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Brain and Cognition

Jessica Hofmann, Hannah A D Keage, Rebecca Callahan, Scott Coussens, Owen Churches, Irina Baetu
This study investigated electroencephalography (EEG) correlates of prediction error during probabilistic learning in pre-adolescents. The detection of prediction errors, the discrepancies between experienced and anticipated outcomes, is thought to be a critical mechanism that drives new learning. Thirty-three typically developing pre-adolescents (mean age = 10.62 years) participated in an associative learning task in which they learned the probabilistic relationships between cues and outcome stimuli in the absence of explicit feedback...
January 7, 2019: Brain and Cognition
Yuki Takakura, Mika Otsuki, Shinya Sakai, Yasutaka Tajima, Yasunori Mito, Akihiko Ogata, Shuichi Koshimizu, Masami Yoshino, Genki Uemori, Satoko Takakura, Yoshitsugu Nakagawa
Some studies have hypothesized that primary progressive apraxia of speech (ppAOS) consists of heterogeneous symptoms that can be sub-classified; however, no study has classified stroke-induced AOS (sAOS) and ppAOS according to common criteria. The purpose of this study was to elucidate the symptoms and relevant brain regions associated with sAOS and ppAOS for sub-classification. Participants included 8 patients with sAOS following lesions in the left precentral gyrus and/or underlying white matter, and 3 patients with ppAOS...
January 7, 2019: Brain and Cognition
Radek Ptak, François Lazeyras
The neural mechanisms underlying the access to object knowledge from early representations of shape are little known. Functional imaging studies support the view that representations of visual properties are distributed across occipito-temporal cortex of both cerebral hemispheres. By contrast, brain lesion studies show that focal occipito-temporal damage may lead to object agnosia - a specific impairment of object recognition. How does distributed processing fit with functional specialization implied by the existence of stimulus-specific agnosias? Using fMRI we studied functional connectivity (FC) in a patient with object agnosia following left lateral occipital damage...
December 24, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Iris Janet Broce, Byron Bernal, Nolan Altman, Catherine Bradley, Natalie Baez, Luis Cabrera, Gretter Hernandez, Anna De Feria, Anthony Steven Dick
The development of fluent reading is an extended process that requires the recruitment of a comprehensive system of perisylvian brain regions connected by an extensive network of fiber pathways. In the present cross-sectional study, we focused on fiber pathways-the arcuate fasciculus (AF), inferior longitudinal fasciculus (ILF), inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF), and vertical occipital fasciculus (VOF)-proposed to support early literacy in typical 5-8-year-old children. We related quantitative metrics of fiber pathway microstructure in these pathways to early literacy measures of phonological awareness and decoding...
December 21, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Jennifer Cozzi, Rebecca Angel, Anthony Herdman
The purpose of this study was to investigate the occurrence of an endogenously-evoked no-go N2b. Previous literature focused on the N2b being evoked by exogenous auditory stimuli. In this study, no-go stimuli were the absence of a gap in a 1000-ms noise burst (i.e., no-gap trials). ERPs were measured from 35 participants while performing a gap-detection task and passively listening to the same stimuli. Participants were asked to press a button when they heard a gap in the noise burst (go trials) and to withhold their button press when they did not perceive a gap in the noise burst (no-go trials)...
December 19, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Amy M Smith, Elizabeth Race, F Caroline Davis, Ayanna K Thomas
Smith, Floerke, and Thomas (2016) demonstrated that learning by repeated testing, or retrieval practice, reduced stress-related memory impairment when compared to learning by repeatedly studying material. In the present experiment, we tested whether, relative to study practice, retrieval practice would improve post-stress memory by increasing access to both item and source information. Participants learned two wordlists, which were temporally segregated to facilitate distinction between the two lists. Participants returned one week later for stress induction and two memory tests...
