Semantic memory and the brain: structure and processes

  title={Semantic memory and the brain: structure and processes},
  author={Alex Martin and Linda L Chao},
  journal={Current Opinion in Neurobiology},
  • Alex MartinL. Chao
  • Published 1 April 2001
  • Psychology, Biology
  • Current Opinion in Neurobiology

Figures from this paper

Semantic Knowledge: Neural Basis of

Semantic retrieval, mnemonic control, and prefrontal cortex.

Evidence from cognitive-behavioral paradigms, neuropsychological studies of patients with focal neural insult, and functional brain imaging concerning the mechanisms underlying retrieval of semantic knowledge and their association with prefrontal cortex are reviewed.

The Neural Organization of Semantic Control: TMS Evidence for a Distributed Network in Left Inferior Frontal and Posterior Middle Temporal Gyrus

Stimulation of left inferior frontal gyrus and posterior middle temporal cortex with repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation reveals that an extended network of prefrontal and posterior temporal regions underpins semantic control.

Is prefrontal cortex necessary for the storage and acquisition of relational concepts?

Frontal cortex may be well suited to support this type of function, but it is argued that PFC neurons necessarily support the storage and acquisition of relational concepts.

The sensory-motor theory of semantics: Evidence from functional imaging

  • U. Noppeney
  • Psychology, Biology
    Language and Cognition
  • 2009
Functional imaging evidence that semantic processing of tools and actions may rely on activations within the visuo-motor system is reviewed.

Motor and cognitive functions of the ventral premotor cortex


A PET study to determine whether there is any regional specialisation for the processing of concepts from different semantic categories using picture stimuli and a semantic categorisation task found robust activation of a large semantic network extending from left inferior frontal cortex into the inferior temporal lobe and including occipital cortex and the fusiform gyrus.



A neural basis for lexical retrieval

Two parallel studies using positron emission tomography indicate that the normal process of retrieving words that denote concrete entities depends in part on multiple regions of the left cerebral hemisphere, located outside the classic language areas.

Attribute-based neural substrates in temporal cortex for perceiving and knowing about objects

These findings suggest that semantic object information is represented in distributed networks that include sites for storing information about specific object attributes such as form and motion in ventral temporal cortex and lateral temporal lobes.

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Semantic Memory Processes in the Frontal Lobes

The results demonstrate that fMRI can visualize changes in an individual's brain function associated with the encoding and retrieval of new memories.

The role of left prefrontal cortex in language and memory.

This article reviews attempts to characterize the mental operations mediated by left inferior prefrontal cortex, especially the anterior and inferior portion of the gyrus, with the functional

Verb generation in patients with focal frontal lesions: a neuropsychological test of neuroimaging findings.

The ability of patients with focal frontal lesions to perform a task commonly used in neuroimaging experiments, the generation of semantically appropriate action words for concrete nouns, is examined and evidence of the necessity of the left inferior frontal gyrus for certain components of the verb generation task is found.

Premotor and Prefrontal Correlates of Category-Related Lexical Retrieval

The data presented here provide additional support for the notion that "nonclassical" language areas in extrasylvian frontal and temporal regions mediate word retrieval and that the pattern of their engagement relates to conceptual category.

Semantic encoding and retrieval in the left inferior prefrontal cortex: a functional MRI study of task difficulty and process specificity

Findings suggest that the left inferior prefrontal cortex (LIPC) is part of a semantic executive system that contributes to the on-line retrieval of semantic information.

Partially overlapping neural networks for real and imagined hand movements.

Results suggest that a specific neuronal substrate is involved in the processing of hand motor representations in the form of cortico-subcortical areas.