Paolo Bernardis

Paolo Bernardis
University of Trieste | UNITS · Department of Life Sciences

Ph.D.

About

39
Publications
6,882
Reads
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984
Citations
Additional affiliations
November 2018 - present
University of Trieste
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
December 2008 - November 2018
University of Trieste
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
January 2008 - December 2008
Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati di Trieste
Position
  • PostDoc Position

Publications

Publications (39)
Article
Whole-body movements represent an ecologically valid model for assessing the effect of emotional stimuli valence on approach/avoidance reactions as they entail a change of the physical distance between such stimuli and the self. However, research in this field has provided inconsistent results as the task relevance of the emotional content of the s...
Article
The use of biological motion (BM) stimuli (point-light walkers PLW) may be a novel alternative to improve the clinical impact of Action Observation treatments in Parkinson's Disease, by directing the patient's attentional focus on gait kinematics. However, the recognition of biological motion in Parkinson's patients has thus far been controversial....
Article
Introduction: Freezing of gait (FoG) is one of the most disabling gait disorders in Parkinson's disease (PD), reflecting motor and cognitive impairments, mainly related to dopamine deficiency. Recent studies investigating kinematic and kinetic factors affecting gait in these patients showed a postural instability characterized by disturbed weight-...
Article
Full-text available
Over the last years, several studies have suggested a possible link between dyslexia and deficits in low-level visual processing (e.g., excessive crowding). At the same time, specially designed "dyslexia-friendly" fonts appeared on the market. This class of fonts presents two main features: the particular graphic characteristics of the letterform d...
Article
Full-text available
Background The use of rhythmic auditory stimulation (RAS) has been proven useful in the management of gait disturbances associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD). Typically, the RAS consists of metronome or music-based sounds (artificial RAS), while ecological footstep sounds (ecological RAS) have never been used for rehabilitation programs.Objectiv...
Article
Introduction: The intricate linkage between Freezing of Gait (FoG) and postural control in Parkinson's disease (PD) is unclear. We analyzed the impact of FoG on dynamic postural control. Methods: 24 PD patients, 12 with (PD + FoG), 12 without FoG (PD-FoG), and 12 healthy controls, were assessed in ON state. Mobility and postural control were mea...
Article
Perceptual learning can occur for a feature irrelevant to the training task, when it is sub-threshold and outside of the focus of attention (task-irrelevant perceptual learning, TIPL); however, TIPL does not occur when the task-irrelevant feature is supra-threshold. Here, we asked the question whether TIPL occurs when the task-irrelevant feature is...
Article
Full-text available
Freezing of gait (FoG) is a disabling symptom associated to falls, with little or no responsiveness to pharmacological treatment. Current protocols used for rehabilitation are based on the use of external sensory cues. However, cued strategies might generate an important dependence on the environment. Teaching motor strategies without cues (i.e. ac...
Article
Implicit preparation over time is a complex cognitive capacity important to optimize behavioural responses to a target occurring after a temporal interval, the so-called foreperiod (FP). If the FP occurs randomly and with the same a priori probability, shorter response times are usually observed with longer FPs than with shorter ones (FP effect). M...
Article
Implicit preparation over time is a complex cognitive capacity important to optimize behavioral responses to a target occurring after a temporal interval, the so-called foreperiod (FP). If the FP occurs randomly and with the same a priori probability, shorter response times are usually observed with longer FPs than with shorter ones (FP effect). Mo...
Article
Full-text available
Le frazioni vengono utilizzate quotidianamente e in maniera ripetuta. Nonostante ciò la rappresentazione mentale di tali entità è stata solo recentemente oggetto di indagine. Inizialmente gli studi cognitivi hanno proposto un’elaborazione con un tipo di strategia componenziale. Successivi sviluppi hanno mostrato invece che è possibile anche un’elab...
Article
Full-text available
Fractions are daily and repetitively used. Despite this the mental representation of those entities has only recently been investigated. Earlier cognitive studies proposed that adults process fractions following a purely componential approach, but further studies demonstrated the possibility for a global/holistic processing. More recently, the most...
Article
Full-text available
In four experiments, a computerized Corsi-like paradigm was used to assess which of the many reference frames are used in visuospatial short-term memory. By varying the relative orientation (slanted +/-45° or in an upright position) of the head and the displays, we modulate the utility of the allocentric, egocentric (eye- and head-centred), and tem...
Article
Actors viewed horizontal segments either in isolation or embedded in patterns that produce spatial-relational effects (Kanizsa's compression illusion or the "dumbell" version of the Mü ller-Lyer compression - expansion illusion). They were asked to reproduce the apparent width of these segments by the amplitude of open- or closed-loop motor respons...
Article
Some models of visual function propose that vision-for-action and vision-for-perception use different spatial representations, so that the visual guidance of action can be accurate even when there are systematic biases in conscious visual perception. Support for this counterintuitive prediction has come from behavioral studies suggesting that visua...
Article
It has often been reported that limb movements and eye movements are driven by common spatial representations. In three experiments using spatially identical displays (variants of the Müller-Lyer illusion), we compared the accuracy of spatial verbal judgments with that of saccadic (eye) and pointing (hand) movements. Verbal judgments showed a clear...
Article
Does the mirror system affect the control of speech? This issue was addressed in behavioral and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) experiments. In behavioral experiment 1, participants pronounced the syllable /da/ while observing (1) a hand grasping large and small objects with power and precision grasps, respectively, (2) a foot interacting w...
