Effect of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor gene Val66Met polymorphism on sensory-motor integration during a complex motor learning exercise


Deveci S. (. , Matur Z. , Kesim Y. (. , (Sentuk) G. (. S. , Sargin-Kurt G. (. , (Ugur) S. A. U. , ...More

BRAIN RESEARCH, vol.1732, 2020 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 1732
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.brainres.2020.146652
  • Title of Journal : BRAIN RESEARCH
  • Keywords: Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, BDNF Met allele, Transcranial magnetic stimulation, Motor skill learning, Sensory-motor integration, LATENCY AFFERENT INHIBITION, TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION, BDNF VAL(66)MET POLYMORPHISM, SENSORIMOTOR INTEGRATION, CORTEX EXCITABILITY, CORTICAL PLASTICITY, HAND, NEUROPLASTICITY, REORGANIZATION, MODULATION

Abstract

The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene Val66Met polymorphism may cause impairment in short-term motor learning by reducing activity-dependent BDNF expression, which causes alterations in synaptic plasticity by changing glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic transmissions. Sensory-motor integration (SMI) plays an important role in motor learning. In this study, we investigated the role of this polymorphism on SMI during a complex motor learning practice. Forty-three healthy participants performed standardized 5-day basketball shooting exercises under supervision. Electrophysiologic SMI studies were performed before the first day exercise (T0) and after the first and fifth day exercises (T1 and T2, respectively). SMI was studied using electrical median nerve stimulation at the wrist, followed by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the contralateral motor cortex with various inter-stimulus intervals (ISIs). Recordings were made from the thenar and forearm flexor muscles. Participants were divided into two groups according to their BDNF genotype. Group 1 consisted of 26 subjects with the Val66Val genotype and group 2 included 17 subjects with the BDNF Met allele. Group 2 had a lower increase in basketball scores at day 5. Moreover, they had higher afferent facilitation for the responses recorded from both thenar and forearm flexor muscles at T1, but these changes could not be maintained until T2. This non-persistent early hyper-responsivity of the sensory-motor cortex in subjects with the BDNF Met allele might be explained by a transient upsurge of cortical excitability to compensate the insufficient cortical plasticity during motor learning, which could be considered as a sign of lower performance in motor skill learning.