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Cortex. 2014 May;54:106-16. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2014.02.007. Epub 2014 Feb 24.

Distinct spatio-temporal profiles of beta-oscillations within visual and sensorimotor areas during action recognition as revealed by MEG.

Author information

1
Institute of Clinical Neuroscience and Medical Psychology, Medical Faculty, Heinrich-Heine-University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany. Electronic address: pavlidou.anastasia@gmail.com.
2
Institute of Clinical Neuroscience and Medical Psychology, Medical Faculty, Heinrich-Heine-University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany.

Abstract

The neural correlates of action recognition have been widely studied in visual and sensorimotor areas of the human brain. However, the role of neuronal oscillations involved during the process of action recognition remains unclear. Here, we were interested in how the plausibility of an action modulates neuronal oscillations in visual and sensorimotor areas. Subjects viewed point-light displays (PLDs) of biomechanically plausible and implausible versions of the same actions. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we examined dynamic changes of oscillatory activity during these action recognition processes. While both actions elicited oscillatory activity in visual and sensorimotor areas in several frequency bands, a significant difference was confined to the beta-band (∼20 Hz). An increase of power for plausible actions was observed in left temporal, parieto-occipital and sensorimotor areas of the brain, in the beta-band in successive order between 1650 and 2650 msec. These distinct spatio-temporal beta-band profiles suggest that the action recognition process is modulated by the degree of biomechanical plausibility of the action, and that spectral power in the beta-band may provide a functional interaction between visual and sensorimotor areas in humans.

KEYWORDS:

Actions; Mirror neuron system; Oscillatory activity; Point-light displays

PMID:
24657479
DOI:
10.1016/j.cortex.2014.02.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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