Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
The neural basis of temporal information processing remains unclear, but it is proposed that the cerebellum plays an important role through its internal clock or feed-forward computation functions. In this study, fMRI was used to investigate the brain networks engaged in perceptual and motor aspects of subsecond temporal processing without accompanying coprocessing of spatial information. Direct comparison between perceptual and motor aspects of time processing was made with a categorical-design analysis. The right lateral cerebellum (lobule VI) was active during a time discrimination task, whereas the left cerebellar lobule VI was activated during a timed movement generation task. These findings were consistent with the idea that the cerebellum contributed to subsecond time processing in both perceptual and motor aspects. The feed-forward computational theory of the cerebellum predicted increased cerebro-cerebellar interactions during time information processing. In fact, a psychophysiological interaction analysis identified the supplementary motor and dorsal premotor areas, which had a significant functional connectivity with the right cerebellar region during a time discrimination task and with the left lateral cerebellum during a timed movement generation task. The involvement of cerebro-cerebellar interactions may provide supportive evidence that temporal information processing relies on the simulation of timing information through feed-forward computation in the cerebellum.