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Temporo-parietal and fronto-parietal lobe contributions to theory of mind and executive control: an fMRI study of verbal jokes.

Chan YC, Lavallee JP - Front Psychol (2015)

Bottom Line: For all joke types, the left dlPFC appeared to support common cognitive mechanisms, such as script-shifting, while the vACC was associated with affective appreciation.The temporo-parietal lobe (TPJ and MTG) was associated with BJs, suggesting involvement of these regions with 'theory of mind' processing.The social-affective appreciation of verbal jokes was associated with activity in the orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala, and parahippocampal gyrus.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Learning Sciences, National Tsing Hua University Hsinchu, Taiwan.

ABSTRACT
'Getting a joke' always requires resolving an apparent incongruity, but the particular cognitive operations called upon vary depending on the nature of the joke itself. Previous research has identified the primary neural correlates of the cognitive and affective processes called upon to respond to humor generally, but little work has been done on the substrates underlying the distinct cognitive operations required to comprehend particular joke types. This study explored the neural correlates of the cognitive processes required to successfully comprehend three joke types: bridging-inference jokes (BJs), exaggeration jokes (EJs), and ambiguity jokes (AJs). For all joke types, the left dlPFC appeared to support common cognitive mechanisms, such as script-shifting, while the vACC was associated with affective appreciation. The temporo-parietal lobe (TPJ and MTG) was associated with BJs, suggesting involvement of these regions with 'theory of mind' processing. The fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG) was associated with both EJs and AJs, suggesting that it supports executive control processes such as retrieval from episodic memory, self-awareness, and language-based decoding. The social-affective appreciation of verbal jokes was associated with activity in the orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala, and parahippocampal gyrus. These results allow a more precise account of the neural processes required to support the particular cognitive operations required for the understanding of different types of humor.

No MeSH data available.


Distinct neural mechanisms for exaggeration jokes and ambiguity jokes in fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG). (Left top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of exaggeration jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (EJ > ES) in bilateral IPL and right IFG during cognitive processing and in right amygdala during affective processing. (Right top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of ambiguity jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (AJ > AS) in left vACC and right PHG during affective processing and extending to ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (IFG) and frontopolar cortex (MFG) during cognitive processing. MNI coordinates for distinct regions can be found in Table 6. (Bottom) Bars show mean beta values of peak voxels for each of the three types. Error bars represent SEM. L, left; R, right; IPL, inferior parietal lobe; IFG, inferior frontal gyrus; vACC, ventral anterior cingulate cortex; PHG, parahippocampal gyrus.
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Figure 3: Distinct neural mechanisms for exaggeration jokes and ambiguity jokes in fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG). (Left top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of exaggeration jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (EJ > ES) in bilateral IPL and right IFG during cognitive processing and in right amygdala during affective processing. (Right top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of ambiguity jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (AJ > AS) in left vACC and right PHG during affective processing and extending to ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (IFG) and frontopolar cortex (MFG) during cognitive processing. MNI coordinates for distinct regions can be found in Table 6. (Bottom) Bars show mean beta values of peak voxels for each of the three types. Error bars represent SEM. L, left; R, right; IPL, inferior parietal lobe; IFG, inferior frontal gyrus; vACC, ventral anterior cingulate cortex; PHG, parahippocampal gyrus.

Mentions: In the exaggeration type condition, the EJs versus ES contrast also revealed a network of cortical and subcortical regions presumably underlying comprehension of exaggerated elements. Significant activations were found in the right amygdala, left claustrum, bilateral IPL, and right IFG (Table 6 and Figure 3). Activation in the claustrum extended to the left vACC (BA 24, Z = 5.78) and left frontopolar cortex (MFG, BA 10, Z = 4.91).


Temporo-parietal and fronto-parietal lobe contributions to theory of mind and executive control: an fMRI study of verbal jokes.

Chan YC, Lavallee JP - Front Psychol (2015)

Distinct neural mechanisms for exaggeration jokes and ambiguity jokes in fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG). (Left top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of exaggeration jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (EJ > ES) in bilateral IPL and right IFG during cognitive processing and in right amygdala during affective processing. (Right top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of ambiguity jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (AJ > AS) in left vACC and right PHG during affective processing and extending to ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (IFG) and frontopolar cortex (MFG) during cognitive processing. MNI coordinates for distinct regions can be found in Table 6. (Bottom) Bars show mean beta values of peak voxels for each of the three types. Error bars represent SEM. L, left; R, right; IPL, inferior parietal lobe; IFG, inferior frontal gyrus; vACC, ventral anterior cingulate cortex; PHG, parahippocampal gyrus.
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Figure 3: Distinct neural mechanisms for exaggeration jokes and ambiguity jokes in fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG). (Left top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of exaggeration jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (EJ > ES) in bilateral IPL and right IFG during cognitive processing and in right amygdala during affective processing. (Right top) Brain images of greater activation were found for simple main contrast of ambiguity jokes with corresponding non-joke baseline (AJ > AS) in left vACC and right PHG during affective processing and extending to ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (IFG) and frontopolar cortex (MFG) during cognitive processing. MNI coordinates for distinct regions can be found in Table 6. (Bottom) Bars show mean beta values of peak voxels for each of the three types. Error bars represent SEM. L, left; R, right; IPL, inferior parietal lobe; IFG, inferior frontal gyrus; vACC, ventral anterior cingulate cortex; PHG, parahippocampal gyrus.
Mentions: In the exaggeration type condition, the EJs versus ES contrast also revealed a network of cortical and subcortical regions presumably underlying comprehension of exaggerated elements. Significant activations were found in the right amygdala, left claustrum, bilateral IPL, and right IFG (Table 6 and Figure 3). Activation in the claustrum extended to the left vACC (BA 24, Z = 5.78) and left frontopolar cortex (MFG, BA 10, Z = 4.91).

Bottom Line: For all joke types, the left dlPFC appeared to support common cognitive mechanisms, such as script-shifting, while the vACC was associated with affective appreciation.The temporo-parietal lobe (TPJ and MTG) was associated with BJs, suggesting involvement of these regions with 'theory of mind' processing.The social-affective appreciation of verbal jokes was associated with activity in the orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala, and parahippocampal gyrus.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Learning Sciences, National Tsing Hua University Hsinchu, Taiwan.

ABSTRACT
'Getting a joke' always requires resolving an apparent incongruity, but the particular cognitive operations called upon vary depending on the nature of the joke itself. Previous research has identified the primary neural correlates of the cognitive and affective processes called upon to respond to humor generally, but little work has been done on the substrates underlying the distinct cognitive operations required to comprehend particular joke types. This study explored the neural correlates of the cognitive processes required to successfully comprehend three joke types: bridging-inference jokes (BJs), exaggeration jokes (EJs), and ambiguity jokes (AJs). For all joke types, the left dlPFC appeared to support common cognitive mechanisms, such as script-shifting, while the vACC was associated with affective appreciation. The temporo-parietal lobe (TPJ and MTG) was associated with BJs, suggesting involvement of these regions with 'theory of mind' processing. The fronto-parietal lobe (IPL and IFG) was associated with both EJs and AJs, suggesting that it supports executive control processes such as retrieval from episodic memory, self-awareness, and language-based decoding. The social-affective appreciation of verbal jokes was associated with activity in the orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala, and parahippocampal gyrus. These results allow a more precise account of the neural processes required to support the particular cognitive operations required for the understanding of different types of humor.

No MeSH data available.