When we cannot recall the name of a well-known person despite preserved access to his/her semantic knowledge, a phonological hint such as his/her initials sometimes helps us to recall the name. This type of recall failure appeared to occur by the transmission deficit from the lexical-semantic stage to the lexical-phonological stage in name recall processes, and the phonological cue appeared to activate this transmission, which leads to successful recall. We hypothesized that the brain regions responsible for the transmission would respond to the phonological cue that facilitates name recall, and would also respond to successful recall. A famous face image was presented with a phonological cue, and the subjects were required to recall and overtly pronounce the name during fMRI scanning. The behavioral results showed that the first syllable cue induced greater number of successful recall trials than both the non-verbal sound of the chime and the non-first syllable cue, suggesting that the first syllable facilitated name recall. The fMRI results demonstrated that two regions in the left superior temporal gyrus responded more strongly to the first syllable than both to the non-verbal sound of the chime and to the non-first syllable. In addition, these two regions were activated when the name recall was successful. These results suggest that two regions in the left superior temporal gyrus may play a crucial role in the transmission from the lexical-semantic to the lexical-phonological stage in the name recall processes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cognitive Neuroscience