[Neuroscience] FMRI of vibrotactile processing

peter.soros from gmail.com via neur-sci%40net.bio.net (by peter.soros from gmail.com)
Fri Dec 28 21:01:16 EST 2007

Hi there,

I would like to draw your attention to my publication:

Functional MRI of working memory and selective attention in
vibrotactile frequency discrimination

Peter Sörös1, Jonathan Marmurek1, Fred Tam1, Nicole Baker1, W Richard
Staines2 and Simon J Graham1,3,4

1Imaging Research, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto,
Ontario, Canada
2Department of Kinesiology, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
3The Rotman Research Institute, Baycrest, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
4Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Ontario,

BMC Neuroscience 2007, 8:48doi:10.1186/1471-2202-8-48



Focal lesions of the frontal, parietal and temporal lobe may interfere
with tactile working memory and attention. To characterise the neural
correlates of intact vibrotactile working memory and attention,
functional MRI was conducted in 12 healthy young adults. Participants
performed a forced-choice vibrotactile frequency discrimination task,
comparing a cue stimulus of fixed frequency to their right thumb with
a probe stimulus of identical or higher frequency. To investigate
working memory, the time interval between the 2 stimuli was pseudo-
randomized (either 2 or 8 s). To investigate selective attention, a
distractor stimulus was occasionally presented contralaterally,
simultaneous to the probe.

Delayed vibrotactile frequency discrimination, following a probe
presented 8 s after the cue in contrast to a probe presented 2 s after
the cue, was associated with activation in the bilateral anterior
insula and the right inferior parietal cortex. Frequency
discrimination under distraction was correlated with activation in the
right anterior insula, in the bilateral posterior parietal cortex, and
in the right middle temporal gyrus.

These results support the notion that working memory and attention are
organised in partly overlapping neural circuits. In contrast to
previous reports in the visual or auditory domain, this study
emphasises the involvement of the anterior insula in vibrotactile
working memory and selective attention.

Peter Soros

School of Communication Sciences & Disorders, Elborn College
University of Western Ontario
London, Ontario, N6B 1H1

URL: http://neuroactivity.org/

More information about the Neur-sci mailing list

Send comments to us at biosci-help [At] net.bio.net