Neural coding within human brain areas involved in actions.
Current opinion in neurobiology
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Many earlier human functional MRI (fMRI) studies that investigated the neural circuits involved in sensorimotor control were motivated by previous non-human primate (NHP) work and focused on the specialization of brain areas for particular actions like reaching, grasping and eye movements. More recently, newer, more sensitive analysis techniques have enabled researchers to move beyond this simple functional mapping approach and begin exploring a wide range of novel research questions in humans that have not been well addressed in NHPs. This work, which we review here, reveals that action-related information is coded across a much broader range of brain regions than expected from earlier studies and offers new insights into the highly distributed hierarchical neural architecture that supports human goal-directed behavior.