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ERIC Number: EJ976308
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jul
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0028-3932
The Neural Substrates Associated with Attentional Resources and Difficulty of Concurrent Processing of the Two Verbal Tasks
Mizuno, Kei; Tanaka, Masaaki; Tanabe, Hiroki C.; Sadato, Norihiro; Watanabe, Yasuyoshi
Neuropsychologia, v50 n8 p1998-2009 Jul 2012
The kana pick-out test has been widely used in Japan to evaluate the ability to divide attention in both adult and pediatric patients. However, the neural substrates underlying the ability to divide attention using the kana pick-out test, which requires participants to pick out individual letters (vowels) in a story while also reading for comprehension, thus requiring simultaneous allocation of attention to both activities, are still unclear. Moreover, outside of the clinical area, neuroimaging studies focused on the mechanisms of divided attention during complex story comprehension are rare. Thus, the purpose of the present study, to clarify the neural substrates of kana pick-out test, improves our current understanding of the basic neural mechanisms of dual task performance in verbal memory function. We compared patterns of activation in the brain obtained during performance of the individual tasks of vowel identification and story comprehension, to levels of activation when participants performed the two tasks simultaneously during the kana pick-out test. We found that activations of the left dorsal inferior frontal gyrus and superior parietal lobule increase in functional connectivity to a greater extent during the dual task condition compared to the two single task conditions. In contrast, activations of the left fusiform gyrus and middle temporal gyrus, which are significantly involved in picking out letters and complex sentences during story comprehension, respectively, were reduced in the dual task condition compared to during the two single task conditions. These results suggest that increased activations of the dorsal inferior frontal gyrus and superior parietal lobule during dual task performance may be associated with the capacity for attentional resources, and reduced activations of the left fusiform gyrus and middle temporal gyrus may reflect the difficulty of concurrent processing of the two tasks. In addition, the increase in synchronization between the left dorsal inferior frontal gyrus and superior parietal lobule in the dual task condition may induce effective communication between these brain regions and contribute to more attentional processing than in the single task condition, due to greater and more complex demands on voluntary attentional resources. (Contains 3 tables and 6 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan