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From a concept to a word in a syntactically complete sentence: an fMRI study on spontaneous language production in an overt picture description task

Item Type:Article
Title:From a concept to a word in a syntactically complete sentence: an fMRI study on spontaneous language production in an overt picture description task
Creators Name:Grande, M. and Meffert, E. and Schoenberger, E. and Jung, S. and Frauenrath, T. and Huber, W. and Hussmann, K. and Moormann, M. and Heim, S.
Abstract:Spontaneous language has rarely been subjected to neuroimaging studies. This study therefore introduces a newly developed method for the analysis of linguistic phenomena observed in continuous language production during fMRI. Most neuroimaging studies investigating language have so far focussed on single word or - to a smaller extent - sentence processing, mostly due to methodological considerations. Natural language production, however, is far more than the mere combination of words to larger units. Therefore, the present study aimed at relating brain activation to linguistic phenomena like word-finding difficulties or syntactic completeness in a continuous language fMRI paradigm. A picture description task with special constraints was used to provoke hesitation phenomena and speech errors. The transcribed speech sample was segmented into events of one second and each event was assigned to one category of a complex schema especially developed for this purpose. The main results were: conceptual planning engages bilateral activation of the precuneus. Successful lexical retrieval is accompanied - particularly in comparison to unsolved word-finding difficulties - by the left middle and superior temporal gyrus. Syntactic completeness is reflected in activation of the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) (area 44). In sum, the method has proven to be useful for investigating the neural correlates of lexical and syntactic phenomena in an overt picture description task. This opens up new prospects for the analysis of spontaneous language production during fMRI.
Keywords:Spontaneous Language Production, fMRI, Lexical Retrieval, Word-Finding Disorders, Left Inferior Frontal Gyrus, Left Middle Temporal Gyrus, Left Superior Temporal Gyrus, Precuneus
Source:NeuroImage
ISSN:1053-8119
Publisher:Academic Press (U.S.A.)
Volume:61
Number:3
Page Range:702-714
Date:2 July 2012
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2012.03.087
PubMed:View item in PubMed

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