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Sample records for improve cognitive performance

  1. Preschoolers' Cognitive Performance Improves Following Massage.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Sybil; Field, Tiffany; Hernandez-Reif, Maria; Lundy, Brenda

    1998-01-01

    Effects of massage on preschoolers' cognitive performance were assessed. Preschoolers were given Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence-Revised subtests before and after receiving 15-minute massage or spending 15 minutes reading stories with the experimenter. Children's performance on Block Design improved following massage, and…

  2. Very low birth weight piglets show improved cognitive performance in the spatial cognitive holeboard task

    PubMed Central

    Antonides, Alexandra; Schoonderwoerd, Anne C.; Nordquist, Rebecca E.; van der Staay, Franz Josef

    2015-01-01

    Low birth weight (LBW) is common in humans and has been found to cause lasting cognitive and developmental deficits later in life. It is thought that the primary cause is intra-uterine growth restriction (IUGR) due to a shortage of oxygen and supply of nutrients to the fetus. Pigs appear to be a good model animal to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW, as LBW is common in commercially farmed breeds of pigs. Moreover, pigs are developmentally similar to humans and can be trained to perform complex tasks. In this study, we trained ten very low birth weight (vLBW) piglets and their ten normal birth weight (NBW) siblings in a spatial cognitive holeboard task in order to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW. In this task, four out of sixteen holes contain a hidden food reward, which allows measuring working memory (WM) (short-term memory) and reference memory (RM) (long-term memory) in parallel. Piglets were trained for 46–54 trials during the acquisition phase, followed by a 20-trial reversal phase in which a different set of four holes was baited. Both groups acquired the task and improved their performance over time. A mixed model repeated measures ANOVA revealed that vLBW piglets showed better RM performance than NBW piglets in both the acquisition and reversal phase. Additionally, WM scores in the vLBW were less disrupted than in the NBW animals when switched to the reversal phase. These findings are contrary to findings in humans. Moreover, vLBW pigs had lower hair cortisol concentrations (HCCs) than NBW pigs in flank hair at 12 weeks of age. These results could indicate that restricted intra-uterine growth causes compensatory mechanisms to arise in early development that result in beneficial effects for vLBW piglets, increasing their low survival chances in early-life competition. PMID:25774127

  3. Acute exercise performed close to the anaerobic threshold improves cognitive performance in elderly females.

    PubMed

    Córdova, C; Silva, V C; Moraes, C F; Simões, H G; Nóbrega, O T

    2009-05-01

    The objective of the present study was to compare the effect of acute exercise performed at different intensities in relation to the anaerobic threshold (AT) on abilities requiring control of executive functions or alertness in physically active elderly females. Forty-eight physically active elderly females (63.8 +/- 4.6 years old) were assigned to one of four groups by drawing lots: control group without exercise or trial groups with exercise performed at 60, 90, or 110% of AT (watts) and submitted to 5 cognitive tests before and after exercise. Following cognitive pretesting, an incremental cycle ergometer test was conducted to determine AT using a fixed blood lactate concentration of 3.5 mmol/L as cutoff. Acute exercise executed at 90% of AT resulted in significant (P < 0.05, ANOVA) improvement in the performance of executive functions when compared to control in 3 of 5 tests (verbal fluency, Tower of Hanoi test (number of movements), and Trail Making test B). Exercising at 60% of AT did not improve results of any tests for executive functions, whereas exercise executed at 110% of AT only improved the performance in one of these tests (verbal fluency) compared to control. Women from all trial groups exhibited a remarkable reduction in the Simple Response Time (alertness) test (P = 0.001). Thus, physical exercise performed close to AT is more effective to improve cognitive processing of older women even if conducted acutely, and using a customized exercise prescription based on the anaerobic threshold should optimize the beneficial effects. PMID:19377796

  4. Altitude acclimatization improves submaximal cognitive performance in mice and involves an imbalance of the cholinergic system.

    PubMed

    Guerra-Narbona, R; Delgado-García, J M; López-Ramos, J C

    2013-06-15

    The aim of this work was to reveal a hypothetical improvement of cognitive abilities in animals acclimatized to altitude and performing under ground level conditions, when looking at submaximal performance, once seen that it was not possible when looking at maximal scores. We modified contrasted cognitive tasks (object recognition, operant conditioning, eight-arm radial maze, and classical conditioning of the eyeblink reflex), increasing their complexity in an attempt to find performance differences in acclimatized animals vs. untrained controls. In addition, we studied, through immunohistochemical quantification, the expression of choline acetyltransferase and acetyl cholinesterase, enzymes involved in the synthesis and degradation of acetylcholine, in the septal area, piriform and visual cortexes, and the hippocampal CA1 area of animals submitted to acute hypobaric hypoxia, or acclimatized to this simulated altitude, to find a relationship between the cholinergic system and a cognitive improvement due to altitude acclimatization. Results showed subtle improvements of the cognitive capabilities of acclimatized animals in all of the tasks when performed under ground-level conditions (although not before 24 h), in the three tasks used to test explicit memory (object recognition, operant conditioning in the Skinner box, and eight-arm radial maze) and (from the first conditioning session) in the classical conditioning task used to evaluate implicit memory. An imbalance of choline acetyltransferase/acetyl cholinesterase expression was found in acclimatized animals, mainly 24 h after the acclimatization period. In conclusion, altitude acclimatization improves cognitive capabilities, in a process parallel to an imbalance of the cholinergic system. PMID:23599398

  5. Cognitive and Performance Enhancing Medication Use to Improve Performance in Poker.

    PubMed

    Caballero, Joshua; Ownby, Raymond L; Rey, Jose A; Clauson, Kevin A

    2016-09-01

    Use of neuroenhancers has been studied in groups ranging from students to surgeons; however, use of cognitive and performance enhancing medications (CPEMs) to improve performance in poker has remained largely overlooked. To assess the use of CPEMs to improve poker performance, a survey of poker players was conducted. Participants were recruited via Internet poker forums; 198 completed the online survey. Approximately 28 % of respondents used prescription CPEMs, with the most commonly used including: amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (62 %), benzodiazepines (20 %), and methylphenidate (20 %). CPEMs were used in poker to focus (73 %), calm nerves (11 %), and stay awake (11 %). Caffeine (71 %), as well as conventionally counter-intuitive substances like marijuana (35 %) and alcohol (30 %) were also reported to enhance poker performance. Non-users of CPEMs were dissuaded from use due to not knowing where to get them (29 %), apprehension about trying them (26 %), and legal or ethical concerns (16 %). Respondents most frequently acquired CPEMs via friends/fellow poker players (52 %), or prescription from physician (38 %). Additionally, greater use of CPEMs was associated with living outside the United States (p = 0.042), prior use of prescription medications for improving non-poker related performance (p < 0.001), and amateur and semi-professional player status (p = 0.035). Unmonitored use of pharmacologically active agents and their methods of acquisition highlight safety concerns in this cohort of poker players, especially among non-professional players. The current state of guidance from national organizations on CPEM use in healthy individuals could impact prescribing patterns. PMID:26450125

  6. Improved cognitive performance after dietary supplementation with a Pinus radiata bark extract formulation.

    PubMed

    Pipingas, Andrew; Silberstein, Richard B; Vitetta, Luis; Rooy, Cindy Van; Harris, Elizabeth V; Young, Joanna M; Frampton, Christopher M; Sali, Avni; Nastasi, Joseph

    2008-09-01

    Dietary interventions may have the potential to counter age-related cognitive decline. Studies have demonstrated an improvement in age-related cognitive impairment in animals after supplementation with plant extracts containing flavonoids but there are few human studies. This double-blind, controlled study examined the effects on cognitive performance of a 5 week supplementation with Enzogenol Pinus radiata bark extract containing flavonoids, in 42 males aged 50-65 years, with a body mass index >25. Participants were supplemented for 5 weeks either with Enzogenol plus vitamin C, or with vitamin C only. A battery of computerized cognitive tests was administered, and cardiovascular and haematological parameters were assessed prior to and following supplementation. The speed of response for the spatial working memory and immediate recognition tasks improved after supplementation with Enzogenol plus vitamin C, whereas vitamin C alone showed no improvements. A trend in a reduction of systolic blood pressure was observed with Enzogenol plus vitamin C, but not with vitamin C alone. The blood safety parameters were unchanged. The findings suggest a beneficial effect of supplementation with Enzogenol on cognition in older individuals. Larger studies are needed to ascertain its potential as a preventive treatment for age-related cognitive decline. PMID:18683195

  7. A diet based on multiple functional concepts improves cognitive performance in healthy subjects

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Disorders such as the metabolic syndrome (MetS), impaired glucose tolerance and diabetes, are associated with increased risk of cognitive decline. Also several of the individual key features that define the MetS, e.g. hypertension, impaired glucose regulation, dyslipidemia, obesity, and inflammation, are related to an increased risk of cognitive decline. Consequently, a diet that prevents metabolic disorders might be expected to prevent cognitive decline. The purpose of the present study was to, in overweight but otherwise healthy subjects, investigate effects on cognitive functions of a dietary regime combining multiple functional concepts potentially beneficial to risk markers associated with MetS. The purpose was in addition to evaluate cognitive performance in relation to results on cardiometabolic risk variables (BMI, blood pressure, glucose, insulin, cholesterol, triglycerides, free fatty acids, lipoprotein A-1 and B, hs-CRP, HbA1c, interleukin-6, TNF-α, and PAI-1). Methods Fourty-four healthy women and men (50–73 years, BMI 25–33, fasting glycemia ≤ 6.1 mmol/L) participated in a randomized, controlled crossover intervention, comparing a multifunctional diet (active diet (AD)) including foods with a potential anti-inflammatory action, with a control diet (CD) devoid of the “active” components. Both diets were composed in close agreement with the Nordic dietary recommendations. Each diet was consumed during 4 wk, separated by a 4 wk washout period. Cognitive tests were performed at fasting and in the postprandial period after a standardized breakfast, after each diet period. Results In comparison with the CD, the AD improved performance in the Rey Auditory-Verbal Learning test (recognition test, p < 0.05, ANOVA, n = 42) and significantly improved performance in test of selective attention, which also included aspects of working memory (p < 0.05, n = 40). Performance in cognitive tests was inversely associated with

  8. A physical education trial improves adolescents' cognitive performance and academic achievement: the EDUFIT study.

    PubMed

    Ardoy, D N; Fernández-Rodríguez, J M; Jiménez-Pavón, D; Castillo, R; Ruiz, J R; Ortega, F B

    2014-02-01

    To analyze the effects of an intervention focused on increasing the time and intensity of Physical Education (PE), on adolescents' cognitive performance and academic achievement. A 4-month group-randomized controlled trial was conducted in 67 adolescents from South-East Spain, 2007. Three classes were randomly allocated into control group (CG), experimental group 1 (EG1) and experimental group 2 (EG2). CG received usual PE (two sessions/week), EG1 received four PE sessions/week and EG2 received four PE sessions/week of high intensity. Cognitive performance (non-verbal and verbal ability, abstract reasoning, spatial ability, verbal reasoning and numerical ability) was assessed by the Spanish Overall and Factorial Intelligence Test, and academic achievement by school grades. All the cognitive performance variables, except verbal reasoning, increased more in EG2 than in CG (all P < 0.05). Average school grades (e.g., mathematics) increased more in EG2 than in CG. Overall, EG2 improved more than EG1, without differences between EG1 and CG. Increased PE can benefit cognitive performance and academic achievement. This study contributes to the current knowledge by suggesting that the intensity of PE sessions might play a role in the positive effect of physical activity on cognition and academic success. Future studies involving larger sample sizes should confirm or contrast these preliminary findings. PMID:23826633

  9. Does Exercise Improve Cognitive Performance? A Conservative Message from Lord's Paradox

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Sicong; Lebeau, Jean-Charles; Tenenbaum, Gershon

    2016-01-01

    Although extant meta-analyses support the notion that exercise results in cognitive performance enhancement, methodology shortcomings are noted among primary evidence. The present study examined relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in the past 20 years (1996–2015) for methodological concerns arise from Lord's paradox. Our analysis revealed that RCTs supporting the positive effect of exercise on cognition are likely to include Type I Error(s). This result can be attributed to the use of gain score analysis on pretest-posttest data as well as the presence of control group superiority over the exercise group on baseline cognitive measures. To improve accuracy of causal inferences in this area, analysis of covariance on pretest-posttest data is recommended under the assumption of group equivalence. Important experimental procedures are discussed to maintain group equivalence. PMID:27493637

  10. Does Exercise Improve Cognitive Performance? A Conservative Message from Lord's Paradox.

    PubMed

    Liu, Sicong; Lebeau, Jean-Charles; Tenenbaum, Gershon

    2016-01-01

    Although extant meta-analyses support the notion that exercise results in cognitive performance enhancement, methodology shortcomings are noted among primary evidence. The present study examined relevant randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in the past 20 years (1996-2015) for methodological concerns arise from Lord's paradox. Our analysis revealed that RCTs supporting the positive effect of exercise on cognition are likely to include Type I Error(s). This result can be attributed to the use of gain score analysis on pretest-posttest data as well as the presence of control group superiority over the exercise group on baseline cognitive measures. To improve accuracy of causal inferences in this area, analysis of covariance on pretest-posttest data is recommended under the assumption of group equivalence. Important experimental procedures are discussed to maintain group equivalence. PMID:27493637

  11. Increasing stimulus duration improves attention and memory performance in elderly with cognitive impairment

    PubMed Central

    Lavner, Yizhar; Rabinowitz, Israel

    2015-01-01

    Objectives: In this study, we investigated whether increasing stimulus duration could improve performance on a test of attention and short-term memory in cognitively impaired individuals. Methods: A computer-generated forward digit span test was administered to 65 patients with mild cognitive impairment or dementia (28 intervention and 37 controls). After point of failure, testing in the intervention group was continued at the same rate, but with an average 150% digit lengthening to 800 ms. Testing of controls was continued using the standard digit span test. Results: In the intervention group, 13/28 (46.4%) improved their digit span test performance, compared to 2/37 (5.4%) in the control group (p = 0.00005). Conclusion: Cognitively impaired elderly participants improved performance on a test of attention and short-term memory, when stimulus duration was increased in proportion to elongation of the finger tap touch-phase previously found in a similar cohort. A possible mechanism for the effect of increased stimulus duration on attention and short-term memory is discussed. PMID:27081485

  12. Music Lessons Improve Auditory Perceptual and Cognitive Performance in Deaf Children

    PubMed Central

    Rochette, Françoise; Moussard, Aline; Bigand, Emmanuel

    2014-01-01

    Despite advanced technologies in auditory rehabilitation of profound deafness, deaf children often exhibit delayed cognitive and linguistic development and auditory training remains a crucial element of their education. In the present cross-sectional study, we assess whether music would be a relevant tool for deaf children rehabilitation. In normal-hearing children, music lessons have been shown to improve cognitive and linguistic-related abilities, such as phonetic discrimination and reading. We compared auditory perception, auditory cognition, and phonetic discrimination between 14 profoundly deaf children who completed weekly music lessons for a period of 1.5–4 years and 14 deaf children who did not receive musical instruction. Children were assessed on perceptual and cognitive auditory tasks using environmental sounds: discrimination, identification, auditory scene analysis, auditory working memory. Transfer to the linguistic domain was tested with a phonetic discrimination task. Musically trained children showed better performance in auditory scene analysis, auditory working memory and phonetic discrimination tasks, and multiple regressions showed that success on these tasks was at least partly driven by music lessons. We propose that musical education contributes to development of general processes such as auditory attention and perception, which, in turn, facilitate auditory-related cognitive and linguistic processes. PMID:25071518

  13. Music lessons improve auditory perceptual and cognitive performance in deaf children.

    PubMed

    Rochette, Françoise; Moussard, Aline; Bigand, Emmanuel

    2014-01-01

    Despite advanced technologies in auditory rehabilitation of profound deafness, deaf children often exhibit delayed cognitive and linguistic development and auditory training remains a crucial element of their education. In the present cross-sectional study, we assess whether music would be a relevant tool for deaf children rehabilitation. In normal-hearing children, music lessons have been shown to improve cognitive and linguistic-related abilities, such as phonetic discrimination and reading. We compared auditory perception, auditory cognition, and phonetic discrimination between 14 profoundly deaf children who completed weekly music lessons for a period of 1.5-4 years and 14 deaf children who did not receive musical instruction. Children were assessed on perceptual and cognitive auditory tasks using environmental sounds: discrimination, identification, auditory scene analysis, auditory working memory. Transfer to the linguistic domain was tested with a phonetic discrimination task. Musically trained children showed better performance in auditory scene analysis, auditory working memory and phonetic discrimination tasks, and multiple regressions showed that success on these tasks was at least partly driven by music lessons. We propose that musical education contributes to development of general processes such as auditory attention and perception, which, in turn, facilitate auditory-related cognitive and linguistic processes. PMID:25071518

  14. Acute moderate exercise elicits increased dorsolateral prefrontal activation and improves cognitive performance with Stroop test.

    PubMed

    Yanagisawa, Hiroki; Dan, Ippeita; Tsuzuki, Daisuke; Kato, Morimasa; Okamoto, Masako; Kyutoku, Yasushi; Soya, Hideaki

    2010-05-01

    A growing number of human studies have reported the beneficial influences of acute as well as chronic exercise on cognitive functions. However, neuroimaging investigations into the neural substrates of the effects of acute exercise have yet to be performed. Using multichannel functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), we sought cortical activation related to changes in the Stroop interference test, elicited by an acute bout of moderate exercise, in healthy volunteers (N=20). The compactness and portability of fNIRS allowed on-site cortical examination in a laboratory with a cycle ergometer, enabling strict control of the exercise intensity of each subject by assessing their peak oxygen intake (VO2peak). We defined moderate exercise intensity as 50% of a subject's peak oxygen uptake (50%VO2peak). An acute bout of moderate exercise caused significant improvement of cognitive performance reflecting Stroop interference as measured by reaction time. Consistent with previous functional neuroimaging studies, we detected brain activation due to Stroop interference (incongruent minus neutral) in the lateral prefrontal cortices in both hemispheres. This Stroop-interference-related activation was significantly enhanced in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex due to the acute bout of moderate exercise. The enhanced activation significantly coincided with the improved cognitive performance. This suggests that the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is likely the neural substrate for the improved Stroop performance elicited by an acute bout of moderate exercise. fNIRS, which allows physiological monitoring and functional neuroimaging to be combined, proved to be an effective tool for examining the cognitive effects of exercise. PMID:20006719

  15. The combination of L-theanine and caffeine improves cognitive performance and increases subjective alertness.

    PubMed

    Giesbrecht, T; Rycroft, J A; Rowson, M J; De Bruin, E A

    2010-12-01

    The non-proteinic amino acid L-theanine and caffeine, a methylxanthine derivative, are naturally occurring ingredients in tea. The present study investigated the effect of a combination of 97 mg L-theanine and 40 mg caffeine as compared to placebo treatment on cognitive performance, alertness, blood pressure, and heart rate in a sample of young adults (n = 44). Cognitive performance, self-reported mood, blood pressure, and heart rate were measured before L-theanine and caffeine administration (i.e. at baseline) and 20 min and 70 min thereafter. The combination of moderate levels of L-theanine and caffeine significantly improved accuracy during task switching and self-reported alertness (both P < 0.01) and reduced self-reported tiredness (P < 0.05). There were no significant effects on other cognitive tasks, such as visual search, choice reaction times, or mental rotation. The present results suggest that 97 mg of L-theanine in combination with 40 mg of caffeine helps to focus attention during a demanding cognitive task. PMID:21040626

  16. Cognitive Performance and Cognitive Style.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    International Journal of Behavioral Development, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Investigates (1) the relationships between cognitive performance and cognitive styles and predictive possibilities and (2) performance differences by sex, school, grade, and income in 92 Indian adolescents. Assessment measures included Liquid Conservation, Islands, Goat-Lion, Hanoi-Tower, Rabbits (Piagetian); Block Design (WISC-R); Paper Cutting…

  17. Cardiovascular and Coordination Training Differentially Improve Cognitive Performance and Neural Processing in Older Adults

    PubMed Central

    Voelcker-Rehage, Claudia; Godde, Ben; Staudinger, Ursula M.

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies revealed a positive influence of physical activity on cognitive functioning in older adults. Studies that investigate the behavioral and neurophysiological effects of type and long term duration of physical training, however, are missing. We performed a 12-month longitudinal study to investigate the effects of cardiovascular and coordination training (control group: relaxation and stretching) on cognitive functions (executive control and perceptual speed) in older adults. We analyzed data of 44 participants aged 62–79 years. Participants were trained three times a week for 12 months. Their physical and cognitive performance was tested prior to training, and after 6 and 12 months. Changes in brain activation patterns were investigated using functional MRI. On the behavioral level, both experimental groups improved in executive functioning and perceptual speed but with differential effects on speed and accuracy. In line with the behavioral findings, neurophysiological results for executive control also revealed changes (increases and reductions) in brain activity for both interventions in frontal, parietal, and sensorimotor cortical areas. In contrast to the behavioral findings, neurophysiological changes were linear without indication of a plateau. In both intervention groups, prefrontal areas showed decreased activation after 6 and 12 months when performing an executive control task, as compared to the control group, indicating more efficient information processing. Furthermore, cardiovascular training was associated with an increased activation of the sensorimotor network, whereas coordination training was associated with increased activation in the visual–spatial network. Our data suggest that besides cardiovascular training also other types of physical activity improve cognition of older adults. The mechanisms, however, that underlie the performance changes seem to differ depending on the intervention. PMID:21441997

  18. Computer-aided cognitive rehabilitation improves cognitive performances and induces brain functional connectivity changes in relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis patients: an exploratory study.

    PubMed

    Bonavita, S; Sacco, R; Della Corte, M; Esposito, S; Sparaco, M; d'Ambrosio, A; Docimo, R; Bisecco, A; Lavorgna, L; Corbo, D; Cirillo, S; Gallo, A; Esposito, F; Tedeschi, G

    2015-01-01

    To better understand the effects of short-term computer-based cognitive rehabilitation (cCR) on cognitive performances and default mode network (DMN) intrinsic functional connectivity (FC) in cognitively impaired relapsing remitting (RR) multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. Eighteen cognitively impaired RRMS patients underwent neuropsychological evaluation by the Rao's brief repeatable battery and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging to evaluate FC of the DMN before and after a short-term (8 weeks, twice a week) cCR. A control group of 14 cognitively impaired RRMS patients was assigned to an aspecific cognitive training (aCT), and underwent the same study protocol. Correlations between DMN and cognitive performances were also tested. After cCR, there was a significant improvement of the following tests: SDMT (p < 0.01), PASAT 3" (p < 0.00), PASAT 2" (p < 0.03), SRT-D (p < 0.02), and 10/36 SPART-D (p < 0.04); as well as a significant increase of the FC of the DMN in the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and bilateral inferior parietal cortex (IPC). After cCR, a significant negative correlation between Stroop Color-Word Interference Test and FC in the PCC emerged. After aCT, the control group did not show any significant effect either on FC or neuropsychological tests. No significant differences were found in brain volumes and lesion load in both groups when comparing data acquired at baseline and after cCR or aCT. In cognitively impaired RRMS patients, cCR improves cognitive performances (i.e., processing speed and visual and verbal sustained memory), and increases FC in the PCC and IPC of the DMN. This exploratory study suggests that cCR may induce adaptive cortical reorganization favoring better cognitive performances, thus strengthening the value of cognitive exercise in the general perspective of building either cognitive or brain reserve. PMID:25308631

  19. Electrical brain stimulation improves cognitive performance by modulating functional connectivity and task-specific activation.

    PubMed

    Meinzer, Marcus; Antonenko, Daria; Lindenberg, Robert; Hetzer, Stefan; Ulm, Lena; Avirame, Keren; Flaisch, Tobias; Flöel, Agnes

    2012-02-01

    Excitatory anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (atDCS) can improve human cognitive functions, but neural underpinnings of its mode of action remain elusive. In a cross-over placebo ("sham") controlled study we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate neurofunctional correlates of improved language functions induced by atDCS over a core language area, the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Intrascanner transcranial direct current stimulation-induced changes in overt semantic word generation assessed behavioral modulation; task-related and task-independent (resting-state) fMRI characterized language network changes. Improved word-retrieval during atDCS was paralleled by selectively reduced task-related activation in the left ventral IFG, an area specifically implicated in semantic retrieval processes. Under atDCS, resting-state fMRI revealed increased connectivity of the left IFG and additional major hubs overlapping with the language network. In conclusion, atDCS modulates endogenous low-frequency oscillations in a distributed set of functionally connected brain areas, possibly inducing more efficient processing in critical task-relevant areas and improved behavioral performance. PMID:22302824

  20. Concurrent cognitive task may improve motor work performance and reduce muscle fatigue.

    PubMed

    Evstigneeva, Maria; Aleksandrov, Aleksandr; Mathiassen, Svend Erik; Lyskov, Eugene

    2012-01-01

    Performance of certain cognitive tasks either during physical load or in rest pauses between boosts might lead to slowing of muscle fatigue and fatigue related decline in performance. Seventeen right-handed healthy volunteers (age 24 ± 1.4, 8 males) participated in this study, aiming to investigate the effect of the level of the cognitive information processing - 1) passive perception of audio stimuli, 2) active stimuli discrimination, 3) active stimuli discrimination following motor response - on motor task performance (handgrip test 30% and 7% of MVC) and muscle fatigue development. Cognitive tasks show the following effects on motor work: i) Perceived fatigue during 30 % MVC (fatiguing) condition developed slower if participant pressed button in response to deviant acoustic stimuli, as compared to passive listening. Counting task, an active task without motor component, took the intermediate position and did not differ significantly from two other cognitive tasks. ii) MVC after 30% MVC (fatiguing) condition tended to decrease stronger when accompanied with passive listening in comparison with both active tasks. iii) Motor task performance during 30% MVC (fatiguing) condition was better for active cognitive task with motor component than for passive task. Active task without motor component took the intermediate position and did not differ significantly from both the other cognitive tasks. PMID:22317158

  1. Monoterpenoid extract of sage (Salvia lavandulaefolia) with cholinesterase inhibiting properties improves cognitive performance and mood in healthy adults.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, David O; Dodd, Fiona L; Robertson, Bernadette C; Okello, Edward J; Reay, Jonathon L; Scholey, Andrew B; Haskell, Crystal F

    2011-08-01

    Extracts of sage (Salvia officinalis/lavandulaefolia) with terpenoid constituents have previously been shown to inhibit cholinesterase and improve cognitive function. The current study combined an in vitro investigation of the cholinesterase inhibitory properties and phytochemical constituents of a S. lavandulaefolia essential oil, with a double-blind, placebo-controlled, balanced crossover study assessing the effects of a single dose on cognitive performance and mood. In this latter investigation 36 healthy participants received capsules containing either 50 µL of the essential oil or placebo on separate occasions, 7 days apart. Cognitive function was assessed using a selection of computerized memory and attention tasks and the Cognitive Demand Battery before the treatment and 1-h and 4-h post-dose. The essential oil was a potent inhibitor of human acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and consisted almost exclusively of monoterpenoids. Oral consumption lead to improved performance of secondary memory and attention tasks, most notably at the 1-h post-dose testing session, and reduced mental fatigue and increased alertness which were more pronounced 4-h post-dose. These results extend previous observations of improved cognitive performance and mood following AChE inhibitory sage extracts and suggest that the ability of well-tolerated terpenoid-containing extracts to beneficially modulate cholinergic function and cognitive performance deserves further attention. PMID:20937617

  2. Some strategies to improve performance in school chemistry, based on two cognitive factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Danili, Eleni; Reid, Norman

    2004-02-01

    The background to this study are the difficulties facing the majority of Greek pupils in understanding chemistry concepts and, therefore, performing well in the National Examinations. The aim was to explore the problems and to suggest ways in which the situation might be improved. Working with 105 Greek pupils aged 15 to 16, the first stage of the enquiry confirmed that both working memory space and extent of field dependency were two psychological factors affecting performance. This is at least part of the nature of the problem. In the second stage, an attempt was made to explore how the problems might be reduced. New teaching materials were constructed to minimize any limitations to learning caused by working memory space and problems associated with being field dependent. The use of the new materials was compared to the normal teaching process working with 210 Greek pupils aged 15 to16. It was found that there was a significant difference in the average improvement of the experimental group and the control group, in favour of the experimental group. This result was independent of the effect of the teacher, and of the interaction of teaching method and teacher. It is suggested that approaches to learning must take into account cognitive factors in the learners in the context of information processing understandings of learning. If this is done, learning is much more effective.

  3. A vitamin/nutriceutical formulation improves memory and cognitive performance in community-dwelling adults without dementia.

    PubMed

    Chan, A; Remington, R; Kotyla, E; Lepore, A; Zemianek, J; Shea, T B

    2010-03-01

    Adults of both genders without dementia consumed a nutriceutical formulation ("NF," consisting of folic acid, B12, Vitamin E, S-adenosylmethionine, N-acetyl cysteine and Acetyl-L-carnitine), previously shown to improve cognitive performance in Alzheimer's disease, or placebo. Participants receiving NF but not placebo improved statistically and clinically in the California Verbal Learning Test II and the Trail-Making Test. Both groups improved further during a 3-month open-label extension. Additional individuals displayed identical improvement during a separate 6-month open-label trial. Performance declined to baseline following withdrawal of NF, and statistically improved when participants resumed taking NF. Additional participants receiving NF but not placebo demonstrated improvement within 2 weeks in Trail-making and Digit-Memory tests; both groups improved in a 2-week open-label extension. An increased percentage of participants > or = 74 years of age did not show improvement with NF, which may relate to age-related difficulties in adsorption and/or basal nutritional deficiencies, or age-related cognitive decline during the course of this study. These findings support the benefit of nutritional supplements for cognitive performance and suggest that additional supplementation may be required for the elderly. PMID:20191258

  4. High velocity circuit resistance training improves cognition, psychiatric symptoms and neuromuscular performance in overweight outpatients with severe mental illness.

    PubMed

    Strassnig, Martin T; Signorile, Joseph F; Potiaumpai, Melanie; Romero, Matthew A; Gonzalez, Carolina; Czaja, Sara; Harvey, Philip D

    2015-09-30

    We developed a physical exercise intervention aimed at improving multiple determinants of physical performance in severe mental illness. A sample of 12 (9M, 3F) overweight or obese community-dwelling patients with schizophrenia (n=9) and bipolar disorder (n=3) completed an eight-week, high-velocity circuit resistance training, performed twice a week on the computerized Keiser pneumatic exercise machines, including extensive pre/post physical performance testing. Participants showed significant increases in strength and power in all major muscle groups. There were significant positive cognitive changes, objectively measured with the Brief Assessment of Cognition Scale: improvement in composite scores, processing speed and symbol coding. Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia and Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale total scores improved significantly. There were large gains in neuromuscular performance that have functional implications. The cognitive domains that showed the greatest improvements (memory and processing speed) are most highly predictive of disability in schizophrenia. Moreover, the improvements seen in depression suggest this type of exercise intervention may be a valuable add-on therapy for bipolar depression. PMID:26187340

  5. Hydration and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Sécher, M; Ritz, P

    2012-04-01

    A clinical link exists between severe dehydration and cognitive performance. Using rapid and severe water loss induced either by intense exercise and/or heat stress, initial studies suggested there were alterations in short-term memory and cognitive function related to vision, but more recent studies have not all confirmed these data. Some studies argue that water loss is not responsible for the observations made, and studies compensating water losses have failed to prevent the symptoms. Studies in children have suggested that drinking extra water helps cognitive performance, but these data rely on a small number of children. In older adults (mean age around 60) the data are not strong enough to support a relationship between mild dehydration and cognitive function. Data on frail elderly and demented people are lacking. Methodological heterogeneity in these studies are such that the relationship between mild dehydration and cognitive performance cannot be supported. PMID:22499450

  6. β-alanine supplementation improves tactical performance but not cognitive function in combat soldiers

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background There are no known studies that have examined β-alanine supplementation in military personnel. Considering the physiological and potential neurological effects that have been reported during sustained military operations, it appears that β-alanine supplementation may have a potential benefit in maintaining physical and cognitive performance during high-intensity military activity under stressful conditions. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of 28 days of β-alanine ingestion in military personnel while fatigued on physical and cognitive performance. Methods Twenty soldiers (20.1 ± 0.9 years) from an elite combat unit were randomly assigned to either a β-alanine (BA) or placebo (PL) group. Soldiers were involved in advanced military training, including combat skill development, navigational training, self-defense/hand-to-hand combat and conditioning. All participants performed a 4-km run, 5-countermovement jumps using a linear position transducer, 120-m sprint, a 10-shot shooting protocol with assault rifle, including overcoming a misfire, and a 2-min serial subtraction test to assess cognitive function before (Pre) and after (Post) 28 days of supplementation. Results The training routine resulted in significant increases in 4-km run time for both groups, but no between group differences were seen (p = 0.597). Peak jump power at Post was greater for BA than PL (p = 0.034), while mean jump power for BA at Post was 10.2% greater (p = 0.139) than PL. BA had a significantly greater (p = 0.012) number of shots on target at Post (8.2 ± 1.0) than PL (6.5 ± 2.1), and their target engagement speed at Post was also significantly faster (p = 0.039). No difference in serial subtraction performance was seen between the groups (p = 0.844). Conclusion Results of this study indicate that 4-weeks of β-alanine ingestion in young, healthy soldiers did not impact cognitive performance, but did enhance power

  7. Cognitive aspects of performance.

    PubMed Central

    Kane, J. E.

