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STAFF  

Professor Giacomo Rizzolatti
~ Full Professor of Human Physiology ~

 
::. Academic Profile  

I was born in Kiev, in the former Soviet Union.

I made my University studies in Padua where I graduated in Medicine and obtained the specialization in Neurology.

I spent then three years at the University of Pisa at the Institute of Physiology, directed at that time by Prof. Giuseppe Moruzzi.

My subsequent academic carrier took place mostly at the University of Parma where I started as an Assistant in Human Physiology and became Professor of Human Physiology, which is my present academic position.

I spent one year in the Department of Psychology of the McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada and one year, as a Visiting Professor, in the Department of Anatomy of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

Since the early nineties I am having a close collaboration with the Department of Computer Science and Neuroscience of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles and with Ahmanson Lovelace Brain Mapping Center of UCLA, Los Angeles.
I have been President of the European Brain Behavior Society and Italian Society for Neuroscience.

For several years I have directed the European Training Program in Brain and Behaviour Research (ETP) sponsored by the European Science Foundation and for a short time I have been a member of the "European Medical Research Council".

At present I am member of Scientific Committee of "Fondation Fyssen" and Associate Member of the Neuroscience Program directed by Gerald Edelman, San Diego.

I am member of "Academia Europaea", of "Accademia dei Lincei" and "Honorary Foreign Member" of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. I have been recently elected member. “Associé étranger” of the Académie des sciences, Institut de France.

Among my major awards are "Golgi Prize for Physiology", "George Miller Award" of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society, the "Feltrinelli Prize for Medicine" of Accademia dei Lincei, and the Herlitzka Prize for Physiology, Accademia delle Scienze di Torino.

I received Honorary Degrees from the University Claude Bernard of Lyon, from the University of St. Petersburg, St. Petersburg, the Grawemeyer Prize for Psychology from the University of Louiseville (USA) and the Prix J.-L. Signoret in Neuropsychologie from the IPSEN Fondation.


(+39) 0521-033879
(+39) 0521-033881


giacomo.rizzolatti@unipr.it

::. Research Interests  

The main focus of my research concerns the motor system and its role in cognitive functions.

In the last years I was mostly involved in studies of the mirror neuron system.

The experimental approach consists of recording the activity of single neurons in non human primates and of brain imaging in humans.

 
::. 10 Most quoted articles  

Rizzolatti G., Arbib M.A.
Language within our grasp.
Trends in Neurosciences, 21(1998), 188-194.

Citations 1651

Rizzolatti G., Fadiga L., Gallese V., Fogassi L.
Premotor cortex and the recognition of motor actions.
Cogn. Brain Res., 3 (1996), 131-141.

Citations 1659

Gallese V., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Rizzolatti G
Action recognition in the premotor cortex.
Brain, 119 (1996), 593-609.

Citations  1621

Iacoboni M., Woods R. P., Brass M., Bekkering H., Mazziotta J.C., Rizzolatti G.
Cortical Mechanisms of human Imitation.
Science 286 (1999) 5449, 2526-2528

Citations 1086

Rizzolatti G., Craighero L.
The Mirror-Neuron System.
Annual Rev. Neurosci. 27 (2004) 169-92.

Citations 1275

Buccino G., Binkofski F., Fink G.R., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Seitz R.J., Zilles K., Rizzolatti G. and Freund H.J.
Action observation activates premotor and parietal areas in a somatotopic manner: an fMRI study.
Eur. J. Neurosci. 13 (2001) 400-404.

Citations 929
Rizzolatti G., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
Neurophysiological mechanisms underlying the understanding and imitation of action.
Nature Reviews Neuroscience 2 (2001) 661-670.
Citations 972
Di Pellegrino G., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Rizzolatti G.
Understanding motor events: a neurophysiological study.
Exp. Brain Res. 91 (1992) 176-180.
Citations 876

Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Pavesi G., Rizzolatti G.
Motor facilitation during action observation: a magnetic stimulation study.
J. Neurophysiol. 73 (1995), 2608-2611.

Citations 792
Rizzolatti G., Camarda R., Fogassi L., Gentilucci M., Luppino G., Matelli M.
Functional organization of inferior area 6 in the Macaque monkey. II. Area F5 and the control of distal movements.
Exp. Brain Res. 71 (1988) 491-507.
Citations 677
 
::. Recent publications  

Rizzolatti G, Fabbri-Destro M, Cattaneo L.
Mirror neurons and their clinical relevance.
Nature Clin Pract Neurol. (2009) 5, 24-34.

 

Umiltà MA, Escola L, Intskirveli I, Grammont F, Rochat M, Caruana F, Jezzini A, Gallese V,. Rizzolatti G.
When pliers become fingers in the monkey motor system.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A (2008) 105:2209-13.

