Godlaski, Aaron J; Giancola, Peter R
The purpose of this investigation was to examine (a) whether irritability mediates the relation between executive functioning (EF) and alcohol-related aggression and (b) whether the alcohol-aggression relation is better explained by the interactive effects of EF and irritability above and beyond the effects of either variable alone. EF was measured using seven well-established neuropsychological tests. Irritability was assessed with the Caprara Irritability Scale. Participants were 313 male and female social drinkers between 21 and 35 years of age. Following the consumption of an alcohol or a placebo beverage, participants were tested on a laboratory aggression task in which electric shocks were given to and received from a fictitious opponent under the guise of a competitive reaction-time task. Aggression was operationalized as the shock intensities administered to the fictitious opponent. Results indicated that irritability successfully mediated the relation between EF and intoxicated aggression for men only. Despite the fact that irritability and EF both independently moderated the alcohol-aggression relation in previous studies, no significant interaction for their combined effect was detected here. The findings are discussed, in part, within a cognitive neoassociationistic framework for aggressive behavior. 2009 APA, all rights reserved.
Rouw, Romke; van Driel, Joram; Knip, Koen; Richard Ridderinkhof, K
In grapheme-color synesthesia, a number or letter can evoke two different and possibly conflicting (real and synesthetic) color sensations at the same time. In this study, we investigate the relationship between synesthesia and executive control functions. First, no general skill differences were obtained between synesthetes and non-synesthetes in classic executive control paradigms. Furthermore, classic executive control effects did not interact with synesthetic behavioral effects. Third, we found support for our hypothesis that inhibition of a synesthetic color takes effort and time. Finally, individual differences analyses showed no relationship between the two skills; performance on a 'normal' Stroop task does not predict performance on a synesthetic Stroop task. Across four studies, the current results consistently show no clear relationship between executive control functions and synesthetic behavioral effects. This raises the question of which mechanisms are at play in synesthetic 'management' during the presence of two conflicting (real and synesthetic) sensations. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Rouw, R.; van Driel, J.; Knip, K.; Ridderinkhof, K.R.
In grapheme-color synesthesia, a number or letter can evoke two different and possibly conflicting (real and synesthetic) color sensations at the same time. In this study, we investigate the relationship between synesthesia and executive control functions. First, no general skill differences were
Full Text Available The executive function (EF is a set of abilities, which allows us to invoke voluntary control of our behavioral responses. These functions enable human beings to develop and carry out plans, make up analogies, obey social rules, solve problems, adapt to unexpected circumstances, do many tasks simultaneously and locate episodes in time and place. EF includes divided attention and sustained attention, working memory, set-shifting, flexibility, planning and the regulation of goal directed behavior and can be defined as a brain function underlying the human faculty to act or think not only in reaction to external events but also in relation with internal goals and states. EF is mostly associated with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (PFC. Besides EF, PFC is involved in self-regulation of behavior, i.e. the ability to regulate behavior according to internal goals and constraints, particularly in less structured situations. Self-regulation of behavior is subtended by ventral medial /orbital PFC. Impairment of EF is one of the most commonly observed deficits in schizophrenia through the various disease stages. Impairment in tasks measuring conceptualization, planning, cognitive flexibility, verbal fluency, ability to solve complex problems and working memory occur in schizophrenia. Disorders detected by executive tests are consistent with evidence from functional neuroimaging, which have shown PFC dysfunction in patients while performing these kinds of tasks. Schizophrenics also exhibit deficit in odor identifying, decision-making and self-regulation of behavior suggesting dysfunction of the orbital PFC. However, impairment in executive tests is explained by dysfunction of prefronto-striato-thalamic, prefronto-parietal and prefronto-temporal neural networks mainly. Disorders in executive functions may be considered central facts with respect to schizophrenia and it has been suggested that negative symptoms may be explained by that executive dysfunction.
Lee, Kerry; Bull, Rebecca; Ho, Ringo M. H.
Although early studies of executive functioning in children supported Miyake et al.'s (2000) three-factor model, more recent findings supported a variety of undifferentiated or two-factor structures. Using a cohort-sequential design, this study examined whether there were age-related differences in the structure of executive functioning among…
Lillard, Angeline S; Li, Hui; Boguszewski, Katie
Children spend a lot of time watching television on its many platforms: directly, online, and via videos and DVDs. Many researchers are concerned that some types of television content appear to negatively influence children's executive function. Because (1) executive function predicts key developmental outcomes, (2) executive function appears to be influenced by some television content, and (3) American children watch large quantities of television (including the content of concern), the issues discussed here comprise a crucial public health issue. Further research is needed to reveal exactly what television content is implicated, what underlies television's effect on executive function, how long the effect lasts, and who is affected. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Farup, Per Grønaas; Hestad, Knut
Background. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is associated with depression and depression with impaired cognitive functions. The primary aim was to study associations between depression and cognitive functions in patients with IBS. Methods. IBS (according to the Rome III criteria), cognitive functions (evaluated with a set of neuropsychological tests), and depression (measured with Beck Depression Inventory II and Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Scale) were analysed in patients with idiopathic dep...
Verburgh, L.; Scherder, E.J.A.; van Lange, P.A.M.; Oosterlaan, J.
Executive functions might be important for successful performance in sports, particularly in team sports requiring quick anticipation and adaptation to continuously changing situations in the field. The executive functions motor inhibition, attention and visuospatial working memory were examined in
Kim, Hye In; Jung, Sung-Ae; Choi, Ju Young; Kim, Seong-Eun; Jung, Hye-kyung; Shim, Ki-Nam; Yoo, Kwon
Disturbances in biological rhythms could lead to unfavorable health impact. This study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of functional dyspepsia (FD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in rotating shift workers, and to determine the factors that have significant association with the prevalence of FD and IBS. The research had been carried out among nurses and nursing assistants working at Ewha Womans University Mokdong Hospital between December 2010 and February 2011. The subjects completed sel...
Hass, Michael R.; Patterson, Ashlea; Sukraw, Jocelyn; Sullivan, Brianna M.
Despite the common usage of the term "executive functioning" in neuropsychology, several aspects of this concept remain unsettled. In this paper, we will address some of the issues surrounding the notion of executive functioning and how an understanding of executive functioning and its components might assist school-based practitioners…
Full Text Available The present study was aimed at investigating different aspects of Executive Functions (EF in children with Developmental Dyslexia (DD.A neuropsychological battery tapping verbal fluency, spoonerism, attention, verbal shifting, short-term and working memory was used to assess 60 children with DD and 65 with typical reading abilities.Compared to their controls, children with DD showed deficits in several EF domains such as verbal categorical and phonological fluency, visual-spatial and auditory attention, spoonerism, verbal and visual short-term memory, and verbal working memory. Moreover, exploring predictive relationships between EF measures and reading, we found that spoonerism abilities better explained word and non-word reading deficits. Although to a lesser extent, auditory and visual-spatial attention also explained the increased percentage of variance related to reading deficit.EF deficits found in DD are interpreted as an expression of a deficient functioning of the Central Executive System and are discussed in the context of the recent temporal sampling theory.
Crane, Laura; Pring, Linda; Ryder, Nicola; Hermelin, Beate
Although executive functions have been widely studied in individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), there have been no direct empirical studies of executive abilities in savants with ASD. This study assessed three facets of executive ability (fluency, perseveration and monitoring) in savant artists with ASD, compared to non-talented adults…
Executive function is traditionally conceptualized as a set of abilities required to guide behavior toward goals. Here, an integrated theoretical framework for executive function is developed which has its roots in the notion of hierarchical mental models. Further following Duncan (2010a,b), executive function is construed as a hierarchical recursive system of test-operation-test-exit units (Miller, Galanter, and Pribram, 1960). Importantly, it is shown that this framework can be used to mode...
