The neural mechanisms that underlie generalization of treatment-induced improvements in word finding in persons with aphasia (PWA) are currently poorly understood. This study aimed to shed light on changes in functional network connectivity underlying generalization in aphasia. To this end, we used fMRI and graph theoretic analyses to examine changes in functional connectivity after a theoretically-based word-finding treatment in which abstract words were used as training items with the goal of promoting generalization to concrete words. Ten right-handed native English-speaking PWA (7 male, 3 female) ranging in age from 47 to 75 (mean = 59) participated in this study. Direct training effects coincided with increased functional connectivity for regions involved in abstract word processing. Generalization effects coincided with increased functional connectivity for regions involved in concrete word processing. Importantly, similarities between training and generalization effects were noted as were differences between participants who generalized and those who did not.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Language and Linguistics
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Linguistics and Language
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Speech and Hearing