Scientists Identify Brain Region Where Individuals with Visual Impairments Recognize Faces through Sound

Scientists Identify Brain Region Where Individuals with Visual Impairments Recognize Faces through Sound

Sound Encoded Faces Activate the Left Fusiform Face Area in the Early Blind

Author: Georgetown University Medical Center – Contact: georgetown.edu
Published: 2023/11/22 – Updated: 2023/11/23
Peer-Reviewed: Yes – Publication Type: Experimental Study
On This Page: Summary – Main Article – About/Author

Synopsis: Using a specialized device that translates images into sound researchers showed that people who are blind recognized basic faces using the fusiform face area, a region of the brain that is crucial for the processing of faces in sighted people. Six people who are blind and 10 sighted people, who served as control subjects, went through three rounds of functional MRI scans to see what parts of the brain were being activated during the translations from image into sound. Our results from people who are blind implies that fusiform face area development does not depend on experience with actual visual faces but on exposure to the geometry of facial configurations, which can be conveyed by other sensory modalities.

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“Sound Encoded Faces Activate the Left Fusiform Face Area in the Early Blind” – PLoS ONE.

Using a specialized device that translates images into sound, Georgetown University [...]

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