Share This Article:

Mirror Neurons and Their Reflections

DOI: 10.4236/oalib.1102001    515 Downloads   922 Views  

ABSTRACT

Human mirror neuron system is believed to provide the basic mechanism for social cognition. Mirror neurons were first discovered in 1990s in the premotor area (F5) of macaque monkeys. Besides the premotor area, mirror neuron systems, having different functions depending on their locations, are found in various cortical areas. In addition, the importance of cingulate cortex in mother-infant relationship is clearly emphasized in the literature. Functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, transcortical magnetic stimulation are the modalities used to evaluate the, activity of mirror neurons; for instance, mu wave suppression in electroencephalography recordings is considered as an evidence of mirror neuron activity. Mirror neurons have very important functions such as language processing, comprehension, learning, social interaction and empathy. For example, autistic individuals have less mirror neuron activity; therefore, it is thought that they have less ability of empathy. Responses of mirror neurons to object-directed and non-object directed actions are different and non-object directed action is required for the activation of mirror neurons. Previous researchers find significantly more suppression during the observation of object-directed movements as compared to mimed actions.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Cabioglu, M. and Iseri, S. (2015) Mirror Neurons and Their Reflections. Open Access Library Journal, 2, 1-7. doi: 10.4236/oalib.1102001.

References

[1] Rizzolatti, G. (2005) The Mirror Neuron System and Imitation. In: Hurley, S. and Charter, N., Eds., Perspective on Imitation: From Neuroscience to Social Science: Mechanisms of Imitation and Imitation in Animals, MIT Press, Cambridge, 55-76.
[2] Gastaut, H.J. and Bert, J. (1954) EEG Changes during Cinematographic Presentation; Moving Picture Activation of the EEG. Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, 6, 433-444.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0013-4694(54)90058-9
[3] Cochin, S., Barthelemy, C., Lejeune, B., Roux, S. and Martineau, J. (1998) Perception of Motion and qEEG Activity in Human Adults. Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, 107, 287-295.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/s0013-4694(98)00071-6
[4] Cochin, S., Barthelemy, C., Roux, S. and Martineau, J. (1999) Observation and Execution of Movement: Similarities Demonstrated by Quantified Electroencephalography. European Journal of Neuroscience, 11, 1839-1842.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1460-9568.1999.00598.x
[5] di Pellegrino, G., Fadiga, L., Fogassi, L., Gallese, V. and Rizzolatti, G. (1992) Understanding Motor Events: A Neurophysiological Study. Experimental Brain Research, 91, 176-180.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF00230027
[6] Le Bel, R.M., Pineda, J.A. and Sharma, A. (2009) Motor-Auditory-Visual Integration: The Role of the Human Mirror Neuron System in Communication and Communication Disorders. Journal of Communication Disorders, 42, 299-304.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcomdis.2009.03.011
[7] Gallese, V., Fadiga, L., Fogassi, L. and Rizzolatti, G. (1996) Action Recognition in the Premotor Cortex. Brain, 119, 593-609.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/brain/119.2.593
[8] Ferrari, P.F., Gallese, V., Rizzolatti, G. and Fogassi, L. (2003) Mirror Neurons Responding to the Observation of Ingestive and Communicative Mouth Actions in the Monkey Ventral Premotor Cortex. European Journal of Neuroscience, 17, 1703-1714.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1460-9568.2003.02601.x
[9] Pineda, J.A., Allison, B.Z. and Vankov, A. (2000) The Effects of Self-Movement, Observation, and Imagination on Mu Rhythms and Readiness Potentials (RP’s): Toward a Brain-Computer Interface (BCI). IEEE Transactions on Rehabilitation Engineering, 8, 219-222.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/86.847822
[10] Fadiga, L., Fogassi, L., Pavesi, G. and Rizzolatti, G. (1995) Motor Facilitation during Action Observation: A Magnetic Stimulation Study. Journal of Neurophysiology, 73, 2608-2611.
[11] Kohler, E., Keysers, C., Umiltà, M.A., Fogassi, L., Gallese, V. and Rizzolatti, G. (2002) Hearing Sounds, Understanding Actions: Action Representation in Mirror Neurons. Science, 297, 846-848.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1070311
