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BACKGROUND A combined protocol of voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) was applied to investigate the neurodevelopment of gray and white matter in autism. METHODS Twenty children with autism (mean age= 7 ± 2.75 years old; age range: 4-14; 2 girls) and 22 matched normally developing children (mean age = 7.68 ± 2.03 years old;(More)
Whether motor and linguistic representations of actions share common neural structures has recently been the focus of an animated debate in cognitive neuroscience. Group studies with brain-damaged patients reported association patterns of praxic and linguistic deficits whereas single case studies documented double dissociations between the correct execution(More)
Past research has indicated that when individuals observe biological movements many areas in the observer's motor system become active. Nonetheless, recent behavioral evidence showed that observed movements can interfere with execution of incompatible movements, especially the biological ones. However, the hypothesis that the interference originates within(More)
The human tendency to imitate gestures performed by conspecifics is automatic in nature. However, whether this automatic imitation can be considered as a true imitative phenomenon or only as a special instance of spatial compatibility is still being debated. New evidence suggests that automatic imitation, otherwise known as 'imitative compatibility', shall(More)
Human ability to imitate movements is instantiated in parietal, premotor and opercular structures, often referred to as the human homologue of the macaque mirror neuron system. As most studies employed imitation of specular models (participants imitated the seen movement as their mirror reflection), it is unclear whether the structures implicated code for(More)
Imitation can be realized via two different routes: a direct route that translates visual input into motor output when gestures are meaningless or unknown, and a semantic route for known/meaningful gestures. Young infants show imitative behaviours compatible with the direct route, but little is known about the development of the semantic route, studied here(More)
Humans flexibly attend to features or locations and these processes are influenced by the probability of sensory events. We combined computational modeling of response times with fMRI to compare the functional correlates of (re-)orienting, and the modulation by probabilistic inference in spatial and feature-based attention systems. Twenty-four volunteers(More)
Imitation is a sensorimotor process whereby the visual information present in the model's movement has to be coupled with the activation of the motor system in the observer. This also implies that greater the similarity between the seen and the produced movement, the easier it will be to execute the movement, a process also known as ideomotor compatibility.(More)
We report a case of a 47-year-old woman with 35-year history of multiple sclerosis, who showed alien hand signs, a rare behavioural disorder that involves unilateral goal-directed movements that are contrary to the individual's intention. Alien hand syndrome has been described in multiple sclerosis (MS) only occasionally and is generally suggestive of(More)
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