 

Fabbri-Destro M, Rizzolatti G.
Mirror neurons and mirror systems in monkeys and humans.
Physiology (2008) 23,171-9.

 

Rozzi S, Ferrari PF, Bonini L, Rizzolatti G, Fogassi L.
Functional organization of inferior parietal lobule convexity in the macaque monkey: electrophysiological characterization of motor, sensory and mirror responses and their correlation with cytoarchitectonic areas.
Eur J Neurosci. (2008 ) 28:1569-88.

 

Rizzolatti G, Fabbri-Destro M.
The mirror system and its role in social cognition.
Curr Opinion Neurobiol. (2008) 18,179-84.

 

Rizzolatti G, Sinigaglia C.
Further reflections on how we interpret the actions of others.
Nature. (2008) 455:589.

 

Lui F, Buccino G, Duzzi D, Benuzzi F, Crisi G, Baraldi P, Nichelli P, Porro CA, Rizzolatti G.
Neural substrates for observing and imagining non-object-directed actions.
Social Neurosci. (2008) 3, 261-75.

 

Cattaneo L, Fabbri-Destro M, Boria S, Pieraccini C, Monti A, Cossu G, Rizzolatti G.
Impairment of actions chains in autism and its possible role in intention understanding.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A.( 2007) 104, 17825-30.

 

Di Dio C, Macaluso E, Rizzolatti G.
The golden beauty: brain response to classical and renaissance sculptures.
PLoS ONE.(2007) 2, e1201, 1-8.

 

Vogt S, Buccino G, Wohlschläger AM, Canessa N, Shah NJ, Zilles K, Eickhoff SB,Freund HJ, Rizzolatti G, Fink GR.
Prefrontal involvement in imitation learning of hand actions: effects of practice and expertise.
Neuroimage. (2007) 37,1371-83.

 

Gazzola V, van der Worp H, Mulder T, Wicker B, Rizzolatti G, Keysers C.
Aplasics born without hands mirror the goal of hand actions with their feet.
Curr Biol. (2007) 17, 1235-40.

 

Sato M, Cattaneo L, Rizzolatti G, Gallese V.
Numbers within our hands: modulation of corticospinal excitability of hand muscles during numerical judgment.
J Cogn Neurosci. (2007) 4, 684-93.

 

Gazzola V, Rizzolatti G, Wicker B, Keysers C.
The anthropomorphic brain: the mirror neuron system responds to human and robotic actions.
Neuroimage. (2007) 35, 1674-84.

 

Buccino G, Baumgaertner A, Colle L, Buechel C, Rizzolatti G, Binkofski F.
The neural basis for understanding non-intended actions.
Neuroimage. (2007) 36, Suppl 2:T119-27.

 

Rizzolatti G., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
Mirrors of the mind.
Scientific American 295 (2006) 54-61.

 

Aziz-Zadeh L., Wilson SM., Rizzolatti G., Iacoboni M.
Congruent embodied representations for visually presented actions and linguistic phrases describing actions.
Current Biology 16 (18) (2006) 1818-23.

 

Rizzolatti G., Ferrari P.F., Rozzi S., Fogassi L.
The inferior parietal lobule: where action becomes perception.
Novartis Found. Symp. 270 (2006) 129-40

 

Nelissen K., Luppino G., Vanduffel W., Rizzolatti G., Orban G.A.
Observing Others: Multiple Action Representation in the Frontal Lobe.
Science, 310(5746):332-336, 2005.

 

Rizzolatti G., Wolpert D.M.
Motor systems.
Curr Opin Neurobiol. 15(6):623-625, 2005.

 

Buccino G., Riggio L., Melli G., Binkofski F., Gallese V., Rizzolatti G.
Listening to action-related sentences modulates the activity of the motor system: A combined TMS and behavioral study.
Cognitive Brain Research, 24(3):355-363, 2005.

View the pdf file of the article

Rizzolatti G.
The mirror neuron system and its function in humans.
Anat Embryol, 210(5-6):419-21, 2005.

 

Tettamanti M., Buccino G., Saccuman M.C., Gallese V., Danna M., Scifo P., Fazio F., Rizzolatti G., Cappa S.F., Perani D.
Listening to Action-related Sentences Activates Fronto-parietal Motor Circuits.
J Cogn Neurosci., 17(2):273-8, 2005.

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Aziz-Zadeh L., Cattaneo L., Rochat M., Rizzolatti G.
Covert Speech Arrests Inducted by rTMS over Both Motor and Nonmotor Left Hemisphere Frontal sites.
Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 17(6):928-938, 2005.

 

Fogassi L., Ferrari P.F., Gesierich B., Rozzi S., Chersi F., Rizzolatti G.
Parietal Lobe: from Action Organization to Intention Understanding.
Science, 308(5722):662-7, 2005.

