Olson IR, Plotzker A, Ezzyat Y. The Enigmatic temporal pole: a review of findings on social and emotional processing. Brain 130(Pt 7): 1718-1731

Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, 3720 Walnut Street, Room B51, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6196, USA.
Brain (Impact Factor: 9.2). 07/2007; 130(Pt 7):1718-31. DOI: 10.1093/brain/awm052
Source: PubMed


The function of the anterior-most portion of the temporal lobes, the temporal pole, is not well understood. Anatomists have long considered it part of an extended limbic system based on its location posterior to the orbital frontal cortex and lateral to the amygdala, along with its tight connectivity to limbic and paralimbic regions. Here we review the literature in both non-human primates and humans to assess the temporal pole's putative role in social and emotional processing. Reviewed findings indicate that it has some role in both social and emotional processes, including face recognition and theory of mind, that goes beyond semantic memory. We propose that the temporal pole binds complex, highly processed perceptual inputs to visceral emotional responses. Because perceptual inputs remain segregated into dorsal (auditory), medial (olfactory) and ventral (visual) streams, the integration of emotion with perception is channel specific.

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    • "In CON subjects, FAL BL BP was mainly associated with pain sensitivity and tolerance in regions whose function is thought to be primarily nociceptive, e.g., cingulate, thalamus, insula, and precentral gyrus (Figs. 3 and 4; Online Resources 5, 6, and 7; Apkarian et al. 2005; Tracey 2008). However, in FM subjects, FAL BL BP was associated with pain sensitivity and tolerance in regions more involved in emotional and stress regulation, e.g., parahippocampal gyrus, temporal pole, and hippocampus (Forkmann et al. 2013; Mutso et al. 2012; Olson et al. 2007; Ploghaus et al. 2001). This spatial discrepancy is consistent with previous studies that have shown that individuals with FM exhibit markedly different patterns of brain activation and connectivity in response to pain than healthy controls (Gracely et al. 2002; Kim et al. 2015; Loggia et al. 2014; Jensen et al. 2012). "
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    Brain Imaging and Behavior 10/2015; DOI:10.1007/s11682-015-9459-4 · 4.60 Impact Factor
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    • "Men, on the other hand, showed higher RSFC to the temporal pole and vmPFC. The temporal pole has been suggested to be involved in the association of sensory input with emotional responses (Olson et al., 2007), while the connections between the amygdala and the vmPFC are critical in the acquisition of conditioned fear as well as in the extinction learning and extinction memory recall (Milad and Quirk, 2012). Our finding of enhanced LB amygdala-vmPFC connectivity in men relative to women is consistent with our recent data showing enhanced functional activation of the vmPFC in men relative to women during extinction recall (Lebron-Milad et al., 2012). "
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