Neuroimaging the short- and long-term effects of repeated picture naming in healthy older adults

Anna D. MacDonald, Shiree Heath, Katie L. McMahon, Lyndsey Nickels, Anthony J. Angwin, Sophia van Hees, Kori Johnson, David A. Copland*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Repeated attempts to name pictures can improve subsequent naming for aphasic individuals with anomia, however, the neurocognitive mechanisms responsible for such improvements are unknown. This study investigated repeated picture naming in healthy older adults over a period of minutes (short-term) after one repetition and a period of days (long-term) after multiple repetitions. Compared to unprimed pictures, both repeated conditions showed faster naming latencies with the fastest latencies evident for the short-term condition. Neuroimaging results identified repetition suppression effects across three left inferior frontal gyrus regions of interest: for both the short- and long-term conditions in the pars orbitalis, and for long-term items in the pars triangularis and pars opercularis regions. The whole brain analysis also showed a repetition suppression effect in bilateral pars triangularis regions for the long-term condition. These findings within the inferior frontal gyrus suggest that effects of repeated naming may be driven by a mapping mechanism across multiple levels of representation, possibly reflecting different levels of learning, and lend support to the idea that processing may be hierarchically organised in the left inferior frontal gyrus. The whole brain analysis also revealed repetition suppression for the long-term condition within the posterior portion of bilateral inferior temporal gyri, which may reflect attenuation of integration processes within this region following the learning of task-relevant information.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-178
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2015


  • Naming
  • Word production
  • Priming
  • Repetition suppression
  • Picture naming
  • FMRI


Dive into the research topics of 'Neuroimaging the short- and long-term effects of repeated picture naming in healthy older adults'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this