Université de Genève

Neuroscience center

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Group leader: Narly Golestani

Group name: Brain and Language Lab

Affiliation: Medical Sciences

Research activities:

Our group aims at better understanding the brain functional and structural bases of speech and language, and of language-related learning. We use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and electroencephalography (EEG) to study the brain functional bases of language and multilingualism, with an emphasis on specific language components such as phonology and grammar, but also on the interplay between non-linguistic functions and second language usage such as during simultaneous interpretation. We also use anatomical MRI and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) in order to uncover normative and expertise-related brain structure-behaviour relationships. We look for convergence across functional and structural imaging methods in order to better understand how the brain changes both functionally as well as structurally due to language learning and expertise. Finally, we aim to elucidate the relative contributions of experience versus of pre-existing, possibly innate influences on individual differences in linguistic/auditory skills and brain function/structure.

Group website: http://brainandlanguagelab.org

Selected Publications:

  • Golestani, N., Price, C.J., Scott, S. K. (2011) Born with an ear for dialects? Structural plasticity in the "expert" phonetician brain. The Journal of Neuroscience, 31(11), 4213-4220.
  • Golestani, N., Molko, N., Pallier, C., Dehaene, S., & Le Bihan, D. (2007). Brain structure predicts the learning of foreign speech sounds. Cerebral Cortex, 17(3), 575-582.
  • Golestani, N., Alario, F.-X., Meriaux, S., Le Bihan, D., Dehaene, S., & Pallier, C. (2006)Syntax production in bilinguals.Neuropsychologia, 44(7), 1029-40.

Contact:
University Medical Center
Département des neurosciences cliniques
Email: Narly (dot) Golestani (at) unige (dot) ch