Mirror neurons and mirror systems in monkeys and humans

Physiology (Bethesda). 2008 Jun:23:171-9. doi: 10.1152/physiol.00004.2008.


Mirror neurons are a distinct class of neurons that transform specific sensory information into a motor format. Mirror neurons have been originally discovered in the premotor and parietal cortex of the monkey. Subsequent neurophysiological (TMS, EEG, MEG) and brain imaging studies have shown that a mirror mechanism is also present in humans. According to its anatomical locations, mirror mechanism plays a role in action and intention understanding, imitation, speech, and emotion feeling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Comprehension / physiology*
  • Emotions / physiology
  • Humans
  • Imitative Behavior / physiology
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Neurons, Afferent / physiology*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology