Ole Numssen, Katie Williams & Gesa Hartwigsen | Functional specialization in the inferior parietal lobes across cognitive domains

Institutskolloquium (intern)

  • Datum: 24.01.2022
  • Uhrzeit: 15:00 - 16:00
  • Vortragende(r): Ole Numssen, Katie Williams & Gesa Hartwigsen
  • Lise Meitner Research "Group Cognition and Plasticity"
  • Ort: MPI für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften
  • Raum: Zoom Meeting
The Default Mode Network (DMN) is most typically studied as a cohesive neural network, and it is generally considered to be less active during “task positive” states. Recently, however, increasing regard is given to the task-specific contribution of a key DMN region, the bilateral inferior parietal lobe (IPL), to broader cognition.

We have conducted elaborate fMRI studies to disentangle the IPL and its interactions with the rest of the brain across its plethora of contributions towards internally and externally directed cognition. These comprehensive studies included prototypical tasks of the larger domains attention, language, and social cognition, as well as task-free “rest” sessions. The acquired rich datasets allows us to identify patterns of specialization and lateralization, with respect to both local IPL and global whole-brain activity and connectivity. We show that complexity of network interactions reflects task complexity for each cognitive domain.

In the most recent study, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) was used to gain insights into local and global brain responses to focal perturbation of this functional hub across key cognitive domains.

Our collective results illuminate the role of the IPL in supporting some of the most distinctive human mental capacities.

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