Motor facilitation during action observation: a magnetic stimulation study. Fadiga, L., L. Fogassi, G. Pavesi, and G. Rizzolatti. Istituto di Fisiologia Umana, Universit[grave]a di Parma, I-43100 Parma, Italy, and Istituto di Clinica Neurologica, Universit[grave]a di Parma, I- 43100 Parma, Italy.
APStracts 2:0037N, 1995.
1. We stimulated the motor cortex of normal subjects (transcranial magnetic stimulation) while they : a) observed an experimenter grasping 3D-objects, b) looked at the same 3D-objects, c) observed an experimenter tracing geometrical figures in the air with his arm, and d) detected the dimming of a light. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were recorded from hand muscles. 2. We found that MEPs significantly increased during the conditions in which subjects observed movements. The MEP pattern reflected the pattern of muscle activity recorded when the subjects executed the observed actions. 3. We conclude that in humans there is a system matching action observation and execution. This system resembles the one recently described in the monkey.

Received 29 July 1994; accepted in final form 21 February 1995.
APS Manuscript Number J464-4.
Article publication pending J. Neurophysiol.
ISSN 1080-4757 Copyright 1995 The American Physiological Society.
Published in APStracts on  3 April 1995.