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Occipito-parietal cortex activation during visuo-spatial imagery in early blind humans

Occipito-parietal cortex activation during visuo-spatial imagery in early blind humans

NeuroImage 19(3): 698-709

Using positron emission tomography, regional cerebral blood flow was studied in five early blind and five control volunteers during visuo-spatial imagery. Subjects were instructed to generate a mental representation of verbally provided bidimensional patterns that were placed in a grid and to assess pattern symmetry in relation to a grid axis. This condition was contrasted with a verbal memory task. Cerebral activation in both groups was similar during the visuo-spatial imagery task. It involved the precuneus (BA 7), superior parietal lobule (BA 7), and occipital gyrus (BA 19). These results are in accordance with previous studies conducted in sighted subjects that indicated that the same occipito-parietal areas are involved in visual perception as well as in mental imagery dealing with spatial components. The dorsal pathway seems to be involved in visuo-spatial imagery in early blind subjects, indicating that this pathway undergoes development in the absence of vision.

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Accession: 011080838

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 12880800

DOI: 10.1016/s1053-8119(03)00153-8

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