Executive function is traditionally conceptualized as a set of abilities required to guide behavior toward goals. Here, an integrated theoretical framework for executive function is developed which has its roots in the notion of hierarchical mental models. Further following Duncan (2010a,b), executive function is construed as a hierarchical recursive system of test-operation-test-exit units (Miller et al., 1960). Importantly, it is shown that this framework can be used to model the main regio...
Executive function is traditionally conceptualized as a set of abilities required to guide behavior toward goals. Here, an integrated theoretical framework for executive function is developed which has its roots in the notion of hierarchical mental models. Further following Duncan (2010a,b), executive function is construed as a hierarchical recursive system of test-operation-test-exit units (Miller et al., 1960). Importantly, it is shown that this framework can be used to model the main regional prefrontal syndromes, which are characterized by apathetic, disinhibited and dysexecutive cognition, and behavior, respectively. Implications of these considerations for the neuropsychological assessment of executive function are discussed.
Full Text Available Executive function is traditionally conceptualized as a set of abilities required to guide behavior toward goals. Here, an integrated theoretical framework for executive function is developed which has its roots in the notion of hierarchical mental models. Further following Duncan (2010a,b, executive function is construed as a hierarchical recursive system of test-operation-test-exit units (Miller, Galanter, and Pribram, 1960. Importantly, it is shown that this framework can be used to model the main regional prefrontal syndromes, which are characterized by apathetic, disinhibited and dysexecutive cognition and behavior, respectively. Implications of these considerations for the neuropsychological assessment of executive function are discussed.
Baggetta, Peter; Alexander, Patricia A.
Executive function is comprised of different behavioral and cognitive elements and is considered to play a significant role in learning and academic achievement. Educational researchers frequently study the construct. However, because of its complexity functionally, the research on executive function can at times be both confusing and…
Kegel, Jessica; Dux, Moira; Macko, Richard
Stroke is a leading cause of disability and sequelae may include physical, emotional, and cognitive impairments. The methods employed to cope with distress, both emotional and cognitive, have not been evaluated in individuals post-stroke. However, research in traumatic brain injury (TBI) suggests that executive function is positively correlated with adaptive coping and negatively correlated with maladaptive coping strategies (Krpan et al., 2007). Examination of these constructs post-stroke may assist with enriching our understanding of cognitive and emotional symptomatology and optimize rehabilitation strategies. The present study aimed to assess the association between executive function and coping strategies in a sample of chronic stroke survivors. The researchers hypothesized that executive function would be positively correlated with adaptive coping strategies and negatively correlated with maladaptive coping strategies. Fifteen stroke survivors were administered a battery of cognitive tests assessing executive function and also completed the Ways of Coping Questionnaire (WAYS), a self-report coping measure. Analyses indicated that executive function deficits were related to increased avoidant coping. Contrary to expectations, executive function was not significantly related to active coping. In addition, post hoc analyses revealed that executive function was a significant predictor of avoidant coping after controlling for demographics. Our data, in accordance with prior work in TBI, suggests that executive function and aspects of coping are associated. Rehabilitation strategies that improve executive function may also lead to utilization of adaptive coping strategies. Research has shown that aerobic exercise increases activation in the frontal lobe and improves executive function (Colcombe & Kramer, 2003; Colcombe et al., 2004). Future studies should examine whether aerobic exercise positively affects executive function and coping in stroke survivors.
Raffard, Stephane; Bayard, Sophie
Schizophrenia is characterized by heterogeneous brain abnormalities involving cerebral regions implied in the executive functioning. The dysexecutive syndrome is one of the most prominent and functionally cognitive features of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, it is not clear to what extend executive deficits are heterogeneous in schizophrenia…
Levine, D.S. [Univ. of Texas, Arlington, TX (United States)
Brain executive function is based in a distributed system whereby prefrontal cortex is interconnected with other cortical. and subcortical loci. Executive function is divided roughly into three interacting parts: affective guidance of responses; linkage among working memory representations; and forming complex behavioral schemata. Neural network models of each of these parts are reviewed and fit into a preliminary theoretical framework.
Bender, Alex C; Austin, Andrea M; Grodstein, Francine; Bynum, Julie P W
We examined the relationship between health care expenditures and cognition, focusing on differences across cognitive systems defined by global cognition, executive function, or episodic memory. We used linear regression models to compare annual health expenditures by cognitive status in 8125 Nurses' Health Study participants who completed a cognitive battery and were enrolled in Medicare parts A and B. Adjusting for demographics and comorbidity, executive impairment was associated with higher total annual expenditures of $1488 per person (P memory impairment was found. Expenditures exhibited a linear relationship with executive function, but not episodic memory ($584 higher for every 1 standard deviation decrement in executive function; P losses in executive function may be effective in reducing costly services. Copyright © 2017 the Alzheimer's Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Ferrara, R; Ansermet, F; Massoni, F; Petrone, L; Onofri, E; Ricci, P; Archer, T; Ricci, S
Earliest notions concerning autism (Autism Spectrum Disorders, ASD) describe the disturbance in executive functioning. Despite altered definition, executive functioning, expressed as higher cognitive skills required complex behaviors linked to the prefrontal cortex, are defective in autism. Specific difficulties in children presenting autism or verbal disabilities at executive functioning levels have been identified. Nevertheless, the developmental deficit of executive functioning in autism is highly diversified with huge individual variation and may even be absent. The aim of the present study to examine the current standing of intact executive functioning intact in ASD. Analysis of ASD populations, whether high-functioning, Asperger's or autism Broad Phenotype, studied over a range of executive functions including response inhibition, planning, cognitive flexibility, cognitive inhibition, and alerting networks indicates an absence of damage/impairment compared to the typically-developed normal control subjects. These findings of intact executive functioning in ASD subjects provide a strong foundation on which to construct applications for growth environments and the rehabilitation of autistic subjects.
Salcedo Palacios, Dii Dayana; Ramírez Nova, Yeimy Johanna; Acosta Barreto, María Rocío
Establish the profile of executive function and behavior in fifty consumers of alcohol are located in a high-risk level according to the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and which belong to different universities in the city of Bogota. Was used analytical transverse design, and were taken as study variables executive function (inhibition, monitoring, sequencing, planning, cognitive flexibility, working memory, attentional control, categorization and concept formation) and executive behavior (decision making, impulse control, emotional feedback, empathy and theory of mind). Results showed that there is a greater number of cognitive domains of executive function involved in contrast to those of executive behavior. Such is for inhibition, sequencing, attention control (processing speed), categorization, cognitive flexibility, self monitoring and planning. Copyright © 2014 Asociación Colombiana de Psiquiatría. Publicado por Elsevier España. All rights reserved.
Adults with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) have been reported to have alterations in autonomic nervous system function as measured by vagal activity via heart rate variability. Whether the same is true for children is unknown. We compared young children 7 to 10 years of age with functional abdominal...
Henry, L.; Bettenay, C.
Background: Executive functioning is increasingly seen as incorporating several component sub-skills and clinical assessments should reflect this complexity. \\ud \\ud Method: Tools for assessing executive functioning in children are reviewed within five key areas, across verbal and visuospatial abilities, with emphasis on batteries of tests. \\ud \\ud Results: There are many appropriate tests for children, although the choice is more limited for those under the age of 8 years. \\ud \\ud Conclusion...
