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Although facilitation of the corticospinal system during action observation is widely accepted, it remains controversial whether this facilitation reflects a replica of the observed movements or the goal of the observed motor acts. In the present study, we asked whether, when an object is grasped by using a tool, corticospinal facilitation represents 1) the(More)
A large body of research reports that perceiving body movements of other people activates motor representations in the observer's brain. This automatic resonance mechanism appears to be imitative in nature. However, action observation does not inevitably lead to symmetrical motor facilitation: mirroring the observed movement might be disadvantageous for(More)
The human mirror system has been the subject of much research over the past two decades, but little is known about the timecourse of mirror responses. In addition, it is unclear whether mirror and counter-mirror effects follow the same timecourse. We used single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation to investigate the timecourse of mirror and(More)
A large body of research reports that perceiving body movements of other people activates motor representations in the observer's brain. This automatic resonance mechanism appears to be imitative in nature. However, action observation does not inevitably lead to symmetrical motor facilitation: Mirroring the observed movement might be disadvantageous for(More)
Skepticism has been expressed concerning the possibility to understand others' intentions by simply observing their movements: since a number of different intentions may have produced a particular action, motor information-it has been argued-might be sufficient to understand what an agent is doing, but not her remote goal in performing that action. Here we(More)
Because the way we grasp an object varies depending on the intention with which the object is grasped, monitoring the properties of prehensile movements may provide access to a person's intention. Here we investigate the role of visual kinematics in the implicit coding of intention, by using functional brain imaging while participants observed grasping(More)
Body movement provides a rich source of information about other people's goals and intentions. In the present study, we examined a particular aspect concerned with the interpretation of bodily movement--how well people can distinguish between different social intentions by observing a reach-to-grasp movement. To ascertain to what extent(More)
Although facilitation of the cortico-spinal system during action observation is widely accepted, it remains controversial whether this facilitation reflects a replica of the observed movements or the goal of the observed motor acts. In the present transcranial magnetic stimulation study, we recorded motor evoked potentials from two hand muscles (first(More)
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) studies have shown that the observation of an action causes subliminal activation within the motor system. However, the issue of whether such an effect is modulated by the match between the observed action and that the observer would have exhibited if acting under similar circumstances remains unclear. We address this(More)
A key component of social understanding is the ability to read intentions from movements. But how do we discern intentions in others' actions? What kind of intention information is actually available in the features of others' movements? Based on the assumption that intentions are hidden away in the other person's mind, standard theories of social cognition(More)