Abstract

In this study, changes in blood oxygenation and volume were monitored while monolingual right-handed subjects read English sentences. Our results confirm the role of the left peri-sylvian cortex in language processing. Interestingly, individual subject analyses reveal a pattern of activation characterized by several small, limited patches rather than a few large, anatomically well-circumscribed centers. Between-subject analyses confirm a lateralized pattern of activation and reveal active classical language areas including Broca's area, Wernicke's area, and the angular gyms. In addition they point to areas only more recently considered as language-relevant including the anterior portion of the superior temporal sulcus. This area has not been reliably observed in imaging studies of isolated word processing. This raises the hypothesis that activation in this area is dependent on processes specific to sentence reading.

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