Dougherty, Lea R; Smith, Victoria C; Bufferd, Sara J; Kessel, Ellen; Carlson, Gabrielle A; Klein, Daniel N
Little is known about the predictive validity and clinical significance of chronic irritability during early childhood. This prospective, longitudinal study examined associations of preschool chronic irritability with psychiatric disorders, functional impairment, and service use at age nine in a large community sample. Four hundred and forty-six children were assessed at age three and again at age nine. Child psychopathology and functional impairment were assessed at age three with the Preschool Age Psychiatric Assessment (PAPA) with parents and at age nine with the Kiddie-Schedule of Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (K-SADS) with parents and children. Items from the PAPA were used to create a dimensional measure of chronic irritability at age three. At age nine, mothers, fathers, and youth completed the Child Depression Inventory (CDI) and the Screen for Anxiety Related Disorders (SCARED). Chronic irritability at age three predicted any current and lifetime anxiety disorders at age nine, current and lifetime generalized anxiety disorder, and current separation anxiety, after controlling for baseline anxiety disorders. In addition, preschool irritability predicted increases in anxiety and disruptive behavior disorder symptoms on the K-SADS, and maternal and paternal reports of depressive and anxiety symptoms on the CDI and SCARED. Lastly, preschool irritability predicted greater functional impairment and outpatient treatment use, even after controlling for all psychiatric disorders at baseline. Findings underscore the central role of irritability in developmental psychopathology and support the importance of early detection and interventions targeting preschool irritability. © 2015 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
Full Text Available This study analyzes differences in metacognitive skills and executive functioning between two groups of students (10-12 years with different levels of metacognitive knowledge (high n = 50, low n = 64. Groups were established based on students' score on a test of knowledge of strategy use. Metacognitive skills were assessed by means of self-report. Students reported the frequency with which they applied these strategies during the phases of planning, execution, and evaluation of learning. Information about student executive functioning was provided by families and teachers, who completed two parallel forms of a behavior rating scale. The results indicated that: a the group with high levels of metacognitive knowledge reported using their metacognitive skills more frequently than their peers in the other group. These differences were statistically significant in the phases of planning and execution; b both family and teachers informed of better levels of executive functioning in the students with high metacognitive knowledge. Statistically significant differences were found in planning, functional memory, focus, and sustained attention. These results show the existence of an association between different levels of metacognitive knowledge, and differences in metacognitive skills and executive functions, and suggest the need to emphasize this set of variables in order to encourage students to acquire increasing levels of control over their learning process.
Kumagai, Hideki; Yokoyama, Koji; Imagawa, Tomoyuki; Yamagata, Takanori
Only a handful of studies have investigated children with functional dyspepsia (FD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) classified according to the Rome III criteria, and limited information is available on the lifestyle of affected patients. We conducted an Internet questionnaire survey of 2060 parents among the general public in Japan who lived with their children aged 10-15, who were screened for FD and IBS. The prevalence of FD and IBS was 2.8% and 6.1%, respectively, and 1.4% of the subjects met the criteria for both FD and IBS. The lifestyles of 155 subjects who met the criteria for FD, IBS, or both were compared with those of 1745 control subjects. In comparison with the controls, a significantly higher percentage of subjects with FD, IBS, or both thought that their sleep was insufficient, ate meals irregularly, were susceptible to stress and to dizziness on standing, had difficulty in getting out of bed or felt sluggish in the morning, had a tendency to faint when standing, and had migraine/chronic headache. Children with FD and IBS are susceptible to stress, have impaired sleep and eating habits, and have more frequent symptoms of comorbid orthostatic dysregulation and headache. © 2015 Japan Pediatric Society.
Sastre-Riba, S; Viana-Saenz, L
High intellectual capacity is a process in development in which the executive functions (inhibition, working memory and flexibility) play a role in the optimal manifestation of their potential. To explore the effectiveness of executive functioning among the profiles of high capacity giftedness and (convergent or divergent) talent. The study examines 78 children with high intellectual capacity aged 8-15 years with profiles of giftedness (n = 21), convergent talent (n = 39) or divergent talent (n = 18). A series of tests were administered including the Battery of Differential and General Aptitudes or the Differential Aptitude Test (depending on the age) and the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, as well as the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Corsi Test and the Go-No Go Test by means of the Psychology Experiment Building Language platform. A multivariate analysis of variance was performed to determine the relationship between executive function and intellectual profile. Significant differences are obtained between the profiles studied and the executive functions of flexibility and inhibition, but not in working memory. Working memory is similar across the profiles studied, but the complex profile of giftedness displays better executive functioning, with greater flexibility and inhibition than talent, especially of the convergent type.
Mandell, D.J.; Ward, S.E.
The neural processes that underlie executive function begin to develop in infancy. However, it is unclear how the behavior manifested by these processes are related or if they can be differentiated early in development. This study seeks to examine early emerging executive functioning skills in
Janssen, G.T.L.; Mey, H.R.A. de; Egger, J.I.M.
The Executive Function Index (EFI) is a short self-report questionnaire for the assessment of executive functions (EF) as encountered in daily life. The aim of the present study is to examine the psychometric properties of the Dutch version of the EFI (EFI-NL) in a college student sample (N = 376).
Russell Jay Hendel
Full Text Available We explore aspects of essay writing requiring high-level organizational capacity and executive function. The literature supports the approach that specific and focused writing-skill mastery leads to reduced anxiety and increased self-efficacy which correlates with improved writing skills. Although essay writing is a complex multi-dimensional task, two particular strategies, tree-diagram and reference methods, specifically address the organizational skills characteristic of executive function. The tree and reference methods presented in this paper address the flow of information, not content, and consequently, the methods presented in this paper apply to mathematics and English as well as to K-12 and college level.
Bialystok, Ellen; Depape, Anne-Marie
The authors investigated whether intensive musical experience leads to enhancements in executive processing, as has been shown for bilingualism. Young adults who were bilinguals, musical performers (instrumentalists or vocalists), or neither completed 3 cognitive measures and 2 executive function tasks based on conflict. Both executive function tasks included control conditions that assessed performance in the absence of conflict. All participants performed equivalently for the cognitive measures and the control conditions of the executive function tasks, but performance diverged in the conflict conditions. In a version of the Simon task involving spatial conflict between a target cue and its position, bilinguals and musicians outperformed monolinguals, replicating earlier research with bilinguals. In a version of the Stroop task involving auditory and linguistic conflict between a word and its pitch, the musicians performed better than the other participants. Instrumentalists and vocalists did not differ on any measure. Results demonstrate that extended musical experience enhances executive control on a nonverbal spatial task, as previously shown for bilingualism, but also enhances control in a more specialized auditory task, although the effect of bilingualism did not extend to that domain. (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved.
The National Academy of Neuropsychology defines clinical neuropsychology as "a sub-field of psychology concerned with the applied science of brain-behavior relationships. Clinical neuropsychologists use this knowledge in the assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and/or rehabilitation of patients across the lifespan with neurological, medical, neurodevelopmental and psychiatric conditions, as well as other cognitive and learning disorders" (National Academy of Neuropsychology, 2011 ). Pediatric neuropsychologists have long been concerned about another area of functionality, making their recommendations educationally relevant. This article describes accommodated metacognitive instruction, a pedagogy based on cognitive neuropsychological principles of learning and used to instruct college faculty on a methodology for teaching in all-inclusive environments.