[12] Murata, A., Fadiga, L., Fogassi, L., Gallese, V., Raos, V. and Rizzolatti, G. (1997) Object Representation in the Ventral Premotor Cortex (Area F5) of the Monkey. Journal of Neurophysiology, 78, 2226-2230.
[13] Pineda, J.A. (2005) The Functional Significance of Mu Rhythms: Translating “Seeing” and “Hearing” into “Doing”. Brain Research, Brain Research Reviews, 50, 57-68.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainresrev.2005.04.005
[14] Ohara, S., Ikeda, A., Kunieda, T., Yazawa, S., Baba, K., et al. (2000) Movement-Related Change of Electrocorticographic Activity in Human Supplementary Motor Area Proper. Brain, 123, 1203-1215.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/brain/123.6.1203
[15] Pfurtscheller, G., Woertz, M., Supp, G. and Lopes da Silva, F.H. (2003) Early Onset of Post-Movement Beta Electroencephalogram Synchronization in the Supplementary Motor Area during Self-Paced Finger Movement in Man. Neuroscience Letters, 339, 111-114.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0304-3940(02)01479-9
[16] Babiloni, C., Babiloni, F., Carducci, F., Cincotti, F., Cocozza, G., et al. (2002) Human Cortical Electroencephalography (EEG) Rhythms during the Observation of Simple Aimless Movements: A High-Resolution EEG Study. Neuroimage, 17, 559-572.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/nimg.2002.1192
[17] Rizzolatti, G. and Craighero, L. (2004) The Mirror-Neuron System. Annual Review of Neuroscience, 27, 169-192.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1146/annurev.neuro.27.070203.144230
[18] Saygin, A.P., Wilson, S.M., Hagler Jr., D.J., Bates, E. and Sereno, M.I. (2004) Point-Light Biological Motion Perception Activates Human Premotor Cortex. Journal of Neuroscience, 24, 6181-6188.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0504-04.2004
[19] Gazzola, V., Aziz-Zadeh, L. and Keysers, C. (2006) Empathy and the Somatotopic Auditory Mirror System in Humans. Current Biology, 16, 1824-1829.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2006.07.072
[20] Oberman, L.M., Hubbard, E.M., McCleery, J.P., Altschuler, E.L., Ramachandran, V.S., et al. (2005) EEG Evidence for Mirror Neuron Dysfunction in Autism Spectrum Disorders. Brain Research. Cognitive Brain Research, 24, 190-198.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cogbrainres.2005.01.014
[21] Oberman, L.M., Pineda, J.A. and Ramachandran, V.S. (2007) The Human Mirror Neuron System: A Link between Action Observation and Social Skills. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 2, 62-66.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/scan/nsl022
[22] Bernier, R., Dawson, G., Webb, S. and Murias, M. (2007) EEG Mu Rhythm and Imitation Impairments in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Brain and Cognition, 64, 228-237.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bandc.2007.03.004
[23] Puzzo, I., Cooper, N.R., Vetter, P. and Russo, R. (2010) EEG Activation Differences in the Pre-Motor Cortex and Supplementary Motor Area between Normal Individuals with High and Low Traits of Autism. Brain Research, 1342, 104-110.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2010.04.060
[24] Fogassi, L., Ferrari, P.F., Gesierich, B., Rozzi, S., Chersi, F., et al. (2005) Parietal Lobe: From Action Organization to Intention Understanding. Science, 308, 662-667.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1106138
[25] Cattaneo, L., Fabbri-Destro, M., Boria, S., Pieraccini, C., Monti, A., et al. (2007) Impairment of Actions Chains in Autism and Its Possible Role in Intention Understanding. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104, 17825-17830.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0706273104
[26] Cheng, Y., Lee, P.L., Yang, C.Y., Lin, C.P., Hung, D., et al. (2008) Gender Differences in the Mu Rhythm of the Human Mirror-Neuron System. PLoS ONE, 3, e2113.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0002113
[27] Perry, A. and Bentin, S. (2009) Mirror Activity in the Human Brain While Observing Hand Movements: A Comparison between EEG Desynchronization in the Mu-Range and Previous fMRI Results. Brain Research, 1282, 126-132.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2009.05.059
[28] Järveläinen, J., Schürmann, M., Avikainen, S. and Hari, R. (2001) Stronger Reactivity of the Human Primary Motor Cortex during Observation of Live Rather than Video Motor Acts. Neuroreport, 12, 3493-3495.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/00001756-200111160-00024