    1978-01-01

    The study of cognitive structures and processes in the control of skilled performance is considered and reviewed with special reference to a proposed hierarchical system incorporating levels of motor integration. Cognitive styles and dispositions of general behaviour are suggested as factors which may determine performance levels. The relative importance of these personal factors and stronger personality traits in accounting for variance in performance is considered in the light of a critique of the current interactional controversy. PMID:444808

  8. Cognitive aspects of performance.

    PubMed

    Kane, J E

    1978-12-01

    The study of cognitive structures and processes in the control of skilled performance is considered and reviewed with special reference to a proposed hierarchical system incorporating levels of motor integration. Cognitive styles and dispositions of general behaviour are suggested as factors which may determine performance levels. The relative importance of these personal factors and stronger personality traits in accounting for variance in performance is considered in the light of a critique of the current interactional controversy. PMID:444808

  9. Slowing down after a mild traumatic brain injury: a strategy to improve cognitive task performance?

    PubMed

    Ozen, Lana J; Fernandes, Myra A

    2012-01-01

    Long-term persistent attention and memory difficulties following a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) often go undetected on standard neuropsychological tests, despite complaints by mild TBI individuals. We conducted a visual Repetition Detection working memory task to digits, in which we manipulated task difficulty by increasing cognitive load, to identify subtle deficits long after a mild TBI. Twenty-six undergraduate students with a self-report of one mild TBI, which occurred at least 6 months prior, and 31 non-head-injured controls took part in the study. Participants were not informed until study completion that the study's purpose was to examine cognitive changes following a mild TBI, to reduce the influence of "diagnosis threat" on performance. Neuropsychological tasks did not differentiate the groups, though mild TBI participants reported higher state anxiety levels. On our working memory task, the mild TBI group took significantly longer to accurately detect repeated targets on our task, suggesting that slowed information processing is a long-term consequence of mild TBI. Accuracy was comparable in the low-load condition and, unexpectedly, mild TBI performance surpassed that of controls in the high-load condition. Temporal analysis of target identification suggested a strategy difference between groups: mild TBI participants made a significantly greater number of accurate responses following the target's offset, and significantly fewer erroneous distracter responses prior to target onset, compared with controls. Results suggest that long after a mild TBI, high-functioning young adults invoke a strategy of delaying their identification of targets in order to maintain, and facilitate, accuracy on cognitively demanding tasks. PMID:22068441

  10. A diet high in omega-3 fatty acids does not improve or protect cognitive performance in Alzheimer's transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Arendash, G W; Jensen, M T; Salem, N; Hussein, N; Cracchiolo, J; Dickson, A; Leighty, R; Potter, H

    2007-10-26

    Although a number of epidemiologic studies reported that higher intake of omega-3 fatty acids (largely associated with fish consumption) is protective against Alzheimer's disease (AD), other human studies reported no such effect. Because retrospective human studies are problematic and controlled longitudinal studies over decades are impractical, the present study utilized Alzheimer's transgenic mice (Tg) in a highly controlled study to determine whether a diet high in omega-3 fatty acid, equivalent to the 13% omega-3 fatty acid diet of Greenland Eskimos, can improve cognitive performance or protect against cognitive impairment. Amyloid precursor protein (APP)-sw+PS1 double transgenic mice, as well as nontransgenic (NT) normal littermates, were given a high omega-3 supplemented diet or a standard diet from 2 through 9 months of age, with a comprehensive behavioral test battery administered during the final 6 weeks. For both Tg and NT mice, long-term n-3 supplementation resulted in cognitive performance that was no better than that of mice fed a standard diet. In NT mice, the high omega-3 diet increased cortical levels of omega-3 fatty acids while decreasing omega-6 levels. However, the high omega-3 diet had no effect on cortical fatty acid levels in Tg mice. Irrespective of diet, no correlations existed between brain omega-3 levels and cognitive performance for individual NT or Tg mice. In contrast, brain levels of omega-6 fatty acids were strongly correlated with cognitive impairment for both genotypes. Thus, elevated brain levels of omega-3 fatty acids were not relevant to cognitive function, whereas high brain levels of omega-6 were associated with impaired cognitive function. In Tg mice, the omega-3 supplemental diet did not induce significant changes in soluble/insoluble Abeta within the hippocampus, although strong correlations were evident between hippocampal Abeta(1-40) levels and cognitive impairment. While these studies involved a genetically manipulated

  11. Memory Decline in Peri- and Post-menopausal Women: The Potential of Mind–Body Medicine to Improve Cognitive Performance

    PubMed Central

    Sliwinski, Jim R; Johnson, Aimee K; Elkins, Gary R

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive decline is a frequent complaint during the menopause transition and among post-menopausal women. Changes in memory correspond with diminished estrogen production. Further, many peri- and post-menopausal women report sleep concerns, depression, and hot flashes, and these factors may contribute to cognitive decline. Hormone therapy can increase estrogen but is contraindicated for many women. Mind–body medicine has been shown to have beneficial effects on sleep, mood, and hot flashes, among post-menopausal women. Further, mind–body medicine holds potential in addressing symptoms of cognitive decline post-menopause. This study proposes an initial framework for how mind–body interventions may improve cognitive performance and inform future research seeking to identify the common and specific factors associated with mind–body medicine for addressing memory decline in peri- and post-menopausal women. It is our hope that this article will eventually lead to a more holistic and integrative approach to the treatment of cognitive deficits in peri- and post-menopausal women. PMID:25125972

  12. Semi-Supervised Multimodal Relevance Vector Regression Improves Cognitive Performance Estimation from Imaging and Biological Biomarkers

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Bo; Chen, Songcan; Kaufer, Daniel I.

    2013-01-01

    Accurate estimation of cognitive scores for patients can help track the progress of neurological diseases. In this paper, we present a novel semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression (SM-RVR) method for predicting clinical scores of neurological diseases from multimodal imaging and biological biomarker, to help evaluate pathological stage and predict progression of diseases, e.g., Alzheimer’s diseases (AD). Unlike most existing methods, we predict clinical scores from multimodal (imaging and biological) biomarkers, including MRI, FDG-PET, and CSF. Considering that the clinical scores of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subjects are often less stable compared to those of AD and normal control (NC) subjects due to the heterogeneity of MCI, we use only the multimodal data of MCI subjects, but no corresponding clinical scores, to train a semi-supervised model for enhancing the estimation of clinical scores for AD and NC subjects. We also develop a new strategy for selecting the most informative MCI subjects. We evaluate the performance of our approach on 202 subjects with all three modalities of data (MRI, FDG-PET and CSF) from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. The experimental results show that our SM-RVR method achieves a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 1.91 and a correlation coefficient (CORR) of 0.80 for estimating the MMSE scores, and also a RMSE of 4.45 and a CORR of 0.78 for estimating the ADAS-Cog scores, demonstrating very promising performances in AD studies. PMID:23504659

  13. Semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression improves cognitive performance estimation from imaging and biological biomarkers.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Bo; Zhang, Daoqiang; Chen, Songcan; Kaufer, Daniel I; Shen, Dinggang

    2013-07-01

    Accurate estimation of cognitive scores for patients can help track the progress of neurological diseases. In this paper, we present a novel semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression (SM-RVR) method for predicting clinical scores of neurological diseases from multimodal imaging and biological biomarker, to help evaluate pathological stage and predict progression of diseases, e.g., Alzheimer's diseases (AD). Unlike most existing methods, we predict clinical scores from multimodal (imaging and biological) biomarkers, including MRI, FDG-PET, and CSF. Considering that the clinical scores of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subjects are often less stable compared to those of AD and normal control (NC) subjects due to the heterogeneity of MCI, we use only the multimodal data of MCI subjects, but no corresponding clinical scores, to train a semi-supervised model for enhancing the estimation of clinical scores for AD and NC subjects. We also develop a new strategy for selecting the most informative MCI subjects. We evaluate the performance of our approach on 202 subjects with all three modalities of data (MRI, FDG-PET and CSF) from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. The experimental results show that our SM-RVR method achieves a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 1.91 and a correlation coefficient (CORR) of 0.80 for estimating the MMSE scores, and also a RMSE of 4.45 and a CORR of 0.78 for estimating the ADAS-Cog scores, demonstrating very promising performances in AD studies. PMID:23504659

  14. Initial Cognitive Performance Predicts Longitudinal Aviator Performance

    PubMed Central

    Jo, Booil; Adamson, Maheen M.; Kennedy, Quinn; Noda, Art; Hernandez, Beatriz; Zeitzer, Jamie M.; Friedman, Leah F.; Fairchild, Kaci; Scanlon, Blake K.; Murphy, Greer M.; Taylor, Joy L.

    2011-01-01

    Objectives. The goal of the study was to improve prediction of longitudinal flight simulator performance by studying cognitive factors that may moderate the influence of chronological age. Method. We examined age-related change in aviation performance in aircraft pilots in relation to baseline cognitive ability measures and aviation expertise. Participants were aircraft pilots (N = 276) aged 40–77.9. Flight simulator performance and cognition were tested yearly; there were an average of 4.3 (± 2.7; range 1–13) data points per participant. Each participant was classified into one of the three levels of aviation expertise based on Federal Aviation Administration pilot proficiency ratings: least, moderate, or high expertise. Results. Addition of measures of cognitive processing speed and executive function to a model of age-related change in aviation performance significantly improved the model. Processing speed and executive function performance interacted such that the slowest rate of decline in flight simulator performance was found in aviators with the highest scores on tests of these abilities. Expertise was beneficial to pilots across the age range studied; however, expertise did not show evidence of reducing the effect of age. Discussion. These data suggest that longitudinal performance on an important real-world activity can be predicted by initial assessment of relevant cognitive abilities. PMID:21586627

  15. The increased potassium intake improves cognitive performance and attenuates histopathological markers in a model of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Cisternas, Pedro; Lindsay, Carolina B; Salazar, Paulina; Silva-Alvarez, Carmen; Retamales, Rocio M; Serrano, Felipe G; Vio, Carlos P; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2015-12-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by hallmarks that include an accumulation of amyloid-β peptide (Aβ), inflammation, oxidative stress and synaptic dysfunction, which lead to a decrease in cognitive function. To date, the onset and progression of AD have been associated with pathologies such as hypertension and diabetes. Hypertension, a disease with a high incidence worldwide, is characterized by a chronic increase in blood pressure. Interestingly, this disease has a close relationship to the eating behavior of patients because high Na(+) intake is a significant risk factor for hypertension. In fact, a decrease in Na(+) consumption, along with an increase in K(+) intake, is a primary non-pharmacological approach to preventing hypertension. In the present work, we examined whether an increase in K(+) intake affects the expression of certain neuropathological markers or the cognitive performance of a murine model of AD. We observed that an increase in K(+) intake leads to a change in the aggregation pattern of the Aβ peptide, a partial decrease in some epitopes of tau phosphorylation and improvement in the cognitive performance. The recovery in cognitive performance was correlated with a significant improvement in the generation of long-term potentiation. We also observed a decrease in markers related to inflammation and oxidative stress such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), interleukin 6 (IL-6) and 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE). Together, our data support the idea that changes in diet, such as an increase in K(+) intake, may be important in the prevention of AD onset as a non-pharmacological therapy. PMID:26391254

  16. Some Strategies to Improve Performance in School Chemistry, Based on Two Cognitive Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danili, Eleni; Reid, Norman

    2004-01-01

    The background to this study are the difficulties facing the majority of Greek pupils in understanding chemistry concepts and, therefore, performing well in the National Examinations. The aim was to explore the problems and to suggest ways in which the situation might be improved. Working with 105 Greek pupils aged 15 to 16, the first stage of the…

  17. Improvements in cognition, quality of life, and physical performance with clinical Pilates in multiple sclerosis: a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Küçük, Fadime; Kara, Bilge; Poyraz, Esra Çoşkuner; İdiman, Egemen

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] The aim of this study was to determine the effects of clinical Pilates in multiple sclerosis patients. [Subjects and Methods] Twenty multiple sclerosis patients were enrolled in this study. The participants were divided into two groups as the clinical Pilates and control groups. Cognition (Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite), balance (Berg Balance Scale), physical performance (timed performance tests, Timed up and go test), tiredness (Modified Fatigue Impact scale), depression (Beck Depression Inventory), and quality of life (Multiple Sclerosis International Quality of Life Questionnaire) were measured before and after treatment in all participants. [Results] There were statistically significant differences in balance, timed performance, tiredness and Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite tests between before and after treatment in the clinical Pilates group. We also found significant differences in timed performance tests, the Timed up and go test and the Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite between before and after treatment in the control group. According to the difference analyses, there were significant differences in Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite and Multiple Sclerosis International Quality of Life Questionnaire scores between the two groups in favor of the clinical Pilates group. There were statistically significant clinical differences in favor of the clinical Pilates group in comparison of measurements between the groups. Clinical Pilates improved cognitive functions and quality of life compared with traditional exercise. [Conclusion] In Multiple Sclerosis treatment, clinical Pilates should be used as a holistic approach by physical therapists. PMID:27134355

  18. Improvements in cognition, quality of life, and physical performance with clinical Pilates in multiple sclerosis: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Küçük, Fadime; Kara, Bilge; Poyraz, Esra Çoşkuner; İdiman, Egemen

    2016-03-01

    [Purpose] The aim of this study was to determine the effects of clinical Pilates in multiple sclerosis patients. [Subjects and Methods] Twenty multiple sclerosis patients were enrolled in this study. The participants were divided into two groups as the clinical Pilates and control groups. Cognition (Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite), balance (Berg Balance Scale), physical performance (timed performance tests, Timed up and go test), tiredness (Modified Fatigue Impact scale), depression (Beck Depression Inventory), and quality of life (Multiple Sclerosis International Quality of Life Questionnaire) were measured before and after treatment in all participants. [Results] There were statistically significant differences in balance, timed performance, tiredness and Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite tests between before and after treatment in the clinical Pilates group. We also found significant differences in timed performance tests, the Timed up and go test and the Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite between before and after treatment in the control group. According to the difference analyses, there were significant differences in Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite and Multiple Sclerosis International Quality of Life Questionnaire scores between the two groups in favor of the clinical Pilates group. There were statistically significant clinical differences in favor of the clinical Pilates group in comparison of measurements between the groups. Clinical Pilates improved cognitive functions and quality of life compared with traditional exercise. [Conclusion] In Multiple Sclerosis treatment, clinical Pilates should be used as a holistic approach by physical therapists. PMID:27134355

  19. Does Cognitively Focused Instruction Improve the Academic Performance of Low-Achieving Students?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kearns, Devin M.; Fuchs, Douglas

    2013-01-01

    Stakeholders are debating the value of cognitively focused instruction for students who have not benefited from a skills-based approach. Much of the discussion, however, is occurring without recognition of research that has been conducted in the past 2 decades. In this article, we reviewed the research. Electronic databases and hard copies of…

  20. Dietary supplementation with coffee improves motor and cognitive performance in aged rats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Polyphenols found in fruits and nuts have anti-inflammatory properties that may provide protection against the decline of cognitive, motor and neuronal function in senescence. The presence of a number of bioactive compounds (e.g., polyphenols) implicates coffee as a potential nutritional therapeutic...

  1. Multi-domain computerized cognitive training program improves performance of bookkeeping tasks: a matched-sampling active-controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Lampit, Amit; Ebster, Claus; Valenzuela, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive skills are important predictors of job performance, but the extent to which computerized cognitive training (CCT) can improve job performance in healthy adults is unclear. We report, for the first time, that a CCT program aimed at attention, memory, reasoning and visuo-spatial abilities can enhance productivity in healthy younger adults on bookkeeping tasks with high relevance to real-world job performance. 44 business students (77.3% female, mean age 21.4 ± 2.6 years) were assigned to either (a) 20 h of CCT, or (b) 20 h of computerized arithmetic training (active control) by a matched sampling procedure. Both interventions were conducted over a period of 6 weeks, 3–4 1-h sessions per week. Transfer of skills to performance on a 60-min paper-based bookkeeping task was measured at three time points—baseline, after 10 h and after 20 h of training. Repeated measures ANOVA found a significant Group X Time effect on productivity (F = 7.033, df = 1.745; 73.273, p = 0.003) with a significant interaction at both the 10-h (Relative Cohen's effect size = 0.38, p = 0.014) and 20-h time points (Relative Cohen's effect size = 0.40, p = 0.003). No significant effects were found on accuracy or on Conners' Continuous Performance Test, a measure of sustained attention. The results are discussed in reference to previous findings on the relationship between brain plasticity and job performance. Generalization of results requires further study. PMID:25120510

  2. Multi-domain computerized cognitive training program improves performance of bookkeeping tasks: a matched-sampling active-controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Lampit, Amit; Ebster, Claus; Valenzuela, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive skills are important predictors of job performance, but the extent to which computerized cognitive training (CCT) can improve job performance in healthy adults is unclear. We report, for the first time, that a CCT program aimed at attention, memory, reasoning and visuo-spatial abilities can enhance productivity in healthy younger adults on bookkeeping tasks with high relevance to real-world job performance. 44 business students (77.3% female, mean age 21.4 ± 2.6 years) were assigned to either (a) 20 h of CCT, or (b) 20 h of computerized arithmetic training (active control) by a matched sampling procedure. Both interventions were conducted over a period of 6 weeks, 3-4 1-h sessions per week. Transfer of skills to performance on a 60-min paper-based bookkeeping task was measured at three time points-baseline, after 10 h and after 20 h of training. Repeated measures ANOVA found a significant Group X Time effect on productivity (F = 7.033, df = 1.745; 73.273, p = 0.003) with a significant interaction at both the 10-h (Relative Cohen's effect size = 0.38, p = 0.014) and 20-h time points (Relative Cohen's effect size = 0.40, p = 0.003). No significant effects were found on accuracy or on Conners' Continuous Performance Test, a measure of sustained attention. The results are discussed in reference to previous findings on the relationship between brain plasticity and job performance. Generalization of results requires further study. PMID:25120510

  3. Low-dose add-on memantine treatment may improve cognitive performance and self-reported health conditions in opioid-dependent patients undergoing methadone-maintenance-therapy

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Yun-Hsuan; Chen, Shiou-Lan; Lee, Sheng-Yu; Chen, Po See; Wang, Tzu-Yun; Lee, I. Hui; Chen, Kao Chin; Yang, Yen Kuang; Hong, Jau-Shyong; Lu, Ru-Band

    2015-01-01

    An important interaction between opioid and dopamine systems has been indicated, and using opioids may negatively affect cognitive functioning. Memantine, a medication for Alzheimer's disease, increasingly is being used for several disorders and maybe important for cognitive improvement. Opioid-dependent patients undergoing methadone-maintenance-therapy (MMT) and healthy controls (HCs) were recruited. Patients randomly assigned to the experimental (5 mg/day memantine (MMT+M) or placebo (MMT+P) group: 57 in MMT+M, 77 in MMT+P. Those completed the cognitive tasks at the baseline and after the 12-week treatment were analyzed. Thirty-seven age- and gender-matched HCs, and 42 MMT+P and 39 MMT+M patients were compared. The dropout rates were 49.4% in the MMT+P and 26.3% in the MMT+M. Both patient groups' cognitive performances were significantly worse than that of the HCs. After the treatment, both patient groups showed improved cognitive performance. We also found an interaction between the patient groups and time which indicated that the MMT+M group's post-treatment improvement was better than that of the MMT+P group. Memantine, previously reported as neuroprotective may attenuate chronic opioid-dependence-induced cognitive decline. Using such low dose of memantine as adjuvant treatment for improving cognitive performance in opioid dependents; the dose of memantine might be a worthy topic in future studies. PMID:25989606

  4. Performance Improvement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1996

    This document contains four papers presented at a symposium on performance improvement moderated by Edward Schorer at the 1996 conference of the Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD) "The Organizational Ecology of Ethical Problems: International Case Studies in the Light of HPT [Human Performance Technology]" (Peter J. Dean, Laurence…

  5. Cognitive Readiness Assessment and Reporting: An Open Source Mobile Framework for Operational Decision Support and Performance Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heric, Matthew; Carter, Jenn

    2011-01-01

    Cognitive readiness (CR) and performance for operational time-critical environments are continuing points of focus for military and academic communities. In response to this need, we designed an open source interactive CR assessment application as a highly adaptive and efficient open source testing administration and analysis tool. It is capable…

  6. An enriched environment improves cognitive performance in mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Zhenyun; Wang, Mingwei; Yan, Baoyong; Gu, Ping; Jiang, Xiangming; Yang, Xiufen; Cui, Dongsheng

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we examined 3-month-old female mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain and age-matched homologous normal aging female mice from the senescence accelerated- resistant mouse 1 strain. Mice from each strain were housed in an enriched environment (including a platform, running wheels, tunnel, and some toys) or a standard environment for 3 months. The mice housed in the enriched environment exhibited shorter escape latencies and a greater percentage of time in the target quadrant in the Morris water maze test, and they exhibited reduced errors and longer latencies in step-down avoidance experiments compared with mice housed in the standard environment. Correspondently, brain-derived neurotrophic factor mRNA and protein expression in the hippocampus was significantly higher in mice housed in the enriched environment compared with those housed in the standard environment, and the level of hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor protein was positively correlated with the learning and memory abilities of mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain. These results suggest that an enriched environment improved cognitive performance in mice form the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression in the hippocampus. PMID:25624804

  7. Improved motor and cognitive performance with sodium nitrite supplementation is related to small metabolite signatures: a pilot trial in middle-aged and older adults

    PubMed Central

    DeVan, Allison E.; Cruickshank-Quinn, Charmion; Reisdorph, Nichole; Bassett, Candace J.; Evans, Trent D.; Brooks, Forrest A.; Bryan, Nathan S.; Chonchol, Michel B.; Giordano, Tony; McQueen, Matthew B.; Seals, Douglas R.

    2015-01-01

    Advancing age is associated with reductions in nitric oxide bioavailability and changes in metabolic activity, which are implicated in declines in motor and cognitive function. In preclinical models, sodium nitrite supplementation (SN) increases plasma nitrite and improves motor function, whereas other nitric oxide-boosting agents improve cognitive function. This pilot study was designed to translate these findings to middle-aged and older (MA/O) humans to provide proof-of-concept support for larger trials. SN (10 weeks, 80 or 160 mg/day capsules, TheraVasc, Inc.) acutely and chronically increased plasma nitrite and improved performance on measures of motor and cognitive outcomes (all p<0.05 or better) in healthy MA/O adults (62 ± 7 years). Untargeted metabolomics analysis revealed that SN significantly altered 33 (160 mg/day) to 45 (80 mg/day) different metabolites, 13 of which were related to changes in functional outcomes; baseline concentrations of 99 different metabolites predicted functional improvements with SN. This pilot study provides the first evidence that SN improves aspects of motor and cognitive function in healthy MA/O adults, and that these improvements are associated with, and predicted by, the plasma metabolome. Our findings provide the necessary support for larger clinical trials on this promising pharmacological strategy for preserving physiological function with aging. PMID:26626856

  8. Improved motor and cognitive performance with sodium nitrite supplementation is related to small metabolite signatures: a pilot trial in middle-aged and older adults.

    PubMed

    Justice, Jamie N; Johnson, Lawrence C; DeVan, Allison E; Cruickshank-Quinn, Charmion; Reisdorph, Nichole; Bassett, Candace J; Evans, Trent D; Brooks, Forrest A; Bryan, Nathan S; Chonchol, Michel B; Giordano, Tony; McQueen, Matthew B; Seals, Douglas R

    2015-11-01

    Advancing age is associated with reductions in nitric oxide bioavailability and changes in metabolic activity, which are implicated in declines in motor and cognitive function. In preclinical models, sodium nitrite supplementation (SN) increases plasma nitrite and improves motor function, whereas other nitric oxide-boosting agents improve cognitive function. This pilot study was designed to translate these findings to middle-aged and older (MA/O) humans to provide proof-of-concept support for larger trials. SN (10 weeks, 80 to 160 mg/day capsules, TheraVasc, Inc.) acutely and chronically increased plasma nitrite and improved performance on measures of motor and cognitive outcomes (all p<0.05 or better) in healthy MA/O adults (62 ± 7 years). Untargeted metabolomics analysis revealed that SN significantly altered 33 (160 mg/day) to 45 (80 mg/day) different metabolites, 13 of which were related to changes in functional outcomes; baseline concentrations of 99 different metabolites predicted functional improvements with SN. This pilot study provides the first evidence that SN improves aspects of motor and cognitive function in healthy MA/O adults, and that these improvements are associated with, and predicted by, the plasma metabolome. Our findings provide the necessary support for larger clinical trials on this promising pharmacological strategy for preserving physiological function with aging. PMID:26626856

  9. Improving temporal cognition by enhancing motivation.

    PubMed

    Avlar, Billur; Kahn, Julia B; Jensen, Greg; Kandel, Eric R; Simpson, Eleanor H; Balsam, Peter D

    2015-10-01

    Increasing motivation can positively impact cognitive performance. Here we employed a cognitive timing task that allows us to detect changes in cognitive performance that are not influenced by general activity or arousal factors such as the speed or persistence of responding. This approach allowed us to manipulate motivation using three different methods; molecular/genetic, behavioral and pharmacological. Increased striatal D2Rs resulted in deficits in temporal discrimination. Switching off the transgene improved motivation in earlier studies, and here partially rescued the temporal discrimination deficit. To manipulate motivation behaviorally, we altered reward magnitude and found that increasing reward magnitude improved timing in control mice and partially rescued timing in the transgenic mice. Lastly, we manipulated motivation pharmacologically using a functionally selective 5-HT2C receptor ligand, SB242084, which we previously found to increase incentive motivation. SB242084 improved temporal discrimination in both control and transgenic mice. Thus, while there is a general intuitive belief that motivation can affect cognition, we here provide a direct demonstration that enhancing motivation, in a variety of ways, can be an effective strategy for enhancing temporal cognition. Understanding the interaction of motivation and cognition is of clinical significance since many psychiatric disorders are characterized by deficits in both domains. PMID:26371378

  10. Exercise-induced improvement in cognitive performance after traumatic brain-injury in rats is dependent on BDNF Activation

    PubMed Central

    Griesbach, Grace Sophia; Hovda, David Allen; Gomez-Pinilla, Fernando

    2009-01-01

    We have previously shown that voluntary exercise upregulates brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) within the hippocampus and is associated with an enhancement of cognitive recovery after a lateral fluid-percussion injury (FPI). In order to determine if BDNF is critical to this effect we used an immunoadhesin chimera (TrkB-IgG) that inactivates free BDNF. This BDNF inhibitor was administered to adult male rats two weeks after they had received a mild fluid percussion injury (FPI) or sham surgery. These animals were then housed with or without access to a running wheel (RW) from post-injury-day (PID) 14 to 20. On PID 21, rats were tested for spatial learning in a Morris Water Maze. Results showed that exercise counteracted the cognitive deficits associated with the injury. However this exercise-induced cognitive improvement was attenuated in the FPI-RW rats that were treated with TrkB-IgG. Molecules important for synaptic plasticity and learning were measured in a separate group of rats that were sacrificed immediately after exercise (PID 21). Western blot analyses showed that exercise increased the mature form of BDNF, synapsin I and cyclic-AMP response-element-binding protein (CREB) in the vehicle treated Sham-RW group. However, only the mature form of BDNF and CREB were increased in the vehicle treated FPI-RW group. Blocking BDNF (pre administration of TrkB-IgG) greatly reduced the molecular effects of exercise in that exercise-induced increases of BDNF, synapsin I and CREB were not observed. These studies provide evidence that BDNF has a major role in exercise's cognitive effects in traumatically injured brain. PMID:19555673

  11. Cognitive Performance in Operational Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Russo, Michael; McGhee, James; Friedler, Edna; Thomas, Maria

    2005-01-01

    Optimal cognition during complex and sustained operations is a critical component for success in current and future military operations. "Cognitive Performance, Judgment, and Decision-making" (CPJD) is a newly organized U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command research program focused on sustaining operational effectiveness of Future Force Warriors by developing paradigms through which militarily-relevant, higher-order cognitive performance, judgment, and decision-making can be assessed and sustained in individuals, small teams, and leaders of network-centric fighting units. CPJD evaluates the impact of stressors intrinsic to military operational environments (e.g., sleep deprivation, workload, fatigue, temperature extremes, altitude, environmental/physiological disruption) on military performance, evaluates noninvasive automated methods for monitoring and predicting cognitive performance, and investigates pharmaceutical strategies (e.g., stimulant countermeasures, hypnotics) to mitigate performance decrements. This manuscript describes the CPJD program, discusses the metrics utilized to relate militarily applied research findings to academic research, and discusses how the simulated combat capabilities of a synthetic battle laboratory may facilitate future cognitive performance research.

  12. Background music and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Angel, Leslie A; Polzella, Donald J; Elvers, Greg C

    2010-06-01

    The present experiment employed standardized test batteries to assess the effects of fast-tempo music on cognitive performance among 56 male and female university students. A linguistic processing task and a spatial processing task were selected from the Criterion Task Set developed to assess verbal and nonverbal performance. Ten excerpts from Mozart's music matched for tempo were selected. Background music increased the speed of spatial processing and the accuracy of linguistic processing. The findings suggest that background music can have predictable effects on cognitive performance. PMID:20865993

  13. Antecedents and correlates of improved cognitive performance in children exposed in Utero to low levels of lead

    SciTech Connect

    Bellinger, D.; Leviton, A. Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA ); Sloman, J. Wheelock College, Boston, MA )

    1990-11-01

    Up to 2 years of age, children with umbilical cord blood lead levels of 10 to 25 {mu}g/dL achieve significantly lower scores on tests of cognitive development than do children with lower prenatal exposures. By age 5 years, however, they appear to have recovered from, or at least compensated for, this early insult. Change in performance between 24 and 57 months of age was examined in relation to level of postnatal lead exposure and various sociodemographic factors. Among children with high prenatal lead exposure, greater recovery of function was associated with lower blood level at 57 months, higher socioeconomic status, higher Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment scores, higher maternal IQ, and female gender. The difference between the scores at 57 months of children with optimal and less optimal values on these variables generally exceed 1/2 standard deviation. Higher prenatal lead exposure is associated with an increased risk of early cognitive deficit. Furthermore, the risk that a deficit will persist through the preschool years is increased among children with high prenatal exposure and either high postnatal exposure or less optimal sociodemographic characteristics.

  14. Cognitive Style and Drafting Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guster, Dennis

    1986-01-01

    The relationships between drafting performance and the cognitive style construct of field dependence/field independence are examined. The analysis revealed that the performance of the field-independent individual is likely to be superior to that of the field-dependent student. (Author/CT)

  15. Updating the Cognitive Performance Scale.

    PubMed

    Morris, John N; Howard, Elizabeth P; Steel, Knight; Perlman, Christopher; Fries, Brant E; Garms-Homolová, Vjenka; Henrard, Jean-Claude; Hirdes, John P; Ljunggren, Gunnar; Gray, Len; Szczerbińska, Katarzyna

    2016-01-01

    This study presents the first update of the Cognitive Performance Scale (CPS) in 20 years. Its goals are 3-fold: extend category options; characterize how the new scale variant tracks with the Mini-Mental State Examination; and present a series of associative findings. Secondary analysis of data from 3733 older adults from 8 countries was completed. Examination of scale dimensions using older and new items was completed using a forward-entry stepwise regression. The revised scale was validated by examining the scale's distribution with a self-reported dementia diagnosis, functional problems, living status, and distress measures. Cognitive Performance Scale 2 extends the measurement metric from a range of 0 to 6 for the original CPS, to 0 to 8. Relating CPS2 to other measures of function, living status, and distress showed that changes in these external measures correspond with increased challenges in cognitive performance. Cognitive Performance Scale 2 enables repeated assessments, sensitive to detect changes particularly in early levels of cognitive decline. PMID:26251111

  16. Cognitive Strategies in Spatial Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cochran, Kathryn F.; Wheatley, Grayson H.

    Individual differences in verbal/analytic and nonverbal/holistic cognitive strategies were studied in relationship to performance levels in spatial tasks, sex and handedness. Analytic processes are described as sequential, resulting in decomposition of stimulus information, and holistic processes, as parallel, involving information synthesis.…

  17. An improved cognitive model of the Iowa and Soochow Gambling Tasks with regard to model fitting performance and tests of parameter consistency

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Junyi; Kerestes, Rebecca; Upton, Daniel J.; Busemeyer, Jerome R.; Stout, Julie C.

