An fMRI study of Chinese character reading and picture naming by native Korean speakers

Hyo Woon Yoon, Jun Young Chung, Kyung Hwan Kim, Myung Sung Song, Hyun Wook Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Chinese characters appear in the currently used Korean language, and the system used for writing system the Korean language consists of a mixture of the Korean alphabet and Chinese characters. In the present study, neural mechanisms involved in reading a single Chinese character words and naming pictures by Korean native speakers were investigated using a functional magnetic resonance imaging technique. The findings show a right hemispheric dominance within the occipito-temporal and the left middle/medial frontal area for both reading Chinese characters and naming pictures. This should reflect the specific visual processing of reading Chinese characters. Additional activations in inferior frontal and cingulage gyrus were also observed. The activations of inferior parietal region and thalamus are of interest, since we assume that these activations are strongly related to the phonological status of single Chinese character words rather than two character words that are typically used by Korean native speakers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90-95
Number of pages6
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Jan 9

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by MOCIE (Korean Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy) with grant no. 2004-02012.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)


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