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      Speech listening specifically modulates the excitability of tongue muscles: a TMS study : Tongue involvement during speech listening

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      European Journal of Neuroscience

      Wiley-Blackwell

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          Most cited references 7

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          Temporal dynamics of cortical representation for action.

          Brain-imaging studies have shown that the human Broca's region and precentral motor cortex are activated both during execution of hand actions and during observation of similar actions performed by other individuals. We aimed to clarify the temporal dynamics of this cortical activation by neuromagnetic recordings during execution, on-line imitation, and observation of right-hand reaching movements that ended with a precision pinch of the tip of a manipulandum. During execution, the left inferior frontal cortex [Brodmann's area (BA) 44] was activated first (peak approximately 250 ms before the pinching); this activation was followed within 100-200 ms by activation in the left primary motor area (BA4) and 150-250 ms later in the right BA4. During imitation and observation, the sequence was otherwise similar, but it started from the left occipital cortex (BA19). Activation was always strongest during action imitation. Only the occipital activation was detected when the subject observed the experimenter reaching his hand without pinching. These results suggest that the left BA44 is the orchestrator of the human "mirror neuron system" and is strongly involved in action imitation. The mirror system matches action observation and execution and probably contributes to our understanding of actions made by others.
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            Localization of grasp representations in humans by positron emission tomography

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              On the relation of speech to language.

              There are two widely divergent theories about the relation of speech to language. The more conventional view holds that the elements of speech are sounds that rely for their production and perception on two wholly separate processes, neither of which is distinctly linguistic. Accordingly, the primary motor and perceptual representations are inappropriate for linguistic purposes until a cognitive process of some sort has connected them to language and to each other. The less conventional theory takes the speech elements to be articulatory gestures that are the primary objects of both production and perception. Those gestures form a natural class that serves a linguistic function and no other. Therefore, their representations are immediately linguistic, requiring no cognitive intervention to make them appropriate for use by the other components of the language system. The unconventional view provides the more plausible answers to three important questions: (1) How was the necessary parity between speaker and listener established in evolution, and how maintained? (2) How does speech meet the special requirements that underlie its ability, unique among natural communication systems, to encode an indefinitely large number of meanings? (3) What biological properties of speech make it easier than the reading and writing of its alphabetic transcription?
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                European Journal of Neuroscience
                European Journal of Neuroscience
                Wiley-Blackwell
                0953816X
                January 2002
                January 2002
                : 15
                : 2
                : 399-402
                Article
                10.1046/j.0953-816x.2001.01874.x
                © 2002

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