Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Interhemispheric somatosensory transfer was studied by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and neuropsychological tests in a patient who underwent resection of the corpus callosum (CC) for drug-resistant epilepsy in two stages. The first resection involved the anterior half of the body of CC and the second, its posterior half and the splenium. For the fMRI study, the hand was stimulated with a rough sponge. The neuropsychological tests included: Tactile Naming Test (TNT), Same-Different Recognition Test (SDRT), and Tactile Finger Localization Test (intra- and intermanual tasks, TFLT). The patient was studied 1 week before and then 6 months and 1 year after the second surgery. Before this operation, unilateral tactile stimulation of either hand activated contralaterally the first (SI) and second (SII) somatosensory areas and the posterior parietal (PP) cortex, and SII and PP cortex ipsilaterally. All three tests were performed without errors. In both postoperative sessions, somatosensory activation was observed in contralateral SI, SII, and PP cortex, but not in ipsilateral SII and PP cortex. Performance was 100% correct in the TNT for the right hand, but below chance for the left; in the other tests, it was below chance except for TFLT in the intramanual task. This case provides the direct demonstration that activation of SII and PP cortex to stimulation of the ipsilateral hand and normal interhemispheric transfer of tactile information require the integrity of the posterior body of the CC.