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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2015 Aug;33:141-9. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2015.03.012. Epub 2015 Apr 11.

Neural coding within human brain areas involved in actions.

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Centre for Neuroscience Studies, Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada; Department of Psychology, Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada.
Brain and Mind Institute, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada; Department of Psychology, University of Western Ontario, London, ON, Canada. Electronic address:


Many earlier human functional MRI (fMRI) studies that investigated the neural circuits involved in sensorimotor control were motivated by previous non-human primate (NHP) work and focused on the specialization of brain areas for particular actions like reaching, grasping and eye movements. More recently, newer, more sensitive analysis techniques have enabled researchers to move beyond this simple functional mapping approach and begin exploring a wide range of novel research questions in humans that have not been well addressed in NHPs. This work, which we review here, reveals that action-related information is coded across a much broader range of brain regions than expected from earlier studies and offers new insights into the highly distributed hierarchical neural architecture that supports human goal-directed behavior.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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