Santa Lucia - Neurosciences and Rehabilitation Sapienza University of Rome

Cogn Neurosci. 2015 Jun 29:1-3. [Epub ahead of print]

"Atypical touch perception in MTS may derive from an abnormally plastic self-representation"

Mirror Touch Synesthetes (MTSs) feel touch while they observe others being touched. According to the authors, two complementary theoretical frameworks, the Threshold Theory and the Self-Other Theory, explain Mirror Touch Synesthesia (MTS). Based on the behavioral evidence that in MTSs the mere observation of touch is sufficient to elicit self-other merging (i.e., self-representation changes), a condition that in non-MTSs just elicits self-other sharing (i.e., mirroring activity without self-other blurring), and on the rTPJ anatomical alterations in MTS, we argue that MTS may derive from an abnormally plastic self-representation and atypical multisensory integrative mechanisms.

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