Conway, Anne; Stifter, Cynthia A
Despite an extensive history underscoring the role of social processes and child contributions to the development of executive functions (C. Lewis & J. Carpendale, 2009; L. S. Vygotsky, 1987), research on these relations is sparse. To address this gap, 68 mother-child dyads were examined to determine whether maternal attention-directing behaviors (attention maintaining, attention redirection) and toddlers' temperament predicted executive processes during preschool (mean age = 4.5 years, SD = 0.46)-delay and conflict inhibition. Maternal attention maintaining was associated with high levels of conflict inhibition for inhibited and exuberant children, whereas attention redirection was associated with low levels of delay and conflict inhibition for inhibited children. Therefore, maternal attention-directing behaviors may enhance the development of executive functions but only for children with inhibited and exuberant temperaments. © 2012 The Authors. Child Development © 2012 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.
Best, John R
The current study examined an important aspect of experience--physical activity--that may contribute to children's executive function. The design attempted to tease apart 2 important aspects of children's exercise by examining the separate and combined effects of acute physical activity and cognitive engagement on an aspect of children's executive functioning. In a 2 × 2 within-subject experimental design, children (N = 33, 6 to 10 years old) completed activities that varied systematically in both physical activity (physically active video games versus sedentary video activities) and cognitive engagement (challenging and interactive video games versus repetitive video activities). Cognitive functioning, including executive function, was assessed after each activity by a modified flanker task (Rueda et al., 2004). Whereas cognitive engagement had no effect on any aspect of task performance, physical activity (i.e., exergaming) enhanced children's speed to resolve interference from conflicting visuospatial stimuli. Age comparisons indicated improvements with age in the accuracy of resolving interference and in overall response time. The results extend past research by showing more precisely how physical activity influences executive function and how this effect differs from the improvements that occur with development. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved.
Lewis, Charlie; Koyasu, Masuo; Oh, Seungmi; Ogawa, Ayako; Short, Benjamin; Huang, Zhao
Much of the evidence from the West has shown links between children's developing self-control (executive function), their social experiences, and their social understanding (Carpendale & Lewis, 2006, chapters 5 and 6), across a range of cultures including China. This chapter describes four studies conducted in three Oriental cultures,…
Jester, Jennifer M.; Nigg, Joel T.; Puttler, Leon I.; Long, Jeffrey C.; Fitzgerald, Hiram E.; Zucker, Robert A.
Relationships between parent and child executive functioning were examined, controlling for the critical potential confound of IQ, in a family study involving 434 children (130 girls and 304 boys) and 376 parents from 204 community recruited families at high risk for the development of substance use disorder. Structural equation modeling found…
Duijkers, Judith C L M; Vissers, Constance Th W M; Egger, Jos I M
In mental health, the term dual-diagnosis is used for the co-occurrence of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) with another mental disorder. These co-occurring disorders can have a shared cause, and can cause/intensify each other's expression. Forming a threat to health and society, dual-diagnosis is associated with relapses in addiction-related behavior and a destructive lifestyle. This is due to a persistent failure to control impulses and the maintaining of inadequate self-regulatory behavior in daily life. Thus, several aspects of executive functioning like inhibitory, shifting and updating processes seem impaired in dual-diagnosis. Executive (dys-)function is currently even seen as a shared underlying key component of most mental disorders. However, the number of studies on diverse aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is limited. In the present review, a systematic overview of various aspects of executive functioning in dual-diagnosis is presented, striving for a prototypical profile of patients with dual-diagnosis. Looking at empirical results, inhibitory and shifting processes appear to be impaired for SUD combined with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or cluster B personality disorders. Studies involving updating process tasks for dual-diagnosis were limited. More research that zooms in to the full diversity of these executive functions is needed in order to strengthen these findings. Detailed insight in the profile of strengths and weaknesses that underlies one's behavior and is related to diagnostic classifications, can lead to tailor-made assessment and indications for treatment, pointing out which aspects need attention and/or training in one's self-regulative abilities.
Full Text Available Executive functions might be important for successful performance in sports, particularly in team sports requiring quick anticipation and adaptation to continuously changing situations in the field. The executive functions motor inhibition, attention and visuospatial working memory were examined in highly talented soccer players. Eighty-four highly talented youth soccer players (mean age 11.9, and forty-two age-matched amateur soccer players (mean age 11.8 in the age range 8 to 16 years performed a Stop Signal task (motor inhibition, the Attention Network Test (alerting, orienting, and executive attention and a visuospatial working memory task. The highly talented soccer players followed the talent development program of the youth academy of a professional soccer club and played at the highest national soccer competition for their age. The amateur soccer players played at a regular soccer club in the same geographical region as the highly talented soccer players and play in a regular regional soccer competition. Group differences were tested using analyses of variance. The highly talented group showed superior motor inhibition as measured by stop signal reaction time (SSRT on the Stop Signal task and a larger alerting effect on the Attention Network Test, indicating an enhanced ability to attain and maintain an alert state. No group differences were found for orienting and executive attention and visuospatial working memory. A logistic regression model with group (highly talented or amateur as dependent variable and executive function measures that significantly distinguished between groups as predictors showed that these measures differentiated highly talented soccer players from amateur soccer players with 89% accuracy. Highly talented youth soccer players outperform youth amateur players on suppressing ongoing motor responses and on the ability to attain and maintain an alert state; both may be essential for success in soccer.
Verburgh, Lot; Scherder, Erik J A; van Lange, Paul A M; Oosterlaan, Jaap
Executive functions might be important for successful performance in sports, particularly in team sports requiring quick anticipation and adaptation to continuously changing situations in the field. The executive functions motor inhibition, attention and visuospatial working memory were examined in highly talented soccer players. Eighty-four highly talented youth soccer players (mean age 11.9), and forty-two age-matched amateur soccer players (mean age 11.8) in the age range 8 to 16 years performed a Stop Signal task (motor inhibition), the Attention Network Test (alerting, orienting, and executive attention) and a visuospatial working memory task. The highly talented soccer players followed the talent development program of the youth academy of a professional soccer club and played at the highest national soccer competition for their age. The amateur soccer players played at a regular soccer club in the same geographical region as the highly talented soccer players and play in a regular regional soccer competition. Group differences were tested using analyses of variance. The highly talented group showed superior motor inhibition as measured by stop signal reaction time (SSRT) on the Stop Signal task and a larger alerting effect on the Attention Network Test, indicating an enhanced ability to attain and maintain an alert state. No group differences were found for orienting and executive attention and visuospatial working memory. A logistic regression model with group (highly talented or amateur) as dependent variable and executive function measures that significantly distinguished between groups as predictors showed that these measures differentiated highly talented soccer players from amateur soccer players with 89% accuracy. Highly talented youth soccer players outperform youth amateur players on suppressing ongoing motor responses and on the ability to attain and maintain an alert state; both may be essential for success in soccer.
