Recognition disorders for famous faces and voices: a review of the literature and normative data of a new test battery

Davide Quaranta, Chiara Piccininni, Giovanni Augusto Carlesimo, Simona Luzzi, Camillo Marra, Costanza Papagno, Luigi Trojano, Guido Gainotti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Several anatomo-clinical investigations have shown that familiar face recognition disorders not due to high level perceptual defects are often observed in patients with lesions of the right anterior temporal lobe (ATL). The meaning of these findings is, however, controversial, because some authors claim that these patients show pure instances of modality-specific ‘associative prosopagnosia’, whereas other authors maintain that in these patients voice recognition is also impaired and that these patients have a ‘multimodal person recognition disorder’. To solve the problem of the nature of famous faces recognition disorders in patients affected by right ATL lesions, it is therefore very important to verify with formal tests if these patients are or are not able to recognize others by voice, but a direct comparison between the two modalities is hindered by the fact that voice recognition is more difficult than face recognition. To circumvent this difficulty, we constructed a test battery in which subjects were requested to recognize the same persons (well-known at the national level) through their faces and voices, evaluating familiarity and identification processes. The present paper describes the ‘Famous People Recognition Battery’ and reports the normative data necessary to clarify the nature of person recognition disorders observed in patients affected by right ATL lesions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)345-352
Number of pages8
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Dec 23 2015


  • Associative prosopagnosia and phonagnosia
  • Face and voice familiarity feelings
  • Familiar people identification
  • Multimodal person recognition disorders
  • Right anterior temporal lesions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Dermatology


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