Data_Sheet_1_Distinct Components in the Right Extended Frontal Aslant Tract Mediate Language and Working Memory Performance: A Tractography-Informed V.DOCX (1.04 MB)

Data_Sheet_1_Distinct Components in the Right Extended Frontal Aslant Tract Mediate Language and Working Memory Performance: A Tractography-Informed VBM Study.DOCX

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posted on 21.04.2020, 05:19 by Federico Varriano, Saül Pascual-Diaz, Alberto Prats-Galino

The extended frontal aslant tract (exFAT) is a tractography-based extension of the frontal aslant tract (FAT) which has been shown to be related with language and working memory performance in healthy human adults, but whether those functional implications map to structurally separate regions along its trajectory is still an open question. We present a tractography-informed Voxel-Based Morphometry procedure capable of detecting local tract-specific structural differences in white matter regions and apply it in two maximum variation sampling studies by comparing local differences in diffusion-derived microstructural parameters and fiber density along the exFAT territory between top performers and bottom performers in language and working memory tasks. In the right hemisphere we were able to detect, without prior constraints, a vertical frontal aslant component approximating the original FAT trajectory whose fiber density was significantly correlated with language (but not working memory) performance and an anterior cluster component corresponding to a distinct anterior frontal aslant component whose fiber density was significantly correlated with working memory (but not language) performance. The reported sub-division of the exFAT territory describes a set of frontal connections that are compatible with previously reported results on the Broca’s territory and frontal cortex hierarchical organization along an anterior-posterior gradient, suggesting that the exFAT could be part of a common neuroanatomical scaffold where language and working memory functions are integrated in the healthy human brain.

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