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Considerable ambiguity exists about the generators of the scalp recorded P300, despite a vast body of research employing a diverse range of methodologies. Previous investigations employing source localization techniques have been limited largely to equivalent current dipole models, with most studies identifying medial temporal and/or hippocampal sources, but providing little information about the contribution of other cortical regions to the generation of the scalp recorded P3. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded from 5 subjects using a 124-channel sensor array during the performance of a visuo-verbal Oddball task. Cortically constrained, MRI-guided boundary element modeling was used to identify the cortical generators of this target P3 in individual subjects. Cortical generators of the P3 were localized principally to the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) and surrounding superior parietal lobes (SPL) bilaterally in all subjects, though with some variability across subjects. Two subjects also showed activity in the lingual/inferior occipital gyrus and mid-fusiform gyrus. A group cortical surface was calculated by non-linear warping of each subject's segmented cortex followed by averaging and creation of a group mesh. Source activity identified across the group reflected the individual subject activations in the IPS and SPL bilaterally and in the lingual/inferior occipital gyrus primarily on the left. Activation of IPS and SPL is interpreted to reflect the role of this region in working memory and related attention processes and visuo-motor integration. The activity in left lingual/inferior occipital gyrus is taken to reflect activation of regions associated with modality-specific analysis of visual word forms.

Original publication




Journal article


Hum Brain Mapp

Publication Date





53 - 77


Adult, Attention, Brain Mapping, Electroencephalography, Event-Related Potentials, P300, Evoked Potentials, Visual, Female, Humans, Language, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Memory, Occipital Lobe, Parietal Lobe, Photic Stimulation