Functional magnetic resonance imaging evidence for right-hemisphere involvement in processing unusual semantic relationships

Carol A. Seger, John E. Desmond, Gary H. Glover, John D.E. Gabrieli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Brain areas active in generating usual (typical) or unusual (atypical) noun-verb relations were examined using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Seven adults generated the 1st verb to come to mind (usual verb) in response to novel and repeated nouns (priming test) and then generated either an unusual verb or the 1st verb to come to mind in response to novel nouns (unusual test). The left inferior prefrontal cortex (LIPC) and right cerebellum were more active when generating usual verbs to novel nouns than to repeated nouns. When participants generated unusual verbs, there was no increased activation in LIPC, but there was increased activity in the right middle and superior frontal gyri, left middle frontal gyrus, and bilateral cerebellum. Results support theories that the right hemisphere is involved in the processing of distant associations that may be useful in creative thought and problem solving.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-369
Number of pages9
JournalNeuropsychology
Volume14
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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