Frontal lobe functioning

  • Strategies and heuristics in spatial planning and navigation:
    Visuo-spatial planning is a process based on heuristics and is carried out in small units during information processing and not in a specific stage before execution of a spatial task. The ability to modifying the plan during the execution of a task was hypothesized to be related to the mid-dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (BA9), interacting with the posterior parietal and other brain areas. This hypothesis has been tested in brain injured and healthy subjects, also using neuroimaging techniques.
    - Basso, D., Lotze, M., Vitale, L., Ferreri, F., Bisiacchi, P.S., Olivetti Belardinelli, M., Rossini, P.M., & Birbaumer, N. (2006). The role of prefrontal cortex on visuo-spatial planning: A repetitive-TMS study. Experimental Brain Research, 171(3), 411-415.
    - Basso, D., Birbaumer, N., Veit, R., Olivetti-Belardinelli, M., & Lotze, M. (2006). Visuo-spatial planning in a labyrinth task: A fMRI study. Neuroimage 31(suppl.1).
    - Basso, D., Saracini, C., Lotze, M., Olivetti-Belardinelli, M., & Birbaumer, N. (2005). Repetitive TMS stimulation on virtual 3D navigation: Gender differences in frontal and parietal involvement. In: B. Hommel, G. P. H. Band, W. La Heij, & G. Wolters (a cura di), Proceedings of the XIV meeting of the ESCOP. (p. 97).
    - Basso, D., Bisiacchi, P.S., & Olivetti Belardinelli, M.. Influence of cognitive style on visuo-spatial planning performance. (In preparation).

  • Feedforward processing in action selection:
    Feedforward processing is considered as a mechanisms to control behaviour, in the modelling of mental processes, as in cognitive psychology to investigate the architecture of mind, as in neuropsychology to detecting the way cellular assemblies and cerebral areas are connected.
    Models of action processes and the control of behaviour based on feedforward processing are evaluated in their possibilities of explanation of mental events.
    - Basso, D., & Olivetti Belardinelli, M. (2006). The role of feedforward paradigm in cognitive psychology. Cognitive Processing, 7(2), 73-88.
    - Olivetti Belardinelli, M., & Basso, D. (2001). The role of feedforward control in motor planning processes. Behavioural and Brain Sciences, 24, 896-897.

  • Decision making and intentionality:
    Intentionality is studied evaluating how goals and plans affect the cognitive process of taking a decision. Our purpose is the description of the conditions in which a task could determine a change in the intentions of a subjects in order to achieve a goal.
    EEG techniques are used to evaluate the mental pattern of activity in subjects performing a visuo-spatial decision-making task.
    - Rea, M., Basso, D., Lucci, G., Olivetti Belardinelli, M., & Gentilomo, A.. EEG activity of associative cortices in low-level decision making about visuo-spatial patterns. (In preparation).

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