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The embodied cognition hypothesis suggests that motor and premotor areas are automatically and necessarily involved in understanding action language, as word conceptual representations are embodied. This transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) study explores the role of the left primary motor cortex in action-verb processing. TMS-induced motor-evoked(More)
Embodied theories hold that understanding what another person is doing requires the observer to map that action directly onto his or her own motor representation and simulate it internally. The human motor system may, thus, be endowed with a "mirror matching" device through which the same motor representation is activated, when the subject is either the(More)
Activity in frontocentral motor regions is routinely reported when individuals process action words and is often interpreted as the implicit simulation of the word content. We hypothesized that these neural responses are not invariant components of action word processing but are modulated by the context in which they are evoked. Using fMRI, we assessed the(More)
It has been proposed that language and action representational systems overlap when the tasks used to assess them involve the same stimuli and require abilities acquired at similarly early developmental stage. We matched variables at task and stimulus level to test this hypothesis in a group of 12 left-damaged patients (and 17 controls). At the patients'(More)
Traditionally the motor system was thought of as a movement output device that, after brain damage, can impede patients from correctly planning and executing an action. In the last 20 years neuropsychological observations have contributed to the development of a new view that attributes higher-level functions to this system. Rapidly, this area of(More)
Sensorimotor representations in the brain encode the sensory and motor aspects of one's own bodily activity. It is highly debated whether sensorimotor representations are the core basis for the representation of action-related knowledge and, in particular, action words, such as verbs. In this review, we will address this question by bringing to bear(More)
Conceptual processing of verbs consistently recruits the left posterior middle temporal gyrus (lpMTG). The left precentral motor cortex also responds to verbs, with higher activity for action than nonaction verbs. The early timing of this effect has suggested that motor features of words' meaning are accessed directly, bypassing access to conceptual(More)
Comprehension of words is an important part of the language faculty, involving the joint activity of frontal and temporo-parietal brain regions. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) enables the controlled perturbation of brain activity, and thus offers a unique tool to test specific predictions about the causal relationship between brain regions and(More)
The right temporoparietal junction (rTPJ) is a polysensory cortical area that plays a key role in perception and awareness. Neuroimaging evidence shows activation of rTPJ in intersensory and sensorimotor conflict situations, but it remains unclear whether this activity reflects detection or resolution of such conflicts. To address this question, we(More)
Motor activations reported during action-word understanding have raised the question as to whether the system for motor production contains semantically-relevant information. Cognitive neuropsychologists have provided compelling evidence that damage to the system for production of object-directed (transitive) actions does not necessarily lead to detrimental(More)