Magnitude processing in the brain: an fMRI study of time, space, and numerosity as a shared cortical system
2016 (English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)Text
Continuous dimensions, such as time, space, and numerosity, have been suggested to be subserved by common neurocognitive mechanisms. Neuroimaging studies that have investigated either one or two dimensions simultaneously have consistently identified neural correlates in the parietal cortex of the brain. However, the degree of neural overlap across several dimensions has yet to be established, and it remains an open question whether a potential overlap can be conceptualized as a neurocognitive magnitude processing system. The current functional resonance imaging (fMRI) study investigated the potential neurocognitive overlap across three dimensions. A sample of adults (N = 24) performed three different magnitude processing tasks: a temporal discrimination task, a number discrimination task, and a line length discrimination task. A conjunction analysis revealed several overlapping neural substrates across multiple magnitude dimensions, and we argue that these cortical nodes comprise a distributed magnitude processing system. Key components of this predominantly right-lateralized system include the intraparietal sulcus, insula, premotor cortex, inferior frontal gyrus and frontal eye-fields. Together with previous research highlighting IPS, our results suggest that the insula also is a core component of the magnitude processing system. We discuss the functional role of each of these components in the magnitude processing system and suggest that further research of this system may provide insight into the etiology of neurodevelopmental disorders where cognitive deficits in magnitude processing are manifest.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Number processing, Time processing, Spatial processing, Magnitude processing, Insula, Intraparietal sulcus (IPS)
Psychology Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-124667OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-124667DiVA: diva2:901911