Directors: Antonio M. Battro and Kurt W. Fischer
Program officer: María Lourdes Majdalani
The separation of cerebral plasticity and adaptation during lexical learning
The functional change of the cerebral cortex during lexical learning was investigated by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technique. The participants were asked to learn the meaning of a set of stimuli in a strange language (Thai) with paired presentation of a stimulus and its corresponding picture. There were two fMRI scan sessions for each participant, one before and one after the learning session. It was found that there was a neural network underlying lexical learning, and the exposure of the learned stimuli increase the activation of the network while the repeat of the unlearned stimuli decrease the activation of the network, which suggests the separation of the mechanism of the plasticity and that of the adaptation.