Verburgh, Lot; Scherder, Erik J. A.; van Lange, Paul A.M.; Oosterlaan, Jaap
Executive functions might be important for successful performance in sports, particularly in team sports requiring quick anticipation and adaptation to continuously changing situations in the field. The executive functions motor inhibition, attention and visuospatial working memory were examined in highly talented soccer players. Eighty-four highly talented youth soccer players (mean age 11.9), and forty-two age-matched amateur soccer players (mean age 11.8) in the age range 8 to 16 years performed a Stop Signal task (motor inhibition), the Attention Network Test (alerting, orienting, and executive attention) and a visuospatial working memory task. The highly talented soccer players followed the talent development program of the youth academy of a professional soccer club and played at the highest national soccer competition for their age. The amateur soccer players played at a regular soccer club in the same geographical region as the highly talented soccer players and play in a regular regional soccer competition. Group differences were tested using analyses of variance. The highly talented group showed superior motor inhibition as measured by stop signal reaction time (SSRT) on the Stop Signal task and a larger alerting effect on the Attention Network Test, indicating an enhanced ability to attain and maintain an alert state. No group differences were found for orienting and executive attention and visuospatial working memory. A logistic regression model with group (highly talented or amateur) as dependent variable and executive function measures that significantly distinguished between groups as predictors showed that these measures differentiated highly talented soccer players from amateur soccer players with 89% accuracy. Highly talented youth soccer players outperform youth amateur players on suppressing ongoing motor responses and on the ability to attain and maintain an alert state; both may be essential for success in soccer. PMID:24632735
Cramm, Heidi A; Krupa, Terry M; Missiuna, Cheryl A; Lysaght, Rosemary M; Parker, Kevin H
Increasingly recognized as an important factor in the performance of complex, goal-directed tasks, executive functioning is understood in different ways across disciplines. The aim was to explore the ways in which executive functioning is conceptualized, discussed, described, and implied in the occupational therapy literature. A scoping review of the occupational therapy literature was conducted following Levac, Colquhoun, and O'Brien's (2010) recommended methodology. Executive functioning is described both as a set of performance component skills or processes and as the executive occupational performance inherent in complex occupations. Executive functioning is implicit in occupational performance and engagement, and some health conditions seem to be commonly associated with impaired executive functioning. Assessing executive functioning requires dynamic occupation- and performance-based assessment. Interventions targeting executive functioning are grounded in metacognitive approaches. Executive functioning is a complex construct that is conceptualized with considerable variance within the occupational therapy literature, creating barriers to effective service delivery.
Richland, Lindsey E; Burchinal, Margaret R
Analogical reasoning is a core cognitive skill that distinguishes humans from all other species and contributes to general fluid intelligence, creativity, and adaptive learning capacities. Yet its origins are not well understood. In the study reported here, we analyzed large-scale longitudinal data from the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development to test predictors of growth in analogical-reasoning skill from third grade to adolescence. Our results suggest an integrative resolution to the theoretical debate regarding contributory factors arising from smaller-scale, cross-sectional experiments on analogy development. Children with greater executive-function skills (both composite and inhibitory control) and vocabulary knowledge in early elementary school displayed higher scores on a verbal analogies task at age 15 years, even after adjusting for key covariates. We posit that knowledge is a prerequisite to analogy performance, but strong executive-functioning resources during early childhood are related to long-term gains in fundamental reasoning skills.
Claudia L R Gonzalez
Full Text Available Executive Function (EF refers to important socio-emotional and cognitive skills that are known to be highly correlated with both academic and life success. EF is a blanket term that is considered to include self-regulation, working memory, and planning. Recent studies have shown a relationship between EF and motor control. The emergence of motor control coincides with that of EF, hence understanding the relationship between these two domains could have significant implications for early detection and remediation of later EF deficits. The purpose of the current study was to investigate this relationship in young children. This study incorporated the Behavioural Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF and two motor assessments with a focus on precision grasping to test this hypothesis. The BRIEF is comprised of two indices of EF: 1 the Behavioral Regulation Index (BRI containing three subscales: Inhibit, Shift, and Emotional Control; 2 the Metacognition Index (MI containing five subscales: Initiate, Working Memory, Plan/Organize, Organization of Materials, and Monitor. A global executive composite (GEC is derived from the two indices. In this study, right-handed children aged 5-6 and 9-10 were asked to: grasp-to-construct (Lego® models; and grasp-to-place (wooden blocks, while their parents completed the BRIEF questionnaire. Analysis of results indicated significant correlations between the strength of right hand preference for grasping and numerous elements of the BRIEF including the BRI, MI, and GEC. Specifically, the more the right hand was used for grasping the better the EF ratings. In addition, patterns of space-use correlated with the GEC in several subscales of the BRIEF. Finally and remarkably, the results also showed a reciprocal relationship between hand and space use for grasping and EF. These findings are discussed with respect to: 1 the developmental overlap of motor and executive functions; 2 detection of EF deficits through
Toll, S.W.M.; van der Ven, S.H.G.; Kroesbergen, E.H.; van Luit, J.E.H.
In the past years, an increasing number of studies have investigated executive functions as predictors of individual differences in mathematical abilities. The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate whether the executive functions shifting, inhibition, and working memory differ
McCabe, David P.; Roediger, Henry L.; McDaniel, Mark A.; Balota, David A.; Hambrick, David Z.
Attentional control has been conceptualized as executive functioning by neuropsychologists and as working memory capacity by experimental psychologists. We examined the relationship between these constructs using a factor analytic approach in an adult lifespan sample. Several tests of working memory capacity and executive function were administered to over 200 subjects between the ages of 18-90 years old, along with tests of processing speed and episodic memory. The correlation between working memory capacity and executive functioning constructs was very strong (r = .97), but correlations between these constructs and processing speed were considerably weaker (r's ≈ .79). Controlling for working memory capacity or executive function eliminated age effects on episodic memory, and working memory capacity or executive function accounted for variance in episodic memory beyond that accounted for by processing speed. We conclude that tests of working memory capacity and executive function share a common underlying executive attention component that is strongly predictive of higher-level cognition. PMID:20230116
Follmer, D. Jake
This article presents a meta-analytic review of the relation between executive function and reading comprehension. Results (N = 6,673) supported a moderate positive association between executive function and reading comprehension (r = 0.36). Moderator analyses suggested that correlations between executive function and reading comprehension did not…
Linnerud, Ida Cathrine Wang
Background: Executive function difficulties are prevalent in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and there are several indications of a modifying relationship between executive functions and language in children. However, there is limited research on the relationship between executive functioning and language in young children with ASD. The current study compared real-world executive functioning between groups of children with ASD, language disorders (LD), and typical development (T...
Vlieger, Arine M.; Menko-Frankenhuis, Carla; Wolfkamp, Simone C. S.; Tromp, Ellen; Benninga, Marc A.
BACKGROUND & AIMS: Functional abdominal pain (FAP) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are highly prevalent in childhood. A substantial proportion of patients continues to experience long-lasting symptoms. Gut-directed hypnotherapy (HT) has been shown to be highly effective in the treatment of adult
KREMER, AM; PAL, TM; BOLEIJ, JSM; SCHOUTEN, JP; RIJCKEN, B
The association between occupational exposure to airway irritants and the prevalence of chronic respiratory symptoms and level of lung function, and whether these associations were modified by airway hyperresponsiveness, smoking, and a history of allergy were studied in 668 workers from synthetic
Full Text Available Executive Functions (EF concern a range of abilities including problem-solving, planning, initiation, selfmonitoring,conscious attention, cope with new situations and the ability to modify plans if necessary. It’s a high cognitive function that is crucial for a person to get engaged and maintain daily activities whilst keeping a good quality of life. Problems in the EF were formerly known as Dysexecutive Syndrome (DS. There are many models concerning DS, although the literature on the subject still remains unclear. Several works appoint the effects brought by elderly life, as well as abuse of drugs and some psychopathologies. These factors are known to increase the distress of the frontal circuits and that could be associated to executive deficits. The effects of DS would compromise individuals in day-to-day routine, academic, social and labor fields. There is a growing body of studies trying to determine the causes, implications, associations and the best way to take care of these effects. This work intends to review DS, focusing on the most important fields related to this area, such as psychopathology associations, cognitive reserve, assessment and cognitive rehabilitation programs.