    2015-01-01

    The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and the Soochow Gambling Task (SGT) are two experience-based risky decision-making tasks for examining decision-making deficits in clinical populations. Several cognitive models, including the expectancy-valence learning (EVL) model and the prospect valence learning (PVL) model, have been developed to disentangle the motivational, cognitive, and response processes underlying the explicit choices in these tasks. The purpose of the current study was to develop an improved model that can fit empirical data better than the EVL and PVL models and, in addition, produce more consistent parameter estimates across the IGT and SGT. Twenty-six opiate users (mean age 34.23; SD 8.79) and 27 control participants (mean age 35; SD 10.44) completed both tasks. Eighteen cognitive models varying in evaluation, updating, and choice rules were fit to individual data and their performances were compared to that of a statistical baseline model to find a best fitting model. The results showed that the model combining the prospect utility function treating gains and losses separately, the decay-reinforcement updating rule, and the trial-independent choice rule performed the best in both tasks. Furthermore, the winning model produced more consistent individual parameter estimates across the two tasks than any of the other models. PMID:25814963

  18. Pain neurophysiology education improves cognitions, pain thresholds, and movement performance in people with chronic whiplash: a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Van Oosterwijck, Jessica; Nijs, Jo; Meeus, Mira; Truijen, Steven; Craps, Julie; Van den Keybus, Nick; Paul, Lorna

    2011-01-01

    Chronic whiplash is a debilitating condition characterized by increased sensitivity to painful stimuli, maladaptive illness beliefs, inappropriate attitudes, and movement dysfunctions. Previous work in people with chronic low back pain and chronic fatigue syndrome indicates that pain neurophysiology education is able to improve illness beliefs and attitudes as well as movement performance. This single-case study (A-B-C design) with six patients with chronic whiplash associated disorders (WAD) was aimed at examining whether education about the neurophysiology of pain is accompanied by changes in symptoms, daily functioning, pain beliefs, and behavior. Periods A and C represented assessment periods, while period B consisted of the intervention (pain neurophysiology education). Results showed a significant decrease in kinesiophobia (Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia), the passive coping strategy of resting (Pain Coping Inventory), self-rated disability (Neck Disability Index), and photophobia (WAD Symptom List). At the same time, significantly increased pain pressure thresholds and improved pain-free movement performance (visual analog scale on Neck Extension Test and Brachial Plexus Provocation Test) were established. Although the current results need to be verified in a randomized, controlled trial, they suggest that education about the physiology of pain is able to increase pain thresholds and improve pain behavior and pain-free movement performance in patients with chronic WAD. PMID:21328162

  19. Cognitive behavioral strategies in athletic performance enhancement.

    PubMed

    Meyers, A W; Whelan, J P; Murphy, S M

    1996-01-01

    While we might debate the role of sport in our culture, its influence is certainly pervasive. Each day millions of Americans engage in some form of competition, training, or physical exercise. Such popularity and the value our culture places on competition have made sport a valid area of psychological inquiry. Within the cognitive behavioral model, sport psychology and, specifically, athletic performance enhancement have experienced vigorous growth over the past two decades. Behavior change strategies familiar to most cognitive behaviorists form the core of virtually all athletic performance enhancement interventions. Goal setting, imagery or mental rehearsal, relaxation training, stress management, self-monitoring, self-instruction, cognitive restructuring, and modeling interventions dominate this literature. Our examination of these performance enhancement programs, both through a qualitative review and the Whelan et al. (1989) meta-analysis, supports the efficacy of cognitive behavioral interventions for the enhancement of sport performance. First, the average effect size across the empirical literature indicates that these interventions are reliably effective. Furthermore, this positive result is observed across variations in treatment conditions, control conditions, and across different types of dependent measures. Evidence on goal setting, imagery, arousal management, cognitive self-regulation, and packaged programs specifically support the behavior change efficacy of these interventions. These findings are encouraging, but much work needs to be done. Few investigators cited in this review attend to crucial internal and external validity issues. Attention to treatment integrity, including training of behavior change agents, verification of intervention implementation, and verification of reception of the treatment, is sorely lacking. Psychological skill development and its relationship to performance improvements are rarely checked. Now that cognitive

  20. 5-Hydroxytryptophan during critical postnatal period improves cognitive performances and promotes dendritic spine maturation in genetic mouse model of phenylketonuria

    PubMed Central

    Andolina, Diego; Conversi, David; Cabib, Simona; Trabalza, Antonio; Ventura, Rossella; Puglisi-Allegra, Stefano; Pascucci, Tiziana

    2011-01-01

    Although phenylketonuria (PKU) is the most common genetic cause of mental retardation, the cellular mechanisms underlying impaired brain function are still unclear. Using PAHenu2 mice (ENU2), the genetic mouse model of PKU, we previously demonstrated that high phenylalanine levels interfere with brain tryptophan hydroxylase activity by reducing the availability of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT), crucial for maturation of neuronal connectivity in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), around the third postnatal week, a critical period for cortical maturation. 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), the product of tryptophan hydroxylation, is known to be a better treatment to increase brain 5-HT levels. In this study we investigated the role of 5-HT during the early postnatal period in cognitive disturbances and in cortical dendritic alterations of PKU subjects by restoring temporarily (postnatal days 14–21) physiological brain levels of 5-HT in ENU2 through 5-HTP treatment. In adult ENU2 mice early 5-HTP treatment reverses cognitive deficits in spatial and object recognition tests accompanied by an increase in spine maturation of pyramidal neurons in layer V of the prelimbic/infralimbic area of the PFC, although locomotor deficits are not recovered by treatment. Taken together, our results support the hypothesis that mental retardation in PKU depends on reduced availability of brain 5-HT during critical developmental periods that interferes with cortical maturation and point to 5-HTP supplementation as a highly promising additional tool to heal PKU patients. PMID:21040618

  1. Using Relaxation, Cognitive Therapy, and Mental Imagery To Reduce Test Anxiety and Improve Performance among Firefighter Trainees.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mogen, David S.

    The significant number of firefighter trainees experiencing performance evaluation anxiety during fire training school was addressed by the implementation of anxiety reduction and performance enhancement strategies. Audiotape recordings were chosen as the primary intervention medium to facilitate program effectiveness within an established fire…

  2. A racket-sport intervention improves behavioral and cognitive performance in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    PubMed

    Pan, Chien-Yu; Chu, Chia-Hua; Tsai, Chia-Liang; Lo, Shen-Yu; Cheng, Yun-Wen; Liu, Yu-Jen

    2016-10-01

    The present study assessed the effects of a 12-week table tennis exercise on motor skills, social behaviors, and executive functions in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In the first 12-week phase, 16 children (group I) received the intervention, whereas 16 children (group II) did not. A second 12-week phase immediately followed with the treatments reversed. Improvements were observed in executive functions in both groups after the intervention. After the first 12-week phase, some motor and behavioral functions improved in group I. After the second 12-week phase, similar improvements were noted for group II, and the intervention effects achieved in the first phase were persisted in group I. The racket-sport intervention is valuable in promoting motor skills, social behaviors, and executive functions and should be included within the standard-of-care treatment for children with ADHD. PMID:27344348

  3. Stimulation of postsynapse adrenergic α2A receptor improves attention/cognition performance in an animal model of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

    PubMed

    Kawaura, Kazuaki; Karasawa, Jun-ichi; Chaki, Shigeyuki; Hikichi, Hirohiko

    2014-08-15

    A 5-trial inhibitory avoidance test using spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) pups has been used as an animal model of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the roles of noradrenergic systems, which are involved in the pathophysiology of ADHD, have not been investigated in this model. In the present study, the effects of adrenergic α2 receptor stimulation, which has been an effective treatment for ADHD, on attention/cognition performance were investigated in this model. Moreover, neuronal mechanisms mediated through adrenergic α2 receptors were investigated. We evaluated the effects of both clonidine, a non-selective adrenergic α2 receptor agonist, and guanfacine, a selective adrenergic α2A receptor agonist, using a 5-trial inhibitory avoidance test with SHR pups. Juvenile SHR exhibited a shorter transfer latency, compared with juvenile Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats. Both clonidine and guanfacine significantly prolonged the transfer latency of juvenile SHR. The effects of clonidine and guanfacine were significantly blocked by pretreatment with an adrenergic α2A receptor antagonist. In contrast, the effect of clonidine was not attenuated by pretreatment with an adrenergic α2B receptor antagonist, or an adrenergic α2C receptor antagonist, while it was attenuated by a non-selective adrenergic α2 receptor antagonist. Furthermore, the effects of neither clonidine nor guanfacine were blocked by pretreatment with a selective noradrenergic neurotoxin. These results suggest that the stimulation of the adrenergic α2A receptor improves the attention/cognition performance of juvenile SHR in the 5-trial inhibitory avoidance test and that postsynaptic, rather than presynaptic, adrenergic α2A receptor is involved in this effect. PMID:24882610

  4. Significant Improvements in Cognitive Performance Post-Transcranial, Red/Near-Infrared Light-Emitting Diode Treatments in Chronic, Mild Traumatic Brain Injury: Open-Protocol Study

    PubMed Central

    Zafonte, Ross; Krengel, Maxine H.; Martin, Paula I.; Frazier, Judith; Hamblin, Michael R.; Knight, Jeffrey A.; Meehan, William P.; Baker, Errol H.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract This pilot, open-protocol study examined whether scalp application of red and near-infrared (NIR) light-emitting diodes (LED) could improve cognition in patients with chronic, mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Application of red/NIR light improves mitochondrial function (especially in hypoxic/compromised cells) promoting increased adenosine triphosphate (ATP) important for cellular metabolism. Nitric oxide is released locally, increasing regional cerebral blood flow. LED therapy is noninvasive, painless, and non-thermal (cleared by the United States Food and Drug Administration [FDA], an insignificant risk device). Eleven chronic, mTBI participants (26–62 years of age, 6 males) with nonpenetrating brain injury and persistent cognitive dysfunction were treated for 18 outpatient sessions (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, for 6 weeks), starting at 10 months to 8 years post- mTBI (motor vehicle accident [MVA] or sports-related; and one participant, improvised explosive device [IED] blast injury). Four had a history of multiple concussions. Each LED cluster head (5.35 cm diameter, 500 mW, 22.2 mW/cm2) was applied for 10 min to each of 11 scalp placements (13 J/cm2). LEDs were placed on the midline from front-to-back hairline; and bilaterally on frontal, parietal, and temporal areas. Neuropsychological testing was performed pre-LED, and at 1 week, and 1 and 2 months after the 18th treatment. A significant linear trend was observed for the effect of LED treatment over time for the Stroop test for Executive Function, Trial 3 inhibition (p=0.004); Stroop, Trial 4 inhibition switching (p=0.003); California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT)-II, Total Trials 1–5 (p=0.003); and CVLT-II, Long Delay Free Recall (p=0.006). Participants reported improved sleep, and fewer post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, if present. Participants and family reported better ability to perform social, interpersonal, and occupational functions. These open-protocol data suggest

  5. Significant improvements in cognitive performance post-transcranial, red/near-infrared light-emitting diode treatments in chronic, mild traumatic brain injury: open-protocol study.

    PubMed

    Naeser, Margaret A; Zafonte, Ross; Krengel, Maxine H; Martin, Paula I; Frazier, Judith; Hamblin, Michael R; Knight, Jeffrey A; Meehan, William P; Baker, Errol H

    2014-06-01

    This pilot, open-protocol study examined whether scalp application of red and near-infrared (NIR) light-emitting diodes (LED) could improve cognition in patients with chronic, mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Application of red/NIR light improves mitochondrial function (especially in hypoxic/compromised cells) promoting increased adenosine triphosphate (ATP) important for cellular metabolism. Nitric oxide is released locally, increasing regional cerebral blood flow. LED therapy is noninvasive, painless, and non-thermal (cleared by the United States Food and Drug Administration [FDA], an insignificant risk device). Eleven chronic, mTBI participants (26-62 years of age, 6 males) with nonpenetrating brain injury and persistent cognitive dysfunction were treated for 18 outpatient sessions (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, for 6 weeks), starting at 10 months to 8 years post- mTBI (motor vehicle accident [MVA] or sports-related; and one participant, improvised explosive device [IED] blast injury). Four had a history of multiple concussions. Each LED cluster head (5.35 cm diameter, 500 mW, 22.2 mW/cm(2)) was applied for 10 min to each of 11 scalp placements (13 J/cm(2)). LEDs were placed on the midline from front-to-back hairline; and bilaterally on frontal, parietal, and temporal areas. Neuropsychological testing was performed pre-LED, and at 1 week, and 1 and 2 months after the 18th treatment. A significant linear trend was observed for the effect of LED treatment over time for the Stroop test for Executive Function, Trial 3 inhibition (p=0.004); Stroop, Trial 4 inhibition switching (p=0.003); California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT)-II, Total Trials 1-5 (p=0.003); and CVLT-II, Long Delay Free Recall (p=0.006). Participants reported improved sleep, and fewer post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, if present. Participants and family reported better ability to perform social, interpersonal, and occupational functions. These open-protocol data suggest that placebo

  6. How Performance Improves

    SciTech Connect

    Jerry L. Harbour; Julie L. Marble

    2005-09-01

    Countless articles and books have been written about and numerous programs have been developed to improve performance. Despite this plethora of activity on how to improve performance, we have largely failed to address the more fundamental question of how performance actually improves. To begin exploring this more basic question, we have plotted some 1,200 performance records to date and found that irrespective of venue, industry, or business, there seems to be a fundamental and repeatable set of concepts regarding how performance improves over time. Such gained insights represent both opportunities and challenges to the performance technologist. Differences in performance outcomes may, for example, be as much a function of the life cycle stage of a performance system as the efficacy of the selected improvement method itself. Accordingly, it may be more difficult to compare differing performance improvement methods than previously thought.

  7. Xanthohumol improved cognitive flexibility in young mice

    PubMed Central

    Zamzow, Daniel R; Elias, Valerie; Legette, LeeCole L; Choi, Jaewoo; Stevens, J. Fred; Magnusson, Kathy R

    2014-01-01

    The protein palmitoylation cycle has been shown to be important for protein signaling and synaptic plasticity. Data from our lab showed a change in the palmitoylation status of certain proteins with age. A greater percentage of the NMDA receptor subunits GluN2A and GluN2B, along with Fyn and PSD95 proteins, were palmitoylated in the old mice. The higher level of protein palmitoylation was also associated with poorer learning scores. Xanthohumol is a prenylated flavonoid that has been shown to increase beta-oxidation in the livers of rodents, decreasing circulating free fatty acids in the serum. What is not known is whether the application of xanthohumol could influence the palmitoylation status of proteins. In this study, young and old mice were fed a diet supplemented with xanthohumol for 8 weeks. Spatial memory was assessed with the Morris water maze and protein palmitoylation quantified. The young xanthohumol-treated mice showed a significant improvement in cognitive flexibility. However, this appeared to be associated with the young control mice, on a defined, phytoestrogen-deficient diet, performing as poorly as the old mice and xanthohumol reversing this effect. The old mice receiving xanthohumol did not significantly improve their learning scores. Xanthohumol treatment was unable to affect the palmitoylation of NMDA receptor subunits and associated proteins assessed in this study. This evidence suggests that xanthohumol may play a role in improving cognitive flexability in young animals, but it appears to be ineffective in adjusting the palmitoylation status of neuronal proteins in aged individuals. PMID:25192637

  8. Xanthohumol improved cognitive flexibility in young mice.

    PubMed

    Zamzow, Daniel R; Elias, Valerie; Legette, LeeCole L; Choi, Jaewoo; Stevens, J Fred; Magnusson, Kathy R

    2014-12-15

    The protein palmitoylation cycle has been shown to be important for protein signaling and synaptic plasticity. Data from our lab showed a change in the palmitoylation status of certain proteins with age. A greater percentage of the NMDA receptor subunits GluN2A and GluN2B, along with Fyn and PSD95 proteins, were palmitoylated in the old mice. The higher level of protein palmitoylation was also associated with poorer learning scores. Xanthohumol is a prenylated flavonoid that has been shown to increase beta-oxidation in the livers of rodents, decreasing circulating free fatty acids in the serum. What is not known is whether the application of xanthohumol could influence the palmitoylation status of proteins. In this study, young and old mice were fed a diet supplemented with xanthohumol for 8 weeks. Spatial memory was assessed with the Morris water maze and protein palmitoylation quantified. The young xanthohumol-treated mice showed a significant improvement in cognitive flexibility. However, this appeared to be associated with the young control mice, on a defined, phytoestrogen-deficient diet, performing as poorly as the old mice and xanthohumol reversing this effect. The old mice receiving xanthohumol did not significantly improve their learning scores. Xanthohumol treatment was unable to affect the palmitoylation of NMDA receptor subunits and associated proteins assessed in this study. This evidence suggests that xanthohumol may play a role in improving cognitive flexability in young animals, but it appears to be ineffective in adjusting the palmitoylation status of neuronal proteins in aged individuals. PMID:25192637

  9. Individual variation in cognitive performance: developmental and evolutionary perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Thornton, Alex; Lukas, Dieter

    2012-01-01

    Animal cognition experiments frequently reveal striking individual variation but rarely consider its causes and largely ignore its potential consequences. Studies often focus on a subset of high-performing subjects, sometimes viewing evidence from a single individual as sufficient to demonstrate the cognitive capacity of a species. We argue that the emphasis on demonstrating species-level cognitive capacities detracts from the value of individual variation in understanding cognitive development and evolution. We consider developmental and evolutionary interpretations of individual variation and use meta-analyses of data from published studies to examine predictors of individual performance. We show that reliance on small sample sizes precludes robust conclusions about individual abilities as well as inter- and intraspecific differences. We advocate standardization of experimental protocols and pooling of data between laboratories to improve statistical rigour. Our analyses show that cognitive performance is influenced by age, sex, rearing conditions and previous experience. These effects limit the validity of comparative analyses unless developmental histories are taken into account, and complicate attempts to understand how cognitive traits are expressed and selected under natural conditions. Further understanding of cognitive evolution requires efforts to elucidate the heritability of cognitive traits and establish whether elevated cognitive performance confers fitness advantages in nature. PMID:22927576

  10. Embarking on performance improvement.

    PubMed

    Brown, Bobbi; Falk, Leslie Hough

    2014-06-01

    Healthcare organizations should approach performance improvement as a program, not a project. The program should be led by a guidance team that identifies goals, prioritizes work, and removes barriers to enable clinical improvement teams and work groups to realize performance improvements. A healthcare enterprise data warehouse can provide the initial foundation for the program analytics. Evidence-based best practices can help achieve improved outcomes and reduced costs. PMID:24968632

  11. Improved Visual Cognition through Stroboscopic Training

    PubMed Central

    Appelbaum, L. Gregory; Schroeder, Julia E.; Cain, Matthew S.; Mitroff, Stephen R.

    2011-01-01

    Humans have a remarkable capacity to learn and adapt, but surprisingly little research has demonstrated generalized learning in which new skills and strategies can be used flexibly across a range of tasks and contexts. In the present work we examined whether generalized learning could result from visual–motor training under stroboscopic visual conditions. Individuals were assigned to either an experimental condition that trained with stroboscopic eyewear or to a control condition that underwent identical training with non-stroboscopic eyewear. The training consisted of multiple sessions of athletic activities during which participants performed simple drills such as throwing and catching. To determine if training led to generalized benefits, we used computerized measures to assess perceptual and cognitive abilities on a variety of tasks before and after training. Computer-based assessments included measures of visual sensitivity (central and peripheral motion coherence thresholds), transient spatial attention (a useful field of view – dual task paradigm), and sustained attention (multiple-object tracking). Results revealed that stroboscopic training led to significantly greater re-test improvement in central visual field motion sensitivity and transient attention abilities. No training benefits were observed for peripheral motion sensitivity or peripheral transient attention abilities, nor were benefits seen for sustained attention during multiple-object tracking. These findings suggest that stroboscopic training can effectively improve some, but not all aspects of visual perception and attention. PMID:22059078

  12. Subjective cognitive complaints, affective distress, and objective cognitive performance in Persian Gulf War veterans.

    PubMed

    Binder, L M; Storzbach, D; Anger, W K; Campbell, K A; Rohlman, D S; of the Portland Environmental, O M; Center, H R

    1999-08-01

    We examined subjective cognitive complaints, affective distress, and cognitive performance in Persian Gulf veterans who reported illness and cognitive complaints. We predicted a stronger relationship between subjective cognitive complaints and affective distress than between subjective cognitive complaints and objective cognitive performance. This prediction was confirmed in a sample of 100 veterans. The results suggest that cognitive impairment should not be diagnosed in this population without objective confirmation with cognitive testing. PMID:14590580

  13. Performance evaluation of cognitive radio in advanced metering infrastructure communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiew, Yik-Kuan; Mohd Aripin, Norazizah; Din, Norashidah Md

    2016-03-01

    Smart grid is an intelligent electricity grid system. A reliable two-way communication system is required to transmit both critical and non-critical smart grid data. However, it is difficult to locate a huge chunk of dedicated spectrum for smart grid communications. Hence, cognitive radio based communication is applied. Cognitive radio allows smart grid users to access licensed spectrums opportunistically with the constraint of not causing harmful interference to licensed users. In this paper, a cognitive radio based smart grid communication framework is proposed. Smart grid framework consists of Home Area Network (HAN) and Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), while AMI is made up of Neighborhood Area Network (NAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN). In this paper, the authors only report the findings for AMI communication. AMI is smart grid domain that comprises smart meters, data aggregator unit, and billing center. Meter data are collected by smart meters and transmitted to data aggregator unit by using cognitive 802.11 technique; data aggregator unit then relays the data to billing center using cognitive WiMAX and TV white space. The performance of cognitive radio in AMI communication is investigated using Network Simulator 2. Simulation results show that cognitive radio improves the latency and throughput performances of AMI. Besides, cognitive radio also improves spectrum utilization efficiency of WiMAX band from 5.92% to 9.24% and duty cycle of TV band from 6.6% to 10.77%.

  14. Performance Improvement Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1997

    This document contains four papers from a symposium on performance improvement processes. In "Never the Twain Shall Meet?: A Glimpse into High Performance Work Practices and Downsizing" (Laurie J. Bassi, Mark E. Van Buren) evidence from a national cross-industry of more than 200 establishments is used to demonstrate that high-performance work…

  15. [Cognitive dimensions used in rating work performance].

    PubMed

    Yanagizawa, Saori

    2008-12-01

    This study explored the cognitive dimensions used by individuals in judging work performance based on the individual scale methodology of Hayashi, Ohashi, & Hirooka (1983). The participants were fifteen undergraduate students and nine workers. First, the participants described the characteristics of eight high performers and eight low performers whom they had worked with. Second, from these characteristics, they selected twenty characteristics that they considered as determinants in judging whether performers are superior or inferior. Third, using an individual scale consisting of the selected characteristics, they rated sixteen high performers and sixteen low performers. Factor analyses were conducted for each participant's ratings on the individual scale. The results suggested that three or four dimensions were generally used in judging performers, although there were individual differences in the number of dimensions used. Undergraduate students judged performers using more cognitive dimensions than workers did. The contents of the cognitive dimensions were relevant to technical skill, work attitude, cognitive ability, motivation, interpersonal competence, leadership, and personality. Undergraduate students used fewer cognitive ability dimensions and more personality dimensions than workers used. PMID:19172909

  16. Sarcopenia and impairment in cognitive and physical performance

    PubMed Central

    Tolea, Magdalena I; Galvin, James E

    2015-01-01

    Background Whether older adults with sarcopenia who underperform controls on tests of physical performance and cognition also have a higher likelihood of combined cognitive-physical impairment is not clear. We assessed the impact of sarcopenia on impairment in both aspects of functionality and the relative contribution of its components, muscle mass and strength. Methods Two hundred and twenty-three community-dwelling adults aged 40 years and older (mean age =68.1±10.6 years; 65% female) were recruited and underwent physical functionality, anthropometry, and cognitive testing. Participants with low muscle mass were categorized as pre-sarcopenic; those with low muscle mass and muscle strength as sarcopenic; those with higher muscle mass and low muscle strength only were categorized as non-sarcopenic and were compared on risk of cognitive impairment (Montreal Cognitive Assessment <26; Ascertaining Dementia 8 ≥2), physical impairment (Mini Physical Performance Test <12), both, or neither by ordinal logistic regression. Results Compared to controls, those with sarcopenia were six times more likely to have combined cognitive impairment/physical impairment with a fully adjusted model showing a three-fold increased odds ratio. The results were consistent across different measures of global cognition (odds ratio =3.46, 95% confidence interval =1.07–11.45 for the Montreal Cognitive Assessment; odds ratio =3.61, 95% confidence interval =1.11–11.72 for Ascertaining Dementia 8). Pre-sarcopenic participants were not different from controls. The effect of sarcopenia on cognition is related to low muscle strength rather than low muscle mass. Conclusion Individuals with sarcopenia are not only more likely to have single but also to have dual impairment in cognitive and physical function. Interventions designed to prevent sarcopenia and improve muscle strength may help reduce the burden of cognitive and physical impairments of functionality in community-dwelling seniors

  17. Distributed Cognition: A Foundation for Performance Support.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greenberg, Jan D.; Dickelman, Gary J.

    2000-01-01

    Discusses distributed cognition theory, a viable framework and methodology for examining interactions between individuals and artifacts, and how it relates to performance support. Highlights include knowledge representation; applications in learning and performance support; learning communities; collaborative learning; and computer technology and…

  18. Review of Human Cognitive Performance in Spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strangman, Gary; Bevan, Gary

    2012-01-01

    Human space exploration is inherently hazardous, particularly for lon g duration (LD) missions (22 days or longer). Maintenance of cognitive functioning is essential, but flight environments pose numerous pote ntial risks to the brain and cognitive performance (eg, radiation, to xins, chronic stress, sleep deprivation, hypercarbia, fluid shifts, h ormone imbalances, and injury). There have been persistent anecdotal reports of cognitive deficits during missions, but an up?-to-date rev iew of the evidence for such changes has remained unavailable. Method s: We identified and reviewed English language publications found via electronic searches in PubMed, PsycInfo, Inspec, the NASA Technical Report Server, and the Defense Technical Information Center, plus rec ursive searches of publication bibliographies. Search terms included the word cognition, cognitive, or performance along with spaceflight, flight, mission, or closely related terms. Results: Inter?-study variability precluded meta?-analysis. Some 32 published studies involving cognitive assessment during spaceflight were identified, involving a total of 110 participants (mean: 3.4 participants per study). The lo ngest?-duration study spanned 438 days, with six additional studies i nvolving flight durations of 90 days, and 11 more studies involved fl ight durations exceeding 21 days. The available evidence failed to st rongly support or refute the existence of cognitive deficits in LD sp aceflight, in part due to inadequate power or control conditions. Evi dence of increased variability in cognitive performance during spacef light, both within and between individuals, was common. Discussion: T hese results represent a negative finding based on small numbers of s ubjects for any given cognitive function. The increased variability within and (particularly) between individuals highlights the potential danger of generalizing from case studies. A mismatch therefore remain s between anecdotal reports describing

  19. MCNP Progress & Performance Improvements

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, Forrest B.; Bull, Jeffrey S.; Rising, Michael Evan

    2015-04-14

    Twenty-eight slides give information about the work of the US DOE/NNSA Nuclear Criticality Safety Program on MCNP6 under the following headings: MCNP6.1.1 Release, with ENDF/B-VII.1; Verification/Validation; User Support & Training; Performance Improvements; and Work in Progress. Whisper methodology will be incorporated into the code, and run speed should be increased.

  20. Improving Surface Irrigation Performance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Surface irrigation systems often have a reputation for poor performance. One key feature of efficient surface irrigation systems is precision (e.g. laser-guided) land grading. Poor land grading can make other improvements ineffective. An important issue, related to land shaping, is developing the pr...

  1. Cognitive performance in pediatric liver transplant recipients.

    PubMed

    Kaller, T; Langguth, N; Petermann, F; Ganschow, R; Nashan, B; Schulz, K-H

    2013-11-01

    To date, the course of cognitive development in children after liver transplantation (Ltx) is poorly understood. Cognitive performance, however, is crucial in all developmental stages and for educational achievement. This cross-sectional single-center study examined the prevalence of long-term cognitive impairment in a cohort of 64 pediatric patients after Ltx. Median age at Ltx was 12 months. The revised Wechsler Intelligence Scale IV was administered to assess cognitive performance. Patients were compared with an age- and gender-matched group of children without a chronic health condition. Liver transplanted children performed significantly worse in three of four cognitive domains as well as in the Total Intelligence Quotient (Total IQ) (p = 0.017 to p = 0.005). Liver transplant recipients showed substantially more "serious delays" (IQ < 70) compared to the reference group (9.4% vs. 4.7%). Children with a genetic-metabolic disease performed worse than the other groups in three of the four WISC Indices and in the Total IQ (p = 0.05 to p = 0.01). The strongest association was revealed between height at Ltx and Verbal Comprehension (R(2)  = 0.21), Perceptual Reasoning (R(2)  = 0.30), Working Memory (R(2)  = 0.23) and Total IQ (R(2)  = 0.25). Our results indicate a high impact of primary diagnosis and height percentile at Ltx even on children's long-term cognitive performance. PMID:24102763

  2. Improving CSF Biomarkers’ Performance for Predicting Progression from Mild Cognitive Impairment to Alzheimer’s Disease by Considering Different Confounding Factors: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Daniel; Rivero-Santana, Amado; Perestelo-Pérez, Lilisbeth; Westman, Eric; Wahlund, Lars-Olof; Sarría, Antonio; Serrano-Aguilar, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    Background: Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers’ performance for predicting conversion from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is still suboptimal. Objective: By considering several confounding factors we aimed to identify in which situations these CSF biomarkers can be useful. Data Sources: A systematic review was conducted on MEDLINE, PreMedline, EMBASE, PsycInfo, CINAHL, Cochrane, and CRD (1990–2013). Eligibility Criteria: (1) Prospective studies of CSF biomarkers’ performance for predicting conversion from MCI to AD/dementia; (2) inclusion of Aβ42 and T-tau and/or p-tau. Several meta-analyses were performed. Results: Aβ42/p-tau ratio had high capacity to predict conversion to AD in MCI patients younger than 70 years. The p-tau had high capacity to identify MCI cases converting to AD in ≤24 months. Conclusions: Explaining how different confounding factors influence CSF biomarkers’ predictive performance is mandatory to elaborate a definitive map of situations, where these CSF biomarkers are useful both in clinics and research. PMID:25360114

  3. Aerobic Exercise Improves Cognition and Motor Function Poststroke

    PubMed Central

    Quaney, Barbara M.; Boyd, Lara A.; McDowd, Joan M.; Zahner, Laura H.; He, Jianghua; Mayo, Matthew S.; Macko, Richard F.

    2010-01-01

    Background Cognitive deficits impede stroke recovery. Aerobic exercise (AEX) improves cognitive executive function (EF) processes in healthy individuals, although the learning benefits after stroke are unknown. Objective To understand AEX-induced improvements in EF, motor learning, and mobility poststroke. Methods Following cardiorespiratory testing, 38 chronic stroke survivors were randomized to 2 different groups that exercised 3 times a week (45-minute sessions) for 8 weeks. The AEX group (n = 19; 9 women; 10 men; 64.10 ± 12.30 years) performed progressive resistive stationary bicycle training at 70% maximal heart rate, whereas the Stretching Exercise (SE) group (n = 19; 12 women; 7 men; 58.96 ± 14.68 years) performed stretches at home. Between-group comparisons were performed on the change in performance at “Post” and “Retention” (8 weeks later) for neuropsychological and motor function measures. Results Vo2max significantly improved at Post with AEX (P = .04). AEX also improved motor learning in the less-affected hand, with large effect sizes (Cohen’s d calculation). Specifically, AEX significantly improved information processing speed on the serial reaction time task (SRTT; ie, “procedural motor learning”) compared with the SE group at Post (P = .024), but not at Retention. Also, at Post (P = .038), AEX significantly improved predictive force accuracy for a precision grip task requiring attention and conditional motor learning of visual cues. Ambulation and sit-to-stand transfers were significantly faster in the AEX group at Post (P = .038), with balance control significantly improved at Retention (P = .041). EF measurements were not significantly different for the AEX group. Conclusion AEX improved mobility and selected cognitive domains related to motor learning, which enhances sensorimotor control after stroke. PMID:19541916

  4. Adult Cognitive Styles and Test Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andrulis, Richard S.; Bush, David

    1977-01-01

    Adult males (N=90) ages 25 to 58 were individually tested with three cognitive style measures. Error scores on the MFF (Matching Familiar Figures Test) are a better predictor of test performance than are latencies. Presented at the 84th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Washington, D.C., 1976. (Author)

  5. Aging, Cognitive Performance, and Mental Speed.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nettelbeck, Ted; Rabbitt, Patrick M. A.

    1992-01-01

    Measures of four-choice reaction time, inspection time, and scores on a speeded coding-substitution task obtained from 104 adults aged 54 to 85 years were found to account for almost all age-related changes in cognitive performance on a number of indices of general fluid ability. (SLD)

  6. Effects of flavonoids on cognitive performance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent studies suggest that nutritional interventions, such as increasing dietary intake of fruits and vegetables, could possibly delay and even reverse age-related declines in brain function such as cognitive and motor performance. Fruits and vegetables rich in flavonoids play a critical role in pr...

  7. Word Recall: Cognitive Performance Within Internet Surveys

    PubMed Central

    Craig, Benjamin M; Jim, Heather S

    2015-01-01

    Background The use of online surveys for data collection has increased exponentially, yet it is often unclear whether interview-based cognitive assessments (such as face-to-face or telephonic word recall tasks) can be adapted for use in application-based research settings. Objective The objective of the current study was to compare and characterize the results of online word recall tasks to those of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) and determine the feasibility and reliability of incorporating word recall tasks into application-based cognitive assessments. Methods The results of the online immediate and delayed word recall assessment, included within the Women’s Health and Valuation (WHV) study, were compared to the results of the immediate and delayed recall tasks of Waves 5-11 (2000-2012) of the HRS. Results Performance on the WHV immediate and delayed tasks demonstrated strong concordance with performance on the HRS tasks (ρc=.79, 95% CI 0.67-0.91), despite significant differences between study populations (P<.001) and study design. Sociodemographic characteristics and self-reported memory demonstrated similar relationships with performance on both the HRS and WHV tasks. Conclusions The key finding of this study is that the HRS word recall tasks performed similarly when used as an online cognitive assessment in the WHV. Online administration of cognitive tests, which has the potential to significantly reduce participant and administrative burden, should be considered in future research studies and health assessments. PMID:26543924

  8. Cognitive Correlates of Performance in Advanced Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wei, Wei; Yuan, Hongbo; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhou, Xinlin

    2012-01-01

    Background: Much research has been devoted to understanding cognitive correlates of elementary mathematics performance, but little such research has been done for advanced mathematics (e.g., modern algebra, statistics, and mathematical logic).Aims: To promote mathematical knowledge among college students, it is necessary to understand what factors…

  9. CF6 performance improvement

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lennard, D. J.

    1978-01-01

    Potential CF6 engine performance improvements directed at reduced fuel consumption were identified and screened relative to airline acceptability and are reviewed. The screening process developed to provide evaluations of fuel savings and economic factors including return on investment and direct operating cost is described. In addition, assessments of development risk and production potential are made. Several promising concepts selected for full-scale development based on a ranking involving these factors are discussed.

  10. Microgravity effects on standardized cognitive performance measures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schiflett, Samuel G.

    1992-01-01

    The purpose of this experiment, selected to fly on the International Microgravity Laboratory (IML-2) Spacelab mission, is to determine the effects of microgravity upon the cognitive skills which are critical to successful performance of many tasks on board the Space Shuttle. Six tests from the Unified Tri-service Cognitive Performance Assessment Battery (UTC-PAB) will be administered to the Mission Specialists to fulfill the goals of this experiment. These tests are based upon current theoretical models of human performance and the hypothesized effects of microgravity. The principle objective is the identification of the effects of microgravity upon specific information processing skills affecting performance from those of fatigue and shifts in work/rest cycles. Multiple measures of both short and long term fatigue will be obtained and used as a major independent variable for the analysis of these performance data. Scientific supporting studies will determine optimum practice and performance testing schedules for the astronauts. The same tests will be used post-flight to collect data on the recovery of any cognitive performance impairment compared with pre-flight, baseline levels.

