University of Hertfordshire

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By the same authors

Damage to the right insula disrupts the perception of affective touch

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  • Louise P Kirsch
  • Sahba Besharati
  • Christina Papadaki
  • Laura Crucianelli
  • Sara Bertagnoli
  • Nick Ward
  • Valentina Moro
  • Paul M Jenkinson
  • Aikaterini Fotopoulou
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Original languageEnglish
Article numbere47895
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2020


Specific, peripheral C-tactile afferents contribute to the perception of tactile pleasure, but the brain areas involved in their processing remain debated. We report the first human lesion study on the perception of C-tactile touch in right hemisphere stroke patients (N = 59), revealing that right posterior and anterior insula lesions reduce tactile, contralateral and ipsilateral pleasantness sensitivity, respectively. These findings corroborate previous imaging studies regarding the role of the posterior insula in the perception of affective touch. However, our findings about the crucial role of the anterior insula for ipsilateral affective touch perception open new avenues of enquiry regarding the cortical organization of this tactile system.


© 2020 Kirsch et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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