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Publication Detail
Lexico-semantic processing across different visual forms: fMRI evidence from native signers of British Sign Language
  • Publication Type:
  • Authors:
    Waters D, MacSweeney M, Capek CM, Woll B, Campbell R, David AS, McGuire PK, Brammer MJ
  • Publisher:
    Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology
  • Publication date:
  • Place of publication:
  • Pagination:
  • Published proceedings:
    Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis
  • Volume:
  • Issue:
  • Status:
  • Name of conference:
    European Brain and Behaviour Society (EBBS) Annual Meeting
  • Series editors:
    Turlejski K
Lexical meaning can be expressed through various visual forms. These include written words, pictures and, for those who use a signed language, signs (SL) and fingerspelling (FS). The aim of the present study was to investigate the neural systems involved in lexico-semantic processing using fMRI. Activation patterns during perception of different visual forms were compared in Deaf native signers of British Sign Language (BSL) and hearing participants with no knowledge of SL or FS, who viewed these stimuli as meaningless gesture. The rationale was to identify linguistic and non-linguistic contributions to networks of activation, as well as differences related to input form. Right-handed volunteers underwent fMRI scanning while viewing lists of concrete nouns presented as different visual forms (written words, pictures, SL, FS). Patterns of activation evident for meaningful linguistic gesture (SL and FS) in signers could be distinguished from those for non-signers, specifically: left superior temporal cortex and left posterior inferior temporal regions (including the region often identified as the visual word form area in studies of reading) were activated more strongly in signers than non-signers by both SL and FS. Further group and task results will be reported.
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