  11. Concurrent and Longitudinal Relationships Between Cognitive Activity, Cognitive Performance, and Brain Volume in Older Adult Women

    PubMed Central

    Erickson, Kirk I.; Espeland, Mark A.; Smith, J. Carson; Tindle, Hilary A.; Rapp, Stephen R.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives. We investigated (a) cross-sectional associations between cognitive activity, cognitive performance, and MRI measures and (b) longitudinal associations between cognitive activity and change in cognitive performance, using structural equation modeling (SEM). Method. Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study (WHIMS) Extension participants who continued annual neuropsychological assessments by telephone and completed a concurrent questionnaire of cognitive activities and MRI scans were included (mean age = 81.4 years; N = 393). Cognitive performance was measured by tests of attention, working memory, verbal fluency, executive function, and memory. Cognitive activity was measured by self-reported participation in a variety of cognitive activities (e.g., reading books, playing games, computer activities; N = 11 items) during the previous 12 months. MRI measures included gray and white matter normal and white matter lesion volumes. Results. SEM demonstrated a significant association between cognitive activity and baseline cognitive performance but not change over 2–3 years. Gray and white matter was associated with cognitive performance but not cognitive activity. All effects remained significant after modeling covariates (age, education, depressive symptoms, WHIMS intervention assignment, and intracranial volume). Conclusions. Cognitive activity benefits current cognitive performance but is not associated with change over 2–3 years. Cognitive activity and MRI volumes are independently associated with cognitive performance, suggesting distinct cognitive and brain reserve constructs. PMID:25209372

  12. Sleep deprivation: Impact on cognitive performance

    PubMed Central

    Alhola, Paula; Polo-Kantola, Päivi

    2007-01-01

    Today, prolonged wakefulness is a widespread phenomenon. Nevertheless, in the field of sleep and wakefulness, several unanswered questions remain. Prolonged wakefulness can be due to acute total sleep deprivation (SD) or to chronic partial sleep restriction. Although the latter is more common in everyday life, the effects of total SD have been examined more thoroughly. Both total and partial SD induce adverse changes in cognitive performance. First and foremost, total SD impairs attention and working memory, but it also affects other functions, such as long-term memory and decision-making. Partial SD is found to influence attention, especially vigilance. Studies on its effects on more demanding cognitive functions are lacking. Coping with SD depends on several factors, especially aging and gender. Also interindividual differences in responses are substantial. In addition to coping with SD, recovering from it also deserves attention. Cognitive recovery processes, although insufficiently studied, seem to be more demanding in partial sleep restriction than in total SD. PMID:19300585

  13. Fluid consumption, exercise, and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Backes, T P; Fitzgerald, K

    2016-09-01

    Laboratory evidence supports the notion that dehydration degrades exercise performance and impairs certain cognitive processes. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of a voluntary versus a dictated drinking condition on exercise and cognitive performance. The study used a double-blind and paired design. Twenty male and female college students (10 women, 10 men) participated in an exercise protocol consisting of 1 hr of treadmill running followed by a high intensity portion continuing until voluntary exhaustion. The dictated drinking condition consisted of 900 ml of water equally distributed in 4 pre-prepared opaque bottles. At 15 min intervals the subject was instructed to drink the entire contents until the end of the 1 hr treadmill protocol. The voluntary drinking condition consisted of 225 ml of water within arm's reach of the subjects while on the treadmill. Exercise performance was significantly better (longer duration and faster speed) in the voluntary condition compared with the dictated condition. Cognitive test outcomes were not significantly different between drinking conditions. A difference in fluid absorption is a potential source of exercise impairment seen in the dictated fluid condition. The higher fluid consumption rate presumably would cause greater gastric and esophageal distention resulting in the diversion of blood flow from working muscles to the gastrointestinal system. In situations where dehydration is likely, drinking to recommended guidelines may protect individuals from dehydration and its negative effects. However, when dehydration is not likely, allowing an individual to follow voluntary drinking behavior is preferable for exercise performance. PMID:27601785

  14. Fluid consumption, exercise, and cognitive performance

    PubMed Central

    Fitzgerald, K

    2016-01-01

    Laboratory evidence supports the notion that dehydration degrades exercise performance and impairs certain cognitive processes. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of a voluntary versus a dictated drinking condition on exercise and cognitive performance. The study used a double-blind and paired design. Twenty male and female college students (10 women, 10 men) participated in an exercise protocol consisting of 1 hr of treadmill running followed by a high intensity portion continuing until voluntary exhaustion. The dictated drinking condition consisted of 900 ml of water equally distributed in 4 pre-prepared opaque bottles. At 15 min intervals the subject was instructed to drink the entire contents until the end of the 1 hr treadmill protocol. The voluntary drinking condition consisted of 225 ml of water within arm's reach of the subjects while on the treadmill. Exercise performance was significantly better (longer duration and faster speed) in the voluntary condition compared with the dictated condition. Cognitive test outcomes were not significantly different between drinking conditions. A difference in fluid absorption is a potential source of exercise impairment seen in the dictated fluid condition. The higher fluid consumption rate presumably would cause greater gastric and esophageal distention resulting in the diversion of blood flow from working muscles to the gastrointestinal system. In situations where dehydration is likely, drinking to recommended guidelines may protect individuals from dehydration and its negative effects. However, when dehydration is not likely, allowing an individual to follow voluntary drinking behavior is preferable for exercise performance. PMID:27601785

  15. Oral zinc supplementation may improve cognitive function in schoolchildren.

    PubMed

    de Moura, José Edson; de Moura, Edna Nubia Oliveira; Alves, Camila Xavier; Vale, Sancha Helena de Lima; Dantas, Márcia Marília Gomes; Silva, Alfredo de Araújo; Almeida, Maria das Graças; Leite, Lúcia Dantas; Brandão-Neto, José

    2013-10-01

    Zinc is an important micronutrient for humans, and zinc deficiency among schoolchildren is deleterious to growth and development, immune competence, and cognitive function. However, the effect of zinc supplementation on cognitive function remains poorly understood. The purpose of our study was to evaluate the effect of oral zinc supplementation (5 mg Zn/day for 3 months) on the Full Scale Intelligence Quotient (FSIQ), Verbal Intelligence Quotient (VIQ), and Performance Intelligence Quotient (PIQ) using a Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-III). We studied 36 schoolchildren aged 6 to 9 years (7.8 ± 1.1) using a nonprobability sampling method. The baseline serum zinc concentrations increased significantly after zinc supplementation (p < 0.0001), with no difference between sexes. Tests were administered under basal conditions before and after zinc supplementation, and there was no difference in FSIQ according to gender or age. The results demonstrated that zinc improved the VIQ only in the Information Subtest (p = 0.009), although the supplementation effects were more significant in relation to the PIQ, as these scores improved for the Picture Completion, Picture Arrangement, Block Design, and Object Assembly Subtests (p = 0.0001, for all subtests). In conclusion, zinc supplementation improved specific cognitive abilities, thereby positively influencing the academic performance of schoolchildren, even those without marginal zinc deficiency. PMID:23892699

  16. Cognitive intervention with elite performers: reversal theory.

    PubMed Central

    Kerr, J H

    1987-01-01

    Noticeable in the literature associated with the application of psychology to the area of sport and sports performance in particular has been the increasing frequency of references to the use of cognitive intervention in the sports context. Currently utilised in clinical psychology and behavioural medicine, and receiving increasing attention in sports psychology, are a number of intervention techniques primarily oriented towards altering the individual's level of arousal. These techniques, which have been advocated for use by sports performers as an aid to adapting and coping during competition, have been largely concerned with arousal reduction. This paper presents an alternative approach, the case of reversal theory, a new general theory of psychology concerned with motivation, and emphasises the conceptual implications of this new approach for the use of cognitive intervention techniques in sport. PMID:3620801

  17. Cognitive performance baseline measurement and eye movement performance measures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viirre, Erik S.; Chase, Bradley; Tsai, Yi-Fang

    2005-05-01

    Personnel are often required to perform multiple simultaneous tasks at the limits of their cognitive capacity. In research surrounding cognitive performance resources for tasks during stress and high cognitive workload, one area of deficiency is measurement of individual differences. To determine the amount of attentional demand a stressor places on a subject, one must first know that all subjects are performing at the same level with the same amount of available capacity in the control condition. By equating the baselines of performance across all subjects ("baselining") we can control for differing amounts of performance capacity or attentional resources in each individual. For example, a given level of task performance without a time restriction may be equated across subjects to account for attentional resources. Training to a fixed level of proficiency with time limits might obliterate individual differences in mental resources. Eye movement parameters may serve as a real-time measure of attentional demand. In implementing a baselining technique to control for individual differences, eye movement behaviors will be associated with the true cognitive demands of task loading or other stressors. Using eye movement data as a proxy for attentional state, it may be possible to "close the loop" on the human-machine system, providing a means by which the system can adapt to the attentional state of the human operator. In our presentation, eye movement data will be shown with and without the benefit of the baselining technique. Experimental results will be discussed within the context of this theoretical framework.

  18. Improving Construct Validity with Cognitive Psychology Principles.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Embretson, Susan; Gorin, Joanna

    2001-01-01

    Examines testing practices in: (1) the past, in which the traditional paradigm left little room for cognitive psychology principles; (2) the present, in which testing research is enhanced by principles of cognitive psychology; and (3) the future, in which the potential of cognitive psychology should be fully realized through item design.…

  19. Clock drawing performance in cognitively normal elderly.

    PubMed

    Hubbard, Emily J; Santini, Veronica; Blankevoort, Christiaan G; Volkers, Karin M; Barrup, Melissa S; Byerly, Laura; Chaisson, Christine; Jefferson, Angela L; Kaplan, Edith; Green, Robert C; Stern, Robert A

    2008-05-01

    The Clock Drawing Test (CDT) is a common neuropsychological measure sensitive to cognitive changes and functional skills (e.g., driving test performance) among older adults. However, normative data have not been adequately developed. We report the distribution of CDT scores using three common scoring systems [Mendez, M. F., Ala, T., & Underwood, K. L. (1992). Development of scoring criteria for the Clock Drawing Task in Alzheimer's Disease. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 40, 1095-1099; Cahn, D. A., Salmon, D. P., Monsch, A. U., Butters, N., Wiederholt, W. C., & Corey-Bloom, J. (1996). Screening for dementia of the Alzheimer type in the community: The utility of the Clock Drawing Test. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 11(6), 529-539], among 207 cognitively normal elderly. The systems were well correlated, took little time to use, and had high inter-rater reliability. We found statistically significant differences in CDT scores based on age and WRAT-3 Reading score, a marker of education quality. We present means, standard deviations, and t- and z-scores based on these subgroups. We found that "normal" CDT performance includes a wider distribution of scores than previously reported. Our results may serve as useful comparisons for clinicians wishing to know whether their patients perform in the general range of cognitively normal elderly. PMID:18243644

  20. Novel television-based cognitive training improves working memory and executive function.

    PubMed

    Shatil, Evelyn; Mikulecká, Jaroslava; Bellotti, Francesco; Bureš, Vladimír

    2014-01-01

    The main study objective was to investigate the effect of interactive television-based cognitive training on cognitive performance of 119 healthy older adults, aged 60-87 years. Participants were randomly allocated to a cognitive training group or to an active control group in a single-blind controlled two-group design. Before and after training interactive television cognitive performance was assessed on well validated tests of fluid, higher-order ability, and system usability was evaluated. The participants in the cognitive training group completed a television-based cognitive training programme, while the participants in the active control group completed a TV-based programme of personally benefiting activities. Significant improvements were observed in well validated working memory and executive function tasks in the cognitive training but not in the control group. None of the groups showed statistically significant improvement in life satisfaction score. Participants' reports of "adequate" to "high" system usability testify to the successful development and implementation of the interactive television-based system and compliant cognitive training contents. The study demonstrates that cognitive training delivered by means of an interactive television system can generate genuine cognitive benefits in users and these are measurable using well-validated cognitive tests. Thus, older adults who cannot use or afford a computer can easily use digital interactive television to benefit from advanced software applications designed to train cognition. PMID:24992187

  1. Cognitive Performance in a Subclinical Obsessive-Compulsive Sample 1: Cognitive Functions

    PubMed Central

    Johansen, Thomas; Dittrich, Winand H.

    2013-01-01

    Individuals who are not clinically diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) but still display obsessive-compulsive (OC) tendencies may show cognitive impairments. The present study investigated whether there are subgroups within a healthy group showing characteristic cognitive and emotional performance levels similar to those found in OCD patients and whether they differ from OCD subgroups regarding performance levels. Of interest are those cases showing subclinical symptomatology. The results revealed no impairments in the subclinical OC participants on the neuropsychological tasks, while evidence suggests that there exist high and low scores on two standardised clinical instruments (Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale and Cognitive Assessment Instrument of Obsessions and Compulsions) in a healthy sample. OC symptoms may diminish the quality of life and prolong sustainable return to work. It may be that occupational rehabilitation programmes are more effective in rectifying subclinical OC tendencies compared to the often complex symptoms of diagnosed OCD patients. The relationship between cognitive style and subclinical OC symptoms is discussed in terms of how materials and information might be processed. Although subclinical OC tendencies would not seem to constitute a diagnosis of OCD, the quality of treatment programmes such as cognitive behavioural therapy can be improved based on the current investigation. PMID:24236282

  2. The influence of agility training on physiological and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Lennemann, Lynette M; Sidrow, Kathryn M; Johnson, Erica M; Harrison, Catherine R; Vojta, Christopher N; Walker, Thomas B

    2013-12-01

    Agility training (AT) has recently been instituted in several military communities in hopes of improving combat performance and general fitness. The purpose of this study was to determine how substituting AT for traditional military physical training (PT) influences physical and cognitive performance. Forty-one subjects undergoing military technical training were divided randomly into 2 groups for 6 weeks of training. One group participated in standard military PT consisting of calisthenics and running. A second group duplicated the amount of exercise of the first group but used AT as their primary mode of training. Before and after training, subjects completed a physical and cognitive battery of tests including V[Combining Dot Above]O2max, reaction time, Illinois Agility Test, body composition, visual vigilance, dichotic listening, and working memory tests. There were significant improvements within the AT group in V[Combining Dot Above]O2max, Illinois Agility Test, visual vigilance, and continuous memory. There was a significant increase in time-to-exhaustion for the traditional group. We conclude that AT is as effective or more effective as PT in enhancing physical fitness. Further, it is potentially more effective than PT in enhancing specific measures of physical and cognitive performance, such as physical agility, memory, and vigilance. Consequently, we suggest that AT be incorporated into existing military PT programs as a way to improve war-fighter performance. Further, it seems likely that the benefits of AT observed here occur in various other populations. PMID:23442271

  3. Neural correlates of cognitive improvements following cognitive remediation in schizophrenia: a systematic review of randomized trials

    PubMed Central

    Isaac, Clémence; Januel, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Background Cognitive impairments are a core feature in schizophrenia and are linked to poor social functioning. Numerous studies have shown that cognitive remediation can enhance cognitive and functional abilities in patients with this pathology. The underlying mechanism of these behavioral improvements seems to be related to structural and functional changes in the brain. However, studies on neural correlates of such enhancement remain scarce. Objectives We explored the neural correlates of cognitive enhancement following cognitive remediation interventions in schizophrenia and the differential effect between cognitive training and other therapeutic interventions or patients’ usual care. Method We searched MEDLINE, PsycInfo, and ScienceDirect databases for studies on cognitive remediation therapy in schizophrenia that used neuroimaging techniques and a randomized design. Search terms included randomized controlled trial, cognitive remediation, cognitive training, rehabilitation, magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography, electroencephalography, magnetoencephalography, near infrared spectroscopy, and diffusion tensor imaging. We selected randomized controlled trials that proposed multiple sessions of cognitive training to adult patients with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder and assessed its efficacy with imaging techniques. Results In total, 15 reports involving 19 studies were included in the systematic review. They involved a total of 455 adult patients, 271 of whom received cognitive remediation. Cognitive remediation therapy seems to provide a neurobiological enhancing effect in schizophrenia. After therapy, increased activations are observed in various brain regions mainly in frontal – especially prefrontal – and also in occipital and anterior cingulate regions during working memory and executive tasks. Several studies provide evidence of an improved functional connectivity after cognitive training, suggesting a neuroplastic effect of

  4. EEG markers of future cognitive performance in the elderly.

    PubMed

    van der Hiele, Karin; Bollen, Eduard L E M; Vein, Alla A; Reijntjes, Robert H A M; Westendorp, Rudi G J; van Buchem, Mark A; Middelkoop, Huub A M; van Dijk, J Gert

    2008-04-01

    This exploratory follow-up study investigated whether EEG parameters can predict future cognitive performance. Forty elderly subjects, ranging from cognitively unimpaired to those with Alzheimer disease underwent EEG registration at baseline and neuropsychological examination at both baseline and follow-up. We assessed relations between EEG measures and future cognitive performance (i.e., global cognition, memory, language, and executive functioning) controlling for age, follow-up time, and baseline cognitive performance. Regression models were constructed to predict performance on the Cambridge Cognitive Examination, a widely used tool within dementia screenings. Baseline EEG measures, i.e., increased theta activity (4-8 Hz) during eyes closed and less alpha reactivity (8-13 Hz) during eyes open and memory activation, indicated lower global cognitive, language (trend significant), and executive performance at follow-up. A regression model combining baseline cognitive and EEG measures provided the best prediction of future Cambridge Cognitive Examination performance (93%). EEG and cognitive measures alone predicted, respectively, 43% and 92% of variance. EEG and cognitive measures combined provided the best prediction of future cognitive performance. Although the "cognition only" model showed similar predictive power, the EEG provided significant additional value. The added value of EEG registration in the diagnostic work-up of dementia should be further assessed in larger samples. PMID:18340274

  5. Whole body vibration improves cognition in healthy young adults.

    PubMed

    Regterschot, G Ruben H; Van Heuvelen, Marieke J G; Zeinstra, Edzard B; Fuermaier, Anselm B M; Tucha, Lara; Koerts, Janneke; Tucha, Oliver; Van Der Zee, Eddy A

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the acute effects of passive whole body vibration (WBV) on executive functions in healthy young adults. Participants (112 females, 21 males; age: 20.5±2.2 years) underwent six passive WBV sessions (frequency 30 Hz, amplitude approximately 0.5 mm) and six non-vibration control sessions of two minutes each while sitting on a chair mounted on a vibrating platform. A passive WBV session was alternated with a control session. Directly after each session, performance on the Stroop Color-Block Test (CBT), Stroop Color-Word Interference Test (CWIT), Stroop Difference Score (SDS) and Digit Span Backward task (DSBT) was measured. In half of the passive WBV and control sessions the test order was CBT-CWIT-DSBT, and DSBT-CBT-CWIT in the other half. Passive WBV improved CWIT (p = 0.009; effect size r = 0.20) and SDS (p = 0.034; r = 0.16) performance, but only when the CBT and CWIT preceded the DSBT. CBT and DSBT performance did not change. This study shows that two minutes passive WBV has positive acute effects on attention and inhibition in young adults, notwithstanding their high cognitive functioning which could have hampered improvement. This finding indicates the potential of passive WBV as a cognition-enhancing therapy worth further evaluation, especially in persons unable to perform active forms of exercise. PMID:24949870

  6. Enhancement of human cognitive performance using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS)

    PubMed Central

    Luber, Bruce; Lisanby, and Sarah H.

    2014-01-01

    Here we review the usefulness of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in modulating cortical networks in ways that might produce performance enhancements in healthy human subjects. To date over sixty studies have reported significant improvements in speed and accuracy in a variety of tasks involving perceptual, motor, and executive processing. Two basic categories of enhancement mechanisms are suggested by this literature: direct modulation of a cortical region or network that leads to more efficient processing, and addition-by-subtraction, which is disruption of processing which competes or distracts from task performance. Potential applications of TMS cognitive enhancement, including research into cortical function, rehabilitation therapy in neurological and psychiatric illness, and accelerated skill acquisition in healthy individuals are discussed, as are methods of optimizing the magnitude and duration of TMS-induced performance enhancement, such as improvement of targeting through further integration of brain imaging with TMS. One technique, combining multiple sessions of TMS with concurrent TMS/task performance to induce Hebbian-like learning, appears to be promising for prolonging enhancement effects. While further refinements in the application of TMS to cognitive enhancement can still be made, and questions remain regarding the mechanisms underlying the observed effects, this appears to be a fruitful area of investigation that may shed light on the basic mechanisms of cognitive function and their therapeutic modulation. PMID:23770409

  7. Disentangling the Relationship between Hemispheric Asymmetry and Cognitive Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hirnstein, Marco; Leask, Stuart; Rose, Jonas; Hausmann, Markus

    2010-01-01

    It is widely believed that advantages of hemispheric asymmetries originated in better cognitive processing, hence it is often implied that the relationship between hemispheric asymmetry and cognitive performance is linearly positive: the higher the degree of lateralization in a specific cognitive domain, the better the performance in a…

  8. Performance Improvement Assuming Complexity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowland, Gordon

    2007-01-01

    Individual performers, work teams, and organizations may be considered complex adaptive systems, while most current human performance technologies appear to assume simple determinism. This article explores the apparent mismatch and speculates on future efforts to enhance performance if complexity rather than simplicity is assumed. Included are…

  9. Performance Improvement [in HRD].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1995

    These four papers are from a symposium that was facilitated by Richard J. Torraco at the 1995 conference of the Academy of Human Resource Development (HRD). "Performance Technology--Isn't It Time We Found Some New Models?" (William J. Rothwell) reviews briefly two classic models, describes criteria for the high performance workplace (HPW), and…

  10. Repeated systemic administration of the nutraceutical alpha-linolenic acid exerts neuroprotective efficacy, an antidepressant effect and improves cognitive performance when given after soman exposure.

    PubMed

    Pan, Hongna; Piermartiri, Tetsade C B; Chen, Jun; McDonough, John; Oppel, Craig; Driwech, Wafae; Winter, Kristin; McFarland, Emylee; Black, Katelyn; Figueiredo, Taiza; Grunberg, Neil; Marini, Ann M

    2015-12-01

    Exposure to nerve agents results in severe seizures or status epilepticus caused by the inhibition of acetylcholinesterase, a critical enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine to terminate neurotransmission. Prolonged seizures cause brain damage and can lead to long-term consequences. Current countermeasures are only modestly effective against the brain damage supporting interest in the evaluation of new and efficacious therapies. The nutraceutical alpha-linolenic acid (LIN) is an essential omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid that has a wide safety margin. Previous work showed that a single intravenous injection of alpha-linolenic acid (500 nmol/kg) administered before or after soman significantly protected against soman-induced brain damage when analyzed 24h after exposure. Here, we show that administration of three intravenous injections of alpha-linolenic acid over a 7 day period after soman significantly improved motor performance on the rotarod, enhanced memory retention, exerted an anti-depressant-like activity and increased animal survival. This dosing schedule significantly reduced soman-induced neuronal degeneration in four major vulnerable brain regions up to 21 days. Taken together, alpha-linolenic acid reduces the profound behavioral deficits induced by soman possibly by decreasing neuronal cell death, and increases animal survival. PMID:26386148

  11. The effect of exercise-induced arousal on cognitive task performance: a meta-regression analysis.

    PubMed

    Lambourne, Kate; Tomporowski, Phillip

    2010-06-23

    The effects of acute exercise on cognitive performance were examined using meta-analytic techniques. The overall mean effect size was dependent on the timing of cognitive assessment. During exercise, cognitive task performance was impaired by a mean effect of -0.14. However, impairments were only observed during the first 20min of exercise. Otherwise, exercise-induced arousal enhanced performance on tasks that involved rapid decisions and automatized behaviors. Following exercise, cognitive task performance improved by a mean effect of 0.20. Arousal continued to facilitate speeded mental processes and also enhanced memory storage and retrieval. Positive effects were observed following exercise regardless of whether the study protocol was designed to measure the effects of steady-state exercise, fatiguing exercise, or the inverted-U hypothesis. Finally, cognitive performance was affected differentially by exercise mode. Cycling was associated with enhanced performance during and after exercise, whereas treadmill running led to impaired performance during exercise and a small improvement in performance following exercise. These results are indicative of the complex relation between exercise and cognition. Cognitive performance may be enhanced or impaired depending on when it is measured, the type of cognitive task selected, and the type of exercise performed. PMID:20381468

  12. Aerobic and Cognitive Exercise (ACE) Pilot Study for Older Adults: Executive Function Improves with Cognitive Challenge While Exergaming.

    PubMed

    Barcelos, Nicole; Shah, Nikita; Cohen, Katherine; Hogan, Michael J; Mulkerrin, Eamon; Arciero, Paul J; Cohen, Brian D; Kramer, Arthur F; Anderson-Hanley, Cay

    2015-11-01

    Dementia cases are increasing worldwide; thus, investigators seek to identify interventions that might prevent or ameliorate cognitive decline in later life. Extensive research confirms the benefits of physical exercise for brain health, yet only a fraction of older adults exercise regularly. Interactive mental and physical exercise, as in aerobic exergaming, not only motivates, but has also been found to yield cognitive benefit above and beyond traditional exercise. This pilot study sought to investigate whether greater cognitive challenge while exergaming would yield differential outcomes in executive function and generalize to everyday functioning. Sixty-four community based older adults (mean age=82) were randomly assigned to pedal a stationary bike, while interactively engaging on-screen with: (1) a low cognitive demand task (bike tour), or (2) a high cognitive demand task (video game). Executive function (indices from Trails, Stroop and Digit Span) was assessed before and after a single-bout and 3-month exercise intervention. Significant group × time interactions were found after a single-bout (Color Trails) and after 3 months of exergaming (Stroop; among 20 adherents). Those in the high cognitive demand group performed better than those in the low cognitive dose condition. Everyday function improved across both exercise conditions. Pilot data indicate that for older adults, cognitive benefit while exergaming increased concomitantly with higher doses of interactive mental challenge. PMID:26581789

  13. Cognitive Performance during a 24-Hour Cold Exposure Survival Simulation

    PubMed Central

    Hartley, Geoffrey L.; Zaharieva, Dessi; Basset, Fabien A.; Hynes, Zach

    2016-01-01

    Survivor of a ship ground in polar regions may have to wait more than five days before being rescued. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore cognitive performance during prolonged cold exposure. Core temperature (Tc) and cognitive test battery (CTB) performance data were collected from eight participants during 24 hours of cold exposure (7.5°C ambient air temperature). Participants (recruited from those who have regular occupational exposure to cold) were instructed that they could freely engage in minimal exercise that was perceived to maintaining a tolerable level of thermal comfort. Despite the active engagement, test conditions were sufficient to significantly decrease Tc after exposure and to eliminate the typical 0.5–1.0°C circadian rise and drop in core temperature throughout a 24 h cycle. Results showed minimal changes in CTB performance regardless of exposure time. Based on the results, it is recommended that survivors who are waiting for rescue should be encouraged to engage in mild physical activity, which could have the benefit of maintaining metabolic heat production, improve motivation, and act as a distractor from cold discomfort. This recommendation should be taken into consideration during future research and when considering guidelines for mandatory survival equipment regarding cognitive performance. PMID:27478839

  14. Cognitive Performance during a 24-Hour Cold Exposure Survival Simulation.

    PubMed

    Taber, Michael J; Hartley, Geoffrey L; McGarr, Gregory W; Zaharieva, Dessi; Basset, Fabien A; Hynes, Zach; Haman, Francois; Pinet, Bernard M; DuCharme, Michel B; Cheung, Stephen S

    2016-01-01

    Survivor of a ship ground in polar regions may have to wait more than five days before being rescued. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore cognitive performance during prolonged cold exposure. Core temperature (T c) and cognitive test battery (CTB) performance data were collected from eight participants during 24 hours of cold exposure (7.5°C ambient air temperature). Participants (recruited from those who have regular occupational exposure to cold) were instructed that they could freely engage in minimal exercise that was perceived to maintaining a tolerable level of thermal comfort. Despite the active engagement, test conditions were sufficient to significantly decrease T c after exposure and to eliminate the typical 0.5-1.0°C circadian rise and drop in core temperature throughout a 24 h cycle. Results showed minimal changes in CTB performance regardless of exposure time. Based on the results, it is recommended that survivors who are waiting for rescue should be encouraged to engage in mild physical activity, which could have the benefit of maintaining metabolic heat production, improve motivation, and act as a distractor from cold discomfort. This recommendation should be taken into consideration during future research and when considering guidelines for mandatory survival equipment regarding cognitive performance. PMID:27478839

  15. Effect of Vinpocetine (Cognitol™) on Cognitive Performances of a Nigerian Population

    PubMed Central

    Ogunrin, AO

    2014-01-01

    Background: Chronic medical disorders are often complicated by cognitive impairments, making medical intervention that can alleviate cognitive disturbances desirable. Vinpocetine enhances cerebral utilization of oxygen and glucose and consequently improves cerebral functions including memory. Aim: This study assessed the efficacy of vinpocetine (Cognitol™) in improving memory and concentration in cognitively impaired patients. Subjects and Methods: A prospective analytical study of 56 cognitively impaired patients compared with age, sex and level of education matched 56 controls. Cognitive performance was assessed with the Short Blessed Test, which was pilot-tested. Baseline cognitive performances of the patients and controls were obtained and thereafter cognitive performances of the patients were assessed at 6 and 12 weeks after administration of vinpocetine at a dose of 5 mg twice-a-day. Comparative analysis of their performances at baseline was done using the Student t-test, while the improvement in patients’ performances and effect of disease variables on cognitive performances were analyzed with one-way analysis of variance and likelihood ratio analysis respectively. Results: The mean (standard deviation) [SD] ages of the cognitively impaired patients (56/112) and controls (56/112) were 49.5 (18.9) and 53.8 (15.8) years respectively (P = 0.19; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.2-10.8). The pilot study yielded an optimal cut-off error score of 6 with a sensitivity of 71.4%, specificity of 96.4% and accuracy of 83.9%. Patients performed significantly worse than the controls (P < 0.001; 95% CI 6.7-11.4). There were significant improvements in memory and concentration with vinpocetine therapy (P < 0.05). The clinical variables of the patients had no effect on the trend of cognitive performances. Conclusions: Vinpocetine was effective in improving memory and concentration of patients with epilepsy and dementia although the efficacy was minimal in demented

  16. Helping Others Improve Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durfee, Arthur E.

    1970-01-01

    Because individuals are motivated by work which they regard as challenging and worthwhile, their motivation is increased as they are given clear-cut responsibility. A performance appraisal system based on these new insights is available and may be used by supervisors. (NL)

  17. Performance improvement on the battlefield.

    PubMed

    De Jong, Marla J; Martin, Kathleen D; Huddleston, Michele; Spott, Mary Ann; McCoy, Jennifer; Black, Julie A; Bolenbaucher, Rose

    2008-01-01

    The Joint Theater Trauma System (JTTS) is a formal system of trauma care designed to improve the medical care and outcomes for combat casualties of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. This article describes the JTTS Trauma Performance Improvement Plan and how JTTS personnel use it to facilitate performance improvement across the entire continuum of combat casualty care. PMID:19092506

  18. Interactions between Sex, Socioeconomic Level, and Children's Cognitive Performance.

    PubMed

    Alves, Ana-Filipa; Martins, Ana; Almeida, Leandro S

    2016-04-01

    This study assesses the interactions between sex, socioeconomic level, and children's cognitive performance. Cognitive performance was measured for a sample of 453 Portuguese children, aged between 4 and 10 years, with 218 boys and 235 girls; verbal and nonverbal cognitive ability and intelligence quotient were measured by the Cognitive Skills Scale for Children. Multivariate analysis of variance assessed the effects of sex and family's socioeconomic level on intelligence quotient. A statistically significant interaction between sex and socioeconomic level was observed for nonverbal intelligence quotient, total intelligence quotient, and two subtests. Socioeconomic level had more influence than sex on most of the cognitive tests. PMID:27154374

  19. Using Simulations To Improve Cognitive Reasoning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGee, Steven; Corriss, Darlene; Shia, Regina

    This study investigated changes in students' cognitive reasoning as they analyzed the dynamics of a rainforest ecosystem (El Yunque) in the aftermath of a hurricane in Puerto Rico. Students explore the virtual rainforest to study what happened to a type of frog after the hurricane. The culminating event is a simulation in which students manipulate…

  20. Social Priming Improves Cognitive Control in Elderly Adults—Evidence from the Simon Task

    PubMed Central

    Aisenberg, Daniela; Cohen, Noga; Pick, Hadas; Tressman, Iris; Rappaport, Michal; Shenberg, Tal; Henik, Avishai

    2015-01-01

    We examined whether social priming of cognitive states affects the inhibitory process in elderly adults, as aging is related to deficits in inhibitory control. Forty-eight elderly adults and 45 young adults were assigned to three groups and performed a cognitive control task (Simon task), which was followed by 3 different manipulations of social priming (i.e., thinking about an 82 year-old person): 1) negative—characterized by poor cognitive abilities, 2) neutral—characterized by acts irrelevant to cognitive abilities, and 3) positive—excellent cognitive abilities. After the manipulation, the Simon task was performed again. Results showed improvement in cognitive control effects in seniors after the positive manipulation, indicated by a significant decrease in the magnitude of the Simon and interference effects, but not after the neutral and negative manipulations. Furthermore, a healthy pattern of sequential effect (Gratton) that was absent before the manipulation in all 3 groups appeared after the positive manipulation. Namely, the Simon effect was only present after congruent but not after incongruent trials for the positive manipulation group. No influence of manipulations was found in young adults. These meaningful results were replicated in a second experiment and suggest a decrease in conflict interference resulting from positive cognitive state priming. Our study provides evidence that an implicit social concept of a positive cognitive condition in old age can affect the control process of the elderly and improve cognitive abilities. PMID:25635946

  1. How Does Exercise Benefit Performance on Cognitive Tests in Primary-School Pupils?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Liam J. B.; Williams, Justin H. G.; Aucott, Lorna; Thomson, Jenny; Mon-Williams, Mark

    2011-01-01

    Aim: We have previously demonstrated improved cognitive performance after a classroom-based exercise regime. In this study, we examined the reproducibility of this effect in a more socio-economically diverse sample and also investigated whether cognitive benefits of exercise were moderated by body mass index (BMI) or symptoms of…

