025). Of more important note, though, was the significant interaction between this lexical category factor and the semantics variable (F(1, 17) = 9.319, p = .007). This interaction was driven by significantly greater activation for concrete nouns (see Fig. 3) compared with concrete verbs in both the more anterior first (t(17) = 2.301, p < .035) and posterior (t(17) = 3.046, p < .01) frontal
regions. Whilst nouns generally evoked greater average activation than verbs in these regions, the difference between abstract nouns and verbs did not reach significance in the present study. Comparison of brain responses to concrete nouns to the pooled response to all three other word types confirmed the relatively enhanced signal to the former in the Tanespimycin in vitro anterior ROI (t(17) = 2.611, p = .018) and a trend in this direction in the posterior (t(17) = 1.672, p = .113). Note, furthermore, the similarity between the activation advantage for concrete nouns in this ROI defined by Martin et al. (1996) and the data-driven IFG/insular ROI found in the present study. Martin et al. had investigated animal and tool naming and these ROIs showed strongest responses in animal naming; in our study, which used words in a passive reading task, most of the concrete
nouns were also animal names. The inferior frontal region thus appears particularly engaged in animal name processing, regardless whether this occurs during naming or passive reading. In a study of abstract and concrete noun
and verb processing, we found a significant interaction effect of orthogonalized semantic (abstract vs. H 89 cell line concrete) and lexical (noun vs. verb) factors in the frontocentral motor system. In central and precentral motor cortex, activation to concrete verbs was generally enhanced compared with concrete nouns and, crucially, a similar difference for abstract word groups was absent. Inferior frontal regions suggested the opposite Protein kinase N1 contrast, activation greater for concrete nouns than for concrete verbs, but, once again, the contrast of nouns vs. verbs was not significant for abstract items. As statistically significant effects of lexical category appeared in interaction with semantic differences between abstract and concrete words, our results argue against a distinction between topographical patterns of brain activation in terms of the lexical categories of nouns and verbs. Rather, our data show that brain activation patterns to nouns and verbs depend on the semantic nature of these items. The most prominent brain distinctions include enhanced activity in central motor cortex to verbs typically used to speak about actions relative to object-related nouns, and relatively stronger activation in inferior frontal cortex to object nouns as compared with action verbs. Our neurometabolic data reveals a pattern of activation across frontal and temporal cortices typical of that generally seen in visual word processing (Bookheimer, 2002 and Kronbichler et al., 2004).