Richard E. Passingham

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When we look at our hands, we immediately know that they are part of our own body. This feeling of ownership of our limbs is a fundamental aspect of self-consciousness. We have studied the neuronal counterparts of this experience. A perceptual illusion was used to manipulate feelings of ownership of a rubber hand presented in front of healthy subjects while(More)
We have used positron emission tomography to study the functional anatomy of motor sequence learning. Subjects learned sequences of keypresses by trial and error using auditory feedback. They were scanned with eyes closed under three conditions: at rest, while performing a sequence that was practiced before scanning until overlearned, and while learning new(More)
It is controversial whether the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is involved in the maintenance of items in working memory or in the selection of responses. We used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the performance of a spatial working memory task by humans. We distinguished the maintenance of spatial items from the selection of an(More)
When we observe someone performing an action, do our brains simulate making that action? Acquired motor skills offer a unique way to test this question, since people differ widely in the actions they have learned to perform. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study differences in brain activity between watching an action that one has learned(More)
When humans are engaged in goal-related processing, activity in prefrontal cortex is increased. However, it has remained unclear whether this prefrontal activity encodes a subject's current intention. Instead, increased levels of activity could reflect preparation of motor responses, holding in mind a set of potential choices, tracking the memory of(More)
1. Differences in the distribution of relative regional cerebral blood flow during motor imagery and execution of a joy-stick movement were investigated in six healthy volunteers with the use of positron emission tomography (PET). Both tasks were compared with a common baseline condition, motor preparation, and with each other. Data were analyzed for(More)
In the macaque monkey ventral premotor cortex (F5), "canonical neurones" are active when the monkey observes an object and when the monkey grasps that object. In the same area, "mirror neurones" fire both when the monkey observes another monkey grasping an object and when the monkey grasps that object. We used event-related fMRI to investigate where in the(More)
Event-related potential studies in man suggest a role for the supplementary motor area (SMA) in movement preparation, particularly when movements are internally generated. In a previous study combining PET with recording of movement-related cortical potentials, we found similar SMA activation and early pre-movement negativity during self-initiated and(More)
Selection of movement in normal subjects has been shown to involve the premotor, supplementary motor, anterior cingulate, posterior parietal, and dorsolateral prefrontal areas. In Parkinson's disease (PD), the primary pathological change is degeneration of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic projections, and this is associated with difficulty in initiating(More)
We used positron emission tomography to study new learning and automatic performance in normal volunteers. Subjects learned sequences of eight finger movements by trial and error. In a previous experiment we showed that the prefrontal cortex was activated during new learning but not during during automatic performance. The aim of the present experiment was(More)