Functional MRI (fMRI) Human Mapping for Indicating Hippocampal Content-Specific Responsivity and Laterality

Yifat Glikmann-Johnston, Tali Halag-Milo, Talma Hendler, Tomer Gazit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Presurgical memory functional MRI (fMRI) mapping for temporal lobe epilepsy surgery is important because of the excision of structures in the temporal lobe (e.g., hippocampus) that are relevant for intact memory. Although the American Academy of Neurology recommends the use of fMRI for presurgical mapping of epilepsy of verbal and nonverbal memory to predict memory outcome, there are still no specific recommendations about which tests to use. In the current study, we evaluate the potential for clinical utility of two established neuropsychological tests of memory adapted into the fMRI setting. Method: We used the Verbal Paired Associates (VPA) for assessment of verbal memory and the Object Learning and Location (OLL) task for assessment of visuospatial memory. To confirm that these tasks engage the hippocampus, we examined their neural underpinning and patterns of laterality in 20 healthy volunteers (mean age = 26.35). Results: During fMRI of the VPA task of verbal memory, we found a strong left-lateralized posterior hippocampal activation. Remembering the location of objects in the OLL task of visuospatial memory elicited right-lateralized hippocampal activation. Conclusions: These findings demonstrate the utility of the VPA and OLL tests to delineate domain-specific activity and laterality and, as such, may provide supportive evidence to strengthen links between presurgical neuropsychological assessment and memory fMRI mapping for epilepsy surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)578-590
Number of pages13
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Epilepsy
  • Functional neurosurgery
  • Object-location memory
  • Temporal lobe
  • Verbal paired associates

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