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Goal-directed behavior involves a continuous loop of perceptions and actions, and integration of multiple cognitive processes. For example, the simple act of opening a door requires the representation of an intention (do I want to exit the room or allow someone in), action-selection (should I use my palm or rather my elbow to avoid possible COVID infection?), and perception (for successful control of the limb with respect to the door-handle). With respect to motor control, these processes are non-trivial since there is no one-to-one mapping between actions and outcome, and this relationship is highly dependent on context. For example, when the car gear is set to reverse, the same action of pressing the gas paddle (and corresponding motor commands) has completely different consequences. In our lab, we use neuroimaging (fMRI/EEG), VR and various behavioral measures to explore how the brain generates voluntary movement and purposeful behavior.


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