Giancola, P R
The causal mechanisms underlying alcohol-related aggression are not well understood. This article presents a conceptual framework designed to guide thinking and generate new research in this area of study. According to the framework, executive functioning is both a mediator and a moderator of intoxicated aggression. Literatures describing associations between alcohol and aggression, executive functioning and aggression, and the acute effects of alcohol on executive functioning are reviewed. On the basis of these findings, it is proposed that (a) executive functioning mediates the alcohol-aggression relation in that acute alcohol intoxication disrupts executive functioning, which then heightens the probability of aggression, and (b) executive functioning moderates the alcohol-aggression relation in that acute alcohol consumption is more likely to facilitate aggressive behavior in persons with low, rather than high, executive functioning.
Giancola, Peter R
The primary goal of this investigation was to determine whether executive functioning (EF) would moderate the alcohol-aggression relation. Participants were 310 (152 men and 158 women) healthy social drinkers between 21 and 35 years of age. EF as well as non-EF skills were measured with 13 validated neuropsychological tests. Following the consumption of either an alcoholic or a placebo beverage, participants were tested on a modified version of the Taylor Aggression Paradigm (S. Taylor, 1967), in which mild electric shocks were received from, and administered to, a fictitious opponent. Aggressive behavior was operationalized as the shock intensities administered to the fictitious opponent. EF was negatively related to aggressive behavior for men, regardless of beverage group, even when controlling for non-EF skills. Furthermore, alcohol increased aggression only for men with lower EF scores. Finally, the mere belief that alcohol was consumed suppressed aggression for women but not for men. Copyright 2004 APA.
Full Text Available Autism is a common and often highly debilitating neurodevelopmental condition, whose core behavioral features are believed to be rooted in disrupted neurocognitive processes, including especially “executive function.” Researchers have predominantly focused upon understanding the putative causal relationship between difficulties in EF and autistic symptomatology. This paper suggests, however, that the effects of individual differences in EF should be more far-reaching, playing a significant part in the real-life outcomes of individuals with autism, including their social competence, everyday adaptive behavior, and academic achievement. It further considers the nature of the EF-outcome relationship, including the possible determinants of individual differences in EF, and makes several recommendations for future research.
Doherty, T. A.; Barker, L. A.; Denniss, R.; Jalil, A.; Beer, M. D.
Current standardized neuropsychological tests may fail to accurately capture real-world executive deficits. We developed a computer-based Cooking Task (CT) assessment of executive functions and trialed the measure with a normative group before use with a head-injured population. Forty-six participants completed the computerized CT and subtests from standardized neuropsychological tasks, including the Tower and Sorting Tests of executive function from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) and the Cambridge prospective memory test (CAMPROMPT), in order to examine whether standardized executive function tasks, predicted performance on measurement indices from the CT. Findings showed that verbal comprehension, rule detection and prospective memory contributed to measures of prospective planning accuracy and strategy implementation of the CT. Results also showed that functions necessary for cooking efficacy differ as an effect of task demands (difficulty levels). Performance on rule detection, strategy implementation and flexible thinking executive function measures contributed to accuracy on the CT. These findings raise questions about the functions captured by present standardized tasks particularly at varying levels of difficulty and during dual-task performance. Our preliminary findings also indicate that CT measures can effectively distinguish between executive function and Full Scale IQ abilities. Results of the present study indicate that the CT shows promise as an ecologically valid measure of executive function for future use with a head-injured population and indexes selective executive function’s captured by standardized tests. PMID:25717294
García-Molina, Alberto; Tirapu-Ustárroz, Javier; Luna-Lario, Pilar; Ibáñez, Joaquín; Duque, Pablo
With the growth of cognitive science, the study of the cognitive components involved in solving tests to assess intelligence become especially significant. From this perspective, the g factor is conceived as the representative of the operation of high-level cognitive processes that control the computational programmes of the brain. Different names have been used to denominate the cognitive processes that underlie the g factor: control processes, executive functioning, executive control or executive functions. We review the relationship between intelligence, on the one hand, and working memory and the executive functions construct, on the other. Furthermore, the article also reviews the relationship between intelligence and the prefrontal cortex, as its possible neuroanatomical substrate. The studies that were surveyed offer different answers to the question of whether intelligence and the executive functions are one and the same thing, the most widely accepted hypothesis being the one that sees intelligence and the executive functions as overlapping in some aspects but not in others.
Philippot, Pierre; Agrigoroaei, Stefan
Previous findings and the depressive-executive dysfunction hypothesis suggest that the established association between executive functioning and depression is accounted for by repetitive thinking. Investigating the association between executive functioning, repetitive thinking, and depressive mood, the present study empirically tested this mediational model in a sample of older adults, while focusing on both concrete and abstract repetitive thinking. This latter distinction is important given the potential protective role of concrete repetitive thinking, in contrast to the depletive effect of abstract repetitive thinking. A sample of 43 elderly volunteers, between 75 and 95 years of age, completed tests of executive functioning (the Stroop test, the Trail Making test, and the Fluency test), and questionnaires of repetitive thinking and depression. Positive correlations were observed between abstract repetitive thinking and depressive mood, and between concrete repetitive thinking and executive functioning; a negative correlation was observed between depressive mood and executive functioning. Further, mediational analysis evidenced that the relation between executive functioning and depressive mood was mediated by abstract repetitive thinking. The present data provide, for the first time, empirical support to the depressive-executive dysfunction hypothesis: the lack of executive resources would favor a mode of abstract repetitive thinking, which in turn would deplete mood. It suggests that clinical intervention targeting depression in the elderly should take into consideration repetitive thinking modes and the executive resources needed to disengage from rumination.
Schwaighofer, Matthias; Bühner, Markus; Fischer, Frank
Executive functions are crucial for complex learning in addition to prior knowledge. In this article, we argue that executive functions can moderate the effectiveness of instructional approaches that vary with respect to the demand on these functions. In addition, we suggest that engagement in complex activity contexts rather than specific…
Smith-Spark, James H; Henry, Lucy A; Messer, David J; Edvardsdottir, Elisa; Zięcik, Adam P
Executive functioning (EF) deficits are well recognized in developmental dyslexia, yet the majority of studies have concerned children rather than adults, ignored the subjective experience of the individual with dyslexia (with regard to their own EFs), and have not followed current theoretical perspectives on EFs. The current study addressed these shortfalls by administering a self-report measure of EF (BRIEF-A; Roth, Isquith, & Gioia, 2005) and experimental tasks to IQ-matched groups of adults with and without dyslexia. The laboratory-based tasks tested the three factors constituting the framework of EF proposed by Miyake et al. (2000). In comparison to the group without dyslexia, the participants with dyslexia self-reported more frequent EF problems in day-to-day life, with these difficulties centering on metacognitive processes (working memory, planning, task monitoring, and organization) rather than on the regulation of emotion and behaviour. The participants with dyslexia showed significant deficits in EF (inhibition, set shifting, and working memory). The findings indicated that dyslexia-related problems have an impact on the daily experience of adults with the condition. Further, EF difficulties are present in adulthood across a range of laboratory-based measures, and, given the nature of the experimental tasks presented, extend beyond difficulties related solely to phonological processing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Whiteside, Douglas M; Kealey, Tammy; Semla, Matthew; Luu, Hien; Rice, Linda; Basso, Michael R; Roper, Brad
Measures of phonemic and semantic verbal fluency, such as FAS and Animal Fluency (Benton, Hamsher, & Sivan, 1989), are often thought to be measures of executive functioning (EF). However, some studies (Henry & Crawford, 2004a , 2004b , 2004c ) have noted there is also a language component to these tasks. The current exploratory factor-analytic study examined the underlying cognitive structure of verbal fluency. Participants were administered language and EF measures, including the Controlled Oral Word Association Test (FAS version), Animal Fluency, Boston Naming Test (BNT), Vocabulary (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III), Wisconsin Card-Sorting Test (WCST, perseverative responses), and Trail-Making Test-Part B (TMT-B). A 2-factor solution was found with the 1st factor, language, having significant loadings for BNT and Vocabulary, while the second factor was labeled EF because of significant loading from the WCST and TMT-B. Surprisingly, FAS and Animal Fluency loaded exclusively on to the language factor and not EF. The current results do not exclude EF as a determinant of verbal fluency, but they do suggest that language processing is the critical component for this task, even without significant aphasic symptoms. Thus, the results indicated that both letter (phonemic) and category (semantic) fluency are related to language, but the relationship to EF is not supported by the results.
