Altered bold response within the core face-processing network in congenital prosopagnosia

Kornél Németh, Márta Zimmer, Krisztina Nagy, Éva M. Bankó, Zoltán Vidnyánszky, Pál Vakli, Gyula Kovács

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Background and purpose - Congenital prosopagnosia is a life-long disorder of face perception. To study the neural backgrounds of congenital prosopagnosia we measured the blood oxygen level-dependent response of congenital prosopagnosic participants, using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Methods - We tested three persons of the family (father, daughter and son), having symptoms of congenital prosopagnosia, as well as healthy controls, using combined neuropsychological and functional magnetic resonance imaging methods. To reveal the neural correlates of the impairments, blood oxygen level-dependent responses within the occipito-temporal cortex were measured to faces and nonsense object images in a block-design experiment. Results - Neuropsychological tests demonstrated significant impairments of face perception/recognition in each subject. We found that the activity of the fusiform and occipital face areas as well as of the lateral occipital cortex was significantly reduced in congenital prosopagnosic participants when compared to controls. Analysis of the hemodynamic response function revealed a lower peak response, but also a significantly faster and stronger decay of the blood oxygen level-dependent response in the occipito-temporal areas in congenital prosopagnosic participants when compared to controls. Conclusion - Our results emphasize the dysfunction of the core face processing system, as well as the lateral occipital complex, in congenital prosopagnosia. Further, the function-al impairment of these areas is signalled best by the altered hemodynamic response function, showing abnormally low initial peak and stronger and faster decay in the later parts of the blood oxygen level-dependent response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-211
Number of pages13
JournalIdeggyogyaszati szemle
Volume68
Issue number5-6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 30 2015

Keywords

  • Congenital prosopagnosia
  • fMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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