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Different contributions of visual and motor brain areas during liking judgments of same- and different-gender bodies

Cazzato, V, Mele, S and Urgesi, C (2016) Different contributions of visual and motor brain areas during liking judgments of same- and different-gender bodies. Brain Research, 1646. pp. 98-108. ISSN 1872-6240

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Previous neuroimaging studies have shown that body aesthetic appreciation involves the activation of both visual and motor areas, supporting a role of sensorimotor embodiment in aesthetic processing. Causative evidence, however, that neural activity in these areas is crucial for reliable aesthetic body appreciation has so far provided only for extrastriate body area (EBA), while the functional role played by premotor regions remained less clear. Here, we applied short trains of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over bilateral dorsal premotor cortex (dPMC) and EBA during liking judgments of female and male bodies varying in weight and implied motion. We found that both dPMC and EBA are necessary for aesthetic body appreciation, but their relative contribution depends on the model's gender. While dPMC-rTMS decreased the liking judgments of same-, but not of different-gender models, EBA-rTMS increased the liking judgments of different-, but not of same-gender models. Relative contributions of motor and visual areas may reflect processing of diverse aesthetic properties, respectively implied motion vs. body form, and/or greater sensorimotor embodiment of same- vs. different-gender bodies. Results suggest that aesthetic body processing is subserved by a network of motor and visual areas, whose relative contribution may depend on the specific stimulus and task.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1109 Neurosciences, 1702 Cognitive Science
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Natural Sciences & Psychology (closed 31 Aug 19)
Publisher: Elsevier
Date Deposited: 31 May 2016 10:23
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2021 12:52
DOI or ID number: 10.1016/j.brainres.2016.05.047
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/3692
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