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Cross-language differences in the brain network subserving intelligible speech

Ge, J; Peng, G; Lyu, B; Wang, Y; Zhuo, Y; Niu, Z; Tang, LH; ... Gao, J-H; + view all (2015) Cross-language differences in the brain network subserving intelligible speech. Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences Of The United States Of America , 112 (10) pp. 2972-2977. 10.1073/pnas.1416000112. Green open access

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Abstract

SIGNIFICANCE: Language processing is generally left hemisphere dominant. However, whether the interactions among the typical left hemispheric language regions differ across different languages is largely unknown. An ideal method to address this question is modeling cortical interactions across language groups, but this is usually constrained by the model space with the prior hypothesis due to massive computation demands. With cloud-computing, we used functional MRI dynamic causal modeling analysis to compare more than 4,000 models of cortical dynamics among critical language regions in the temporal and frontal cortex, established the bias-free information flow maps that were shared or specific for processing intelligible speech in Chinese and English, and revealed the neural dynamics between the left and right hemispheres in Chinese speech comprehension. ABSTRACT: How is language processed in the brain by native speakers of different languages? Is there one brain system for all languages or are different languages subserved by different brain systems? The first view emphasizes commonality, whereas the second emphasizes specificity. We investigated the cortical dynamics involved in processing two very diverse languages: a tonal language (Chinese) and a nontonal language (English). We used functional MRI and dynamic causal modeling analysis to compute and compare brain network models exhaustively with all possible connections among nodes of language regions in temporal and frontal cortex and found that the information flow from the posterior to anterior portions of the temporal cortex was commonly shared by Chinese and English speakers during speech comprehension, whereas the inferior frontal gyrus received neural signals from the left posterior portion of the temporal cortex in English speakers and from the bilateral anterior portion of the temporal cortex in Chinese speakers. Our results revealed that, although speech processing is largely carried out in the common left hemisphere classical language areas (Broca’s and Wernicke’s areas) and anterior temporal cortex, speech comprehension across different language groups depends on how these brain regions interact with each other. Moreover, the right anterior temporal cortex, which is crucial for tone processing, is equally important as its left homolog, the left anterior temporal cortex, in modulating the cortical dynamics in tone language comprehension. The current study pinpoints the importance of the bilateral anterior temporal cortex in language comprehension that is downplayed or even ignored by popular contemporary models of speech comprehension.

Type: Article
Title: Cross-language differences in the brain network subserving intelligible speech
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1416000112
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/ 10.1073/pnas.1416000112
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2017 National Academy of Sciences.
Keywords: Speech Perception, Tonal Language, Functional Mri, Cortical Dynamics, Temporal-lobe, Perception, Comprehension, Acquisition, Integration, Experience, Activation, Pathways, Prosody, Streams
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Brain Repair and Rehabilitation
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1466964
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