Osaka, N.,Ikeda, T.,& Osaka, M.


Effect of intentional bias on agency attribution of animated motion: An

event-related fMRI study


PLoS One





Animated movements of simple geometric shapes can readily be interpreted

as depicting social events in which animate agents are engaged in

intentional activity. However, the brain regions associated with such

intention have not been clearly elucidated. In this study, intentional

bias was manipulated using shape and pattern animations while measuring

associated brain activity using event-related functional magnetic

resonance imaging (fMRI). Twenty-five higher-intention involved and

twenty-five lower-intention involved animations were presented to

participants. Behavioral results showed that the degree of agency

attribution of the mental state increased as intentional involvement

increased. fMRI results revealed that the posterior superior temporal

sulcus (STS), inferior temporal gyrus (ITG), inferior frontal gyrus

(IFG), premotor, temporal pole, supramarginal gyrus, and superior

parietal lobule (SPL) were activated while participants viewed the

high-intention animations. In contrast, occipital, lingual, and middle

frontal gyri were activated while the participants viewed the

low-intention animations. These findings suggest that as agent

attribution increases, the visual brain changes its functional role to

the intentional brain and becomes a flexible network for processing

information about social interaction.

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