ERIC Number: EJ848046
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Interindividual Differences in Neonatal Imitation and the Development of Action Chains in Rhesus Macaques
Ferrari, Pier Francesco; Paukner, Annika; Ruggiero, Angela; Darcey, Lisa; Unbehagen, Sarah; Suomi, Stephen J.
Child Development, v80 n4 p1057-1068 Jul-Aug 2009
The capacity to imitate facial gestures is highly variable in rhesus macaques and this variability may be related to differences in specific neurobehavioral patterns of development. This study evaluated the differential neonatal imitative response of 41 macaques in relation to the development of sensory, motor, and cognitive skills throughout the 1st month of life. The results show that infants who imitate facial gestures display more developed skills in goal-directed movements (reaching-grasping and fine hand motor control) than nonimitators. These differences might reflect, at least in part, the differential maturation of motor chains in the parietal and motor cortices, which partly overlap with those of the mirror neuron system. Thus, neonatal imitation appears to be a predictor of future neurobehavioral development.
Descriptors: Nonverbal Communication, Imitation, Individual Differences, Animals, Neurological Organization, Child Development, Infants, Developmental Stages, Psychomotor Skills, Sensory Experience, Cognitive Development
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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