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Iacoboni M., Molnar-Szakacs I., Gallese V., Buccino G., Mazziotta J.C., Rizzolatti G.
Grasping the intentions of others with one’s own mirror neuron system.
Public Library of Science, 3:529-535, 2005.

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Rizzolatti G., Craighero L.
The Mirror-Neuron System.
Annual Rev. Neurosci., 27:169-92, 2004.

 

Buccino G., Vogt S., Ritzl A., Fink G.R., Zilles K., Freund H.J., Rizzolatti G.
Neural circuits underlying imitation learning of hand actions: an event related fMRI study.
Neuron, 42:323-334, 2004.

 

Buccino G., Lui F., Canessa N., Patteri I., Lagravinese G., Benuzzi F., Porro C.A., Rizzolatti G.
Neural circuits involved in the recognition of actions performed by non-conspecifics: an fMRI study.
J. Cogn. Neurosci., 16:114-126, 2004.

 

Gallese V., Keysers C. and Rizzolatti G.
A unifying view of the basis of social cognition.
Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 8: 396-403, 2004.

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Wicker B., Keysers C., Plailly J., Royet J-P., Gallese V.,Rizzolatti G.
Both of us disgusted in my insula: The common neural basis of seeing and feeling disgust.
Neuron, 40: 655-664, 2003.

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Ferrari P.F., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Rizzolatti G.
Mirror neurons responding to the observation of ingestive and communicative mouth actions in the monkey ventral premotor cortex.
European Journal of Neuroscience, 17 (8), 1703-1714, 2003.

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Rizzolatti G., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
Motor and cognitive functions of the ventral premotor cortex.
Curr. Op. Neurobiol. 12: 149-154, 2002.

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Kohler E., Keysers C., Umiltà M.A., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Rizzolatti G.
Hearing sounds, understanding actions: action representation in mirror neurons.
Science, 297: 846-848, 2002.

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Gallese V., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Rizzolatti G.
Action representation and the inferior parietal lobule.
In Prinz, W., and Hommel, B. (Eds.) Common Mechanisms in Perception and Action: Attention and Performance, Vol. XIX. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 247-266, 2002.

 

Fogassi L., Gallese V., Buccino G., Craighero L., Fadiga L., Rizzolatti G.
Cortical mechanisms for the visual guidance of hand grasping movements in the monkey: a reversible inactivation study.
Brain 124:571-586, 2001.

View the pdf file of the article

Rizzolatti G., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
Neurophysiological mechanisms underlying the understanding and imitation of action.
Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 2: 661-670, 2001.

View the pdf file of the article

Umiltà M.A., Kohler E., Gallese V., Fogassi L., Fadiga L., Keysers C., Rizzolatti G.
“I know what you are doing”: a neurophysiological study.
Neuron: 32; 91-101, 2001.

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Buccino G., Binkofski F., Fink G.R., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Seitz R.J., Zilles K., Rizzolatti G., Freund H.J.
Action observation activates premotor and parietal areas in a somatotopic manner: an fMRI study.
Eur. J. Neurosci. 13: 400-404, 2001.

View the pdf file of the article

Luppino G., Rizzolatti G.
The organization of the frontal motor cortex.
News Physiol. Sci. 15:219-224, 2000.

View the pdf file of the article

Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Rizzolatti G.
Visuomotor neurons: ambiguity of the discharge or ‘motor’ perception?
Int. J. Psychophysiology, 35:165-77, 2000.

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Rizzolatti G., Arbib M.A..
Language within our grasp.
Trends in Neurosciences, 21: 188-194, 1998.

View the pdf file of the article

Vorobiev V., Govoni P., Rizzolatti G., Matelli M., Luppino G.
Parcellation of human mesial area 6: cytoarchitectonic evidence for three separate areas.
Eur. J. of Neurosci., 10: 2199-2203, 1998.

 

Rizzolatti G., Luppino G., Matelli M.
The organization of the cortical motor system: new concepts.
Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, 106: 283-296, 1998.

 

Murata A., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V., Raos V., Rizzolatti G.
Object representation in the ventral premotor cortex (area F5) of the monkey.
Journal of Neurophysiology 78: 2226-2230, 1997.

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Rizzolatti G., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
Parietal cortex: from sight to action.
Curr. Op. Neurobiol., 7: 562-567, 1997.

 

Rizzolatti G., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Gallese V.
The space around us.
Science, 277: 190-191, 1997.

 

Gallese V., Fadiga L., Fogassi L., Rizzolatti G.
Action recognition in the premotor cortex.
Brain 119: 593-609, 1996.

View the pdf file of the article
 
 
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