  2. Testosterone and Dihydrotestosterone Differentially Improve Cognition in Aged Female Mice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benice, Ted S.; Raber, Jacob

    2009-01-01

    Compared with age-matched male mice, female mice experience a more severe age-related cognitive decline (ACD). Since androgens are less abundant in aged female mice compared with aged male mice, androgen supplementation may enhance cognition in aged female mice. To test this, we assessed behavioral performance on a variety of tasks in 22- to…

  3. Electroencephalogram associations to cognitive performance in clinically active nurses.

    PubMed

    Lees, Ty; Khushaba, Rami; Lal, Sara

    2016-07-01

    Cognitive impairment is traditionally identified via cognitive screening tools that have limited ability in detecting early or transitional stages of impairment. The dynamic nature of physiological variables such as the electroencephalogram (EEG) may provide alternate means for detecting these transitions. However, previous research examining EEG and cognitive performance is largely confined to samples with diagnosed cognitive impairments, and research examining non-impaired, and occupation specific samples, is limited. The present study aimed to investigate the associations between frontal pole and central EEG and cognitive performance in a sample of male and female nurses, and to determine the significance of these associations. Fifty seven nurses participated in the study, in which two lead bipolar EEG was recorded at positions Fp1 (frontal polar), Fp2, C3 (central) and C4 during a baseline and an active phase involving the common neuropsychological Stroop test. Participants' cognitive performance was assessed using the mini-mental state exam (MMSE) and Cognistat screening tools. Significant correlations between EEG beta activity and the outcome of MMSE and Cognistat were revealed, where an increased beta activity was associated to an increased global cognitive performance. Additionally, domain specific cognitive performance was also significantly associated to various EEG variables. The study identified potential EEG biomarkers for global and domain specific cognitive performance, and provides initial groundwork for the development of future EEG based biomarkers for detection of cognitive pathologies. PMID:27244262

  4. Donepezil Improved Cognitive Deficits in a Patient With Neurosyphilis.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yi-Shan; Lane, Hsien-Yuan; Lin, Chieh-Hsin

    2015-01-01

    A large number of patients with neurosyphilis present dementia with a progressive course and psychiatric symptoms such as depression, mania, and psychosis. Despite prompt and proper antibiotic treatment, the recovery is often incomplete, especially when tissue damage has occurred. We reported a patient with persisted cognitive decline associated with neurosyphilis that improved substantially after donepezil therapy. A 43-year-old man manifested significant psychiatric symptoms such as mania, psychosis, and cognitive impairment due to neurosyphilis. Subsequently, the patient was treated with antipsychotics and donepezil concurrent with an adequate antibiotic treatment for neurosyphilis. During the 1-year follow-up, his rapid plasma reagin titer approached from 1:256 to 1:64. His Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale scores improved from 12 to 25 and 42.3 to 6.3, respectively, after a 6-month donepezil treatment. Donepezil was discontinued. Three months later, worsening of cognitive impairment (MMSE score, 23) was noted. After donepezil was started again for 3 months, his MMSE score improved to 26. Persistent cognitive impairment is commonly associated with neurosyphilis despite adequate penicillin treatment. Treatment of the cognitive impairment is important but difficult. Cholinergic pathways are considered as involving in the cognitive deficit induced by neurosyphilis and donepezil, a cholinesterase inhibitor, which may be useful for the improvement of cognition. In this case report, we described for the first time the successful use of donepezil in treating cognitive impairment associated with neurosyphilis. The role of cholinesterase inhibitors in the treatment of cognitive impairments caused by neurosyphilis needs further studies. PMID:26166240

  5. RC2S: A Cognitive Remediation Program to Improve Social Cognition in Schizophrenia and Related Disorders.

    PubMed

    Peyroux, Elodie; Franck, Nicolas

    2014-01-01

    In people with psychiatric disorders, particularly those suffering from schizophrenia and related illnesses, pronounced difficulties in social interactions are a key manifestation. These difficulties can be partly explained by impairments in social cognition, defined as the ability to understand oneself and others in the social world, which includes abilities such as emotion recognition, theory of mind (ToM), attributional style, and social perception and knowledge. The impact of several kinds of interventions on social cognition has been studied recently. The best outcomes in the area of social cognition in schizophrenia are those obtained by way of cognitive remediation programs. New strategies and programs in this line are currently being developed, such as RC2S (cognitive remediation of social cognition) in Lyon, France. Considering that the social cognitive deficits experienced by patients with schizophrenia are very diverse, and that the main objective of social cognitive remediation programs is to improve patients' functioning in their daily social life, RC2S was developed as an individualized and flexible program that allows patients to practice social interaction in a realistic environment through the use of virtual reality techniques. In the RC2S program, the patient's goal is to assist a character named Tom in various social situations. The underlying idea for the patient is to acquire cognitive strategies for analyzing social context and emotional information in order to understand other characters' mental states and to help Tom manage his social interactions. In this paper, we begin by presenting some data regarding the social cognitive impairments found in schizophrenia and related disorders, and we describe how these deficits are targeted by social cognitive remediation. Then we present the RC2S program and discuss the advantages of computer-based simulation to improve social cognition and social functioning in people with psychiatric disorders. PMID

  6. RC2S: A Cognitive Remediation Program to Improve Social Cognition in Schizophrenia and Related Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Peyroux, Elodie; Franck, Nicolas

    2014-01-01

    In people with psychiatric disorders, particularly those suffering from schizophrenia and related illnesses, pronounced difficulties in social interactions are a key manifestation. These difficulties can be partly explained by impairments in social cognition, defined as the ability to understand oneself and others in the social world, which includes abilities such as emotion recognition, theory of mind (ToM), attributional style, and social perception and knowledge. The impact of several kinds of interventions on social cognition has been studied recently. The best outcomes in the area of social cognition in schizophrenia are those obtained by way of cognitive remediation programs. New strategies and programs in this line are currently being developed, such as RC2S (cognitive remediation of social cognition) in Lyon, France. Considering that the social cognitive deficits experienced by patients with schizophrenia are very diverse, and that the main objective of social cognitive remediation programs is to improve patients’ functioning in their daily social life, RC2S was developed as an individualized and flexible program that allows patients to practice social interaction in a realistic environment through the use of virtual reality techniques. In the RC2S program, the patient’s goal is to assist a character named Tom in various social situations. The underlying idea for the patient is to acquire cognitive strategies for analyzing social context and emotional information in order to understand other characters’ mental states and to help Tom manage his social interactions. In this paper, we begin by presenting some data regarding the social cognitive impairments found in schizophrenia and related disorders, and we describe how these deficits are targeted by social cognitive remediation. Then we present the RC2S program and discuss the advantages of computer-based simulation to improve social cognition and social functioning in people with psychiatric disorders

  7. Age dependent levels of plasma homocysteine and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Aruna; Ilango, K; Singh, Praveen K; Karmakar, Dipankar; Singh, G P I; Kumari, Rinki; Dubey, G P

    2015-04-15

    Elevated plasma homocysteine (hcy) levels, also known as hyperhomocysteinemia (hhcy), have been associated with cognitive impairment and neurodegenerative disorders. Hhcy has been attributed to deficiency of B vitamins which can adversely affect the brain and result in memory loss and poor attention power. Monitoring hcy levels and the use of vitamin supplementation to treat hhcy may therefore prove advantageous for the prevention and management of cognitive impairment. With this in consideration, we measured plasma hcy, folate and vitamin B12 levels in 639 subjects from different age groups in two sub-regions of India. Cognitive function was also measured using attention span and immediate and delayed memory recall tests. Depression scores were obtained using the Beck Depression Inventory-II and functional impairment was assessed using the functional activities questionnaire (FAQ) score. As hhcy has also been linked to inflammation, plasma levels of high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were also measured. The results demonstrated significant negative correlations between hcy levels and folic acid levels, vitamin B12 levels and cognitive performance (attention span and delayed but not immediate memory recall) along with significant positive correlations between hcy levels and depression scores and hsCRP (but not IL-6) levels. A positive correlation was also observed between hcy levels and FAQ scores, however this was not found to be significant. Based on these results, folic acid and vitamin B12 intervention in people with elevated hcy levels in India could prove to be effective in lowering hcy levels and help maintain or improve cognitive function. PMID:25601573

  8. QUASAR's QStates cognitive gauge performance in the cognitive state assessment competition 2011.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Neil J; Soussou, Walid

    2011-01-01

    The Cognitive State Assessment Competition 2011 was organized by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to compare the performance of real-time cognitive state classification software. This paper presents results for QUASAR's data classification module, QStates, which is a software package for real-time (and off-line) analysis of physiologic data collected during cognitive-specific tasks. The classifier's methodology can be generalized to any particular cognitive state; QStates identifies the most salient features extracted from EEG signals recorded during different cognitive states or loads. PMID:22255838

  9. Martial Art Training and Cognitive Performance in Middle-Aged Adults.

    PubMed

    Douris, Peter; Douris, Christopher; Balder, Nicole; LaCasse, Michael; Rand, Amir; Tarapore, Freya; Zhuchkan, Aleskey; Handrakis, John

    2015-09-29

    Cognitive performance includes the processes of attention, memory, processing speed, and executive functioning, which typically declines with aging. Previous research has demonstrated that aerobic and resistance exercise improves cognitive performance immediately following exercise. However, there is limited research examining the effect that a cognitively complex exercise such as martial art training has on these cognitive processes. Our study compared the acute effects of 2 types of martial art training to aerobic exercise on cognitive performance in middle-aged adults. We utilized a repeated measures design with the order of the 3 exercise conditions randomly assigned and counterbalanced. Ten recreational middle-aged martial artists (mean age = 53.5 ± 8.6 years) participated in 3 treatment conditions: a typical martial art class, an atypical martial art class, and a one-hour walk at a self-selected speed. Cognitive performance was assessed by the Stroop Color and Word test. While all 3 exercise conditions improved attention and processing speed, only the 2 martial art conditions improved the highest order of cognitive performance, executive function. The effect of the 2 martial art conditions on executive function was not different. The improvement in executive function may be due to the increased cortical demand required by the more complex, coordinated motor tasks of martial art exercise compared to the more repetitive actions of walking. PMID:26672872

  10. The effects of cognitive rehabilitation on Alzheimer’s dementia patients’ cognitive assessment reference diagnosis system performance based on level of cognitive functioning

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Jung-Ha; Cha, Hyun-Gyu; Cho, Hyuk-Shin

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] The purpose of this study is to apply cognitive rehabilitation according to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) patients’ level of cognitive functioning to compare changes in Cognitive Assessment Reference Diagnosis System performance and present standards for effective intervention. [Subjects] Subjects were 30 inpatients diagnosed with AD. Subjects were grouped by Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) class (CDR-0.5, CDR-1, or CDR-2, n = 10 per group), which is based on level of cognitive functioning, and cognitive rehabilitation was applied for 50 minutes per day, five days per week, for four weeks. [Methods] After cognitive rehabilitation intervention, CARDS tests were conducted to evaluate memory. [Results] Bonferroni tests comparing the three groups revealed that the CDR-0.5 and CDR-1 groups showed significant increases in Delayed 10 word-list, Delayed 10 object-list, Recognition 10 object, and Recent memory performance compared to the CDR-2 group. In addition, the CDR-0.5 group showed significant decreases in Recognition 10 word performance compared to the CDR-1 group. [Conclusion] Cognitive rehabilitation, CDR-0.5 or CDR-1 subjects showed significantly greater memory improvements than CDR-2 subjects. Moreover, was not effective for CDR-2 subjects. PMID:26504315

  11. The NASA performance assessment workstation: Cognitive performance during head-down bed rest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shehab, Randa L.; Schlegel, Robert E.; Schiflett, Samuel G.; Eddy, Douglas R.

    The NASA Performance Assessment Workstation was used to assess cognitive performance changes in eight males subjected to seventeen days of 6 ° head-down bed rest. PAWS uses six performance tasks to assess directed and divided attention, spatial, mathematical, and memory skills, and tracking ability. Subjective scales assess overall fatigue and mood state. Subjects completed training trials, practice trials, bed rest trials, and recovery trials. The last eight practice trials and all bed rest trials were performed with subjects lying face-down on a gurney. In general, there was no apparent cumulative effect of bed rest. Following a short period of performance stabilization, a slight but steady trend of performance improvement was observed across all trials. For most tasks, this trend of performance improvement was enhanced during recovery. No statistically significant differences in performance were observed when comparing bed rest with the control period. Additionally, fatigue scores showed little change across all periods.

  12. Fluid Intake and Cognitive Performance: Should Schoolchildren Drink during Lessons?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fuchs, Tanja; Lührmann, Petra; Simpson, Faith; Dohnke, Birte

    2016-01-01

    Background: Evidence suggests that an insufficient fluid intake impairs cognitive performance. Drinking policies at schools--especially drinking during lessons--is a point of controversy. To provide a scientific base for this debate, more empirical evidence is needed on which aspects of fluid intake are crucial for cognitive performance. This…

  13. The Effect of Colour on Children's Cognitive Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brooker, Alice; Franklin, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Background: The presence of red appears to hamper adults' cognitive performance relative to other colours (see Elliot & Maier, 2014, "Ann. Rev. Psychol." 65, 95). Aims and sample: Here, we investigate whether colour affects cognitive performance in 8- and 9-year-olds. Method: Children completed a battery of tasks once in the presence…

  14. Musical Distracters, Personality Type and Cognitive Performance in School Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Furnham, Adrian; Stephenson, Rebecca

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study was to ascertain the nature of the interaction between the affective value of musical distraction, personality type and performance on the cognitive tasks of reading comprehension, free recall, mental arithmetic and verbal reasoning in children aged 11-12 years. It was hypothesized that the cognitive performance of extraverts…

  15. The Hydration Equation: Update on Water Balance and Cognitive Performance

    PubMed Central

    Riebl, Shaun K; Davy, Brenda M.

    2013-01-01

    LEARNING OBJECTIVES To become aware of the most practical measures of hydration status.To describe sources of water input and output and the basics of water balance.To understand how hydration status may impact daily cognitive performance. CONDENSED VERSION AND BOTTOM LINE Water is a crucial nutrient and euhydration is necessary for optimal daily functioning. Water balance is precisely regulated within the body and many methods exist for assessing hydration status. Cognitive performance measures an individual’s attentiveness, critical thinking skills, and memory. Traditionally a 2% or more body water deficit was thought to produce cognitive performance decrements; however, recent literature suggests that even mild dehydration – a body water loss of 1–2% – can impair cognitive performance. Counseling clients about their health and wellbeing should include conveying the importance of water for normal body functioning, as well as its effects on physical and cognitive performance. PMID:25346594

  16. Effects of Gestational Age at Birth on Cognitive Performance: A Function of Cognitive Workload Demands

    PubMed Central

    Jaekel, Julia; Baumann, Nicole; Wolke, Dieter

    2013-01-01

    Objective Cognitive deficits have been inconsistently described for late or moderately preterm children but are consistently found in very preterm children. This study investigates the association between cognitive workload demands of tasks and cognitive performance in relation to gestational age at birth. Methods Data were collected as part of a prospective geographically defined whole-population study of neonatal at-risk children in Southern Bavaria. At 8;5 years, n = 1326 children (gestation range: 23–41 weeks) were assessed with the K-ABC and a Mathematics Test. Results Cognitive scores of preterm children decreased as cognitive workload demands of tasks increased. The relationship between gestation and task workload was curvilinear and more pronounced the higher the cognitive workload: GA2 (quadratic term) on low cognitive workload: R2 = .02, p<0.001; moderate cognitive workload: R2 = .09, p<0.001; and high cognitive workload tasks: R2 = .14, p<0.001. Specifically, disproportionally lower scores were found for very (<32 weeks gestation) and moderately (32–33 weeks gestation) preterm children the higher the cognitive workload of the tasks. Early biological factors such as gestation and neonatal complications explained more of the variance in high (12.5%) compared with moderate (8.1%) and low cognitive workload tasks (1.7%). Conclusions The cognitive workload model may help to explain variations of findings on the relationship of gestational age with cognitive performance in the literature. The findings have implications for routine cognitive follow-up, educational intervention, and basic research into neuro-plasticity and brain reorganization after preterm birth. PMID:23717694

  17. Immediate effect of yogic visual concentration on cognitive performance

    PubMed Central

    Raghavendra, B.R.; Singh, Prashanth

    2015-01-01

    The ancient Indian yoga text, Hatha Yoga Pradipika, describes six cleansing techniques. The objective of cleansing techniques is to purify and prepare the body for the practice of yoga postures, breath regulation, and meditation. Yogic visual concentration technique (trataka) is one of these techniques. A previous study showed an increase in critical flicker fusion (CFF) following yogic visual concentration (trataka). The present study planned to assess the immediate effect of trataka on cognitive performance using the Stroop color–word test. Performance on the Stroop color–word test was assessed in 30 healthy male volunteers with ages ranging from 18 years to 31 years old (22.57 ± 3.65 years). The participants were tested before and after yogic visual concentration (trataka) and during a control session on two separate days. There was a significant improvement in performance on the Stroop color–word test after trataka compared to the control session [repeated measures analysis of variance (RM ANOVA) with Bonferroni adjustment; p < 0.001]. Performance on the Stroop color–word test was better after trataka compared to the control session suggesting that the trataka technique increased the selective attention, cognitive flexibility, and response inhibition. PMID:26870677

  18. Immediate effect of yogic visual concentration on cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Raghavendra, B R; Singh, Prashanth

    2016-01-01

    The ancient Indian yoga text, Hatha Yoga Pradipika, describes six cleansing techniques. The objective of cleansing techniques is to purify and prepare the body for the practice of yoga postures, breath regulation, and meditation. Yogic visual concentration technique (trataka) is one of these techniques. A previous study showed an increase in critical flicker fusion (CFF) following yogic visual concentration (trataka). The present study planned to assess the immediate effect of trataka on cognitive performance using the Stroop color-word test. Performance on the Stroop color-word test was assessed in 30 healthy male volunteers with ages ranging from 18 years to 31 years old (22.57 ± 3.65 years). The participants were tested before and after yogic visual concentration (trataka) and during a control session on two separate days. There was a significant improvement in performance on the Stroop color-word test after trataka compared to the control session [repeated measures analysis of variance (RM ANOVA) with Bonferroni adjustment; p < 0.001]. Performance on the Stroop color-word test was better after trataka compared to the control session suggesting that the trataka technique increased the selective attention, cognitive flexibility, and response inhibition. PMID:26870677

  19. Cognitive fatigue influences students' performance on standardized tests.

    PubMed

    Sievertsen, Hans Henrik; Gino, Francesca; Piovesan, Marco

    2016-03-01

    Using test data for all children attending Danish public schools between school years 2009/10 and 2012/13, we examine how the time of the test affects performance. Test time is determined by the weekly class schedule and computer availability at the school. We find that, for every hour later in the day, test performance decreases by 0.9% of an SD (95% CI, 0.7-1.0%). However, a 20- to 30-minute break improves average test performance by 1.7% of an SD (95% CI, 1.2-2.2%). These findings have two important policy implications: First, cognitive fatigue should be taken into consideration when deciding on the length of the school day and the frequency and duration of breaks throughout the day. Second, school accountability systems should control for the influence of external factors on test scores. PMID:26884183

  20. Cognitive fatigue influences students’ performance on standardized tests

    PubMed Central

    Sievertsen, Hans Henrik; Gino, Francesca; Piovesan, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Using test data for all children attending Danish public schools between school years 2009/10 and 2012/13, we examine how the time of the test affects performance. Test time is determined by the weekly class schedule and computer availability at the school. We find that, for every hour later in the day, test performance decreases by 0.9% of an SD (95% CI, 0.7–1.0%). However, a 20- to 30-minute break improves average test performance by 1.7% of an SD (95% CI, 1.2–2.2%). These findings have two important policy implications: First, cognitive fatigue should be taken into consideration when deciding on the length of the school day and the frequency and duration of breaks throughout the day. Second, school accountability systems should control for the influence of external factors on test scores. PMID:26884183

  1. Improving Facial Emotion Recognition in Schizophrenia: a Controlled Study Comparing Specific and Attentional Focused Cognitive Remediation.

    PubMed

    Gaudelus, Baptiste; Virgile, Jefferson; Geliot, Sabrina; Franck, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive impairments associated with schizophrenia are very frequent. They concern both neurocognition and social cognition, including facial emotion recognition. These impairments have a negative impact on the daily functioning, in particular the social and vocational rehabilitation of people with schizophrenia. Previous studies in this area clearly demonstrated the interest of cognitive remediation to improve neurocognitive and social cognitive functioning in schizophrenia. They also established clear links between facial emotion recognition skills and attentional processes. The present study compares the GAÏA s-face program (GAÏA arm), which focuses on facial emotion recognition processes, with the RECOS program (RECOS arm), a neurocognitive remediation therapy focusing on selective attention. Forty people with schizophrenia were randomly distributed between each study arm and assessed pre- (T1) and post- (T2) therapy. The single-blind assessment focused on facial emotion recognition (the main criteria), symptoms, social and subjective functioning, and neurocognitive and social cognitive performance. Both programs were conducted by nurses after a 3-day training session. The study showed a significant improvement in facial emotion recognition performance in both groups, with a significantly larger effect in the GAÏA arm. Symptoms and social functioning also improved in the GAÏA arm, and certain neurocognitive and social cognitive processes improved in both study arms. Further studies are recommended, with larger population samples and a follow-up assessing the long-term preservation of these improvements. PMID:27445866

  2. Improving Facial Emotion Recognition in Schizophrenia: a Controlled Study Comparing Specific and Attentional Focused Cognitive Remediation

    PubMed Central

    Gaudelus, Baptiste; Virgile, Jefferson; Geliot, Sabrina; Dupuis, M.; Franck, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive impairments associated with schizophrenia are very frequent. They concern both neurocognition and social cognition, including facial emotion recognition. These impairments have a negative impact on the daily functioning, in particular the social and vocational rehabilitation of people with schizophrenia. Previous studies in this area clearly demonstrated the interest of cognitive remediation to improve neurocognitive and social cognitive functioning in schizophrenia. They also established clear links between facial emotion recognition skills and attentional processes. The present study compares the GAÏA s-face program (GAÏA arm), which focuses on facial emotion recognition processes, with the RECOS program (RECOS arm), a neurocognitive remediation therapy focusing on selective attention. Forty people with schizophrenia were randomly distributed between each study arm and assessed pre- (T1) and post- (T2) therapy. The single-blind assessment focused on facial emotion recognition (the main criteria), symptoms, social and subjective functioning, and neurocognitive and social cognitive performance. Both programs were conducted by nurses after a 3-day training session. The study showed a significant improvement in facial emotion recognition performance in both groups, with a significantly larger effect in the GAÏA arm. Symptoms and social functioning also improved in the GAÏA arm, and certain neurocognitive and social cognitive processes improved in both study arms. Further studies are recommended, with larger population samples and a follow-up assessing the long-term preservation of these improvements. PMID:27445866

  3. Improved cognition after control of risk factors for multi-infarct dementia

    SciTech Connect

    Meyer, J.S.; Judd, B.W.; Tawaklna, T.; Rogers, R.L.; Mortel, K.F.

    1986-10-24

    A cohort of 52 patients (30 men and 22 women) with multi-infarct dementia (MID) has been followed up prospectively for a mean interval of 22.2 months. Clinical course has been documented by serial history taking and interviews and neurological, medical, and psychological examinations, and correlated with measurements of cerebral blood flow. The clinical course and cognitive performance have been compared with those of age-matched normal volunteers and patients with Alzheimer's disease. Patients with MID were subdivided into hypertensive and normotensive groups, and also into those displaying stabilized or improved cognition and those whose condition deteriorated. Among hypertensive patients with MID, improved cognition and clinical course correlated with control of systolic blood pressure within upper limits of normalf (135 to 150 mm Hg), but if systolic blood pressure was reduced below this level, patients with MID deteriorated. Among normotensive patients with MID, improved cognition was associated with cessation of smoking cigarettes.

  4. A single dose of oxytocin nasal spray improves higher-order social cognition in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Guastella, Adam J; Ward, Philip B; Hickie, Ian B; Shahrestani, Sara; Hodge, Marie Antoinette Redoblado; Scott, Elizabeth M; Langdon, Robyn

    2015-11-01

    Schizophrenia is associated with significant impairments in both higher and lower order social cognitive performance and these impairments contribute to poor social functioning. People with schizophrenia report poor social functioning to be one of their greatest unmet treatment needs. Recent studies have suggested the potential of oxytocin as such a treatment, but mixed results render it uncertain what aspects of social cognition are improved by oxytocin and, subsequently, how oxytocin might best be applied as a therapeutic. The aim of this study was to determine whether a single dose of oxytocin improved higher-order and lower-order social cognition performance for patients with schizophrenia across a well-established battery of social cognition tests. Twenty-one male patients received both a single dose of oxytocin nasal spray (24IU) and a placebo, two weeks apart in a randomized within-subjects placebo controlled design. Following each administration, participants completed the social cognition tasks, as well as a test of general neurocognition. Results revealed that oxytocin particularly enhanced performance on higher order social cognition tasks, with no effects on general neurocognition. Results for individual tasks showed most improvement on tests measuring appreciation of indirect hints and recognition of social faux pas. These results suggest that oxytocin, if combined to enhance social cognition learning, may be beneficial when targeted at higher order social cognition domains. This study also suggests that these higher order tasks, which assess social cognitive processing in a social communication context, may provide useful markers of response to oxytocin in schizophrenia. PMID:26150070

  5. Do cognitive interventions improve general cognition in dementia? A meta-analysis and meta-regression

    PubMed Central

    Huntley, J D; Gould, R L; Liu, K; Smith, M; Howard, R J

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To review the efficacy of cognitive interventions on improving general cognition in dementia. Method Online literature databases and trial registers, previous systematic reviews and leading journals were searched for relevant randomised controlled trials. A systematic review, random-effects meta-analyses and meta-regression were conducted. Cognitive interventions were categorised as: cognitive stimulation (CS), involving a range of social and cognitive activities to stimulate multiple cognitive domains; cognitive training (CT), involving repeated practice of standardised tasks targeting a specific cognitive function; cognitive rehabilitation (CR), which takes a person-centred approach to target impaired function; or mixed  CT and stimulation (MCTS). Separate analyses were conducted for general cognitive outcome measures and for studies using ‘active’ (designed to control for non-specific therapeutic effects) and non-active (minimal or no intervention) control groups. Results 33 studies were included. Significant positive effect sizes (Hedges’ g) were found for CS with the mini-mental state examination (MMSE) (g=0.51, 95% CI 0.29 to 0.69; p<0.001) compared to non-active controls and (g=0.35, 95% CI 0.06 to 0.65; p=0.019) compared to active controls. Significant benefit was also seen with the Alzheimer's disease Assessment Scale-Cognition (ADAS-Cog) (g=−0.26, 95% CI −0.445 to −0.08; p=0.005). There was no evidence that CT or MCTS produced significant improvements on general cognition outcomes and not enough CR studies for meta-analysis. The lowest accepted minimum clinically important difference was reached in 11/17 CS studies for the MMSE, but only 2/9 studies for the ADAS-Cog. Additionally, 95% prediction intervals suggested that although statistically significant, CS may not lead to benefits on the ADAS-Cog in all clinical settings. Conclusions CS improves scores on MMSE and ADAS-Cog in dementia, but benefits on the ADAS-Cog are generally

  6. Improving Performance Appraisal in Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vincelette, Joyce P.; Pfister, Fred C.

    1984-01-01

    This article identifies problems with current practice in evaluating employee performance and presents currently accepted performance appraisal methods (behaviorally anchored rating scales, management by objectives). A research project designed to improve appraisals for school media specialists which was field-tested in four Florida school…

  7. Evaluating and Improving Teacher Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Manatt, Richard P.

    This workbook, coordinated with Manatt Teacher Performance Evaluation (TPE) workshops, summarizes large group presentation in sequence with the transparancies used. The first four modules of the workbook deal with the state of the art of evaluating and improving teacher performance; the development of the TPE system, including selection of…

  8. Improving Reading Performance through Hypnosis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fillmer, H. Thompson; And Others

    1981-01-01

    Describes a study investigating the effects of group hypnosis on the reading performance of university students in a reading and writing center. Discusses study procedures and presents data on pretest scores and gains in vocabulary and comprehension scores. Concludes that regular use of self-hypnosis significantly improved performance. (DMM)

  9. Improving Cognition: A Multi-Cultural Approach. Final Report, MICA Project: Multi-Cultural Improvement of Cognitive Abilities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    De Avila, Edward; And Others

    Described and summarized are the results of a program designed to improve the intellectual, academic, and linguistic functioning of children in a linguistically and culturally mixed setting. The program, Multicultural Improvement of Cognitive Abilities (MICA), was installed and supported by project staff in nine participating classrooms under two…

  10. Exergames: neuroplastic hypothesis about cognitive improvement and biological effects on physical function of institutionalized older persons.

    PubMed

    Monteiro-Junior, Renato Sobral; Vaghetti, César Augusto Otero; Nascimento, Osvaldo José M; Laks, Jerson; Deslandes, Andrea Camaz

    2016-02-01

    Exergames can be considered a dual task because the games are performed by a man-videogame interface, requiring cognitive and motor functions simultaneously. Although the literature has shown improvements of cognitive and physical functions due to exergames, the intrinsic mechanisms involved in these functional changes have still not been elucidated. The aims of the present study were (1) to demonstrate the known biological mechanisms of physical exercise regarding muscle adaptation and establish a relationship with exergames; and (2) to present a neurobiological hypothesis about the neuroplastic effects of exergames on the cognitive function of institutionalized older persons. These hypotheses are discussed. PMID:27073355

  11. Exergames: neuroplastic hypothesis about cognitive improvement and biological effects on physical function of institutionalized older persons

    PubMed Central

    Monteiro-Junior, Renato Sobral; Vaghetti, César Augusto Otero; Nascimento, Osvaldo José M.; Laks, Jerson; Deslandes, Andrea Camaz

    2016-01-01

    Exergames can be considered a dual task because the games are performed by a man-videogame interface, requiring cognitive and motor functions simultaneously. Although the literature has shown improvements of cognitive and physical functions due to exergames, the intrinsic mechanisms involved in these functional changes have still not been elucidated. The aims of the present study were (1) to demonstrate the known biological mechanisms of physical exercise regarding muscle adaptation and establish a relationship with exergames; and (2) to present a neurobiological hypothesis about the neuroplastic effects of exergames on the cognitive function of institutionalized older persons. These hypotheses are discussed. PMID:27073355

  12. The Effect of Anxiety and Boredom on Cognitive Test Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, George H.; Carroll, C. Dennis

    Two factors which act to depress cognitive test performance are referred to as anxiety and boredom. The responses to a 20-item adjectival checklist administered to high school seniors after completing a cognitive test battery were subjected to iterative principal axes factor analysis. The relationships between anxiety or boredom and test…

  13. Cardiac Rehabilitation is Associated with Lasting Improvements in Cognitive Function in Older Adults with Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Alosco, Michael L.; Spitznagel, Mary Beth; Cohen, Ronald; Sweet, Lawrence H.; Josephson, Richard; Hughes, Joel; Rosneck, Jim; Gunstad, John

    2016-01-01

    Objective Heart failure (HF) is a known risk factor for cognitive impairment. Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) may attenuate poor neurocognitive outcomes in HF via improved physical fitness—a significant promoter of cognitive function. However, no study has examined the possible acute and lasting benefits of CR on cognitive function in persons with HF. Methods and Results 52 patients with HF completed a 12-week Phase II CR program. All participants were administered neuropsychological testing and completed a brief physical fitness assessment at baseline, completion of CR (i.e. 12-weeks), and 12-month follow-up. Repeated measures analyses showed a significant time effect for both attention/executive function and memory (p < 0.05). Attention/executive function performance increased from baseline to 12-weeks and these gains remained up to 12-months; memory was unchanged from baseline to 12-weeks, but then improved between the 12-week and 12-month time points. Physical fitness improved from baseline to 12-weeks and these benefits were maintained 12-months later. Changes in physical fitness and cognitive function over time did not reach a statistically significant association, though poorer physical fitness was associated with decreased cognitive performance at the baseline and 12-month time points. Conclusions CR is associated with both acute and lasting cognitive benefits in patients with HF. Prospective studies with extended follow-ups are needed to clarify the mechanisms that underpin cognitive improvements following CR (e.g., improved cerebral perfusion) and whether CR can ultimately reduce risk for cognitive decline and conditions like Alzheimer’s disease in HF. PMID:25181916

  14. LEARNING AND COGNITIVE PERFORMANCE IN ADULTS. BIBLIOGRAPHY.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    KUHLEN, RAYMOND G.; AND OTHERS

    THIS RETROSPECTIVE BIBLIOGRAPHY OF OVER 1,500 ITEMS IS LARGELY DEVOTED TO VARIOUS TYPES OF ADULT LEARNING AND COGNITIVE BEHAVIOR (CONDITIONING, SKILL LEARNING, DISCRIMINATION, VERBAL LEARNING, PROBLEM SOLVING AND COMPLEX BEHAVIOR, MEMORY, VERBAL BEHAVIOR, AND SET), TO STUDIES ON INTELLIGENCE AND TEST BEHAVIOR (AGE CHANGES, CORRELATIONAL AND FACTOR…

  15. Interval Running Training Improves Cognitive Flexibility and Aerobic Power of Young Healthy Adults.

    PubMed

    Venckunas, Tomas; Snieckus, Audrius; Trinkunas, Eugenijus; Baranauskiene, Neringa; Solianik, Rima; Juodsnukis, Antanas; Streckis, Vytautas; Kamandulis, Sigitas

    2016-08-01

    Venckunas, T, Snieckus, A, Trinkunas, E, Baranauskiene, N, Solianik, R, Juodsnukis, A, Streckis, V, and Kamandulis, S. Interval running training improves cognitive flexibility and aerobic power of young healthy adults. J Strength Cond Res 30(8): 2114-2121, 2016-The benefits of regular physical exercise may well extend beyond the reduction of chronic diseases risk and augmentation of working capacity, to many other aspects of human well-being, including improved cognitive functioning. Although the effects of moderate intensity continuous training on cognitive performance are relatively well studied, the benefits of interval training have not been investigated in this respect so far. The aim of the current study was to assess whether 7 weeks of interval running training is effective at improving both aerobic fitness and cognitive performance. For this purpose, 8 young dinghy sailors (6 boys and 2 girls) completed the interval running program with 200 m and 2,000 m running performance, cycling maximal oxygen uptake, and cognitive function was measured before and after the intervention. The control group consisted of healthy age-matched subjects (8 boys and 2 girls) who continued their active lifestyle and were tested in the same way as the experimental group, but did not complete any regular training. In the experimental group, 200 m and 2,000 m running performance and cycling maximal oxygen uptake increased together with improved results on cognitive flexibility tasks. No changes in the results of short-term and working memory tasks were observed in the experimental group, and no changes in any of the measured indices were evident in the controls. In conclusion, 7 weeks of interval running training improved running performance and cycling aerobic power, and were sufficient to improve the ability to adjust behavior to changing demands in young active individuals. PMID:26808852

  16. Neighborhood Integration and Connectivity Predict Cognitive Performance and Decline

    PubMed Central

    Watts, Amber; Ferdous, Farhana; Moore, Keith Diaz; Burns, Jeffrey M.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Neighborhood characteristics may be important for promoting walking, but little research has focused on older adults, especially those with cognitive impairment. We evaluated the role of neighborhood characteristics on cognitive function and decline over a 2-year period adjusting for measures of walking. Method In a study of 64 older adults with and without mild Alzheimer's disease (AD), we evaluated neighborhood integration and connectivity using geographical information systems data and space syntax analysis. In multiple regression analyses, we used these characteristics to predict 2-year declines in factor analytically derived cognitive scores (attention, verbal memory, mental status) adjusting for age, sex, education, and self-reported walking. Results Neighborhood integration and connectivity predicted cognitive performance at baseline, and changes in cognitive performance over 2 years. The relationships between neighborhood characteristics and cognitive performance were not fully explained by self-reported walking. Discussion Clearer definitions of specific neighborhood characteristics associated with walkability are needed to better understand the mechanisms by which neighborhoods may impact cognitive outcomes. These results have implications for measuring neighborhood characteristics, design and maintenance of living spaces, and interventions to increase walking among older adults. We offer suggestions for future research measuring neighborhood characteristics and cognitive function. PMID:26504889

  17. Priming Ability-Relevant Social Categories Improves Intellectual Test Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lin, Phoebe S.; Kennette, Lynne N.; Van Havermaet, Lisa R.; Frank, Nichole M.; McIntyre, Rusty B.

