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Article
Nature Neuroscience  4, 845 - 850 (2001)
doi:10.1038/90565

Differential responses in the fusiform region to same-race and other-race faces

Alexandra J. Golby, John D. E. Gabrieli, Joan Y. Chiao & Jennifer L. Eberhardt

Departments of Radiology and Psychology, Jordan Hall-Building 420, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Jennifer L. Eberhardt jle@psych.stanford.edu
Many studies have shown that people remember faces of their own race better than faces of other races. We investigated the neural substrates of same-race memory superiority using functional MRI (fMRI). European-American (EA) and African-American (AA) males underwent fMRI while they viewed photographs of AA males, EA males and objects under intentional encoding conditions. Recognition memory was superior for same-race versus other-race faces. Individually defined areas in the fusiform region that responded preferentially to faces had greater response to same-race versus other-race faces. Across both groups, memory differences between same-race and other-race faces correlated with activation in left fusiform cortex and right parahippocampal and hippocampal areas. These results suggest that differential activation in fusiform regions contributes to same-race memory superiority.

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Nature Neuroscience
ISSN: 1097-6256
EISSN: 1546-1726
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