Idiom comprehension: A prefrontal task?

Leonor J Romero Lauro, Marco Tettamanti, Stefano F. Cappa, Costanza Papagno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

95 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We investigated the neural correlates of idiomatic sentence processing using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twenty-two healthy subjects were presented with 62 literal sentences and 62 idiomatic sentences, each followed by a picture and were required to judge whether the sentence matched the picture or not. A common network of cortical activity was engaged by both conditions, with the nonliteral task eliciting overall greater activation, both in terms of magnitude and spatial extent. The network that was specifically activated by the nonliteral condition involved the left temporal cortex, the left superior medial frontal gyrus (Brodmann area 9), and the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Activations were also present in the right superior and middle temporal gyri and temporal pole and in the right IFG. In contrast, literal sentences selectively activated the left inferior parietal lobule and the right supramarginal gyrus. An analysis of effective connectivity indicated that the medial prefrontal area significantly increased the connection between frontotemporal areas bilaterally during idiomatic processing. Overall, the present findings indicate a crucial role of the prefrontal cortex in idiom comprehension, which could reflect the selection between alternative sentence meanings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-170
Number of pages9
JournalCerebral Cortex
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008

Fingerprint

Prefrontal Cortex
Parietal Lobe
Temporal Lobe
Healthy Volunteers
Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Keywords

  • Anterior prefrontal cortex
  • Idiom comprehension
  • RH hypothesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Lauro, L. J. R., Tettamanti, M., Cappa, S. F., & Papagno, C. (2008). Idiom comprehension: A prefrontal task? Cerebral Cortex, 18(1), 162-170. https://doi.org/10.1093/cercor/bhm042

Idiom comprehension : A prefrontal task? / Lauro, Leonor J Romero; Tettamanti, Marco; Cappa, Stefano F.; Papagno, Costanza.

In: Cerebral Cortex, Vol. 18, No. 1, 01.2008, p. 162-170.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lauro, LJR, Tettamanti, M, Cappa, SF & Papagno, C 2008, 'Idiom comprehension: A prefrontal task?', Cerebral Cortex, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 162-170. https://doi.org/10.1093/cercor/bhm042
Lauro, Leonor J Romero ; Tettamanti, Marco ; Cappa, Stefano F. ; Papagno, Costanza. / Idiom comprehension : A prefrontal task?. In: Cerebral Cortex. 2008 ; Vol. 18, No. 1. pp. 162-170.
@article{ffc1441ed6614de4b69c187fe0b5e016,
title = "Idiom comprehension: A prefrontal task?",
abstract = "We investigated the neural correlates of idiomatic sentence processing using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twenty-two healthy subjects were presented with 62 literal sentences and 62 idiomatic sentences, each followed by a picture and were required to judge whether the sentence matched the picture or not. A common network of cortical activity was engaged by both conditions, with the nonliteral task eliciting overall greater activation, both in terms of magnitude and spatial extent. The network that was specifically activated by the nonliteral condition involved the left temporal cortex, the left superior medial frontal gyrus (Brodmann area 9), and the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Activations were also present in the right superior and middle temporal gyri and temporal pole and in the right IFG. In contrast, literal sentences selectively activated the left inferior parietal lobule and the right supramarginal gyrus. An analysis of effective connectivity indicated that the medial prefrontal area significantly increased the connection between frontotemporal areas bilaterally during idiomatic processing. Overall, the present findings indicate a crucial role of the prefrontal cortex in idiom comprehension, which could reflect the selection between alternative sentence meanings.",
keywords = "Anterior prefrontal cortex, Idiom comprehension, RH hypothesis",
author = "Lauro, {Leonor J Romero} and Marco Tettamanti and Cappa, {Stefano F.} and Costanza Papagno",
year = "2008",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1093/cercor/bhm042",
language = "English",
volume = "18",
pages = "162--170",
journal = "Cerebral Cortex",
issn = "1047-3211",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Idiom comprehension

T2 - A prefrontal task?

AU - Lauro, Leonor J Romero

AU - Tettamanti, Marco

AU - Cappa, Stefano F.

AU - Papagno, Costanza

PY - 2008/1

Y1 - 2008/1

N2 - We investigated the neural correlates of idiomatic sentence processing using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twenty-two healthy subjects were presented with 62 literal sentences and 62 idiomatic sentences, each followed by a picture and were required to judge whether the sentence matched the picture or not. A common network of cortical activity was engaged by both conditions, with the nonliteral task eliciting overall greater activation, both in terms of magnitude and spatial extent. The network that was specifically activated by the nonliteral condition involved the left temporal cortex, the left superior medial frontal gyrus (Brodmann area 9), and the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Activations were also present in the right superior and middle temporal gyri and temporal pole and in the right IFG. In contrast, literal sentences selectively activated the left inferior parietal lobule and the right supramarginal gyrus. An analysis of effective connectivity indicated that the medial prefrontal area significantly increased the connection between frontotemporal areas bilaterally during idiomatic processing. Overall, the present findings indicate a crucial role of the prefrontal cortex in idiom comprehension, which could reflect the selection between alternative sentence meanings.

AB - We investigated the neural correlates of idiomatic sentence processing using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twenty-two healthy subjects were presented with 62 literal sentences and 62 idiomatic sentences, each followed by a picture and were required to judge whether the sentence matched the picture or not. A common network of cortical activity was engaged by both conditions, with the nonliteral task eliciting overall greater activation, both in terms of magnitude and spatial extent. The network that was specifically activated by the nonliteral condition involved the left temporal cortex, the left superior medial frontal gyrus (Brodmann area 9), and the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Activations were also present in the right superior and middle temporal gyri and temporal pole and in the right IFG. In contrast, literal sentences selectively activated the left inferior parietal lobule and the right supramarginal gyrus. An analysis of effective connectivity indicated that the medial prefrontal area significantly increased the connection between frontotemporal areas bilaterally during idiomatic processing. Overall, the present findings indicate a crucial role of the prefrontal cortex in idiom comprehension, which could reflect the selection between alternative sentence meanings.

KW - Anterior prefrontal cortex

KW - Idiom comprehension

KW - RH hypothesis

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=36849034935&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=36849034935&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/cercor/bhm042

DO - 10.1093/cercor/bhm042

M3 - Article

C2 - 17490991

AN - SCOPUS:36849034935

VL - 18

SP - 162

EP - 170

JO - Cerebral Cortex

JF - Cerebral Cortex

SN - 1047-3211

IS - 1

ER -