    2012-01-01

    Research shows that priming affects behavioral tasks; fewer studies, however, have been conducted on how social category primes affect cognitive tasks. The present study aimed to examine the effects of social category primes on math performance and word recall. It was hypothesized that Asian prime words would improve math performance and word…

  18. Surviving Performance Improvement "Solutions": Aligning Performance Improvement Interventions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bernardez, Mariano L.

    2009-01-01

    How can organizations avoid the negative, sometimes chaotic, effects of multiple, poorly coordinated performance improvement interventions? How can we avoid punishing our external clients or staff with the side effects of solutions that might benefit our bottom line or internal efficiency at the expense of the value received or perceived by…

  19. Practice of Contemporary Dance Improves Cognitive Flexibility in Aging

    PubMed Central

    Coubard, Olivier A.; Duretz, Stéphanie; Lefebvre, Virginie; Lapalus, Pauline; Ferrufino, Lena

    2011-01-01

    As society ages and frequency of dementia increases exponentially, counteracting cognitive aging decline is a challenging issue for countries of the developed world. Previous studies have suggested that physical fitness based on cardiovascular and strength training helps to improve attentional control in normal aging. However, how motor activity based on motor-skill learning can also benefit attentional control with age has been hitherto a neglected issue. This study examined the impact of contemporary dance (CD) improvisation on attentional control of older adults, as compared to two other motor training programs, fall prevention and Tai Chi Chuan. Participants performed setting, suppressing, and switching attention tasks before and after 5.7-month training in either CD or fall prevention or Tai Chi Chuan. Results indicated that CD improved switching but not setting or suppressing attention. In contrast, neither fall prevention nor Tai Chi Chuan showed any effect. We suggest that CD improvisation works as a training for change, inducing plasticity in flexible attention. PMID:21960971

  20. Smartphone-based system to improve transportation access for the cognitively impaired.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Shane M; Riehle, Timothy H; Lichter, Patrick A; Brown, Allen W; Panescu, Dorin

    2015-08-01

    This project developed and evaluated a smartphone-based system to improve mobility and transportation access for the cognitively impaired. The proposed system is intended to allow the cognitively impaired to use public transportation systems, community transportation and dedicated transportation services for the disabled with greater ease and safety. Individuals with cognitive disabilities are often unable to operate an automobile, or may require a prolonged recovery period before resuming driving. Public transportation systems represent a significant means to allow these individuals to maintain independence. Yet public transportation systems can pose significant challenges to individuals with cognitive impairment. The goal of this project is to develop a system to reduce these barriers via a technological solution consisting of components developed both for the cognitively impaired user and their caregiver or family member. The first component consists of a cognitive prosthetic device featuring traditional memory cueing and reminders as well as custom location-based transportation specific functions. This cognitive mobility assistant will leverage the computing power and GPS location determination capabilities of inexpensive, powerful smart phones. The second component consists of a management application which offers caregivers the ability to configure and program the reminder and transit functions remotely via the Internet. Following completion of the prototype system a pilot human test was performed with cognitively disabled individuals and family members or caregivers to assess the usability and acceptability of both system components. PMID:26738091

  1. Effects of Motion in the Far Peripheral Visual Field on Cognitive Test Performance and Cognitive Load.

    PubMed

    Bevilacqua, Andy; Paas, Fred; Krigbaum, Genomary

    2016-04-01

    Cognitive load theory posits that limited attention is in actuality a limitation in working memory resources. The load theory of selective attention and cognitive control sees the interplay between attention and awareness as separate modifying functions that act on working memory. Reconciling the theoretical differences in these two theories has important implications for learning. Thirty-nine adult participants performed a cognitively demanding test, with and without movement in the far peripheral field. Although the results for movement effects on cognitive load in this experiment were not statistically significant, men spent less time on the cognitive test in the peripheral movement condition than in the conditions without peripheral movement. No such difference was found for women. The implications of these results and recommendations for future research that extends the present study are presented. PMID:27166327

  2. Arctic cognition: a study of cognitive performance in summer and winter at 69 degrees N

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brennen, T.; Martinussen, M.; Hansen, B. O.; Hjemdal, O.

    1999-01-01

    Evidence has accumulated over the past 15 years that affect in humans is cyclical. In winter there is a tendency to depression, with remission in summer, and this effect is stronger at higher latitudes. In order to determine whether human cognition is similarly rhythmical, this study investigated the cognitive processes of 100 participants living at 69 degrees N. Participants were tested in summer and winter on a range of cognitive tasks, including verbal memory, attention and simple reaction time tasks. The seasonally counterbalanced design and the very northerly latitude of this study provide optimal conditions for detecting impaired cognitive performance in winter, and the conclusion is negative: of five tasks with seasonal effects, four had disadvantages in summer. Like the menstrual cycle, the circannual cycle appears to influence mood but not cognition.

  3. The impact of motivation on cognitive performance in an animal model of the negative and cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Ward, Ryan D; Winiger, Vanessa; Higa, Kerin K; Kahn, Julia B; Kandel, Eric R; Balsam, Peter D; Simpson, Eleanor H

    2015-06-01

    Interactions between motivation and cognition are implicated in producing functional impairments and poor quality of life in psychiatric patients. This interaction, however, is not well understood at either the behavioral or neural level. We developed a procedure for mice in which a cognitive measure, sustained attention, is modulated by a motivationally relevant signal that predicts reward probability on a trial-by-trial basis. Using this paradigm, we tested the interaction between motivation and cognition in mice that model the increased striatal D2 receptor activity observed in schizophrenia patients (D2R-OE mice). In control mice, attention was modulated by signaled-reward probability. In D2R-OE mice, however, attention was not modulated by reward-related cues. This impairment was not due to any global deficits in attention or maintenance of the trial-specific information in working memory. Turning off the transgene in D2R-OE mice rescued the motivational modulation of attention. These results indicate that deficits in motivation impair the ability to use reward-related cues to recruit attention and that improving motivation improves functional cognitive performance. These results further suggest that addressing motivational impairments in patients is critical to achieving substantive cognitive and functional gains. PMID:25914923

  4. The impact of motivation on cognitive performance in an animal model of the negative and cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Ryan D.; Winiger, Vanessa; Higa, Kerin K.; Kahn, Julia B.; Kandel, Eric R.; Balsam, Peter D; Simpson, Eleanor H.

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between motivation and cognition are implicated in producing functional impairments and poor quality of life in psychiatric patients. This interaction, however, is not well understood at either the behavioral or neural level. We developed a procedure for mice in which a cognitive measure, sustained attention, is modulated by a motivationally-relevant signal which predicts reward probability on a trial-by-trial basis. Using this paradigm, we tested the interaction between motivation and cognition in mice which model the increased striatal D2 receptor activity observed in schizophrenia patients (D2R-OE mice). In control mice, attention was modulated by signaled-reward probability. In D2R-OE mice, however, attention was not modulated by reward-related cues. This impairment was not due to any global deficits in attention or maintenance of the trial-specific information in working memory. Turning off the transgene in D2R-OE mice rescued the motivational modulation of attention. These results indicate that deficits in motivation impair the ability to use reward-related cues to recruit attention, and that improving motivation improves functional cognitive performance. These results further suggest that addressing motivational impairments in patients is critical to achieving substantive cognitive and functional gains. PMID:25914923

  5. Does Variability in Cognitive Performance Correlate with Frontal Brain Volume?

    PubMed Central

    Lövdén, Martin; Schmiedek, Florian; Kennedy, Kristen M.; Rodrigue, Karen M.; Lindenberger, Ulman; Raz, Naftali

    2012-01-01

    Little is known about the neural correlates of within-person variability in cognitive performance. We investigated associations between regional brain volumes and trial-to-trial, block-to-block, and day-to-day variability in choice-reaction time, and episodic and working memory accuracy. Healthy younger (n = 25) and older (n = 18) adults underwent 101 daily assessments of cognitive performance, and their regional brain volumes were measured manually on magnetic resonance images. Results showed that smaller prefrontal white matter volumes were associated with higher block-to-block variability in choice-reaction time performance, with a stronger association observed among older adults. Smaller volumes of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex covaried with higher block-to-block variability in episodic memory (number-word pair) performance. This association was stronger for younger adults. The observed associations between variability and brain volume were not due to individual differences in mean performance. Trial-to-trial and day-to-day variability in cognitive performance were unrelated to regional brain volume. We thus report novel findings demonstrating that block-by-block variability in cognitive performance is associated with integrity of the prefrontal regions and that between-person differences in different measures of variability of cognitive performance reflect different age-related constellations of behavioral and neural antecedents. PMID:23000256

  6. Loss-Aversion or Loss-Attention: The Impact of Losses on Cognitive Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yechiam, Eldad; Hochman, Guy

    2013-01-01

    Losses were found to improve cognitive performance, and this has been commonly explained by increased weighting of losses compared to gains (i.e., loss aversion). We examine whether effects of losses on performance could be modulated by two alternative processes: an attentional effect leading to increased sensitivity to task incentives; and a…

  7. Acai fruit improves motor and cognitive function in aged rats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aged rats show impaired performance on motor and cognitive tasks that require the use of spatial learning and memory. In previous studies, we have shown the beneficial effects of various berry fruits (blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries) in reversing age-related deficits in behavioral and ne...

  8. Human cognitive performance in spaceflight and analogue environments.

    PubMed

    Strangman, Gary E; Sipes, Walter; Beven, Gary

    2014-10-01

    Maintaining intact cognitive performance is a high priority for space exploration. This review seeks to summarize the cumulative results of existing studies of cognitive performance in spaceflight and analogue environments. We focused on long-duration (>21 d) studies for which no review has previously been conducted. There were 11 published studies identified for long-duration spaceflight (N = 42 subjects) as well as 21 shorter spaceflight studies (N = 70 subjects). Overall, spaceflight cognitive studies ranged from 6-438 d in duration. Some 55 spaceflight analogue studies were also identified, ranging from 6 to 520 d. The diverse nature of experimental procedures and protocols precluded formal meta-analysis. In general, the available evidence fails to strongly support or refute the existence of specific cognitive deficits in low Earth orbit during long-duration spaceflight, which may be due in large part to small numbers of subjects. The studies consistently suggest that novel environments (spaceflight or other) induce variable alterations in cognitive performance across individuals, consistent with known astronaut experiences. This highlights the need to better quantify the magnitude and scope of this interindividual variability, and understand its underlying factors, when predicting in-flight cognitive functioning for extended periods. PMID:25245904

  9. Psychological Intervention for Improving Cognitive Function in Cancer Survivors: A Literature Review and Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    King, Summer; Green, Heather Joy

    2015-01-01

    Although the impact of cancer and associated treatments on cognitive functioning is becoming an increasingly recognized problem, there are few published studies that have investigated psychological interventions to address this issue. A waitlist randomized controlled trial methodology was used to assess the efficacy of a group cognitive rehabilitation intervention (“ReCog”) that successfully targeted cancer-related cognitive decline in previously published pilot research. Participants were 29 cancer survivors who were randomly allocated to either the intervention group or a waitlist group who received the intervention at a later date, and 16 demographically matched community volunteers with no history of cancer (trial registration ACTRN12615000009516, available at http://www.ANZCTR.org.au/ACTRN12615000009516.aspx). The study was the first to include an adapted version of the Traumatic Brain Injury Self-Efficacy Scale to assess cognitive self-efficacy (CSE) in people who have experienced cancer. Results revealed participating in the intervention was associated with significantly faster performance on one objective cognitive task that measures processing speed and visual scanning. Significantly larger improvements for the intervention group were also found on measures of perceived cognitive impairments and CSE. There was some evidence to support the roles of CSE and illness perceptions as potential mechanisms of change for the intervention. Overall, the study provided additional evidence of feasibility and efficacy of group psychological intervention for targeting cancer-related cognitive decline. PMID:25859431

  10. Interactive Cognitive-Motor Step Training Improves Cognitive Risk Factors of Falling in Older Adults – A Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Schoene, Daniel; Valenzuela, Trinidad; Toson, Barbara; Delbaere, Kim; Severino, Connie; Garcia, Jaime; Davies, Thomas A.; Russell, Frances; Smith, Stuart T.; Lord, Stephen R.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Interactive cognitive-motor training (ICMT) requires individuals to perform both gross motor movements and complex information processing. This study investigated the effectiveness of ICMT on cognitive functions associated with falls in older adults. Methods A single-blinded randomized controlled trial was conducted in community-dwelling older adults (N = 90, mean age 81.5±7) without major cognitive impairment. Participants in the intervention group (IG) played four stepping games that required them to divide attention, inhibit irrelevant stimuli, switch between tasks, rotate objects and make rapid decisions. The recommended minimum dose was three 20-minute sessions per week over a period of 16 weeks unsupervised at home. Participants in the control group (CG) received an evidence-based brochure on fall prevention. Measures of processing speed, attention/executive function (EF), visuo-spatial ability, concerns about falling and depression were assessed before and after the intervention. Results Eighty-one participants (90%) attended re-assessment. There were no improvements with respect to the Stroop Stepping Test (primary outcome) in the intervention group. Compared to the CG, the IG improved significantly in measures of processing speed, visuo-spatial ability and concern about falling. Significant interactions were observed for measures of EF and divided attention, indicating group differences varied for different levels of the covariate with larger improvements in IG participants with poorer baseline performance. The interaction for depression showed no change for the IG but an increase in the CG for those with low depressive symptoms at baseline. Additionally, low and high-adherer groups differed in their baseline performance and responded differently to the intervention. Compared to high adherers, low adherers improved more in processing speed and visual scanning while high-adherers improved more in tasks related to EF. Conclusions This study shows

  11. Insight in cognition: self-awareness of performance across cognitive domains.

    PubMed

    Schoo, Linda A; van Zandvoort, Martine J E; Biessels, G J; Kappelle, L Jaap; Postma, Albert

    2013-01-01

    Loss of cognitive functions, as apparent through self-awareness, is considered an important indicator of cognitive deficits and is therefore commonly used in clinical practice. However, little is known about self-awareness of cognitive performance, including its accuracy, its basis, and whether people can distinguish their performance across different cognitive domains. In the present study, 20 university students (M (age) = 21.7 ± 2.2 years, 9 males) and 20 middle-aged participants (M (age) = 52.8 ± 3.9 years, 10 males) gave estimations of their performances on executive functioning, memory, attention, and visuoperception before and after confrontation with their capacities. A repeated-measures analysis of variance with age group as a between-subjects factor was performed on the calculated estimation errors, before and after neuropsychological testing. Overall, the estimation errors were significantly higher before than after experience with test performance, ps < .01, partial η²s = .17. An overall effect of domain (four levels), ps < .001, partial η²s = .22 was found. These results suggest that self-awareness is domain-specific, and although it is adaptive to the experience of mental effort, it is most dependent on preexisting beliefs about one's own cognitive abilities. PMID:23397995

  12. l-Carnitine improves cognitive and renal functions in a rat model of chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Abu Ahmad, Nur; Armaly, Zaher; Berman, Sylvia; Jabour, Adel; Aga-Mizrachi, Shlomit; Mosenego-Ornan, Efrat; Avital, Avi

    2016-10-01

    Over the past decade, the prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has reached epidemic proportions. The search for novel pharmacological treatment for CKD has become an area of intensive clinical research. l-Carnitine, considered as the "gatekeeper" responsible for admitting long chain fatty acids into cell mitochondria. l-Carnitine synthesis and turnover are regulated mainly by the kidney and its levels inversely correlate with serum creatinine of normal subjects and CKD patients. Previous studies showed that l-carnitine administration to elderly people is improving and preserving cognitive function. As yet, there are no clinical intervention studies that investigated the effect of l-carnitine administration on cognitive impairment evidenced in CKD patients. Thus, we aimed to investigate the effects of l-carnitine treatment on renal function and on the cognitive performance in a rat model of progressive CKD. To assess the role of l-carnitine on CKD condition, we estimated the renal function and cognitive abilities in a CKD rat model. We found that all CKD animals exhibited renal function deterioration, as indicated by elevated serum creatinine, BUN, and ample histopathological abnormalities. l-Carnitine treatment of CKD rats significantly reduced serum creatinine and BUN, attenuated renal hypertrophy and decreased renal tissue damage. In addition, in the two way shuttle avoidance learning, CKD animals showed cognitive impairment which recovered by the administration of l-carnitine. We conclude that in a rat model of CKD, l-carnitine administration significantly improved cognitive and renal functions. PMID:27241631

  13. Cognitive Performance Profiles by Latent Classes of Drug Use

    PubMed Central

    Harrell, PT; Mancha, B; Martins, SS; Mauro, PM; Kuo, JH; Scherer, M; Bolla, KI; Latimer, WW

    2014-01-01

    Background and Objectives The relationship between substance use and cognitive deficits is complex and requires innovative methods to enhance understanding. The present study is the first to use LCA to examine associations of drug use patterns with cognitive performance. Methods Cocaine/heroin users (N=552) completed questionnaires, and cognitive measures. LCA identified classes based on past-month drug use and adjusted for probabilities of group membership when examining cognitive performance. Latent indicators were: alcohol (ALC), cigarettes (CIG), marijuana (MJ), crack smoking (CS), nasal heroin (NH), injection cocaine (IC), injection heroin (IH), and injection speedball (IS). Age and education were included as covariates in model creation. Results Bootstrap Likelihood Ratio Test (BLRT) supported a 5-class model. Prevalent indicators (estimated probability of over 50%) for each class are as follows: “Older Nasal Heroin/Crack Smokers” (ONH/CS, n=166.9): ALC, CIG, NH, CS; “Older, Less Educated Polysubstance” (OLEP, n=54.8): ALC, CIG, CS, IH, IC, and IS; “Younger Multi-Injectors” (MI, n=128.7): ALC, CIG, MJ, IH, IC, and IS; “Less Educated Heroin Injectors” (LEHI, n=87.4): CIG, IH; and “More Educated Nasal Heroin” users (MENH, n = ALC, CIG, NH). In general, all classes performed worse than established norms and older, less educated classes performed worse, with the exception that MENH demonstrated worse cognitive flexibility than YMI. Discussion and Conclusions This study demonstrated novel applications of a methodology for examining complicated relationships between polysubstance use and cognitive performance. Scientific Significance Education and/or nasal heroin use are associated with reduced cognitive flexibility in this sample of inner city drug users. PMID:24628774

  14. Dual Motor-Cognitive Virtual Reality Training Impacts Dual-Task Performance in Freezing of Gait.

    PubMed

    Killane, Isabelle; Fearon, Conor; Newman, Louise; McDonnell, Conor; Waechter, Saskia M; Sons, Kristian; Lynch, Timothy; Reilly, Richard B

    2015-11-01

    Freezing of gait (FOG), an episodic gait disturbance characterized by the inability to generate effective stepping, occurs in more than half of Parkinson's disease patients. It is associated with both executive dysfunction and attention and becomes most evident during dual tasking (performing two tasks simultaneously). This study examined the effect of dual motor-cognitive virtual reality training on dual-task performance in FOG. Twenty community dwelling participants with Parkinson's disease (13 with FOG, 7 without FOG) participated in a pre-assessment, eight 20-minute intervention sessions, and a post-assessment. The intervention consisted of a virtual reality maze (DFKI, Germany) through which participants navigated by stepping-in-place on a balance board (Nintendo, Japan) under time pressure. This was combined with a cognitive task (Stroop test), which repeatedly divided participants' attention. The primary outcome measures were pre- and post-intervention differences in motor (stepping time, symmetry, rhythmicity) and cognitive (accuracy, reaction time) performance during single- and dual-tasks. Both assessments consisted of 1) a single cognitive task 2) a single motor task, and 3) a dual motor-cognitive task. Following the intervention, there was significant improvement in dual-task cognitive and motor parameters (stepping time and rhythmicity), dual-task effect for those with FOG and a noteworthy improvement in FOG episodes. These improvements were less significant for those without FOG. This is the first study to show benefit of a dual motor-cognitive approach on dual-task performance in FOG. Advances in such virtual reality interventions for home use could substantially improve the quality of life for patients who experience FOG. PMID:26394439

  15. Changes in Cognitive Performance Are Associated with Changes in Sleep in Older Adults With Insomnia.

    PubMed

    Wilckens, Kristine A; Hall, Martica H; Nebes, Robert D; Monk, Timothy H; Buysse, Daniel J

    2016-01-01

    The present study examined sleep features associated with cognition in older adults and examined whether sleep changes following insomnia treatment were associated with cognitive improvements. Polysomnography and cognition (recall, working memory, and reasoning) were assessed before and after an insomnia intervention (Brief Behavioral Treatment of Insomnia [BBTI] or information control [IC]) in 77 older adults with insomnia. Baseline wake-after-sleep-onset (WASO) was associated with recall. Greater NREM (nonrapid eye movement) delta power and lower NREM sigma power were associated with greater working memory and reasoning. The insomnia intervention did not improve performance. However, increased absolute delta power and decreased relative sigma power were associated with improved reasoning. Findings suggest that improvements in executive function may occur with changes in NREM architecture. PMID:26322904

  16. Aging and Concurrent Task Performance: Cognitive Demand and Motor Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Albinet, Cedric; Tomporowski, Phillip D.; Beasman, Kathryn

    2006-01-01

    A motor task that requires fine control of upper limb movements and a cognitive task that requires executive processing--first performing them separately and then concurrently--was performed by 18 young and 18 older adults. The motor task required participants to tap alternatively on two targets, the sizes of which varied systematically. The…

  17. Hydration effects on cognitive performance during military tasks in temperate and cold environments.

    PubMed

    Adam, Gina E; Carter, Robert; Cheuvront, Samuel N; Merullo, Donna J; Castellani, John W; Lieberman, Harris R; Sawka, Michael N

    2008-03-18

    Body water deficits or hypohydration (HYP) may degrade cognitive performance during heat exposure and perhaps temperate conditions. Cold exposure often induces HYP, but the combined effects of cold and HYP on cognitive performance are unknown. This study investigated whether HYP degrades cognitive performance during cold exposure and if physical exercise could mitigate any cold-induced performance decline. On four occasions, eight volunteers completed one hour of militarily-relevant cognitive testing: 30 min of simulated sentry duty/marksmanship, 20 min of a visual vigilance task, a self-report workload assessment, and a mood questionnaire. Testing was conducted in a cold (2 degrees C) or temperate (20 degrees C) environment before and after cycle ergometer (60 min at 60% of VO(2peak)) exercise. Each trial was preceded by 3 h of passive heat stress (45 degrees C) in the early morning with (euhydration, EUH) or without (hypohydration, HYP; 3% body mass) fluid replacement followed by prolonged recovery. HYP did not alter any cognitive, psychomotor, or self-report parameter in either environment before or after exercise. Cold exposure increased (p<0.05) target detection latency in the sentry duty task, adversely affected mood and workload ratings, but had no impact on any other cognitive or psychomotor measure. After completing the exercise bout, there were modest improvements in friend-foe discrimination and total response latency in the sentry duty task, but not on any other performance measures. Moderate HYP had no effect on cognitive and psychomotor performance in either environment, cold exposure produced equivocal effects, and aerobic exercise improved some aspects of military task performance. PMID:18166204

  18. Reducing postural sway by concurrently performing challenging cognitive tasks.

    PubMed

    Polskaia, Nadia; Lajoie, Yves

    2016-04-01

    The present experiment varied cognitive complexity and sensory modality on postural control in young adults. Seventeen participants (23.71±1.99years) were instructed to stand feet together on a force platform while concurrently performing cognitive tasks of varying degrees of difficulty (easy, moderate and difficult). The cognitive tasks were presented both, auditorily and visually. Auditory tasks consisted of counting the occurrence of one or two letters and repeating a string of words. Visual tasks consisted of counting the occurrence of one or two numbers. With increasing cognitive demand, area of 95% confidence ellipse and ML sway variability was significantly reduced. The visual tasks reduced ML sway variability, whereas the auditory tasks increased COP irregularity. We suggest that these findings are primarily due to an increase in sensorimotor integration as a result of a shift in attentional focus. PMID:26796418

  19. Neuroimaging predictors of cognitive performance across a standardized neurocognitive battery

    PubMed Central

    Roalf, David R.; Ruparel, Kosha; Gur, Raquel E.; Bilker, Warren; Gerraty, Raphael; Elliott, Mark A.; Gallagher, R. Sean; Almasy, Laura; Pogue-Geile, Michael F.; Prasad, Konasale; Wood, Joel; Nimgaonkar, Vishwajit L.; Gur, Ruben C.

    2014-01-01

    Objective The advent of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) enables the identification of brain regions recruited for specific behavioral tasks. Most fMRI studies focus on group effects in single tasks, which limits applicability where assessment of individual differences and multiple brain systems is needed. Method We demonstrate the feasibility of concurrently measuring fMRI activation patterns and performance on a computerized neurocognitive battery (CNB) in 212 healthy individuals at two sites. Cross-validated sparse regression of regional brain amplitude and extent of activation were used to predict concurrent performance on six neurocognitive tasks: abstraction/mental flexibility, attention, emotion processing, and verbal, face and spatial memory. Results Brain activation was task-responsive and domain-specific as reported in previous single-task studies. Prediction of performance was robust for most tasks, particularly for abstraction/mental flexibility and visuo-spatial memory. Conclusions The feasibility of administering a comprehensive neuropsychological battery in the scanner was established, and task-specific brain activation patterns improved prediction beyond demographic information. This benchmark index of performance-associated brain activation can be applied to link brain activation with neurocognitive performance during standardized testing. This first step in standardizing a neurocognitive battery for use in fMRI may enable quantitative assessment of patients with brain disorders across multiple cognitive domains. Such data may facilitate identification of neural dysfunction associated with poor performance, allow for identification of individuals at-risk for brain disorders, and help guide early intervention and rehabilitation of neurocognitive deficits. PMID:24364396

  20. Dexmedetomidine improves early postoperative cognitive dysfunction in aged mice.

    PubMed

    Qian, Xiao-Lan; Zhang, Wei; Liu, Ming-Zheng; Zhou, Yu-Bing; Zhang, Jing-Min; Han, Li; Peng, You-Mei; Jiang, Jin-hua; Wang, Qing-Duan

    2015-01-01

    Postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD) is a frequent complication following major surgery in the elderly. However, the exact pathogenic mechanisms are still unknown. Dexmedetomidine, a selective alpha 2 adrenal receptor agonist, was revealed anesthesia and brain protective role. The present study aimed to examine whether dexmedetomdine protects against POCD induced by major surgical trauma under general anesthesia in aged mice. In the present study, cognitive function was assessed by Y-maze. Proinflammatory cytokines interleukin-1β (IL-1β) and tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), apoptosis-related factor caspase-3 and Bax were detected by real-time PCR, Western blot or immunohistochemistry. The results showed that anesthesia alone caused weak cognitive dysfunction on the first day after general anesthesia. Cognitive function in mice with splenectomy under general anesthesia was significantly exacerbated at the first and third days after surgery, and was significantly improved by dexmedetomidine administration. Splenectomy increased the expression of IL-1β, TNF-α, Bax and caspase-3 in hippocampus. These changes were significantly inversed by dexmedetomidine. These results suggest that hippocampal inflammatory response and neuronal apoptosis may contribute to POCD, and selective alpha 2 adrenal receptor excitation play a protective role. PMID:25460022

  1. The relationship between dopamine receptor D1 and cognitive performance

    PubMed Central

    Tsang, Jonathan; Fullard, John F; Giakoumaki, Stella G; Katsel, Pavel; Katsel, Pavel; Karagiorga, Vasiliki Eirini; Greenwood, Tiffany A; Braff, David L; Siever, Larry J; Bitsios, Panos; Haroutunian, Vahram; Roussos, Panos

    2015-01-01

    Background: Cognitive impairment cuts across traditional diagnostic boundaries and is one of the most typical symptoms in various psychiatric and neurobiological disorders. Aims: The objective of this study was to examine the genetic association between 94 candidate genes, including receptors and enzymes that participate in neurotransmission, with measures of cognition. Methods: The Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR), a global measure of cognition, and genotypes derived from a custom array of 1,536 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 94 genes were available for a large postmortem cohort of Caucasian cases with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), schizophrenia and controls (n=727). A cohort of healthy young males (n=1,493) originating from the LOGOS project (Learning On Genetics Of Schizophrenia Spectrum) profiled across multiple cognitive domains was available for targeted SNP genotyping. Gene expression was quantified in the superior temporal gyrus of control samples (n=109). The regulatory effect on transcriptional activity was assessed using the luciferase reporter system. Results: The rs5326-A allele at the promoter region of dopamine receptor D1 (DRD1) locus was associated with: (i) poorer cognition (higher CDR) in the postmortem cohort (P=9.325×10−4); (ii) worse cognitive performance relevant to strategic planning in the LOGOS cohort (P=0.008); (iii) lower DRD1 gene expression in the superior temporal gyrus of controls (P=0.038); and (iv) decreased transcriptional activity in human neuroblastoma (SH-SY5Y) cells (P=0.026). Conclusions: An interdisciplinary approach combining genetics with cognitive and molecular neuroscience provided a possible mechanistic link among DRD1 and alterations in cognitive performance. PMID:27336024

  2. Cognitive enhancement therapy improves emotional intelligence in early course schizophrenia: preliminary effects.

    PubMed

    Eack, Shaun M; Hogarty, Gerard E; Greenwald, Deborah P; Hogarty, Susan S; Keshavan, Matcheri S

    2007-01-01

    This research examined the preliminary effects of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (CET) on social cognition in early course schizophrenia, using an objective, performance-based measure of emotional intelligence. Individuals in the early course of schizophrenia were randomly assigned to either CET (n=18) or Enriched Supportive Therapy (n=20), and assessed at baseline and after 1 year of treatment with the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test. A series of analyses of covariance showed highly significant (p=.005) and large (Cohen's d=.96) effects favoring CET for improving emotional intelligence, with the most pronounced improvements occurring in patients' ability to understand and manage their own and others' emotions. These findings lend preliminary support to the previously documented benefits of CET on social cognition in schizophrenia, and suggest that such benefits can be extended to patients in the early course of the illness. PMID:17055227

  3. Towards improved animal models for evaluating social cognition and its disruption in schizophrenia: the CNTRICS initiative.

    PubMed

    Millan, Mark J; Bales, Karen L

    2013-11-01

    Social cognition refers to processes used to monitor and interpret social signals from others, to decipher their state of mind, emotional status and intentions, and select appropriate social behaviour. Social cognition is sophisticated in humans, being embedded with verbal language and enacted in a complex cultural environment. Its disruption characterises the entire course of schizophrenia and is correlated with poor functional outcome. Further, deficits in social cognition are related to impairment in other cognitive domains, positive symptoms (paranoia and delusions) and negative symptoms (social withdrawal and reduced motivation). In light of the significance and inadequate management of social cognition deficits, there is a need for translatable experimental procedures for their study, and identification of effective pharmacotherapy. No single paradigm captures the multi-dimensional nature of social cognition, and procedures for assessing ability to infer mental states are not well-developed for experimental therapeutic settings. Accordingly, a recent CNTRICS meeting prioritised procedures for measuring a specific construct: "acquisition and recognition of affective (emotional) states", coupled to individual recognition. Two complementary paradigms for refinement were identified: social recognition/preference in rodents, and visual tracking of social scenes in non-human primates (NHPs). Social recognition is disrupted in genetic, developmental or pharmacological disease models for schizophrenia, and performance in both procedures is improved by the neuropeptide oxytocin. The present article surveys a broad range of procedures for studying social cognition in rodents and NHPs, discusses advantages and drawbacks, and focuses on development of social recognition/preference and gaze-following paradigms for improved study of social cognition deficits in schizophrenia and their potential treatment. PMID:24090822

  4. Improving brain injury cognitive rehabilitation by personalized telerehabilitation services: Guttmann neuropersonal trainer.

