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Cortex. 2016 Oct;83:139-44. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2016.07.012. Epub 2016 Jul 26.

Associative hallucinations result from stimulating left ventromedial temporal cortex.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, Pittsburgh, PA, USA. Electronic address: eaminoff@cmu.edu.
2
Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Program in Neural Computation, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
3
Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
4
Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
5
Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition, Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

Abstract

Visual recognition requires connecting perceptual information with contextual information and existing knowledge. The ventromedial temporal cortex (VTC), including the medial fusiform, has been linked with object recognition, paired associate learning, contextual processing, and episodic memory, suggesting that this area may be critical in connecting visual processing, context, knowledge and experience. However, evidence for the link between associative processing, episodic memory, and visual recognition in VTC is currently lacking. Using electrocorticography (ECoG) in a single human patient, medial regions of the left VTC were found to be sensitive to the contextual associations of objects. Electrical brain stimulation (EBS) of this part of the left VTC of the patient, functionally defined as sensitive to associative processing, caused memory related, associative experiential visual phenomena. This provides evidence of a relationship between visual recognition, associative processing, and episodic memory. These results suggest a potential role for abnormalities of these processes as part of a mechanism that gives rise to some visual hallucinations.

KEYWORDS:

Associative processing; Electrical brain stimulation; Electrocorticography; Fusiform; Visual recognition

PMID:
27533133
PMCID:
PMC5228589
DOI:
10.1016/j.cortex.2016.07.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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