The mirror neuron system in motor and sensory rehabilitation

Yutaka Oouchida, Shinichi Izumi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The discovery of the mirror neuron system has dramatically changed the study of motor control in neuroscience. The mirror neuron system provides a conceptual framework covering the aspects of motor as well as sensory functions in motor control. Previous studies of motor control can be classified as studies of motor or sensory functions, and these two classes of studies appear to have advanced independently. In rehabilitation requiring motor learning, such as relearning movement after limb paresis, however, sensory information of feedback for motor output as well as motor command are essential. During rehabilitation from chronic pain, motor exercise is one of the most effective treatments for pain caused by dysfunction in the sensory system. In rehabilitation where total intervention unifying the motor and sensory aspects of motor control is important, learning through imitation, which is associated with the mirror neuron system can be effective and suitable. In this paper, we introduce the clinical applications of imitated movement in rehabilitation from motor impairment after brain damage and phantom limb pain after limb amputation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)655-663
Number of pages9
JournalBrain and Nerve
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jun


  • Hemiparesis
  • Imitation learning
  • Mirror neuron system
  • Phantom limb pain
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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