Motor cognition: neurophysiological underpinning of planning, imagining
and predicting upcoming actions
Claudia Domingues Vargas (UFRJ)
Motor systems are exquisitely adapted to transform an action goal into the
production of a movement of greatest fit in a given context.
This transformation, called motor planning, is thought to be performed through
internal models of actions.
These models operate by continuously monitoring the motor output and by making
future predictions of changes in body states and of the immediate environment.
Because of the delays inherent to sensorimotor processing, the ability to
predict the future state of the motor system in a variable environment (context)
is considered crucial to create efficient movements and appropriate behaviors.
In this colloquium I intend to explore how the brain activity associated with
motor planning changes as a function of the context in which this movement shall
Furthermore, I will present results showing that lesions in specific brain
regions can affect the capacity of making predictions of one's own and/or of
other's upcoming actions.