Effective connectivity of brain regions related to visual word recognition: An fMRI study of Chinese reading

Min Xu, Tianfu Wang, Siping Chen, Peter T. Fox, Li Hai Tan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Past neuroimaging studies have focused on identifying specialized functional brain systems for processing different components of reading, such as orthography, phonology, and semantics. More recently, a few experiments have been performed to look into the integration and interaction of distributed neural systems for visual word recognition, suggesting that lexical processing in alphabetic languages involves both ventral and dorsal neural pathways originating from the visual cortex. In the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study, we tested the multiple pathways model with Chinese character stimuli and examined how the neural systems interacted in reading Chinese. Using dynamic causal modeling, we demonstrated that visual word recognition in Chinese engages the ventral pathway from the visual cortex to the left ventral occipitotemporal cortex, but not the dorsal pathway from the visual cortex to the left parietal region. The ventral pathway, however, is linked to the superior parietal lobule and the left middle frontal gyrus (MFG) so that a dynamic neural network is formed, with information flowing from the visual cortex to the left ventral occipitotemporal cortex to the parietal lobule and then to the left MFG. The findings suggest that cortical dynamics is constrained by the differences in how visual orthographic symbols in writing systems are linked to spoken language.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2580-2591
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Brain Mapping
Volume36
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015

Keywords

  • Chinese reading
  • Connectivity
  • Dorsal pathway
  • Dynamic causal modeling
  • Functional magnetic resonance imaging
  • Reading
  • Ventral pathway
  • Writing systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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