Modulation of putative mirror neuron activity by both positively and negatively valenced affective stimuli: a TMS study

Aron Hill, Bernadette Fitzgibbon, Sara Arnold, Nicole Joan Rinehart, Paul Bernard Fitzgerald, Peter Gregory Enticott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Research indicates that mirror neurons are important for social cognition, including emotion processing. Emerging evidence, however, also reveals that emotional stimuli might be capable of modulating human mirror neuron system (MNS) activity. The current study used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to assess putative mirror neuron function following emotionally evocative images in twenty healthy adults. Participants observed videos of either a transitive hand action or a static hand while undergoing TMS of the primary motor cortex. In order to examine the effect of emotion on the MNS, each video was preceded by an image of either a positive, negative or neutral valence. MNS activity was found to be augmented by both the positive and negative (relative to neutral) stimuli, thus providing empirical support for a bi-directional link between emotion and the MNS, whereby both positively and negatively valenced stimuli are capable of facilitating mirror neuron activity. The potential adaptive significance of this finding is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)116 - 123
Number of pages8
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume249
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Cite this

@article{9a1dc6dba657457c813cdd617d0e18ea,
title = "Modulation of putative mirror neuron activity by both positively and negatively valenced affective stimuli: a TMS study",
abstract = "Research indicates that mirror neurons are important for social cognition, including emotion processing. Emerging evidence, however, also reveals that emotional stimuli might be capable of modulating human mirror neuron system (MNS) activity. The current study used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to assess putative mirror neuron function following emotionally evocative images in twenty healthy adults. Participants observed videos of either a transitive hand action or a static hand while undergoing TMS of the primary motor cortex. In order to examine the effect of emotion on the MNS, each video was preceded by an image of either a positive, negative or neutral valence. MNS activity was found to be augmented by both the positive and negative (relative to neutral) stimuli, thus providing empirical support for a bi-directional link between emotion and the MNS, whereby both positively and negatively valenced stimuli are capable of facilitating mirror neuron activity. The potential adaptive significance of this finding is discussed.",
author = "Aron Hill and Bernadette Fitzgibbon and Sara Arnold and Rinehart, {Nicole Joan} and Fitzgerald, {Paul Bernard} and Enticott, {Peter Gregory}",
year = "2013",
doi = "10.1016/j.bbr.2013.04.027",
language = "English",
volume = "249",
pages = "116 -- 123",
journal = "Behavioural Brain Research",
issn = "0166-4328",
publisher = "Elsevier - Mosby",

}

Modulation of putative mirror neuron activity by both positively and negatively valenced affective stimuli: a TMS study. / Hill, Aron; Fitzgibbon, Bernadette; Arnold, Sara; Rinehart, Nicole Joan; Fitzgerald, Paul Bernard; Enticott, Peter Gregory.

In: Behavioural Brain Research, Vol. 249, 2013, p. 116 - 123.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Modulation of putative mirror neuron activity by both positively and negatively valenced affective stimuli: a TMS study

AU - Hill, Aron

AU - Fitzgibbon, Bernadette

AU - Arnold, Sara

AU - Rinehart, Nicole Joan

AU - Fitzgerald, Paul Bernard

AU - Enticott, Peter Gregory

PY - 2013

Y1 - 2013

N2 - Research indicates that mirror neurons are important for social cognition, including emotion processing. Emerging evidence, however, also reveals that emotional stimuli might be capable of modulating human mirror neuron system (MNS) activity. The current study used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to assess putative mirror neuron function following emotionally evocative images in twenty healthy adults. Participants observed videos of either a transitive hand action or a static hand while undergoing TMS of the primary motor cortex. In order to examine the effect of emotion on the MNS, each video was preceded by an image of either a positive, negative or neutral valence. MNS activity was found to be augmented by both the positive and negative (relative to neutral) stimuli, thus providing empirical support for a bi-directional link between emotion and the MNS, whereby both positively and negatively valenced stimuli are capable of facilitating mirror neuron activity. The potential adaptive significance of this finding is discussed.

AB - Research indicates that mirror neurons are important for social cognition, including emotion processing. Emerging evidence, however, also reveals that emotional stimuli might be capable of modulating human mirror neuron system (MNS) activity. The current study used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to assess putative mirror neuron function following emotionally evocative images in twenty healthy adults. Participants observed videos of either a transitive hand action or a static hand while undergoing TMS of the primary motor cortex. In order to examine the effect of emotion on the MNS, each video was preceded by an image of either a positive, negative or neutral valence. MNS activity was found to be augmented by both the positive and negative (relative to neutral) stimuli, thus providing empirical support for a bi-directional link between emotion and the MNS, whereby both positively and negatively valenced stimuli are capable of facilitating mirror neuron activity. The potential adaptive significance of this finding is discussed.

UR - http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0166432813002271

U2 - 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.04.027

DO - 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.04.027

M3 - Article

VL - 249

SP - 116

EP - 123

JO - Behavioural Brain Research

JF - Behavioural Brain Research

SN - 0166-4328

ER -