December 19, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Alexandria C Zakrzewski, Matthew G Wisniewski, Nandini Iyer, Brian D Simpson
Recent research has focused on measuring neural correlates of metacognitive judgments in decision and post-decision processes during memory retrieval and categorization. However, many tasks (e.g., stimulus detection) may require monitoring of earlier sensory processing. Here, participants indicated which of two intervals contained an 80-ms pure tone embedded in white noise. One frequency (e.g., 1000 Hz) was presented on ∼80% of all trials (i.e., 'primary' trials). Another frequency (e.g., 2500 Hz) was presented on ∼20% of trials (i...
December 13, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Elizabeth V Goldfarb
Stress can strongly influence what we learn and remember, including by making memories stronger. Experiments probing stress effects on hippocampus-dependent memory in rodents have revealed modulatory factors and physiological mechanisms by which acute stress can enhance long-term memory. However, extending these findings and mechanisms to understand when stress will enhance declarative memory in humans faces important challenges. This review synthesizes human and rodent studies of stress and memory, examining translational gaps related to measurements of declarative memory and stress responses in humans...
December 12, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Paige Greenwood, John Hutton, Jon Dudley, Tzipi Horowitz-Kraus
Reading is an acquired skill that relies on cognitive-control and language abilities. Home reading environment has been positively correlated with activation in parietal-temporal-occipital association cortex supporting mental imagery and narrative comprehension during a story-listening task in preschool-age children. However, the degree to which maternal reading ability influences early brain development, specifically neural circuits involved with language and reading, is not well understood. The current study explored the relationship between maternal reading ability and functional connectivity within the language network, between the language network and networks related to cognitive control and visual processing, as well as between the language network and the entire brain (network-to-voxel analysis) of preschool-age children during a resting state...
December 12, 2018: Brain and Cognition
F Morange-Majoux, E Devouche
The main purpose of this study was to test the influence of music environment on hand-use preference in infants from 5 to 12 months, compared to speech environment. According to hemispheric specialization, our hypothesis was that infants would reach for objects more with their right hand in a speech context (left hemisphere), and more with their left hand in a music context (right hemisphere). 61 full-term infants aged from 5 to 12 months participated in this study. A prehension task was proposed successively in two sound environments (music and speech) in a counterbalanced order...
December 10, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Kelly A Vaughn, Pilar Archila-Suerte, Arturo E Hernandez
Research suggests that bilingualism is associated with increases in parietal gray matter volume (GMV). These parietal GMV increases are a source of variability that may help explain the reported bilingual/monolingual differences in attentional control. The current study examined how parietal GMV variability and a participant's language background predicted Simon task performance. GMV measures were extracted from the bilateral angular and supramarginal gyri from participants' MRI scans using Freesurfer image analysis suite...
December 6, 2018: Brain and Cognition
A M Barrett, Olga Boukrina, Soha Saleh
Emerging research suggests spatial neglect after right stroke is linked to dysfunctional attention and motor networks. Advanced functional connectivity analysis clarified brain network recovery, however we need to know how networks participate in adaptive motor performance. We need to verify network changes associated with validated functional measures and spatial-motor performance in spatial neglect, especially in patients with large brain lesions and significant disability. This study tested whether disability-relevant spatial neglect associates with different patterns of resting state functional connectivity between motor, dorsal and ventral attention networks (MN, DAN and VAN)...
December 3, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Matthew J Kmiecik, Ryan J Brisson, Robert G Morrison
Analogy is an important ability that allows humans to discover relationships between information domains that often vary in surface and relational characteristics. Cognitive neuroscience studies of analogy have demonstrated the importance of the prefrontal cortex during relational comparisons, but little is known about how semantic and relational similarity interact throughout its time course. We used scalp electroencephalography (EEG) analyzed with event-related potentials (ERPs) to examine the neural time course of analogical reasoning while 16 participants solved four-term verbal analogies...
