Neural bases of the bodily self as revealed by electrical brain stimulation: A systematic review


  • Dary Zoé
  • Lenggenhager Bigna
  • Lagarde Stanislas
  • Medina Villalon Samuel
  • Bartolomei Fabrice
  • Lopez Christophe


  • Self consciousness bodily self electrical brain stimulation epilepsy parietal cortex
  • Self consciousness
  • Bodily self
  • Electrical brain stimulation
  • Epilepsy
  • Parietal cortex

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An increasing amount of recent research has focused on the multisensory and neural bases of the bodily self. This pre-reflective form of self is considered as multifaceted, incorporating phenomenal components, such as self location, body ownership, firstperson perspective, agency, and the perceptual body image. Direct electrical brain stimulation (EBS) during presurgical evaluation of epilepsy and brain tumor resection is a unique method to causally relate specific brain areas to the various phenomenal components of the bodily self. We conducted a systematic review of the literature describing altered phenomenal experience of the bodily self evoked by EBS. We included 42 articles and analyzed self reports from 221 patients. Threedimensional density maps of EBS revealed that stimulation in the middle cingulum, inferior parietal lobule, supplementary motor area, posterior insula, hippocampal complex/amygdala, and precuneus most consistently altered one or several components of the bodily self. In addition, we found that only EBS in the parietal cortex induced disturbances of all five components of the bodily self considered in this review article. These findings inform current neuroscientific models of the bodily self.

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