Current neuroscientific models of empathy postulate that attending to others’ emotions and feelings automatically activate a representation of that state in the observer. Pain consists of affective and sensory-discriminative components, mapped in emotional and sensorimotor structures of a complex neural network (pain matrix). Studies showed empathy for pain relies on activation of the affective division of the pain matrix. In a series of transcranial magnetic stimulation and somatosensory evoked potentials studies we proved that empathy for pain also imply the sharing of fine-grained somatomotor representations, according to the sensory qualities of others’ pain and interestingly also to onlookers’ personality traits. Therefore, empathic resonance for pain is a multifaceted phenomenon characterized by the complex interaction of affective and sensory components, social and personality variables. Although philosophers emphasized that our bodily sensations are intrinsically private, neuroscientific results suggest that the social dimension may extend to the basic sensorimotor level of neural processing.
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|Titolo:||Neural correlates of empathy for pain.|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2009|
|Appartiene alla tipologia:||04c Atto di convegno in rivista|