supramarginal_gyrus_animationThe right portion of the supramarginal gyrus appears to play a central role in controlling our empathy towards other people.

When this structure isn’t working properly or when we have to make very quick judgments, our empathy becomes severely limited.

Research has shown that disrupting the neurons in the right supramarginal gyrus causes humans to project our emotions on other, inhibiting our ability to be empathetic.

In addition, this disruption also causes people to be more egocentric, mainly because they aren’t able to perceive the emotions of those around them.

Both the left and right supramarginal gyri of healthy, right-handed individuals are shown to be active when making phonological word choices.

Individuals who had lesions to the left hemisphere had more difficulty than those with lesions to the right hemisphere, reinforcing the dominance of the left hemisphere in language.


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10 thoughts on “Supramarginal Gyrus

  • November 25, 2016 at 12:59 pm
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    Brodmann area 40 (BA40) is part of the parietal cortex in the human brain. The inferior part of BA40 is in the area of the supramarginal gyrus, which lies at the posterior end of the lateral fissure, in the inferior lateral part of the parietal lobe.

    The supramarginal gyrus part of Brodmann area 40 is the region in the inferior parietal lobe that is involved in reading both as regards meaning and phonology.




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  • November 25, 2016 at 1:05 pm
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    Area 40 for short, surely.




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  • November 25, 2016 at 1:39 pm
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    From the Max Planck piece

    Differences only arose during the test runs in which one partner was confronted with pleasant stimuli and the other with unpleasant ones. Their capacity for empathy suddenly plummeted. The participants’ own emotions distorted their assessment of the other person’s feelings. The participants who were feeling good themselves assessed their partners’ negative experiences as less severe than they actually were. In contrast, those who had just had an unpleasant experience assessed their partners’ good experiences less positively.

    Sadly, the article does not say how said neurons were “disrupted”.




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  • November 25, 2016 at 2:10 pm
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    Here it is ( page 9 of 11 ):

    when either disrupting the neuronal mechanisms necessary to overcome egocentric judgments, using TMS, or when reducing the time given to participants to disentangle their own and the other’s emotions.

    TMS = Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation




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  • November 25, 2016 at 2:29 pm
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    Just in case people didn’t click through the wiki link:

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a magnetic method used to stimulate small regions of the brain. During a TMS procedure, a magnetic field generator, or “coil”, is placed near the head of the person receiving the treatment. The coil produces small electric currents in the region of the brain just under the coil via electromagnetic induction. The coil is connected to a pulse generator, or stimulator, that delivers electric current to the coil.

    TMS is used diagnostically to measure the connection between the brain and a muscle to evaluate damage from stroke, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, movement disorders, motor neuron disease and injuries and other disorders affecting the facial and other cranial nerves and the spinal cord.

    Evidence suggests it is useful for neuropathic pain and treatment-resistant major depressive disorder.[4][5] A 2015 Cochrane review found not enough evidence to make any conclusions in schizophrenia.[6] For negative symptoms another review found possible efficacy.

    As of 2014, all other investigated uses of repetitive TMS have only possible or no clinical efficacy.

    Matching the discomfort of TMS to distinguish true effects from placebo is an important and challenging issue that influences the results of clinical trials. The greatest risks of TMS are the rare occurrence of syncope (fainting) and even less commonly, induced seizures.

    Other adverse effects of TMS include discomfort or pain, transient induction of hypomania, transient cognitive changes, transient hearing loss, transient impairment of working memory, and induced currents in electrical circuits in implanted devices.

    To which we can add “inhibiting an individual’s ability to be empathic”.




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  • November 25, 2016 at 2:37 pm
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    AKA, Transcranial Magnetic Disruption (TMD)




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