Chief, Michiru Makuuchi, Ph.D.

Michiru Makuuchi / 【CV(pdf)】

Our research focus is the brain mechanisms of language. Understanding the function of Broca's area is a key to our research question. Broca's area is known to play an important role in production of speech, but lesion confined to this area does not cause aphasia. Instead, it causes effortful articulation which lasts only for a limited period. To our surprise, modern neuroimaging methods have revealed that Broca's area is involved in various cognitive tasks including hand/finger movement, drawing, music perception, visual rhythm perception, arithmetic, etc. beyond speech production. The range of cognitive tasks that Broca's area is involved is so wide, that the exact role of this area becomes even more elusive. We aim at finding an account for this enigma using neuroimaging techniques such as fMRI, EEG, and TMS. The results will provide a basis for developing rehabilitation methods for aphasics and people with cognitive impairments.

Broca's area fsa
Left: Broca's and Wernicke's areas shown on the left hemisphere. Right: A finite state automaton for artificial grammar learning experiments.

Tomomi Mizuochi-Endo, Ph.D.

Tomomi Mizuochi-Endo JSPS Research Fellow /

The aim of my research is to cite scientific evidence for rehabilitation of patients with aphasia or higher brain dysfunctions. Especially, I want to investigate integration process of auditory and other modality (visual, motor and so on) information, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

Former Members

Kimihiro Nakamura

Section chief, Jan 2011 - Aug 2011.
Current position: Human Brain Research Center, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan

Kaori Yamaguchi

Postdoctoral Research fellow, Jun 2011 - May 2012.
Current position: Information and Support Center for Persons with Developmental Disorders National Rehabilitation Center for Persons with Disabilities, Tokorozawa, Japan

Toshiki Iwabuchi

Postdoctoral Research fellow, April 2014 - September 2016.
Current position: Research Center for Child Mental Development Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Shizuoka, Japan

Nakai Tomoya

Postdoctoral Research fellow, April 2016 - March 2017.