Article

Dejerine's reading area revisited with intracranial EEG: Selective responses to letter strings.

From the Laboratoire de Psychologie Cognitive (C.M.H., M. Szwed), CNRS (UMR7290), Aix-Marseille Université, Marseille; Lyon Neuroscience Research Center (C.M.H., J.R.V., M.P.-B., O.B., J.-P.L.), Brain Dynamics and Cognition Team, CNRS (UMR5292), INSERM (U1028), Université Lyon 1, Lyon, France; Jagiellonian University (M. Szwed), Kraków, Poland; Université Pierre et Marie Curie University (M. Sharman), Paris; Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (M. Sharman), Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle Épinière, UMRS 975, Paris; and Grenoble University Hospital (P.K.), Grenoble, France.
Neurology (Impact Factor: 8.25). 02/2013; 80(6):602-603. DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e31828154d9
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The visual word form area in the ventral occipitotemporal cortex develops with acquisition of reading skills. It is debated whether this region is specialized for reading(1) or is rather a general-purpose area associating visual form (words, objects) with meaning. An outline of this debate can be found in appendix e-1 on the Neurology® Web site at www.neurology.org. We recorded intracranial EEG in 2 patients with epilepsy (figures 1, e-1, and e-2) and found neural populations responding almost exclusively to letter strings, over 500% of all other responses. With the exception of the fusiform face area, such specific responses have never been described before in the human visual system.(2) Strong specialization in the human brain can thus be achieved also through cultural learning.

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