Representation and integration of auditory and visual stimuli in the primate ventral lateral prefrontal cortex

Cereb Cortex. 2007 Sep;17 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):i61-9. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhm099. Epub 2007 Jul 18.


Through the influence of Goldman-Rakic, much research has been focused on the role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in spatial working memory, decision making, and saccade generation, whereas functions of other parts of the frontal lobe including the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) are less clear. Previous studies in non-human primates have shown that some VLPFC cells are selectively responsive to faces. Recent findings indicate that adjacent to the region where face- and object-selective cells have been recorded are neurons which respond to complex sounds including human and monkey vocalizations. Furthermore, when neurons in this same region are tested with combined face and voice communication stimuli, it is apparent that some cells in VLPFC are multisensory and respond to audiovisual stimuli. The determination that ventral prefrontal neurons are multisensory and responsive to auditory and visual communication stimuli may help to establish an animal model to assist in the investigation of the circuit and cellular basis of human communication. This will also aid in the understanding of general frontal lobe function and the processes that go awry in disorders including autism and schizophrenia, where disturbances in prefrontal function have been noted.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Animals
  • Auditory Pathways / physiology
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Prefrontal Cortex / physiology*
  • Primates / physiology*