Relationships between reading performance and regional spontaneous brain activity following surgical removal of primary left-hemisphere tumors: A resting-state fMRI study


Left-hemisphere intraparenchymal primary brain tumor patients are at risk of developing reading difficulties that may be stable, improve or deteriorate after surgery. Previous studies examining language organization in brain tumor patients have provided insights into neural plasticity supporting recovery. Only a single study, however, has examined the role of white matter tracts in preserving reading ability post-surgery and none have examined the functional reading network. The current study aimed to investigate the regional spontaneous brain activity associated with reading performance in a group of 36 adult patients 6–24 months following left-hemisphere tumor resection. Spontaneous brain activity was assessed using resting-state fMRI (rs-fMRI) regional homogeneity (ReHo) and fractional amplitude low frequency fluctuation (fALFF) metrics, which measure local functional connectivity and activity, respectively. ReHo in the left occipito-temporal and right superior parietal regions was negatively correlated with reading performance. fALFF in the putamen bilaterally and the left cerebellum was negatively correlated with reading performance, and positively correlated in the right superior parietal gyrus. These findings are broadly consistent with reading networks reported in healthy participants, indicating that reading ability following brain tumor surgery might not involve substantial functional re-organization.

Neuropsychologia, 188(108631)