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MEL LAB

Plasticity and recovery of function

Quentin Romain, Awosika Oluwole, Cohen Leonardo G.

Abstract

the frontal lobe plays a crucial role in human motor behavior. it is one of the last areas of the brain to mature, especially the prefrontal regions. after a brief historical perspective on the perceived dichotomy between the view of the brain as a static organ and that of a plastic, constantly changing structure, we discuss the stability/plasticity dilemma including examples of documented cortical reorganization taking place at multiple spatial and temporal scales. we pose that while plasticity is needed for motor learning, stability of the system is necessary for storage and maintenance of memorized skills. we discuss how this plasticity/stability dilemma is resolved along the life span and after a brain injury. we then examine the main challenges that clinicians have to overcome to promote recovery of function in patients with brain lesions, including attempts to use neurostimulation techniques as adjuvant to training-based customary neurorehabilitation.


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