    PubMed

    Solana, Javier; Cáceres, César; García-Molina, Alberto; Opisso, Eloy; Roig, Teresa; Tormos, José M; Gómez, Enrique J

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive rehabilitation aims to remediate or alleviate the cognitive deficits appearing after an episode of acquired brain injury (ABI). The purpose of this work is to describe the telerehabilitation platform called Guttmann Neuropersonal Trainer (GNPT) which provides new strategies for cognitive rehabilitation, improving efficiency and access to treatments, and to increase knowledge generation from the process. A cognitive rehabilitation process has been modeled to design and develop the system, which allows neuropsychologists to configure and schedule rehabilitation sessions, consisting of set of personalized computerized cognitive exercises grounded on neuroscience and plasticity principles. It provides remote continuous monitoring of patient's performance, by an asynchronous communication strategy. An automatic knowledge extraction method has been used to implement a decision support system, improving treatment customization. GNPT has been implemented in 27 rehabilitation centers and in 83 patients' homes, facilitating the access to the treatment. In total, 1660 patients have been treated. Usability and cost analysis methodologies have been applied to measure the efficiency in real clinical environments. The usability evaluation reveals a system usability score higher than 70 for all target users. The cost efficiency study results show a relation of 1-20 compared to face-to-face rehabilitation. GNPT enables brain-damaged patients to continue and further extend rehabilitation beyond the hospital, improving the efficiency of the rehabilitation process. It allows customized therapeutic plans, providing information to further development of clinical practice guidelines. PMID:25204001

  5. Program of arithmetic improvement by means of cognitive enhancement: an intervention in children with special educational needs.

    PubMed

    Deaño, Manuel Deaño; Alfonso, Sonia; Das, Jagannath Prasad

    2015-03-01

    This study reports the cognitive and arithmetic improvement of a mathematical model based on the program PASS Remedial Program (PREP), which aims to improve specific cognitive processes underlying academic skills such as arithmetic. For this purpose, a group of 20 students from the last four grades of Primary Education was divided into two groups. One group (n=10) received training in the program and the other served as control. Students were assessed at pre and post intervention in the PASS cognitive processes (planning, attention, simultaneous and successive processing), general level of intelligence, and arithmetic performance in calculus and solving problems. Performance of children from the experimental group was significantly higher than that of the control group in cognitive process and arithmetic. This joint enhancement of cognitive and arithmetic processes was a result of the operationalization of training that promotes the encoding task, attention and planning, and learning by induction, mediation and verbalization. The implications of this are discussed. PMID:25594486

  6. Rich Club Organization and Cognitive Performance in Healthy Older Participants.

    PubMed

    Baggio, Hugo C; Segura, Barbara; Junque, Carme; de Reus, Marcel A; Sala-Llonch, Roser; Van den Heuvel, Martijn P

    2015-09-01

    The human brain is a complex network that has been noted to contain a group of densely interconnected hub regions. With a putative "rich club" of hubs hypothesized to play a central role in global integrative brain functioning, we assessed whether hub and rich club organizations are associated with cognitive performance in healthy participants and whether the rich club might be differentially involved in cognitive functions with a heavier dependence on global integration. A group of 30 relatively older participants (range = 39-79 years of age) underwent extensive neuropsychological testing, combined with diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging to reconstruct individual structural brain networks. Rich club connectivity was found to be associated with general cognitive performance. More specifically, assessing the relationship between the rich club and performance in two specific cognitive domains, we found rich club connectivity to be differentially associated with attention/executive functions-known to rely on the integration of distributed brain areas-rather than with visuospatial/visuoperceptual functions, which have a more constrained neuroanatomical substrate. Our findings thus provide first empirical evidence of a relevant role played by the rich club in cognitive processes. PMID:25941870

  7. APOE, MAPT, SNCA, and Cognitive Performance in Parkinson Disease

    PubMed Central

    Mata, Ignacio F.; Leverenz, James B.; Weintraub, Daniel; Trojanowski, John Q.; Hurtig, Howard I.; Van Deerlin, Vivianna M.; Ritz, Beate; Rausch, Rebecca; Rhodes, Shannon L; Factor, Stewart A.; Wood-Siverio, Cathy; Quinn, Joseph F.; Chung, Kathryn A.; Peterson, Amie L.; Espay, Alberto J.; Revilla, Fredy J.; Devoto, Johnna; Hu, Shu-Ching; Cholerton, Brenna A.; Wan, Jia Y.; Montine, Thomas J.; Edwards, Karen L.; Zabetian, Cyrus P.

    2014-01-01

    Importance Cognitive impairment (CI) is a common and disabling problem in Parkinson’s disease (PD) that is not well understood and is difficult to treat. Identification of genetic variants that influence the rate of cognitive decline or pattern of early cognitive deficits in PD might provide a clearer understanding of the etiopathogenesis of this important non-motor feature. Objectives To determine if common variation in the APOE, MAPT, and SNCA genes is associated with cognitive performance in patients with PD. Design, Setting and Participants We studied 1,079 PD patients from six academic centers in the U.S. who underwent assessments of memory (Hopkins Verbal Learning Test-Revised [HVLT-R]), attention/executive function (Letter-Number Sequencing and Trail Making Test), language processing (semantic and phonemic verbal fluency), visuospatial skills (Benton Judgment of Line Orientation) and global cognitive function (Montreal Cognitive Assessment [MoCA]). Subjects were genotyped for APOE ε2/ε3/ε4, MAPT H1/H2 haplotypes, and SNCA rs356219. Linear regression was used to test for association between genotype and baseline cognitive performance adjusting for age, sex, years of education, disease duration, and site. We used a Bonferroni correction to adjust for the nine comparisons that were performed for each gene. Main Outcomes and Measures Nine variables derived from seven psychometric tests. Results APOE ε4 was associated with lower performance on HVLT-R total learning (P=6.7×10−6; corrected P [Pc]=6.0×10−5), delayed recall (P=0.001; Pc=0.009), and recognition discrimination index (P=0.004; Pc=0.04), and semantic verbal fluency (P=0.002; Pc=0.018), Letter-Number sequencing (P=1 × 10−5; Pc=9 × 10−5), and Trails B-A (P=0.002; Pc=0.018). In a subset of 645 non-demented patients, APOE ε4 was associated with lower scores on HVLT-R total learning (P=0.005; Pc=0.045) and semantic verbal fluency (P=0.005; Pc=0.045). MAPT and SNCA variants were not

  8. Predictors of neuropsychological improvement following cognitive rehabilitation in patients with gliomas.

    PubMed

    Gehring, Karin; Aaronson, Neil K; Gundy, Chad M; Taphoorn, Martin J B; Sitskoorn, Margriet M

    2011-03-01

    This study investigated the specific patient factors that predict responsiveness to a cognitive rehabilitation program. The program has previously been demonstrated to be successful at the group level in patients with gliomas, but it is unclear which patient characteristics optimized the effect of the intervention at the individual level. Four categories of possible predictors of improvement were selected for evaluation: sociodemographic and clinical variables, self-reported cognitive symptoms, and objective neuropsychological test performance. Hierarchical logistic regression analyses were conducted, beginning with the most accessible (sociodemographic) variables and ending with the most difficult (baseline neuropsychological) to identify in clinical practice. Nearly 60% of the participants of the intervention were classified as reliably improved. Reliable improvement was predicted by age (p = .003) and education (p = .011). Additional results suggested that younger patients were more likely to benefit specifically from the cognitive rehabilitation program (p = .001), and that higher education was also associated with improvement in the control group (p = .024). The findings are discussed in light of brain reserve theory. A practical implication is that cognitive rehabilitation programs should take the patients' age into account and, if possible, adapt programs to increase the likelihood of improvement among older participants. PMID:21205412

  9. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy improves cognitive functioning after brain injury

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Su; Shen, Guangyu; Deng, Shukun; Wang, Xiubin; Wu, Qinfeng; Guo, Aisong

    2013-01-01

    Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been widely applied and recognized in the treatment of brain injury; however, the correlation between the protective effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy and changes of metabolites in the brain remains unclear. To investigate the effect and potential mechanism of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on cognitive functioning in rats, we established traumatic brain injury models using Feeney's free falling method. We treated rat models with hyperbaric oxygen therapy at 0.2 MPa for 60 minutes per day. The Morris water maze test for spatial navigation showed that the average escape latency was significantly prolonged and cognitive function decreased in rats with brain injury. After treatment with hyperbaric oxygen therapy for 1 and 2 weeks, the rats’ spatial learning and memory abilities were improved. Hydrogen proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy analysis showed that the N-acetylaspartate/creatine ratio in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased at 1 week, and the N-acetylaspartate/choline ratio was significantly increased at 2 weeks after hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Nissl staining and immunohistochemical staining showed that the number of nerve cells and Nissl bodies in the hippocampal CA3 region was significantly increased, and glial fibrillary acidic protein positive cells were decreased after a 2-week hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatment. Our findings indicate that hyperbaric oxygen therapy significantly improves cognitive functioning in rats with traumatic brain injury, and the potential mechanism is mediated by metabolic changes and nerve cell restoration in the hippocampal CA3 region. PMID:25206655

  10. Physical Education Performance Outcomes and Cognitive Function

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castelli, Darla M.; Hillman, Charles H.

    2007-01-01

    This article intends to inform physical education teachers about the current research describing the relationship between physical education performance outcomes as identified by the national physical education standards (i.e., regular participation in physical activity, physical fitness, motor competence; National Association of Physical…

  11. Musicians' Cognitive Processing of Imagery-Based Instructions for Expressive Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woody, Robert H.

    2006-01-01

    This study addressed the cognitive processes of musicians using imagery to improve expressive performance. Specifically, it was an examination of the extent to which musicians translate imagery into explicit plans for the sound properties of music. Eighty-four undergraduate and graduate music majors completed a research packet during individual…

  12. Influence of energy drink ingredients on mood and cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Childs, Emma

    2014-10-01

    Sales of energy products have grown enormously in recent years. Manufacturers claim that the products, in the form of drinks, shots, supplements, and gels, enhance physical and cognitive performance, while users believe the products promote concentration, alertness, and fun. Most of these products contain caffeine, a mild psychostimulant, as their foremost active ingredient. However, they also contain additional ingredients, e.g., carbohydrates, amino acids, herbal extracts, vitamins, and minerals, often in unspecified amounts and labeled as an "energy blend." It is not clear whether these additional ingredients provide any physical or cognitive enhancement beyond that provided by caffeine alone. This article reviews the available empirical data on the interactive effects of these ingredients and caffeine on sleep and cognitive performance and suggests objectives for future study. PMID:25293543

  13. Sleep Quality Improvement During Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety Disorders.

    PubMed

    Ramsawh, Holly J; Bomyea, Jessica; Stein, Murray B; Cissell, Shadha H; Lang, Ariel J

    2016-01-01

    Despite the ubiquity of sleep complaints among individuals with anxiety disorders, few prior studies have examined whether sleep quality improves during anxiety treatment. The current study examined pre- to posttreatment sleep quality improvement during cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for panic disorder (PD; n = 26) or generalized anxiety disorder (GAD; n = 24). Among sleep quality indices, only global sleep quality and sleep latency improved significantly (but modestly) during CBT. Sleep quality improvement was greater for treatment responders, but did not vary by diagnosis. Additionally, poor baseline sleep quality was independently associated with worse anxiety treatment outcome, as measured by higher intolerance of uncertainty. Additional intervention targeting sleep prior to or during CBT for anxiety may be beneficial for poor sleepers. PMID:26244485

  14. Age and individual sleep characteristics affect cognitive performance in anesthesiology residents after a 24-hour shift.

    PubMed

    Tadinac, Meri; Sekulić, Ante; Hromatko, Ivana; Mazul-Sunko, Branka; Ivancić, Romina

    2014-03-01

    Previous research has shown that both shift work and sleep deprivation have an adverse influence on various aspects of human cognitive performance. The aim of this study was to explore changes in cognitive functioning and subjective sleepiness of anesthesiology residents after a 24-hour shift. Twenty-six anesthesiology residents completed a set of psychological instruments at the beginning and at the end of the shift, as well as a questionnaire regarding information about the shift, Stanford Sleepiness Scale, and Circadian Type Questionnaire. There was a significant decline in cognitive performance measured by the Auditory Verbal Learning Test after the shift. The effect was stronger in older participants and in those with high scores on rigidity of sleep scale and low scores on the ability to overcome sleepiness scale. There were no differences in the digits forward test (a measure of concentration), while digits backward test (a measure of working memory) even showed an improved performance after the shift. Although participants reported being significantly sleepier after the shift, the subjective sleepiness did not correlate with any of the objective measures of cognitive performance. In conclusion, the performance in short tasks involving concentration and working memory was not impaired, while performance in long-term and monotone tasks declined after sleep deprivation, and the magnitude of this decline depended on the specific individual characteristics of sleep and on age Surprisingly, age seemed to have an important impact on cognitive functions after shift work even in the relatively age-homogeneous population of young anesthesiology residents. PMID:24974663

  15. Study Abroad Field Trip Improves Test Performance through Engagement and New Social Networks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Houser, Chris; Brannstrom, Christian; Quiring, Steven M.; Lemmons, Kelly K.

    2011-01-01

    Although study abroad trips provide an opportunity for affective and cognitive learning, it is largely assumed that they improve learning outcomes. The purpose of this study is to determine whether a study abroad field trip improved cognitive learning by comparing test performance between the study abroad participants (n = 20) and their peers who…

  16. Homocysteine and Cognitive Performance in Elders with Self-Neglect

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burnett, J.; Smith, S.M.; Aung, K.; Dyer, C.

    2009-01-01

    Elevated plasma homocysteine has been associated with altered cognitive performance in older adults. Elders referred to Adult Protective Services (APS) for self-neglect have been reported to have elevated plasma homocysteine levels and to suffer from cognitive impairment. This study assesses the association, if any, between plasma homocysteine and cognitive performance among elders with self-neglect. Methods: Sixty-five community-living adults, 65 years of age and older, reported to Adult Protective Services for self-neglect and 55 matched controls (matched for age, ethnicity, gender and socio-economic status) consented and participated in this study. The research team conducted in-home comprehensive geriatric assessments which included the mini-mental state exam (MMSE), the 15-item geriatric depression scale (GDS), the Wolf-Klein Clock Drawing Tests (CDT) and a comprehensive nutritional biochemistry panel, which included plasma homocysteine. Student s t tests and Pearson correlations were conducted to assess for bivariate associations. Results: Elders with self-neglect had significantly higher plasma homocysteine levels (M=12.68umol/L, sd=4.4) compared to the controls (M=10.40umol/L, sd=3.61;t=3.21, df=127, p=.002). There were no statistically significant associations between cognitive performance and plasma homocysteine in the self-neglect group, however there was a significant correlation between plasma homocysteine and the CDT among the controls (r=-.296, p=.022). Conclusion: Mean plasma homocysteine levels were significantly higher in elders with self-neglect, however, they do not appear to be related to cognitive performance, indicating that cognitive impairment in elder self-neglect involve mechanisms other than hyperhomocysteinemia. These findings warrant further investigation

  17. Eeg-Derived Estimators of Present and Future Cognitive Performance

    PubMed Central

    Stikic, Maja; Johnson, Robin R.; Levendowski, Daniel J.; Popovic, Djordje P.; Olmstead, Richard E.; Berka, Chris

    2011-01-01

    Previous electroencephalography (EEG)-based fatigue-related research primarily focused on the association between concurrent cognitive performance and time-locked physiology. The goal of this study was to investigate the capability of EEG to assess the impact of fatigue on both present and future cognitive performance during a 20-min sustained attention task, the 3-choice active vigilance task (3CVT), that requires subjects to discriminate one primary target from two secondary non-target geometric shapes. The current study demonstrated the ability of EEG to estimate not only present, but also future cognitive performance, utilizing a single, combined reaction time (RT), and accuracy performance metric. The correlations between observed and estimated performance, for both present and future performance, were strong (up to 0.89 and 0.79, respectively). The models were able to consistently estimate “unacceptable” performance throughout the entire 3CVT, i.e., excessively missed responses and/or slow RTs, while acceptable performance was recognized less accurately later in the task. The developed models were trained on a relatively large dataset (n = 50 subjects) to increase stability. Cross-validation results suggested the models were not over-fitted. This study indicates that EEG can be used to predict gross-performance degradations 5–15 min in advance. PMID:21927601

  18. Expert music performance: cognitive, neural, and developmental bases.

    PubMed

    Brown, Rachel M; Zatorre, Robert J; Penhune, Virginia B

    2015-01-01

    In this chapter, we explore what happens in the brain of an expert musician during performance. Understanding expert music performance is interesting to cognitive neuroscientists not only because it tests the limits of human memory and movement, but also because studying expert musicianship can help us understand skilled human behavior in general. In this chapter, we outline important facets of our current understanding of the cognitive and neural basis for music performance, and developmental factors that may underlie musical ability. We address three main questions. (1) What is expert performance? (2) How do musicians achieve expert-level performance? (3) How does expert performance come about? We address the first question by describing musicians' ability to remember, plan, execute, and monitor their performances in order to perform music accurately and expressively. We address the second question by reviewing evidence for possible cognitive and neural mechanisms that may underlie or contribute to expert music performance, including the integration of sound and movement, feedforward and feedback motor control processes, expectancy, and imagery. We further discuss how neural circuits in auditory, motor, parietal, subcortical, and frontal cortex all contribute to different facets of musical expertise. Finally, we address the third question by reviewing evidence for the heritability of musical expertise and for how expertise develops through training and practice. We end by discussing outlooks for future work. PMID:25725910

  19. Improve Relationships to Improve Student Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Arum, Richard

    2011-01-01

    Attempts to raise student performance have focused primarily on either relationships between adults in the system or formal curriculum. Relatively ignored has been a focus on what sociologists believe is the primary relationship of consequence for student outcomes--authority relationships between students and educators. Successful school reform is…

  20. Cognitive aid use improves transition of care by graduating medical students during a simulated crisis

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Brooke; Rebel, Annette; Dilorenzo, Amy; Schell, Randall M.; Dority, Jeremy S.; Lukens, Faith; Sloan, Paul A.

    2016-01-01

    Background Residents are expected to have transition of care (ToC) skills upon entering graduate medical education. It is unclear whether experience and training during medical school is adequate. Objective The aim of the project was to assess: 1) graduating medical students’ ability to perform ToC in a crisis situation, and 2) whether using a cognitive aid improves the ToC quality. Methods The authors developed simulation scenarios for rapid response teams and a cognitive aid to assist in the ToC during crisis situations. Graduating medical students were enrolled and randomly divided into teams of three students, randomly assigned into one of two groups: teams using a cognitive aid for ToC (CA), or not using a cognitive aid (nCA). In the scenario, teams respond to a deteriorating patient and then transfer care to the next provider after stabilization. Three faculty reviewed the recording to assess completeness of the ToC and the overall quality. A completeness score was expressed as a fraction of the maximum score. Statistical analysis was performed using a t-test and Mann-Whitney U test. Results A total of 112 senior medical students participated: CA n=19, nCA n=17. The completeness score of the ToC and overall quality improved when using the cognitive aid (completeness score: CA 0.80±0.06 vs. nCA 0.52±0.07, p<0.01; ToC quality: CA 3.16±0.65 vs. nCA 1.92±0.56, p<0.01). Participants’ rating of knowledge and comfort with the ToC process increased after the simulation. Conclusion The completeness of information transfer during the ToC process by graduating medical students improved by using a cognitive aid in a simulated patient crisis. PMID:27435838

  1. Recent performance improvements on FXR

    SciTech Connect

    Kulke, B.; Kihara, R.

    1983-01-01

    The FXR machine is a nominal 4-kA, 20-MeV, linear-induction, electron accelerator for flash radiography at LLNL. The machine met its baseline requirements in March 1982. Since then, the performance has been greatly improved. We have achieved stable and repeatable beam acceleration and transport, with over 80% transmission to the tungsten bremsstrahlung target located some 35 m downstream. For best stability, external-beam steering has been eliminated almost entirely. We regularly produce over 500 Roentgen at 1 m from the target (TLD measurement), with a radiographic spot size of 3 to 5 mm. Present efforts are directed towards the development of a 4-kA tune, working interactively with particle-field and beam transport code models. A remaining uncertainty is the possible onset of RF instabilities at the higher current levels.

  2. [Neuroprogression and cognition in Bipolar Disorders: A systematic review of cognitive performance in euthymic patients].

    PubMed

    Lolich, María; Holtzman, Jessica N; Rago, Carlo M; Vázquez, Gustavo H

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, investigators have begun to consider the possibility of explaining the physiopathology of bipolar disorder from a neuroprogressive perspective. The evidence that supports the feasibility of such an approach is varied, and arises from neuroimaging studies, batteries of neurocognitive evaluations, and tests to identify the specific biomarkers of the disorder. The present article seeks to perform a review of the research that investigates the cognitive deficits in bipolar disorder. A bibliographic revision was performed of articles published between 1990 and 2015. Levels of cognitive performance were explored in both cross-sectional and longitudinal studies. The compiled studies signal the presence of altered cognitive function, even during periods of euthymia. However, there are contradictory results as to whether bipolar disorder presents a degenerative course. New lines of investigation suggest that only a percentage of individuals with bipolar disorder are affected in a progressive manner. It is of paramount importance to perform new longitudinal studies in high-risk populations, so as to validate or refute a neuroprogressive model of cognitive deficits in patients with bipolar disorder. PMID:26672503

  3. Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Predictors of College Readiness and Performance: Role of Academic Discipline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Komarraju, Meera; Ramsey, Alex; Rinella, Virginia

    2013-01-01

    Identifying the best predictors of academic performance is crucial for postsecondary institutions seeking students with the greatest promise. We investigated the relative strength of standardized test scores (ACT), high school GPA, and non-cognitive, college readiness skills in predicting college GPA. College freshmen (505) completed the 108-item…

  4. Cognitive Determinants of Academic Performance in Nigerian Pharmacy Schools.

    PubMed

    Ubaka, Chukwuemeka M; Sansgiry, Sujit S; Ukwe, Chinwe V

    2015-09-25

    Objective. To evaluate cognitive factors that might influence academic performance of students in Nigerian pharmacy schools. Methods. A cross-sectional, multi-center survey of Nigerian pharmacy students from 7 schools of pharmacy was conducted using 2 validated questionnaires measuring cognitive constructs such as test anxiety, academic competence, test competence, time management, and strategic study habits. Results. Female students and older students scored significantly better on time management skills and study habits, respectively. Test anxiety was negatively associated with academic performance while test competence, academic competence, and time management were positively associated with academic performance. These 4 constructs significantly discriminated between the lower and higher performing students, with the first 2 contributing to the most differences. Conclusion. Test and academic competence, test anxiety, and time management were significant factors associated with low and high academic performance among Nigerian pharmacy students. The study also demonstrated the significant effects of age, gender, and marital status on these constructs. PMID:27168614

  5. Cognitive Determinants of Academic Performance in Nigerian Pharmacy Schools

    PubMed Central

    Sansgiry, Sujit S.; Ukwe, Chinwe V.

    2015-01-01

    Objective. To evaluate cognitive factors that might influence academic performance of students in Nigerian pharmacy schools. Methods. A cross-sectional, multi-center survey of Nigerian pharmacy students from 7 schools of pharmacy was conducted using 2 validated questionnaires measuring cognitive constructs such as test anxiety, academic competence, test competence, time management, and strategic study habits. Results. Female students and older students scored significantly better on time management skills and study habits, respectively. Test anxiety was negatively associated with academic performance while test competence, academic competence, and time management were positively associated with academic performance. These 4 constructs significantly discriminated between the lower and higher performing students, with the first 2 contributing to the most differences. Conclusion. Test and academic competence, test anxiety, and time management were significant factors associated with low and high academic performance among Nigerian pharmacy students. The study also demonstrated the significant effects of age, gender, and marital status on these constructs. PMID:27168614

  6. Qualitative Pedagogical Inquiry into Cognitive Modulation of Musical Performance Anxiety.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Picard, Andre

    1999-01-01

    Presents a study that identifies some concepts involved in the cognitive modulation of naturalistic Musical Performance Anxiety (MPA) episodes among undergraduate music students and elaborates an alternative to psychological apprehension in regard to MPA. The research was exploratory and consisted of eight case studies. Data were collected and…

  7. Cognitive Somatic Behavioral Interventions for Maximizing Gymnastic Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ravizza, Kenneth; Rotella, Robert

    Psychological training programs developed and implemented for gymnasts of a wide range of age and varying ability levels are examined. The programs utilized strategies based on cognitive-behavioral intervention. The approach contends that mental training plays a crucial role in maximizing performance for most gymnasts. The object of the training…

  8. Performance and Cognitive Assessment in 3-D Modeling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fahrer, Nolan E.; Ernst, Jeremy V.; Branoff, Theodore J.; Clark, Aaron C.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate identifiable differences between performance and cognitive assessment scores in a 3-D modeling unit of an engineering drafting course curriculum. The study aimed to provide further investigation of the need of skill-based assessments in engineering/technical graphics courses to potentially increase…

  9. Prospective Associations between Dietary Patterns and Cognitive Performance during Adolescence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nyaradi, Anett; Foster, Jonathan K.; Hickling, Siobhan; Li, Jianghong; Ambrosini, Gina L.; Jacques, Angela; Oddy, Wendy H.

    2014-01-01

    Background: The aim of the study was to investigate prospective associations between dietary patterns and cognitive performance during adolescence. Methods: Participants were sourced from the Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) Study that includes 2868 children born between 1989 and 1992 in Perth, Western Australia. When the children were…

  10. Cognitive, Affective, and Behavioral Determinants of Performance: A Process Model.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dorfman, Peter W.; Stephan, Walter G.

    Literature from organizational and social psychology has suggested that three types of factors influence performance, i.e., cognitive, affective and behavioral. A model was developed to test a set of propositions concerning the relationship between the three kinds of factors, and included attributions, expectancies, general emotional responses to…

  11. HYDRATION STATUS AND COGNITIVE PERFORMANCE IN YOUNG ADULTS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Adequate hydration levels are important for both mental and physical functioning. Research conducted in young adults suggests that mild levels of dehydration (2%-4%) can negatively influence cognitive performance in a variety of tasks, but these data are inconsistent. Dehydration may be relatively...

  12. Distributed Cognition in Sports Teams: Explaining Successful and Expert Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williamson, Kellie; Cox, Rochelle

    2014-01-01

    In this article we use a hybrid methodology to better understand the skilful performance of sports teams as an exemplar of distributed cognition. We highlight key differences between a team of individual experts (an aggregate system) and an expert team (an emergent system), and outline the kinds of shared characteristics likely to be found in an…

  13. Midsagittal Brain Shape Correlation with Intelligence and Cognitive Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bruner, Emiliano; Martin-Loeches, Manuel; Burgaleta, Miguel; Colom, Roberto

    2011-01-01

    Brain shape might influence cognitive performance because of the relationships between functions, spatial organization, and differential volumetric development of cortical areas. Here we analyze the relationships between midsagittal brain shape variation and a set of basic psychological measures. Coordinates in 2D from 102 MRI-scanned young adult…

  14. Sibsize, Family Environment, Cognitive Performance, and Affective Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marjoribanks, Kevin

    1976-01-01

    Incorporates measures of family environment (parent-child interaction) into research methodology to study the effects of sibsize (family size and birth order) on a child's cognitive performance and affective behavior. Provides tentative support for the confluence model of sibsize influences on children's behaviors. (RL)

  15. The Influence of Cognitive Abilities on Mathematical Problem Solving Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bahar, Abdulkadir

    2013-01-01

    Problem solving has been a core theme in education for several decades. Educators and policy makers agree on the importance of the role of problem solving skills for school and real life success. A primary purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of cognitive abilities on mathematical problem solving performance of students. The…

  16. Modeling Cognitive Strategies during Complex Task Performing Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazman, Sacide Guzin; Altun, Arif

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to examine individuals' computer based complex task performing processes and strategies in order to determine the reasons of failure by cognitive task analysis method and cued retrospective think aloud with eye movement data. Study group was five senior students from Computer Education and Instructional Technologies…

  17. Composition Instruction and Cognitive Performance: Results of a Pilot Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bugos, Jennifer; Jacobs, Edward

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of a composition program, Composers in Public Schools (CiPS), on cognitive skills essential for academic success. The underlying hypothesis is that composition instruction will promote creative expression and increase performance on music-specific skills such as music reading, as well as foster…

  18. Influence of cognitive abilities and age on word recall performance across trials and list segments.

    PubMed

    Krueger, Lacy E; Salthouse, Timothy A

    2011-01-01

    The influence of cognitive abilities and age on multitrial word recall performance was examined for different list segments (i.e., first, middle, and last) and across trials by having 2497 participants ages 18-98 complete a multitrial word list test along with reference cognitive ability tests. As expected, higher episodic memory ability was associated with better recall on all list segments but with a smaller influence for the last items on the early trials. Performance improved across trials, but there were no relations of the fluid intelligence construct that might be postulated to be associated with effective strategy implementation with any of the recall measures. Advanced age was associated with lower levels of performance, but very few of the age relations were significant after the variation in the reference cognitive abilities was controlled for. PMID:21977691

  19. Hair cortisol and cognitive performance in working age adults.

    PubMed

    McLennan, Skye N; Ihle, Andreas; Steudte-Schmiedgen, Susann; Kirschbaum, Clemens; Kliegel, Matthias

    2016-05-01

    It has been hypothesized that prolonged exposure to high cortisol levels results in cognitive impairment. However, previous research into the relationship between cortisol and cognition has produced mixed results, most likely due to difficulties achieving valid estimates of long-term cortisol exposure based on salivary or plasma cortisol assessments at a single time point. Furthermore, there has been little research on the cognitive effects of long-term cortisol exposure in working-age adults. In the present study, hair samples were collected from 246 nurses (89.8% female) aged from 21 to 62 (M=42.0, SD=11.2). Hair cortisol concentrations (HCC) in the proximal 3-cm hair segment were analyzed providing an estimate of integrated cortisol secretion over the 3 month-period prior to hair sampling. Cognition was measured using a battery of 15 neuropsychological tests, measuring core dimensions of memory, inductive reasoning, processing speed, crystalized intelligence and major aspects of executive functioning. HCC was not significantly related to any of the cognitive abilities measured, either before or after controlling for potential moderators such as age, sex, education, health, well-being, work ability and burnout. Tests for nonlinear relationships also yielded non-significant results. Thus, despite the study being well powered, long term cortisol exposure did not appear to be related to cognitive performance in this sample of working-age adults, suggesting that long term cortisol exposure may be less relevant to cognition in younger and middle-aged adults than was previously thought. PMID:26881835

  20. Children's Cognitive Performance and Selective Attention Following Recent Community Violence

    PubMed Central

    McCoy, Dana Charles; Raver, C. Cybele; Sharkey, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Research has shown robust relationships between community violence and psychopathology, yet relatively little is known about the ways in which community violence may affect cognitive performance and attention. The present study estimates the effects of police-reported community violence on 359 urban children's performance on a computerized neuropsychological task using a quasi-experimental fixed-effects design. Living in close proximity to a recent violent crime predicted faster but marginally less accurate task performance for the full sample, evolutionarily adaptive patterns of “vigilant” attention (i.e., less attention toward positive stimuli, more attention toward negative stimuli) for children reporting low trait anxiety, and potentially maladaptive patterns of “avoidant” attention for highly anxious children. These results suggest that community violence can directly affect children's cognitive performance while also having different (and potentially orthogonal) impacts on attention deployment depending on children's levels of biobehavioral risk. Implications for mental health and sociological research are discussed. PMID:25663176

  1. Cognition and the Placebo Effect – Dissociating Subjective Perception and Actual Performance

    PubMed Central

    Schwarz, Katharina A.; Büchel, Christian

    2015-01-01

    The influence of positive or negative expectations on clinical outcomes such as pain relief or motor performance in patients and healthy participants has been extensively investigated for years. Such research promises potential benefit for patient treatment by deliberately using expectations as means to stimulate endogenous regulation processes. Especially regarding recent interest and controversies revolving around cognitive enhancement, the question remains whether mere expectancies might also yield enhancing or impairing effects in the cognitive domain, i.e., can we improve or impair cognitive performance simply by creating a strong expectancy in participants about their performance? Moreover, previous literature suggests that especially subjective perception is highly susceptible to expectancy effects, whereas objective measures can be affected in certain domains, but not in others. Does such a dissociation of objective measures and subjective perception also apply to cognitive placebo and nocebo effects? In this study, we sought to investigate whether placebo and nocebo effects can be evoked in cognitive tasks, and whether these effects influence objective and subjective measures alike. To this end, we instructed participants about alleged effects of different tone frequencies (high, intermediate, low) on brain activity and cognitive functions. We paired each tone with specific success rates in a Flanker task paradigm as a preliminary conditioning procedure, adapted from research on placebo hypoalgesia. In a subsequent test phase, we measured reaction times and success rates in different expectancy conditions (placebo, nocebo, and control) and then asked participants how the different tone frequencies affected their performance. Interestingly, we found no effects of expectation on objective measures, but a strong effect on subjective perception, i.e., although actual performance was not affected by expectancy, participants strongly believed that the placebo

  2. Is Education Associated with Improvements in General Cognitive Ability, or in Specific Skills?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ritchie, Stuart J.; Bates, Timothy C.; Deary, Ian J.

