Article

Differential cerebral activation during observation of expressive gestures and motor acts

University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Neuropsychologia (Impact Factor: 3.3). 02/2006; 44(10):1787-95. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2006.03.016
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

We compared brain activation involved in the observation of isolated right hand movements (e.g. twisting a lid), body-referred movements (e.g. brushing teeth) and expressive gestures (e.g. threatening) in 20 healthy subjects by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Perception-related areas in the occipital and inferior temporal lobe but also the mirror neuron system in the lateral frontal (ventral premotor cortex and BA 44) and superior parietal lobe were active during all three conditions. Observation of body-referred compared to common hand actions induced increased activity in the bilateral posterior superior temporal sulcus (STS), the left temporo-parietal lobe and left BA 45. Expressive gestures involved additional areas related to social perception (bilateral STS, temporal poles, medial prefrontal lobe), emotional processing (bilateral amygdala, bilateral ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), speech and language processing (Broca's and Wernicke's areas) and the pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA). In comparison to body-referred actions, expressive gestures evoked additional activity only in the left VLPFC (BA 47). The valence-ratings for expressive gestures correlated significantly with activation intensity in the VLPFC during expressive gesture observation. Valence-ratings for negative expressive gestures correlated with right STS-activity. Our data suggest that both, the VLPFC and the STS are coding for differential emotional valence during the observation of expressive gestures.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Ralf Veit
    • "The question that arose was whether activation patterns of brain regions were the same when observing the dynamic facial expressions and gestures, taking into consideration the assumption that gestures might be processed in a more cognitive manner unlike facial expressions that primarily had an emotional meaning (Prochnow et al., 2013). In a recent fMRI study, Prochnow et al. (2013) found that inferior temporal gyrus (ITG) and IFG) were activated when observing dynamic facial expressions and gestures, unlike in other studies that found that in addition to IFG activation , the anterior medial prefrontal (Lotze et al., 2006) or paracingulate cortex (Gallagher & Frith, 2004) were also activated. The results obtained by Prochnow et al. (2013) suggested a right-hemisphere dominance for processing affective body expressions due to the intense activation of the right dorsal medial frontal cortex and the ITG. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Processing emotional body expressions has become recently an important topic in affective and social neuroscience along with the investigation of facial expressions. The objective of the study is to review the literature on emotional body expressions in order to discuss the current state of knowledge on this topic and identify directions for future research. The following electronic databases were searched: PsychINFO, Ebsco, ERIC, ProQuest, Sagepub, and SCOPUS using terms such as “body, ” “bodily expression, ” “body perception, ” “emotions, ” “posture, ” “body recognition” and combinations of them. The synthesis revealed several research questions that were addressed in neuroimaging, electrophysiological and behavioral studies. Among them, one important question targeted the neural mechanisms of emotional processing of body expressions to specific subsections regarding the time course for the integration of emotional signals from face and body, as well as the role of context in the perception of emotional signals. Processing bodily expression of emotion is similar to processing facial expressions, and the holistic processing is extended to the whole person. The current state-of-the-art in processing emotional body expressions may lead to a better understanding of the underlying neural mechanisms of social behavior. At the end of the review, suggestions for future research directions are presented.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Social neuroscience
  • Source
    • " seems to have other many functions . In addition to the functions already mentioned , BA44 appears involved in verbal working memory tasks ( Rämä et al . , 2001 ; Sun et al . , 2005 ) , particularly memory of syntactic type ( Fiebach et al . , 2005 ; Wang et al . , 2008 ) ; mirror neuron system ( Manthey et al . , 2003 ; Lawrence et al . , 2006 ; Lotze et al . , 2006 ) ; motor programing ( Amunts et al . , 2004 ) ; tactile imagery ( Yoo et al . , 2003 ) ; arithmetic processing ( Rickard et al . , 2000 ) ; and even music enjoyment ( Koelsch et al . , 2006 ) . This multifunctionality of Broca ' s area may be explained in part by the anatomical subdivision described before , but still specific sub - ar"
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Modern neuroimaging developments have demonstrated that cognitive functions correlate with brain networks rather than specific areas. The purpose of this paper was to analyze the connectivity of Broca's area based on language tasks. A connectivity modeling study was performed by pooling data of Broca's activation in language tasks. Fifty-seven papers that included 883 subjects in 84 experiments were analyzed. Analysis of Likelihood Estimates of pooled data was utilized to generate the map; thresholds at p < 0.01 were corrected for multiple comparisons and false discovery rate. Resulting images were co-registered into MNI standard space. A network consisting of 16 clusters of activation was obtained. Main clusters were located in the frontal operculum, left posterior temporal region, supplementary motor area, and the parietal lobe. Less common clusters were seen in the sub-cortical structures including the left thalamus, left putamen, secondary visual areas, and the right cerebellum. Broca's area-44-related networks involved in language processing were demonstrated utilizing a pooling-data connectivity study. Significance, interpretation, and limitations of the results are discussed.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · Frontiers in Psychology
  • Source
    • "The patients showed little problems with gesture comprehension, but the left parietal volunteers were most severely disturbed on imitation performance, especially with gestures on their own body (combing one’s hair) rather than with an external object (hammering a nail). In a related study, healthy volunteers observed similar sets of pantomimes while undergoing fMRI (Lotze et al., 2006). aIPS was activated in body-referred and isolated hand pantomimes, whereas left inferior SMG and AG showed a significantly increased response to body-referred pantomimes compared to an isolated hand pantomiming an external object. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Neuropsychological and neuroimaging data suggest a differential contribution of posterior parietal regions during the different components of a transitive gesture. Reaching requires the integration of object location and body position coordinates and reaching tasks elicit bilateral activation in different foci along the intraparietal sulcus. Grasping requires a visuomotor match between the object's shape and the hand's posture. Lesion studies and neuroimaging confirm the importance of the anterior part of the intraparietal sulcus for human grasping. Reaching and grasping reveal bilateral activation that is generally more prominent on the side contralateral to the hand used or the hemifield stimulated. Purposeful behavior with objects and tools can be assessed in a variety of ways, including actual use, pantomimed use, and pure imagery of manipulation. All tasks have been shown to elicit robust activation over the left parietal cortex in neuroimaging, but lesion studies have not always confirmed these findings. Compared to pantomimed or imagined gestures, actual object and tool use typically produces activation over the left primary somatosensory region. Neuroimaging studies on pantomiming or imagery of tool use in healthy volunteers revealed neural responses in possibly separate foci in the left supramarginal gyrus. In sum, the parietal contribution of reaching and grasping of objects seems to depend on a bilateral network of intraparietal foci that appear organized along gradients of sensory and effector preferences. Dorsal and medial parietal cortex appears to contribute to the online monitoring/adjusting of the ongoing prehensile action, whereas the functional use of objects and tools seems to involve the inferior lateral parietal cortex. This functional input reveals a clear left lateralized activation pattern that may be tuned to the integration of acquired knowledge in the planning and guidance of the transitive movement.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Frontiers in Psychology
Show more