Kapa, Leah Lynn
Prior research has established an executive function advantage among bilinguals as compared to monolingual peers. These non-linguistic cognitive advantages are largely assumed to result from the experience of managing two linguistic systems. However, the possibility remains that the relationship between bilingualism and executive function is…
Rhodes, Sinéad M.; Booth, Josephine N.; Campbell, Lorna Elise; Blythe, Richard A.; Wheate, Nial J.; Delibegovic, Mirela
Research examining cognition and science learning has focused on working memory, but evidence implicates a broader set of executive functions. The current study examined executive functions and learning of biology in young adolescents. Fifty-six participants, aged 12-13?years, completed tasks of working memory (Spatial Working Memory), inhibition…
Mantyla, Timo; Carelli, Maria Grazia; Forman, Helen
This study examined time-based prospective memory performance in relation to individual and developmental differences in executive functioning. School-age children and young adults completed six experimental tasks that tapped three basic components of executive functioning: inhibition, updating, and mental shifting. Monitoring performance was…
Mahy, Caitlin E. V.; Moses, Louis J.
The current study examined the role of executive functioning (EF) in children's prospective memory (PM) by assessing the effect of delay and number of intentions to-be-remembered on PM, as well as relations between PM and EF. Ninety-six 4-, 5-, and 6-year-olds completed a PM task and two executive function tasks. The PM task required children to…
Methods: Hot executive functions including decision‑making and emotion recognition were assessed using the Iowa gambling task and Ekman faces test, whereas cold executive functions including working memory (WM), cognitive flexibility, and response inhibition were assessed using n‑back, Wisconsin card sorting test, ...
Allee-Smith, Paula J.; Winters, Rebecca R.; Drake, Amanda; Joslin, Amanda K.
The Barkley Deficits in Executive Functioning Scale (BDEFS), authored by Russell A. Barkley and published by Guilford in 2011, is an individually administered assessment tool that may be used to evaluate adults ages 18 to 81. The purpose of this measure is to screen those who may be experiencing executive functioning (EF) deficits in…
Connolly, Samantha L; Wagner, Clara A; Shapero, Benjamin G; Pendergast, Laura L; Abramson, Lyn Y; Alloy, Lauren B
The current study tested the resource allocation hypothesis, examining whether baseline rumination or depressive symptom levels prospectively predicted deficits in executive functioning in an adolescent sample. The alternative to this hypothesis was also evaluated by testing whether lower initial levels of executive functioning predicted increases in rumination or depressive symptoms at follow-up. A community sample of 200 adolescents (ages 12-13) completed measures of depressive symptoms, rumination, and executive functioning at baseline and at a follow-up session approximately 15 months later. Adolescents with higher levels of baseline rumination displayed decreases in selective attention and attentional switching at follow-up. Rumination did not predict changes in working memory or sustained and divided attention. Depressive symptoms were not found to predict significant changes in executive functioning scores at follow-up. Baseline executive functioning was not associated with change in rumination or depression over time. Findings partially support the resource allocation hypothesis that engaging in ruminative thoughts consumes cognitive resources that would otherwise be allocated towards difficult tests of executive functioning. Support was not found for the alternative hypothesis that lower levels of initial executive functioning would predict increased rumination or depressive symptoms at follow-up. Our study is the first to find support for the resource allocation hypothesis using a longitudinal design and an adolescent sample. Findings highlight the potentially detrimental effects of rumination on executive functioning during early adolescence. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Kronenberger, William G; Castellanos, Irina; Pisoni, David B
Delays in the development of executive functioning skills are frequently observed in pediatric neuropsychology populations and can have a broad and significant impact on quality of life. As a result, assessment of executive functioning is often relevant for the development of formulations and recommendations in pediatric neuropsychology clinical work. Questionnaire-based measures of executive functioning behaviors in everyday life have unique advantages and complement traditional neuropsychological measures of executive functioning. Two case studies of children with spina bifida are presented to illustrate the clinical use of a new questionnaire measure of executive and learning-related functioning, the Learning, Executive, and Attention Functioning Scale (LEAF). The LEAF emphasizes clinical utility in assessment by incorporating four characteristics: brevity in administration, breadth of additional relevant content, efficiency of scoring and interpretation, and ease of availability for use. LEAF results were consistent with another executive functioning checklist in documenting everyday behavior problems related to working memory, planning, and organization while offering additional breadth of assessment of domains such as attention, processing speed, and novel problem-solving. These case study results demonstrate the clinical utility of questionnaire-based measurement of executive functioning in pediatric neuropsychology and provide a new measure for accomplishing this goal.
Toll, Sylke W. M.; Van der Ven, Sanne H. G.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Van Luit, Johannes E. H.
In the past years, an increasing number of studies have investigated executive functions as predictors of individual differences in mathematical abilities. The present longitudinal study was designed to investigate whether the executive functions shifting, inhibition, and working memory differ between low achieving and typically achieving children…
... 29 Labor 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Nature of executive functions. 452.20 Section 452.20 Labor Regulations Relating to Labor OFFICE OF LABOR-MANAGEMENT STANDARDS, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR LABOR-MANAGEMENT... DISCLOSURE ACT OF 1959 Coverage of Election Provisions § 452.20 Nature of executive functions. (a) The...
Pirila, Silja; van der Meere, Jaap J.; Rantanen, Kati; Jokiluoma, Maria; Eriksson, Kai
Dependent on criteria used, between 35% and 53% of the participants with cerebral palsy fulfilled the criteria of clinically relevant executive function problems as defined by Conners' (1994) Continuous Performance Test. Executive function problems were noticed mainly in participants with bilateral
Lewis, Charlie; Carpendale, Jeremy I. M.
The term executive function is used increasingly within developmental psychology and is often taken to refer to unfolding brain processes. We trace the origins of research on executive function to show that the link with social interaction has a long history. We suggest that a recent frenzy of research exploring methods for studying individual…
Clinical researchers have become increasingly interested in considering the role of normal and impaired executive functioning in psychopathology. The concept of executive functions is, however, often used as a metaphor for a wide range of operations that may, on the one hand, be distinct from one another, but also may be integrated in various ways under different information-processing conditions. A clinician's perspective of executive functioning should take full advantage of the rich body of data and theory that has developed in contemporary cognitive neuroscience around functions such as forms of inhibition and controlled (in contrast to automatic) functions, in a variety of cognitive domains such as making decisions and tracking performance.