[29] Joly-Mascheroni, R.M., Senju, A. and Shepherd, A.J. (2008) Dogs Catch Human Yawns. Biology Letters, 4, 446-448.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2008.0333
[30] Lewis, D.H. (2010) Mu Suppression, Mirror Neuron Activity, and Empathy. Honors Thesis, Texas State University, San Marcos.
[31] De Waal, F., Thompson, E. and Proctor, J. (2005) Primates, Monk and the Mind. Journal of Consciousness Studies, 12, 1-17.
[32] Freud, S. (1966) Project for a Scientific Psychology (1950/1895) in Complete Psychological Works. Hogarch Press, London.
[33] Fenichel, O. (1974) Nevrozların Psikoanalitik Teorisi. Ege University Press, Izmir.
[34] Batson, C.D., Kobrynowicz, D., Dinnerstein, J.L., Kampf, H.C. and Wilson, A.D. (1997) In a Very Different Voice: Unmasking Moral Hypocrisy. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 72, 1335-1348.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.72.6.1335
[35] Starcevic, V. and Piontek, C.M. (1997) Empathic Understanding Revisited: Conceptualization, Controversies, and Limitations. American Journal of Psychotherapy, 51, 317-328.
[36] Harrison, N.A., Wilson, C.E. and Critchley, H.D. (2007) Processing of Observed Pupil Size Modulates Perception of Sadness and Predicts Empathy. Emotion, 7, 724-729.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/1528-3542.7.4.724
[37] Pfurtscheller, G. and Neuper, C. (1997) Motor Imagery Activates Primary Sensorimotor Area in Humans. Neuroscience Letters, 239, 65-68.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0304-3940(97)00889-6
[38] Oberman, L.M., Ramachandran, V.S. and Pineda, J.A. (2008) Modulation of Mu Suppression in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders in Response to Familiar or Unfamiliar Stimuli: The Mirror Neuron Hypothesis. Neuropsychologia, 46, 1558-1565.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2008.01.010
[39] Yang, C.Y., Decety, J., Lee, S., Chen, C. and Cheng, Y. (2009) Gender Differences in the Mu Rhythm during Empathy for Pain: An Electroencephalographic Study. Brain Research, 1251, 176-184.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brainres.2008.11.062
[40] Bell, S.M. and Ainsworth, M.D. (1972) Infant Crying and Maternal Responsiveness. Child Development, 43, 1171-1190.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/1127506
[41] Swain, J.E., Leckman, J.F., Mayes, L.C., Feldman, R., Constable, R.T., et al. (2003) The Neural Circuitry of Parent-Infant Attachment in the Early Postpartum. Proceedings of the 42nd American College of Neuropsychopharmacology Annual Meeting, San Juan, Puerto Rico,7-11 December 2003, 7-11.
[42] Maestripieri, D. (1995) Maternal Responsiveness to Infant Distress Calls in Stumptail Macaques. Folia Primatologica (Basel), 64, 201-206.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000156854
[43] Bridges, R.S. (2008) Neurobiology of the Parental Brain. Academic Press, Burlington.
[44] MacLean, P.D. (1990) The Triune Brain in Evolution (Role in Paleocerebral Functions). Plenum Press, New York.
[45] Slotnick, B.M. (1967) Disturbances of Maternal Behavior in the Rat Following Lesions of the Cingulate Cortex. Behaviour, 29, 204-236.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/156853967X00127
[46] Stamm, J.S. (1955) The Function of the Median Cerebral Cortex in Maternal Behavior of Rats. Journal of Comparative & Physiological Psychology, 48, 347-356.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/h0042977
[47] Wilsoncroft, W.E. (1963) Effects of Median Cortex Lesions on the Maternal Behavior of the Rat. Psychological Reports, 13, 835-838.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2466/pr0.1963.13.3.835
[48] Lorberbaum, J.P., Newman, J.D., Dubno, J.R., Horwitz, A.R., Nahas, Z., et al. (1999) Feasibility of Using fMRI to Study Mothers Responding to Infant Cries. Depress Anxiety, 10, 99-104.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/(SICI)1520-6394(1999)10:3<99::AID-DA2>3.0.CO;2-#
[49] Milner, J.S., Halsey, L.B. and Fultz, J. (1995) Empathic Responsiveness and Affective Reactivity to Infant Stimuli in High- and Low-Risk for Physical Child Abuse Mothers. Child Abuse & Neglect, 19, 767-780.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0145-2134(95)00035-7
[50] MacLean, P.D. and Newman, J.D. (1988) Role of Midline Frontolimbic Cortex in Production of the Isolation Call of Squirrel Monkeys. Brain Research, 450, 111-123.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0006-8993(88)91550-8

  
comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2019 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.