Facial identity and facial speech processing in developmental prosopagnosia
The neural substrate of acquired prosopagnosia, including its lateralization, remains a matter of investigation. Face processing networks in healthy subjects are right dominant, and acquired prosopagnosia usually results from right or bilateral lesions. Nevertheless, there may be a complementary contribution of the left hemisphere to certain types of face processing. Prior reports suggest that this might be processing faces depicted by line contours, or lip reading. We performed two behavioural studies in seven subjects with developmental prosopagnosia. The first examined their ability to match faces across viewpoint changes, with either unaltered photographs or images that had been reduced to line elements. Prosopagnosic subjects had normal performance with line-contour faces, but failed to show the normal benefit from the additional information in unaltered photographs. The second experiment examined their ability to perceive facial speech patterns. Prosopagnosic subjects could detect, discriminate and identify facial speech patterns, but most showed reduced use of these cues or anomalous audiovisual integration in the McGurk effect, with only one subject performing normally. We conclude that developmental prosopagnosia can be associated with a subtle impairment in lip reading, which in prior studies of acquired lesions has been associated more with left than with right fusiform damage.
Albonico, Andrea; Yu, Sabrina; Corrow, Sherryse L.; and Barton, Jason JS, "Facial identity and facial speech processing in developmental prosopagnosia" (2022). Psychology Faculty Publications. 24.