Optical imaging of bilingual cortical representations. Case report

N. Pouratian, S. Y. Bookheimer, A. M. O'Farrell, N. L. Sicotte, A. F. Cannestra, D. Becker, A. W. Toga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


The organization of language in the brains of multilingual persons remains controversial. The authors investigated language representations in a proficient bilingual patient by using a novel neuroimaging technique, intraoperative optical imaging of intrinsic signals (iOIS), and a visual object naming task. The results indicate that there are cortical areas that are activated by the use of both English and Spanish languages (superior temporal sulcus, superior and middle temporal gyri, and parts of the supramarginal gyrus). In addition, language-specific areas were identified in the supramarginal (Spanish) and precentral (English) gyri. These results suggest that cortical language representations in bilingual persons may consist of both overlapping and distinct components. Furthermore, this study demonstrates the utility of iOIS in detecting topographical segregation of cognitively distinct cortices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)676-681
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Brain mapping
  • Cerebral blood flow
  • Diagnostic imaging
  • Neurosurgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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