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Hum Brain Mapp. 2009 Jan;30(1):299-311.

Neural activations at the junction of the inferior frontal sulcus and the inferior precentral sulcus: interindividual variability, reliability, and association with sulcal morphology.

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Medicine (INB3), Institute of Neurosciences and Biophysics - Medicine (INB-3), Research Center Juelich, Juelich, Germany.


The sulcal morphology of the human frontal lobe is highly variable. Although the structural images usually acquired in functional magnetic resonance imaging studies provide information about this interindividual variability, this information is only rarely used to relate structure and function. Here, we investigated the spatial relationship between posterior frontolateral activations in a task-switching paradigm and the junction of the inferior frontal sulcus and the inferior precentral sulcus (inferior frontal junction, IFJ) on an individual-subject basis. Results show that, although variable in terms of stereotaxic coordinates, the posterior frontolateral activations observed in task-switching are consistently and reliably located at the IFJ in the brains of individual participants. The IFJ shares such consistent localization with other nonprimary areas as motion-sensitive area V5/MT and the frontal eye field. Building on tension-based models of morphogenesis, this structure-function correspondence might indicate that the cytoarchitectonic area underlying activations of the IFJ develops at early stages of cortical folding.

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