Mirror neuron

mirror neuronsmirror neuron systemMirror motor neuronsmirror neurons networkMirror neuron activityMirror neurons in monkeysmirror systemmirror systemsmirroredmirroring
A mirror neuron is a neuron that fires both when an animal acts and when the animal observes the same action performed by another.wikipedia
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Empathy

empathicempathempathetic
In addition, Iacoboni has argued that mirror neurons are the neural basis of the human capacity for emotions such as empathy.
* Somatic empathy is a physical reaction, probably based on mirror neuron responses, in the somatic nervous system.

Vittorio Gallese

In the 1980s and 1990s, neurophysiologists Giacomo Rizzolatti, Giuseppe Di Pellegrino, Luciano Fadiga, Leonardo Fogassi, and Vittorio Gallese at the University of Parma placed electrodes in the ventral premotor cortex of the macaque monkey to study neurons specialized in the control of hand and mouth actions; for example, taking hold of an object and manipulating it.
Gallese is one of the discoverers of mirror neurons.

Giacomo Rizzolatti

Professor Giacomo Rizzolatti
In the 1980s and 1990s, neurophysiologists Giacomo Rizzolatti, Giuseppe Di Pellegrino, Luciano Fadiga, Leonardo Fogassi, and Vittorio Gallese at the University of Parma placed electrodes in the ventral premotor cortex of the macaque monkey to study neurons specialized in the control of hand and mouth actions; for example, taking hold of an object and manipulating it.
Born in Kiev, Ukraine, he is the Senior Scientist of the research team that discovered mirror neurons in the frontal and parietal cortex of the macaque monkey, and has written many scientific articles on the topic.

Christian Keysers

In 2002 Christian Keysers and colleagues reported that, in both humans and monkeys, the mirror system also responds to the sound of actions.
After that, he moved to the University of Parma where he was part of the team that discovered auditory mirror neurons in the frontal cortex of the macaque monkey.

Common coding theory

coding of both visual and motor actionscommon coding theories
Some researchers in cognitive neuroscience and cognitive psychology consider that this system provides the physiological mechanism for the perception/action coupling (see the common coding theory).
Today common coding theory is closely related to research and theory in two intersecting fields of study: Mirror neurons systems and embodied cognition.

Theory of mind

theory of mind (ToM)theory of the mindtheory of other minds
Some researchers speculate that mirror systems may simulate observed actions, and thus contribute to theory of mind skills, while others relate mirror neurons to language abilities. In Philosophy of mind, mirror neurons have become the primary rallying call of simulation theorists concerning our "theory of mind".
Research by Vittorio Gallese, Luciano Fadiga and Giacomo Rizzolatti (reviewed in ) has shown that some sensorimotor neurons, which are referred to as mirror neurons, first discovered in the premotor cortex of rhesus monkeys, may be involved in action understanding.

Premotor cortex

premotorarea F7dorsal premotor cortex
In the 1980s and 1990s, neurophysiologists Giacomo Rizzolatti, Giuseppe Di Pellegrino, Luciano Fadiga, Leonardo Fogassi, and Vittorio Gallese at the University of Parma placed electrodes in the ventral premotor cortex of the macaque monkey to study neurons specialized in the control of hand and mouth actions; for example, taking hold of an object and manipulating it. In humans, brain activity consistent with that of mirror neurons has been found in the premotor cortex, the supplementary motor area, the primary somatosensory cortex, and the inferior parietal cortex.
Mirror neurons were first discovered in area F5 in the monkey brain by Rizzolatti and colleagues.

Luciano Fadiga

In the 1980s and 1990s, neurophysiologists Giacomo Rizzolatti, Giuseppe Di Pellegrino, Luciano Fadiga, Leonardo Fogassi, and Vittorio Gallese at the University of Parma placed electrodes in the ventral premotor cortex of the macaque monkey to study neurons specialized in the control of hand and mouth actions; for example, taking hold of an object and manipulating it.

Associative sequence learning

Two closely related models postulate that mirror neurons are trained through Hebbian or Associative learning (see Associative Sequence Learning).
Associative sequence learning (ASL) explains how mirror neurons are able to match observed and performed actions, and how individuals (adults, children, animals) are able to imitate body movements.