    2015-01-01

    Previous research has indicated that education influences cognitive development, but it is unclear what, precisely, is being improved. Here, we tested whether education is associated with cognitive test score improvements via domain-general effects on general cognitive ability ("g"), or via domain-specific effects on particular cognitive…

  3. The effect of breakfast cereal consumption on adolescents' cognitive performance and mood

    PubMed Central

    Defeyter, Margaret A.; Russo, Riccardo

    2013-01-01

    The aim of the current study was to investigate the effect of breakfast consumption on cognitive performance and mood in adolescents, and any interaction that breakfast consumption might have with cognitive load. The rationale for this approach was that the beneficial effects of any intervention with regard to cognitive function may be more readily apparent when more demands are placed on the system. Furthermore, as skipping breakfast is particularly prevalent within this age group, thus, we focused on adolescents who habitually skip breakfast. Cognitive load was modulated by varying the level of difficulty of a series of cognitive tasks tapping memory, attention, and executive functions. Mood measured with Bond–Lader scales (1974) as well as measures of thirst, hunger, and satiety were recorded at each test session both at baseline and after the completion of each test battery. Forty adolescents (mean age = 14:2) participated in this within-subjects design study. According to treatment, all participants were tested before and after the intake of a low Glycaemic index breakfast (i.e., a 35 g portion of AllBran and 125 ml semi-skimmed milk) and before and after no breakfast consumption. Assessment time had two levels: 8.00 am (baseline) and 10.45 am. The orders of cognitive load tasks were counterbalanced. Overall it appeared that following breakfast participants felt more alert, satiated, and content. Following breakfast consumption, there was evidence for improved cognitive performance across the school morning compared to breakfast omission in some tasks (e.g., Hard Word Recall, Serial 3's and Serial 7's). However, whilst participants performance on the hard version of each cognitive task was significantly poorer compared to the corresponding easy version, there was limited evidence to support the hypothesis that the effect of breakfast was greater in the more demanding versions of the tasks. PMID:24312043

  4. The effect of breakfast cereal consumption on adolescents' cognitive performance and mood.

    PubMed

    Defeyter, Margaret A; Russo, Riccardo

    2013-01-01

    The aim of the current study was to investigate the effect of breakfast consumption on cognitive performance and mood in adolescents, and any interaction that breakfast consumption might have with cognitive load. The rationale for this approach was that the beneficial effects of any intervention with regard to cognitive function may be more readily apparent when more demands are placed on the system. Furthermore, as skipping breakfast is particularly prevalent within this age group, thus, we focused on adolescents who habitually skip breakfast. Cognitive load was modulated by varying the level of difficulty of a series of cognitive tasks tapping memory, attention, and executive functions. Mood measured with Bond-Lader scales (1974) as well as measures of thirst, hunger, and satiety were recorded at each test session both at baseline and after the completion of each test battery. Forty adolescents (mean age = 14:2) participated in this within-subjects design study. According to treatment, all participants were tested before and after the intake of a low Glycaemic index breakfast (i.e., a 35 g portion of AllBran and 125 ml semi-skimmed milk) and before and after no breakfast consumption. Assessment time had two levels: 8.00 am (baseline) and 10.45 am. The orders of cognitive load tasks were counterbalanced. Overall it appeared that following breakfast participants felt more alert, satiated, and content. Following breakfast consumption, there was evidence for improved cognitive performance across the school morning compared to breakfast omission in some tasks (e.g., Hard Word Recall, Serial 3's and Serial 7's). However, whilst participants performance on the hard version of each cognitive task was significantly poorer compared to the corresponding easy version, there was limited evidence to support the hypothesis that the effect of breakfast was greater in the more demanding versions of the tasks. PMID:24312043

  5. Flipperons for Improved Aerodynamic Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mabe, James H.

    2008-01-01

    Lightweight, piezoelectrically actuated bending flight-control surfaces have shown promise as means of actively controlling airflows to improve the performances of transport airplanes. These bending flight-control surfaces are called flipperons because they look somewhat like small ailerons, but, unlike ailerons, are operated in an oscillatory mode reminiscent of the actions of biological flippers. The underlying concept of using flipperons and other flipperlike actuators to impart desired characteristics to flows is not new. Moreover, elements of flipperon-based active flow-control (AFC) systems for aircraft had been developed previously, but it was not until the development reported here that the elements have been integrated into a complete, controllable prototype AFC system for wind-tunnel testing to enable evaluation of the benefits of AFC for aircraft. The piezoelectric actuator materials chosen for use in the flipperons are single- crystal solid solutions of lead zinc niobate and lead titanate, denoted generically by the empirical formula (1-x)[Pb(Zn(1/3)Nb(2/3))O3]:x[PbTiO3] (where x<1) and popularly denoted by the abbreviation PZN-PT. These are relatively newly recognized piezoelectric materials that are capable of strain levels exceeding 1 percent and strain-energy densities 5 times greater than those of previously commercially available piezoelectric materials. Despite their high performance levels, (1-x)[Pb(Zn(1/3)Nb(2/3))O3]:x[PbTiO3] materials have found limited use until now because, relative to previously commercially available piezoelectric materials, they tend to be much more fragile.

  6. Hair cortisol and cognitive performance in healthy older people.

    PubMed

    Pulopulos, Matias M; Hidalgo, Vanesa; Almela, Mercedes; Puig-Perez, Sara; Villada, Carolina; Salvador, Alicia

    2014-06-01

    Worse cognitive performance in older people has been associated with hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysregulation (in particular, higher cortisol levels). Analysis of hair cortisol concentrations (HCC) is a novel method to measure long-term cortisol exposure, and its relationship with cognition in healthy older people has not yet been studied. We investigated whether HCC (measured in hair scalp) and diurnal salivary cortisol levels (awakening, 30min after awakening, and evening, across two days) were related to cognitive performance (assessed with the Trail-making Test A and B, Digit Span Forward and Backward, word list-RAVLT and Stories subtest of the Rivermead) in 57 healthy older people (mean age=64.75 years, SD=4.17). Results showed that lower HCC were consistently related to worse working memory, learning, short-term verbal memory (RAVLT first trial and immediate recall) and long-term verbal memory. In contrast, higher mean levels and higher diurnal area under the curve of diurnal salivary cortisol were related to worse attention and short-term verbal memory (immediate story recall), respectively. Interestingly, a higher ratio of mean levels of diurnal salivary cortisol over HCC were related to worse performance on working memory and short-term verbal memory, suggesting that those individuals with lower long-term cortisol exposure might be more vulnerable to the negative effect of HPA-axis dysregulation on these cognitive processes. Our findings suggest that both low long-term cortisol exposure and a possible dysregulation of the diurnal rhythm of the HPA-axis may account, at least in part, for the inter-individual variability in cognitive performance in healthy older people. PMID:24767624

  7. A Cognitive Framework for Understanding and Improving Interference Resolution in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Mishra, Jyoti; Anguera, Joaquin A.; Ziegler, David A.; Gazzaley, Adam

    2014-01-01

    All of us are familiar with the negative impact of interference on achieving our task goals. We are referring to interference by information, which either impinges on our senses from an external environmental source or is internally generated by our thoughts. Informed by more than a decade of research on the cognitive and neural processing of interference, we have developed a framework for understanding how interference impacts our neural systems and especially how it is regulated and suppressed during efficient on-task performance. Importantly, externally and internally generated interferences have distinct neural signatures, and further, distinct neural processing emerges depending on whether individuals must ignore and suppress the interference, as for distractions, or engage with them in a secondary task, as during multitasking. Here, we elaborate on this cognitive framework and how it changes throughout the human lifespan, focusing mostly on research evidence from younger adults and comparing these findings to data from older adults, children, and cognitively impaired populations. With insights gleaned from our growing understanding, we then describe three novel translational efforts in our lab directed at improving distinct aspects of interference resolution using cognitive training. Critically, these training approaches were specifically developed to target improved interference resolution based on neuroplasticity principles and have shown much success in randomized controlled first version evaluations in healthy aging. Our results show not only on-task training improvements but also robust generalization of benefit to other cognitive control abilities. This research showcases how an in-depth understanding of neural mechanisms can then inform the development of effective deficit-targeted interventions, which can in turn benefit both healthy and cognitively impaired populations. PMID:24309262

  8. Whole-body vibration improves cognitive functions of an adult with ADHD.

    PubMed

    Fuermaier, Anselm B M; Tucha, Lara; Koerts, Janneke; van den Bos, Meinris; Regterschot, G Ruben H; Zeinstra, Edzard B; van Heuvelen, Marieke J G; van der Zee, Eddy A; Lange, Klaus W; Tucha, Oliver

    2014-09-01

    Adult attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with a variety of cognitive impairments, which were shown to affect academic achievement and quality of life. Current treatment strategies, such as stimulant drug treatment, were demonstrated to effectively improve cognitive functions of patients with ADHD. However, most treatment strategies are associated with a number of disadvantages in a considerable proportion of patients, such as unsatisfactory effects, adverse clinical side effects or high financial costs. In order to address limitations of current treatment strategies, whole-body vibration (WBV) might represent a novel approach to treat cognitive dysfunctions of patients with ADHD. WBV refers to the exposure of the whole body of an individual to vibration and was found to affect physiology and cognition. In the present study, WBV was applied on 10 consecutive days to an adult diagnosed with ADHD. Neuropsychological assessments were performed repeatedly at three different times, i.e., the day before the start of the treatment, on the day following completion of treatment and 14 days after the treatment have been completed (follow-up). An improved neuropsychological test performance following WBV treatment points to the high clinical value of WBV in treating patients with neuropsychological impairments such as ADHD. PMID:25031090

  9. Social Cognition in Williams Syndrome: Relations between Performance on the Social Attribution Task and Cognitive and Behavioral Characteristics

    PubMed Central

    van der Fluit, Faye; Gaffrey, Michael S.; Klein-Tasman, Bonita P.

    2012-01-01

    Williams syndrome (WS) is a developmental disorder of genetic origin, with characteristic cognitive and personality profiles. Studies of WS point to an outgoing and gregarious personality style, often contrasted with autism spectrum disorders; however, recent research has uncovered underlying social reciprocity difficulties in people with WS. Social information processing difficulties that underlie these social reciprocity difficulties have been sparsely examined. Participants in the current study included 24 children with WS ages 8 through 15. A lab-based measure of social perception and social cognition was administered (Social Attribution Test), as well as an intellectual functioning measure (KBIT-II) and parent reports of communication and reciprocal social skills (Social Communication Questionnaire, Social Responsiveness Scale). Relations between social cognition, cognitive abilities, and social-communication were examined. Results demonstrated relations between parent-reported social reciprocity and the typicality of the responses provided in the lab-based measure, even once variability in intellectual functioning was taken into account. Specifically, those individuals who produced narratives in response to the social attribution task (SAT) that were more similar to those described in previous studies of typically developing individuals were also reported to have fewer social reciprocity difficulties in the real world setting as reported by parents. In addition, a significant improvement in performance on the SAT was seen with added scaffolding, particularly for participants with stronger intellectual functioning. These findings indicate that difficulties interpreting the social dynamics between others in ambiguous situations may contribute to the social relationship difficulties observed in people with WS, above and beyond the role of intellectual functioning. Exploratory analyses indicated that performance by individuals with stronger intellectual

  10. Social Cognition in Williams Syndrome: Relations between Performance on the Social Attribution Task and Cognitive and Behavioral Characteristics.

    PubMed

    van der Fluit, Faye; Gaffrey, Michael S; Klein-Tasman, Bonita P

    2012-01-01

    Williams syndrome (WS) is a developmental disorder of genetic origin, with characteristic cognitive and personality profiles. Studies of WS point to an outgoing and gregarious personality style, often contrasted with autism spectrum disorders; however, recent research has uncovered underlying social reciprocity difficulties in people with WS. Social information processing difficulties that underlie these social reciprocity difficulties have been sparsely examined. Participants in the current study included 24 children with WS ages 8 through 15. A lab-based measure of social perception and social cognition was administered (Social Attribution Test), as well as an intellectual functioning measure (KBIT-II) and parent reports of communication and reciprocal social skills (Social Communication Questionnaire, Social Responsiveness Scale). Relations between social cognition, cognitive abilities, and social-communication were examined. Results demonstrated relations between parent-reported social reciprocity and the typicality of the responses provided in the lab-based measure, even once variability in intellectual functioning was taken into account. Specifically, those individuals who produced narratives in response to the social attribution task (SAT) that were more similar to those described in previous studies of typically developing individuals were also reported to have fewer social reciprocity difficulties in the real world setting as reported by parents. In addition, a significant improvement in performance on the SAT was seen with added scaffolding, particularly for participants with stronger intellectual functioning. These findings indicate that difficulties interpreting the social dynamics between others in ambiguous situations may contribute to the social relationship difficulties observed in people with WS, above and beyond the role of intellectual functioning. Exploratory analyses indicated that performance by individuals with stronger intellectual

  11. Daily iron supplementation on cognitive performance in primary-school-aged children with and without anemia: a meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xiu-min; Liu, Hui; Qian, Jing

    2015-01-01

    Anemia is an important public health and clinical problem. Observational studies have linked iron deficiency and anemia in children with many poor outcomes, including impaired cognitive development. In this study, we summarize the evidence for the effect of daily iron supplementation on cognitive performance in primary-school-aged children. We searched electronic databases (including MEDLINE and Wangfang database) and other sources (August 2015) for randomized and quasi-randomized controlled trials involving daily iron supplementation on cognitive performance in children aged 5-12 years. We combined the data using random effects meta-analysis. We identified 3219 studies; of these, we evaluated 5 full-text papers including 1825 children. Iron supplementation cannot improve global cognitive scores (Mean difference 1.05, 95% confidence interval [CI] -2.69 to 4.79, P<0.01). Our analysis suggests that iron supplementation improves global cognitive c outcomes among primary-school-aged children is still unclear. PMID:26629120

  12. Exploring the Effect of Red and Blue on Cognitive Task Performances

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Tiansheng; Song, Lu; Wang, Ting T.; Tan, Ling; Mo, Lei

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies on the effect of color on cognitive task performances and have led to two different views. Some researchers think that the influence of red and blue on cognitive tasks is modulated by the difficulty of the task, and other researchers suggest that the influence mainly depends on the type of task. The current study combined these factors to investigate the effect of color on cognitive task performance. In Experiment 1, we manipulated the difficulty of the task to investigate the effect of red and blue on detail-oriented task performance (the proofreading task), whereas in Experiment 2 we manipulated task difficulty to explore the effect of red and blue on creative task performance (the Remote Associates Test). The results showed that red enhanced the performance on a simple detail-oriented task. However, blue improved the performance on a difficult detail-oriented task as well as on both simple and difficult creative tasks. The results of the current study indicate that the type and difficulty of the task together modulate the effect of color on cognitive performances. PMID:27303343

  13. The effect of age on cognitive performance of frontal patients

    PubMed Central

    Cipolotti, Lisa; Healy, Colm; Chan, Edgar; MacPherson, Sarah E.; White, Mark; Woollett, Katherine; Turner, Martha; Robinson, Gail; Spanò, Barbara; Bozzali, Marco; Shallice, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Age is known to affect prefrontal brain structure and executive functioning in healthy older adults, patients with neurodegenerative conditions and TBI. Yet, no studies appear to have systematically investigated the effect of age on cognitive performance in patients with focal lesions. We investigated the effect of age on the cognitive performance of a large sample of tumour and stroke patients with focal unilateral, frontal (n=68), or non-frontal lesions (n=45) and healthy controls (n=52). We retrospectively reviewed their cross sectional cognitive and imaging data. In our frontal patients, age significantly predicted the magnitude of their impairment on two executive tests (Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices, RAPM and the Stroop test) but not on nominal (Graded Naming Test, GNT) or perceptual (Incomplete Letters) task. In our non-frontal patients, age did not predict the magnitude of their impairment on the RAPM and GNT. Furthermore, the exacerbated executive impairment observed in our frontal patients manifested itself from middle age. We found that only age consistently predicted the exacerbated executive impairment. Lesions to specific frontal areas, or an increase in global brain atrophy or white matter abnormalities were not associated with this impairment. Our results are in line with the notion that the frontal cortex plays a critical role in aging to counteract cognitive and neuronal decline. We suggest that the combined effect of aging and frontal lesions impairs the frontal cortical systems by causing its computational power to fall below the threshold needed to complete executive tasks successfully. PMID:26102190

  14. The effect of age on cognitive performance of frontal patients.

    PubMed

    Cipolotti, Lisa; Healy, Colm; Chan, Edgar; MacPherson, Sarah E; White, Mark; Woollett, Katherine; Turner, Martha; Robinson, Gail; Spanò, Barbara; Bozzali, Marco; Shallice, Tim

    2015-08-01

    Age is known to affect prefrontal brain structure and executive functioning in healthy older adults, patients with neurodegenerative conditions and TBI. Yet, no studies appear to have systematically investigated the effect of age on cognitive performance in patients with focal lesions. We investigated the effect of age on the cognitive performance of a large sample of tumour and stroke patients with focal unilateral, frontal (n=68), or non-frontal lesions (n=45) and healthy controls (n=52). We retrospectively reviewed their cross sectional cognitive and imaging data. In our frontal patients, age significantly predicted the magnitude of their impairment on two executive tests (Raven's Advanced Progressive Matrices, RAPM and the Stroop test) but not on nominal (Graded Naming Test, GNT) or perceptual (Incomplete Letters) task. In our non-frontal patients, age did not predict the magnitude of their impairment on the RAPM and GNT. Furthermore, the exacerbated executive impairment observed in our frontal patients manifested itself from middle age. We found that only age consistently predicted the exacerbated executive impairment. Lesions to specific frontal areas, or an increase in global brain atrophy or white matter abnormalities were not associated with this impairment. Our results are in line with the notion that the frontal cortex plays a critical role in aging to counteract cognitive and neuronal decline. We suggest that the combined effect of aging and frontal lesions impairs the frontal cortical systems by causing its computational power to fall below the threshold needed to complete executive tasks successfully. PMID:26102190

  15. Working memory training shows immediate and long-term effects on cognitive performance in children

    PubMed Central

    Pugin, Fiona; Metz, Andreas J.; Stauffer, Madlaina; Wolf, Martin; Jenni, Oskar G.; Huber, Reto

    2014-01-01

    Working memory is important for mental reasoning and learning processes. Several studies in adults and school-age children have shown performance improvement in cognitive tests after working memory training. Our aim was to examine not only immediate but also long-term effects of intensive working memory training on cognitive performance tests in children. Fourteen healthy male subjects between 10 and 16 years trained a visuospatial n-back task over 3 weeks (30 min daily), while 15 individuals of the same age range served as a passive control group. Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls). The improvement was more pronounced in subjects who improved their performance during the training. Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group. We conclude that visuospatial working memory training in children boosts performance in similar memory tasks such as the auditory n-back task. The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training. PMID:25671082

  16. Neuroplasticity-Based Auditory Training Via Laptop Computer Improves Cognition in Young Individuals With Recent Onset Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Fisher, Melissa; Loewy, Rachel; Carter, Cameron; Lee, Ashley; Ragland, J. Daniel; Niendam, Tara; Schlosser, Danielle; Pham, Lien; Miskovich, Tara; Vinogradov, Sophia

    2015-01-01

    Objective: Cognitive deficits that characterize schizophrenia are present in the prodrome, worsen with illness onset, and predict functional outcome. Cognitive dysfunction is thus a critical target for early intervention in young individuals with recent onset schizophrenia. Method: This 2-site double-blind randomized controlled trial investigated cognitive training of auditory processing/verbal learning in 86 subjects with recent onset schizophrenia (mean age of 21 years). Subjects were given laptop computers to take home and were asked to perform 40 hours of training or 40 hours of commercial computer games over 8 weeks. We examined cognitive measures recommended by the Measurement and Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia initiative (MATRICS), symptoms, and functioning. We also assessed baseline reward anticipation to index motivational system functioning and measured changes in auditory processing speed after 20 hours of training to assess target engagement. Results: Auditory training subjects demonstrated significant improvements in global cognition, verbal memory, and problem solving compared with those of computer games control subjects. Both groups showed a slight but significant decrease in symptoms and no change in functional outcome measures. Training-induced cognitive gains at posttraining showed significant associations with reward anticipation at baseline and with improvement in auditory processing speed at 20 hours. Conclusion: Neuroscience-informed cognitive training via laptop computer represents a promising treatment approach for cognitive dysfunction in early schizophrenia. An individual’s baseline motivational system functioning (reward anticipation), and ability to engage in auditory processing speed improvement, may represent important predictors of treatment outcome. Future studies must investigate whether cognitive training improves functioning and how best to integrate it into critical psychosocial interventions. PMID

  17. Chicken Essence for Cognitive Function Improvement: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

    PubMed

    Teoh, Siew Li; Sudfangsai, Suthinee; Lumbiganon, Pisake; Laopaiboon, Malinee; Lai, Nai Ming; Chaiyakunapruk, Nathorn

    2016-01-01

    Chicken essence (CE) is a popular traditional remedy in Asia, which is believed to improve cognitive functions. CE company claimed that the health benefits were proven with research studies. A systematic review was conducted to determine the cognitive-enhancing effects of CE. We systematically searched a number of databases for randomized controlled trials with human subjects consuming CE and cognitive tests involved. Cochrane's Risk of Bias (ROB) tool was used to assess the quality of trials and meta-analysis was performed. Seven trials were included, where six healthy subjects and one subject with poorer cognitive functions were recruited. One trial had unclear ROB while the rest had high ROB. For executive function tests, there was a significant difference favoring CE (pooled standardized mean difference (SMD) of -0.55 (-1.04, -0.06)) and another with no significant difference (pooled SMD of 0.70 (-0.001, 1.40)). For short-term memory tests, no significant difference was found (pooled SMD of 0.63 (-0.16, 1.42)). Currently, there is a lack of convincing evidence to show a cognitive enhancing effect of CE. PMID:26805876

  18. Chicken Essence for Cognitive Function Improvement: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Teoh, Siew Li; Sudfangsai, Suthinee; Lumbiganon, Pisake; Laopaiboon, Malinee; Lai, Nai Ming; Chaiyakunapruk, Nathorn

    2016-01-01

    Chicken essence (CE) is a popular traditional remedy in Asia, which is believed to improve cognitive functions. CE company claimed that the health benefits were proven with research studies. A systematic review was conducted to determine the cognitive-enhancing effects of CE. We systematically searched a number of databases for randomized controlled trials with human subjects consuming CE and cognitive tests involved. Cochrane’s Risk of Bias (ROB) tool was used to assess the quality of trials and meta-analysis was performed. Seven trials were included, where six healthy subjects and one subject with poorer cognitive functions were recruited. One trial had unclear ROB while the rest had high ROB. For executive function tests, there was a significant difference favoring CE (pooled standardized mean difference (SMD) of −0.55 (−1.04, −0.06)) and another with no significant difference (pooled SMD of 0.70 (−0.001, 1.40)). For short-term memory tests, no significant difference was found (pooled SMD of 0.63 (−0.16, 1.42)). Currently, there is a lack of convincing evidence to show a cognitive enhancing effect of CE. PMID:26805876

  19. EEG Analysis of the Effects of Therapeutic Cooling on the Cognitive Performance of Multiple Sclerosis Patients

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Montgomery, Leslie D.; Montgomery, Richard W.; Ku, Yu-Tsuan E.; Luna, Bernadette; Lee, Hank C.; Kliss, Mark; Webbon, Bruce; Mead, Susan C. (Technical Monitor)

    1999-01-01

    The objective of this project was to determine whether a controlled period of head and torso cooling would enhance the cognitive performance of multiple sclerosis patients. Nineteen MS patients (11 men and 8 women) participated in the study. Control data were taken from nineteen healthy volunteers (12 men and 7 women). All but six of nineteen MS patients tested improved their cognitive performance, as measured by their scores on the Rao test battery. A second objective was to gain insight into the neurological effects of cooling. Visual evoked potentials (VEPs) stimulated by a reversing checkerboard pattern were recorded before and after cooling. We found that cooling selectively benefited the cognitive performance of those MS patients whose pre-cooling VEPs were abnormally shaped (which is an indication of visual pathway impairment due to demyelinization). Moreover, for female MS patients, the degree of cognitive performance improvement following cooling was correlated with a change in the shape of their VEPs toward a more normal shape following cooling.

  20. Nutritional habits and cognitive performance of older adults.

    PubMed

    Mallidou, Anastasia; Cartie, Mario

    2015-06-01

    Healthy nutritional habits, including drinking plenty of water and maintaining hydration, are fundamental components for sustaining life, health and wellbeing. Evidence has suggested that certain dietary patterns and lifestyles could help delay the ageing process and reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease. This article explores the potential association between nutritional habits and the cognitive performance of older adults and identifies research gaps that could be filled by future studies on healthy ageing. PMID:26014793

  1. Effects of aerobic exercise on cognitive performance and individual psychopathology in depressive and schizophrenia patients.

    PubMed

    Oertel-Knöchel, Viola; Mehler, Pia; Thiel, Christian; Steinbrecher, Kristina; Malchow, Berend; Tesky, Valentina; Ademmer, Karin; Prvulovic, David; Banzer, Winfried; Zopf, Yurdagül; Schmitt, Andrea; Hänsel, Frank

    2014-10-01

    Cognitive deficits are core symptoms in patients with schizophrenia (SZ) and major depressive disorder (MDD), but specific and approved treatments for cognitive deterioration are scarce. Experimental and clinical evidence suggests that aerobic exercise may help to reduce psychopathological symptoms and support cognitive performance, but this has not yet been systematically investigated. In the current study, we examined the effects of aerobic training on cognitive performance and symptom severity in psychiatric inpatients. To our knowledge, to date, no studies have been published that directly compare the effects of exercise across disease groups in order to acquire a better understanding of disease-specific versus general or overlapping effects of physical training intervention. Two disease groups (n=22 MDD patients, n=29 SZ patients) that were matched for age, gender, duration of disease and years of education received cognitive training combined either with aerobic physical exercise or with mental relaxation training. The interventions included 12 sessions (3 times a week) over a time period of 4 weeks, lasting each for 75 min (30 min of cognitive training+45 min of cardio training/mental relaxation training). Cognitive parameters and psychopathology scores of all participants were tested in pre- and post-testing sessions and were then compared with a waiting control group. In the total group of patients, the results indicate an increase in cognitive performance in the domains visual learning, working memory and speed of processing, a decrease in state anxiety and an increase in subjective quality of life between pre- and post-testing. The effects in SZ patients compared with MDD patients were stronger for cognitive performance, whereas there were stronger effects in MDD patients compared with SZ patients in individual psychopathology values. MDD patients showed a significant reduction in depressive symptoms and state anxiety values after the intervention period

  2. Improving Performance in a Nuclear Cardiology Department

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LaFleur, Doug; Smalley, Karolyn; Austin, John

    2005-01-01

    Improving performance in the medical industry is an area that is ideally suited for the tools advocated by the International Society of Performance Improvement (ISPI). This paper describes an application of the tools that have been developed by Dale Brethower and Geary Rummler, two pillars of the performance improvement industry. It allows the…

  3. Intranasal Insulin Improves Age-Related Cognitive Deficits and Reverses Electrophysiological Correlates of Brain Aging.

    PubMed

    Maimaiti, Shaniya; Anderson, Katie L; DeMoll, Chris; Brewer, Lawrence D; Rauh, Benjamin A; Gant, John C; Blalock, Eric M; Porter, Nada M; Thibault, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Peripheral insulin resistance is a key component of metabolic syndrome associated with obesity, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes. While the impact of insulin resistance is well recognized in the periphery, it is also becoming apparent in the brain. Recent studies suggest that insulin resistance may be a factor in brain aging and Alzheimer's disease (AD) whereby intranasal insulin therapy, which delivers insulin to the brain, improves cognition and memory in AD patients. Here, we tested a clinically relevant delivery method to determine the impact of two forms of insulin, short-acting insulin lispro (Humalog) or long-acting insulin detemir (Levemir), on cognitive functions in aged F344 rats. We also explored insulin effects on the Ca(2+)-dependent hippocampal afterhyperpolarization (AHP), a well-characterized neurophysiological marker of aging which is increased in the aged, memory impaired animal. Low-dose intranasal insulin improved memory recall in aged animals such that their performance was similar to that seen in younger animals. Further, because ex vivo insulin also reduced the AHP, our results suggest that the AHP may be a novel cellular target of insulin in the brain, and improved cognitive performance following intranasal insulin therapy may be the result of insulin actions on the AHP. PMID:25659889

  4. How performance (non-)contingent reward modulates cognitive control.

    PubMed

    Fröber, Kerstin; Dreisbach, Gesine

    2016-07-01

    Reward has repeatedly been shown to influence cognitive control. More precisely, performance contingent reward is known to increase preparatory, proactive control. In comparison, performance non-contingent reward, that is, reward that is not dependent on a pre-specified performance criterion but is given unconditional for any response, even errors, is a rather understudied topic. Recently, Fröber and Dreisbach (2014) compared performance contingent and non-contingent reward in a single experiment. They found that non-contingent reward seems to modulate cognitive control in an oppositional way than contingent reward, namely by reducing proactive control. In the present paper, the authors further investigate this dissociation in two experiments with a reward manipulation that facilitated adaptations to changes in reward availability: reward - with performance contingency varying between subjects - was manipulated not trial-by-trial but in mini-blocks of 20 consecutive trials in an AX-Continuous Performance Task. Performance contingent reward significantly increased proactive control. The repeated experience of non-contingent reward even for errors did not result in increased error rates, but instead was indicative of stable compliance with task rules over time and with less reliance on proactive control. PMID:27160060

  5. Plasma 1,8-cineole correlates with cognitive performance following exposure to rosemary essential oil aroma

    PubMed Central

    Oliver, Lorraine

    2012-01-01

    Objective The mode of influence of the aromas of plant essential oils on human behaviour is largely unclear. This study was designed to assess the potential pharmacological relationships between absorbed 1,8-cineole following exposure to rosemary aroma, cognitive performance and mood. Methods Twenty healthy volunteers performed serial subtraction and visual information processing tasks in a cubicle diffused with the aroma of rosemary. Mood assessments were made pre and post testing, and venous blood was sampled at the end of the session. Pearson correlations were carried out between serum levels of 1,8-cineole, cognitive performance measures and change in mood scores. Results Here we show for the first time that performance on cognitive tasks is significantly related to concentration of absorbed 1,8-cineole following exposure to rosemary aroma, with improved performance at higher concentrations. Furthermore, these effects were found for speed and accuracy outcomes, indicating that the relationship is not describing a speed–accuracy trade off. The relationships between 1,8-cineole levels and mood were less pronounced, but did reveal a significant negative correlation between change in contentment and plasma 1,8-cineole levels. Conclusion These findings suggest that compounds absorbed from rosemary aroma affect cognition and subjective state independently through different neurochemical pathways. PMID:23983963

  6. Better Adherence to Treatment Recommendations in Heart Failure Predicts Improved Cognitive Function at a One Year Follow Up

    PubMed Central

    Alosco, Michael L.; Spitznagel, Mary Beth; Cohen, Ronald; Sweet, Lawrence H.; Josephson, Richard; Hughes, Joel; Rosneck, Jim; Gunstad, John

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Treatment non-adherence is common in heart failure and associated with poor health outcomes in this population. Recent cross-sectional work in heart failure and past work in other medical populations suggests cognitive function is a key determinant of patient’s ability to adhere to treatment recommendations. However, it is also possible that treatment adherence is an important modifier and predictor of cognitive function, though no study has examined this possibility and we sought to do so in a sample of heart failure patients. Methods 115 patients with heart failure self-reported adherence to treatment recommendations. The Modified Mini Mental State Examination (3MS), Trail Making Test parts A and B, and the California Verbal Learning Test-II (CVLT-II) assessed cognitive function. These procedures were performed at baseline and a 12-month follow-up. Results Global cognition and memory abilities improved over the 12-month period. Regression analyses controlling for baseline and medical and demographic factors showed better baseline treatment adherence predicted improved 12-month performances on the 3MS and CVLT-II. Adherence to medication and diet regimens and smoking abstinence emerged as the most important contributors. Conclusions Better treatment adherence predicted improved cognition one-year later in HF. Prospective studies that utilize objective assessments of treatment adherence are needed to confirm our findings and examine whether improved treatment adherence preserves cognitive function in heart failure. PMID:25352233

  7. Performance Pay Path to Improvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gratz, Donald B.

    2011-01-01

    The primary goal of performance pay for the past decade has been higher test scores, and the most prominent strategy has been to increase teacher performance through financial incentives. If teachers are rewarded for success, according to this logic, they will try harder. If they try harder, more children will achieve higher test scores. The…

  8. Improved Processing Speed: Online Computer-Based Cognitive Training in Older Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simpson, Tamara; Camfield, David; Pipingas, Andrew; Macpherson, Helen; Stough, Con

    2012-01-01

    In an increasingly aging population, a number of adults are concerned about declines in their cognitive abilities. Online computer-based cognitive training programs have been proposed as an accessible means by which the elderly may improve their cognitive abilities; yet, more research is needed in order to assess the efficacy of these programs. In…

  9. Improving Cognitive Processes in Preschool Children: The COGEST Programme

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mayoral-Rodríguez, Silvia; Timoneda-Gallart, Carme; Pérez-Álvarez, Federico; Das, J. P.

    2015-01-01

    The present study provides empirical evidence to support the hypothesis that pre-school children's cognitive functions can be developed by virtue of a training tool named COGENT (Cognitive Enhancement Training). We assumed that COGENT (COGEST in Spain) which is embedded in speech and language, will enhance the core cognitive processes that are…

  10. Imaging of neuro-cognitive performance in extreme Environments—A (p)review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, Stefan; Bubeev, Juri A.; Choukèr, Alexander; Morukov, Boris; Johannes, Bernd; Strüder, Heiko K.

    2012-12-01

    Living in extreme environments is accompanied by a number of stressors, which can be classified either as physiological stressors (e.g. microgravity, missing sunlight) or psychological stressors (e.g. confinement). From earth bound studies a negative impact of stress on mental health and cognitive performance is well known and both factors might impair mission success and mission safety during longer inhabitation of space. Accordingly there is the need to identify adequate countermeasures. Nevertheless causal research of neuro-cognitive impairments in space remains speculative due to missing possibilities of brain imaging. Furthermore the reliability of current psychological tests used to assess and monitor cognitive performance in extreme environments seems to be vulnerable due to a lack of compliance. With on-going plans of international space agencies to send people to moon and/or mars, this manuscript aims to summarize and review research attempts of the past two decades and to identify methodological shortcomings. Finally, following the guideline that research has no legacy for its own but must serve the self-concept and well-being of man, this manuscript presents a number of recommendations to enhance future neuro-cognitive research in extreme environments. A deeper insight into neuro-cognitive coherence is not only desirable to understand the effects of stress on mental health, which seems to be a major issue for our current society, and to develop adequate countermeasures but will also help to maintain and improve mission success and mission safety in manned space flight.