December 1, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Ranganatha Sitaram, Tao Yu, Ulrike Halsband, Dominik Vogel, Friedemann Müller, Simone Lang, Niels Birbaumer, Boris Kotchoubey
BACKGROUND: Functional connectivity (fcMRI) analyses of resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data revealed substantial differences between states of consciousness. The underlying cause-effect linkage, however, remains unknown to the present day. The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between fcMRI measures and Disorders of Consciousness (DOC) in resting state and under adequate stimulation. METHODS AND FINDINGS: fMRI data from thirteen patients with unresponsive wakefulness syndrome, eight patients in minimally conscious state, and eleven healthy controls were acquired in rest and during the application of nociceptive and emotional acoustic stimuli...
November 27, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Matthias Hartmann, Nils R Sommer, Lorenzo Diana, René M Müri, Aleksandra K Eberhard-Moscicka
Previous studies showed that the small leftward bias found in healthy humans' spatial judgments of lines ("pseudoneglect") shifts to the right with increasing distance between stimuli and observer. In this study, we investigated whether such a modulation of attentional asymmetry can also be observed in free visual exploration. Participants freely explored photographs of naturalistic scenes for 7 s in near (60 cm) and far (140 cm) space. After an initial leftward bias, followed by a compensatory rightward bias, gaze positions were significantly more leftward in near compared to far space (around 4 s from scene onset)...
November 22, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Anna Strotseva-Feinschmidt, Christine S Schipke, Thomas C Gunter, Jens Brauer, Angela D Friederici
Sentence comprehension requires the assignment of thematic relations between the verb and its noun arguments in order to determine who is doing what to whom. In some languages, such as English, word order is the primary syntactic cue. In other languages, such as German, case-marking is additionally used to assign thematic roles. During development children have to acquire the thematic relevance of these syntactic cues and weigh them against semantic cues. Here we investigated the processing of syntactic cues and semantic cues in 2- and 3-year-old children by analyzing their behavioral and neurophysiological responses...
November 12, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Jennifer Legault, Shin-Yi Fang, Yu-Ju Lan, Ping Li
Recent research indicates that learning a second language (L2) results in both functional and structural brain changes. However, few studies have examined whether structural brain changes vary as a function of the context in which L2 learning takes place. The current study examines changes in cortical thickness (CT) and gray matter volume (GMV) in response to short-term L2 vocabulary learning. In particular, we compared structural changes for learning with paired picture-word (PW) association versus learning within virtual environments (VE) and non-trained controls...
November 11, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Tad T Brunyé, Amy M Smith, Carlene B Horner, Ayanna K Thomas
Retrieval practice involves repeatedly testing a student during the learning experience, reliably conferring learning advantages relative to repeated study. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) has also been shown to confer learning advantages for verbal memory, though research is equivocal. The present study examined the effects of retrieval versus study practice with or without left dlPFC tDCS on verbal episodic memory. Participants (N = 150) experienced either retrieval practice or study practice, and active anodal, active cathodal, or sham tDCS while encoding word lists, and then returned two days later for a final recall test...
November 8, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Nancy Tsai, Jacquelynne S Eccles, Susanne M Jaeggi
Stress pervades everyday life and more importantly, affects prefrontal cortices that support executive control functions, processes that are critical to learning and memory as well as a range of life outcomes. The positive or negative effect of stress on cognition depends on an interaction of factors related to the situation and the individual. Research has shown that psychological characteristics related to self-relevance and the availability of resources may lead individuals to perceive a stressor as a threat or challenge, driving performance outcomes...
November 2, 2018: Brain and Cognition
Guglielmo Puglisi, Antonella Leonetti, Gabriella Cerri, Paola Borroni
Observation of others' actions evokes a motor resonant (MR) response, in the parieto-frontal Action Observation Network (AON, comprising BA40, BA6, BA4). In order to investigate the effect of cognitive processes on the AON we manipulated attention and cognitive load during central and peripheral observation of hand grasping actions with three experiments. Motor Evoked Potentials (MEPs) were elicited in the opponent of the thumb (OP) and abductor of the little finger (ADM) by Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) of the primary motor cortex...
October 27, 2018: Brain and Cognition
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