Insular cortex

insulaanterior insulainsula cortex
A large number of experiments using fMRI, electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG) have shown that certain brain regions (in particular the anterior insula, anterior cingulate cortex, and inferior frontal cortex) are active when people experience an emotion (disgust, happiness, pain, etc.) and when they see another person experiencing an emotion.
This associates with a mirror neuron-like link between external and internal experiences.

Mirroring (psychology)

mirroringmirrormirrored
The activation of mirror neurons takes place within the individual who begins to mirror another's movements, and allows them a greater connection and understanding with the individual who they are mirroring, as well as allowing the individual who is being mirrored to feel a stronger connection with the other individual.

Motor theory of speech perception

Motor theoryMotor theories of speech
This has increased particularly since the discovery of mirror neurons that link the production and perception of motor movements, including those made by the vocal tract.

Electroencephalography

EEGelectroencephalogramelectroencephalograph
A large number of experiments using fMRI, electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG) have shown that certain brain regions (in particular the anterior insula, anterior cingulate cortex, and inferior frontal cortex) are active when people experience an emotion (disgust, happiness, pain, etc.) and when they see another person experiencing an emotion.

Simulation theory of empathy

simulation theorysimulation theorists
In Philosophy of mind, mirror neurons have become the primary rallying call of simulation theorists concerning our "theory of mind".
The discovery of mirror neurons in macaque monkeys has provided a physiological mechanism for the common coding between perception and action (see Wolfgang Prinz) and the hypothesis of a similar mirror neuron system in the human brain.

Hebbian theory

Hebbian learningHebbianHebbian plasticity
Two closely related models postulate that mirror neurons are trained through Hebbian or Associative learning (see Associative Sequence Learning).
Hebbian learning and spike-timing-dependent plasticity have been used in an influential theory of how mirror neurons emerge.

V. S. Ramachandran

Vilayanur S. RamachandranV.S. RamachandranVilayanur Ramachandran
V. S. Ramachandran has speculated that mirror neurons may provide the neurological basis of human self-awareness.
In 1999, Ramachandran, in collaboration with then post-doctoral fellow Eric Altschuler and colleague Jaime Pineda, hypothesized that a dysfunction of mirror neuron activity might be responsible for some of the symptoms and signs of autism spectrum disorders.

Speech repetition

Nonword Repetitionword repetitionphonetically
Such speech repetition occurs automatically, fast and separately in the brain to speech perception.
Mirror neurons have been identified that both process the perception and production of motor movements.

Echolalia

echolalicechologiarepeating snippets people have said
Moreover, such vocal imitation can occur without comprehension such as in speech shadowing and echolalia.
Unintentional or nonfunctional echolalia shows similarities to imitation behavior seen after disinhibition of the frontal network is most likely related to mirror neurons.

Motor cognition

actionembodied learningperception-action cycles
The discovery of mirror neurons in the ventral premotor and parietal cortices of the macaque monkey that fire both when it carries out a goal-directed action and when it observes the same action performed by another individual provides neurophysiological evidence for a direct matching between action perception and action production.

Mirror-touch synesthesia

Mirror neurons, discovered recently in monkeys, play a role in helping perceive action.

On Intelligence

Nname cellOn Intelligence: How a New Understanding of the Brain will Lead to the Creation of Truly Intelligent Machines
:Note: As of 2005 mirror neurons have been observed to fire before an anticipated event.

Speech shadowing

shadowingshadowshadowing task
Moreover, such vocal imitation can occur without comprehension such as in speech shadowing and echolalia.

Emotional contagion

affective and emotional contagionaffective contagioncontagion
Vittorio Gallese posits that mirror neurons are responsible for intentional attunement in relation to others.

Action potential

action potentialsnerve impulsenerve impulses
A mirror neuron is a neuron that fires both when an animal acts and when the animal observes the same action performed by another.

Primate

primatesnon-human primatesnon-human primate
Such neurons have been directly observed in primate species.