Article
We report two experiments that provide converging behavioural and neurophysiological evidence on the relationship between the meaning of iconic gestures and words. Experiment 1 exploited a semantic priming paradigm and revealed interference between gestures and words when they were not related in meaning, but no facilitation when they were. This re...
Article
Full-text available
Upper limb gestures, as well as transitive actions (i.e. acted upon an object) when either executed or observed affect speech. Broca's area seems to be involved in integration between the two motor representations of arm and mouth (Bernardis and Gentilucci, Neuropsychologia, 44:178-190, 2006, Gentilucci et al., Eur J Neurosci, 19:190-202, 2004a, Ne...
Article
Models of the human vision propose a division of labor between vision-for-action (identified with the V1-PPT dorsal stream) and vision-for-perception (the V1-IT ventral stream). The idea has been successful in explaining a host of neuropsychological and behavioral data, but has remained controversial in predicting that visually guided actions shoul...
Article
Full-text available
The present study aimed to determine whether the representation of object affordances requires specification of the effector potentially interacting with the object: specifically, in this study, vision of the interacting hand. In Experiment 1 we used an apparatus by which a fruit to be reached and grasped was identified by word reading, whereas ano...
Article
Does listening to and observing the speaking interlocutor influence phoneme production? In two experiments female participants were required to recognize and, then, to repeat the string-of-phonemes /aba/ presented by actors visually, acoustically and audiovisually. In experiment 1 a male actor presented the string-of-phonemes and the participants'...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the present study was to determine whether Broca's area is involved in translating some aspects of arm gesture representations into mouth articulation gestures. In Experiment 1, we applied low-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation over Broca's area and over the symmetrical loci of the right hemisphere of participants res...
Article
Full-text available
Humans speak and produce symbolic gestures. Do these two forms of communication interact, and how? First, we tested whether the two communication signals influenced each other when emitted simultaneously. Participants either pronounced words, or executed symbolic gestures, or emitted the two communication signals simultaneously. Relative to the uni...
Article
Full-text available
Using spatially identical displays (variants of the Müller-Lyer illusion), we compared the accuracy of spatial verbal judgments with that of saccadic (eye) and pointing (hand) movements. Verbal judgments showed a clear effect of the illusion. The amplitude of the primary saccade from one endpoint of the pattern (at fixation) to the other also showe...
Article
The planning/control distinction is an important tool in the study of sensorimotor transformations. However, published data from our laboratories suggest that, contrary to what is predicted by the proposed model, (1) structures in the superior parietal lobe of both monkeys and humans can be involved in movement planning; and (2) fast pointing actio...
Article
Full-text available
Actors viewed horizontal segments either in isolation or embedded in patterns that produce spatial illusory effects (Kanizsa's compression illusion and the "dumbbell" version of the Müller-Lyer compression-expansion illusion). They were asked to reproduce the apparent horizontal extent of these segments by the amplitude of open- or closed-loop moto...
Article
Full-text available
When a horizontally elongated surface is occluded in the middle by a larger surface, it appears narrower than its true width (Kanizsa's compression illusion). We report that a similar compression effect occurs for closed-loop visuomotor matches of size, but not for otherwise comparable open-loop "mimed" reaching or size-matching visuomotor response...
Article
Full-text available
Observers compared two center/surround configurations haploscopically. One configuration consisted of a standard surface surrounded by two, three, or four surfaces, each with a different luminance. The other configuration consisted of a comparison surface surrounded by a single annulus that varied in luminance. Center surfaces always had the same l...
Article
Full-text available
Observers compared two center/surround configurations haploscopically. One configuration consisted of a standard surface surrounded by two, three, or four surfaces, each with a different luminance. The other configuration consisted of a comparison surface surrounded by a single annulus that varied in luminance. Center surfaces always had the same l...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, we provide evidence for a cross-modal interaction between the meaning of pantomimes and words when the visuo-spatial and perceptual information of these last is enhanced. We recorded behavioral and electrophysiological responses with a cross-modal repetition priming. Pantomimes of objects and actions were used to prime visually prese...
Article
Full-text available
The interaction between words and gesture meanings was highlighted in two experiments with a priming paradigm. The results converge in showing the peculiarities of the two meaning systems, thus supporting the Information Packaging Hypothesis (Kita, 2000) against the Lexical Retrieval Hypothesis (Butterworth & Hadar, 1989).

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Projects

Project (1)
Project
Can we modify typographical variables in order to make a text easy to read for dyslexics? Developmental Dyslexia (DD) is a specific learning difficulty that mostly affects the skills involved in reading. It is a life long condition which impacts negatively on a person’s life. The idea to change typographical variables to improve readability is not new. For example, several fonts (e.g., OpenDyslexic, Dyslexie, EasyReading, Biancoenero) had been design to facilitate reading in DD, since these font are claimed to prevent letter confusability. However, recent research has shown that the use of a dyslexic-friendly font has no influence on reading performance (speed and accuracy) in either children or adult dyslexics when compared to the commonly fonts. We are studying, in collaboration with Walter Gerbino, Beppe Chia from the “Chialab” (Bologna, Italy) and Luciano Perondi from the “Istituto Superiore per le Industrie Artistiche” (ISIA, Urbino, Italy), which typographical variables, other than the font, could help to support and promote reading in DD readers.