Gough, Aisling; Linden, Mark A; Spence, Dale; Halliday, Henry L; Patterson, Christopher C; McGarvey, Lorcan
To assess long-term impairments of executive functioning in adult survivors of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD). Participants were assessed on measures of executive functioning, health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and social functioning. Survivors of BPD (n = 63; 34 males; mean age 24.2 years) were compared with groups comprising preterm (without BPD) (executive functioning relating to problem solving (OR: 5.1, CI: 1.4-19.3), awareness of behavior (OR: 12.7, CI: 1.5-106.4) and organization of their environment (OR: 13.0, CI: 1.6-107.1). Birth weight, HRQoL and social functioning were predictive of deficits in executive functioning. This study represents the largest sample of survivors into adulthood of BPD and is the first to show that deficits in executive functioning persist. Children with BPD should be assessed to identify cognitive impairments and allow early intervention aimed at ameliorating their effects. Implications for Rehabilitation Adults born preterm with very-low birth weight, and particularly those who develop BPD, are at increased risk of exhibiting defects in executive functioning. Clinicians and educators should be made aware of the impact that BPD can have on the long-term development of executive functions. Children and young adults identified as having BPD should be periodically monitored to identify the need for possible intervention.
Miller, S E; DeBoer, M D; Scharf, R J
Poor executive functioning is associated with life-long difficulty. Identification of children at risk for executive dysfunction is important for early intervention to improve neurodevelopmental outcomes. This study is designed to examine relationships between birthweight and executive functioning in US children during kindergarten. Our hypothesis was that children with higher birthweights would have better executive function scores. We evaluated data from 17506 US children from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten 2011 cohort. Birthweight and gestational age were obtained by parental survey. Executive functions were directly assessed using the number reverse test and card sort test to measure working memory and cognitive flexibility, respectively. Teacher evaluations were used for additional executive functions. Data were analyzed using SAS to run all linear and logistical regressions. For every kilogram of birthweight, scores of working memory increased by 1.47 (Pexecutive functioning. As birthweight increases executive function scores improve, even among infants born normal weight. Further evaluation of this population including interventions and progression through school is needed.
Full Text Available Over the last two decades, there has been a growing interest in the study of the development of executive functions in preschool children due to their relationship with different cognitive, psychological, social and academic domains. Early detection of individual differences in executive functioning can have major implications for basic and applied research. Consequently, there is a key need for assessment tools adapted to preschool skills: Shape School has been shown to be a suitable task for this purpose. Our study uses Shape School as the main task to analyze development of inhibition, task-switching and working memory in a sample of 304 preschoolers (age range 3.25-6.50 years. Additionally, we include cognitive tasks for the evaluation of verbal variables (vocabulary, word reasoning and short-term memory and performance variables (picture completion and symbol search, so as to analyze their relationship with executive functions. Our results show age-associated improvements in executive functions and the cognitive variables assessed. Furthermore, correlation analyses reveal positive relationships between executive functions and the other cognitive variables. More specifically, using structural equation modeling and including age direct and indirect effects, our results suggest that executive functions explain to a greater extent performance on verbal and performance tasks. These findings provide further information to support research that considers preschool age to be a crucial period for the development of executive functions and their relationship with other cognitive processes
Castellanos, Irina; Kronenberger, William G; Pisoni, David B
The psychometric properties of the Learning, Executive, and Attention Functioning (LEAF) scale were investigated in an outpatient clinical pediatric sample. As a part of clinical testing, the LEAF scale, which broadly measures neuropsychological abilities related to executive functioning and learning, was administered to parents of 118 children and adolescents referred for psychological testing at a pediatric psychology clinic; 85 teachers also completed LEAF scales to assess reliability across different raters and settings. Scores on neuropsychological tests of executive functioning and academic achievement were abstracted from charts. Psychometric analyses of the LEAF scale demonstrated satisfactory internal consistency, parent-teacher inter-rater reliability in the small to large effect size range, and test-retest reliability in the large effect size range, similar to values for other executive functioning checklists. Correlations between corresponding subscales on the LEAF and other behavior checklists were large, while most correlations with neuropsychological tests of executive functioning and achievement were significant but in the small to medium range. Results support the utility of the LEAF as a reliable and valid questionnaire-based assessment of delays and disturbances in executive functioning and learning. Applications and advantages of the LEAF and other questionnaire measures of executive functioning in clinical neuropsychology settings are discussed.
Wiebe, Sandra A.; Sheffield, Tiffany; Nelson, Jennifer Mize; Clark, Caron A. C.; Chevalier, Nicolas; Espy, Kimberly Andrews
Although the structure of executive function (EF) during adulthood is characterized by both unity and diversity, recent evidence suggests that preschool EF may be best described by a single factor. The latent structure of EF was examined in 228 3-year-olds using confirmatory factor analysis. Children completed a battery of executive tasks that…
Executive functions are core skills for cognitive processes and social-emotional adaptation. The “Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function, Preschool Version (BRIEF-P)” in its German version is an instrument to capture the real-world applications of executive functions. The parents of 50 children with Down syndrome (mean age: 5 years) reported on their observations. In comparison to children with typical development the level of scores in the scales examining “working memory”, “plan/or...
Full Text Available The ontogeny of executive functions is essential in explaining differential and normative developmental trends. Executive functions must be studied from an early age given their consequential effects on mental flexibility, monitoring information, planning, and cognitive control. We propose a differential study in alternative developmental courses through observing typical babies, Down syndrome babies, and babies with risk-factors at birth (due to low weight or to congenital hypothyroidism. Applymg Systematic Observational Methodology, spontaneous babies' activity was registered. The results indicated that: a Typical babies showed better shifting and action flexibility in order to obtain a goal, thus better results; b Among the higher risk-babies, the lower efficacy in executive functioning was observed in underweight babies. Those with hypothyroidism were more in line with the typical babies; c Underweight babies showed a good level of combining actions but they obtained inferior results; d Down syndrome babies displayed more executive functioning difficulty, lower flexibility, high perseveration and less error detection.
Towe-Goodman, Nissa R; Willoughby, Michael; Blair, Clancy; Gustafsson, Hanna C; Mills-Koonce, W Roger; Cox, Martha J
Using data from a diverse sample of 620 families residing in rural, predominately low-income communities, this study examined longitudinal links between fathers' sensitive parenting in infancy and toddlerhood and children's early executive functioning, as well as the contribution of maternal sensitive parenting. After accounting for the quality of concurrent and prior parental care, children's early cognitive ability, and other child and family factors, fathers' and mothers' sensitive and supportive parenting during play at 24 months predicted children's executive functioning at 3 years of age. In contrast, paternal parenting quality during play at 7 months did not make an independent contribution above that of maternal care, but the links between maternal sensitive and supportive parenting and executive functioning seemed to operate in similar ways during infancy and toddlerhood. These findings add to prior work on early experience and children's executive functioning, suggesting that both fathers and mothers play a distinct and complementary role in the development of these self-regulatory skills.
This study examines language abilities of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and compares these abilities to those of children with specific language impairment (SLI) and typically developing children. Executive functioning, an umbrella term for various higher order
Uekermann, J; Channon, S; Winkel, K; Schlebusch, P; Daum, I
Alcoholism is associated with cognitive deficits, which have been interpreted in terms of a specific vulnerability of the frontal lobes to the toxic effects of alcohol. While executive functions in alcoholism have been investigated extensively, only little work has been carried out on social cognition. The aim of the present study was to investigate the association between executive functions, theory of mind and humour processing in alcoholism. A comprehensive neuropsychological test battery was administered to 29 alcoholic patients (Alc) and 29 healthy controls (HC). The test battery included measurements of affect, general intellectual abilities, executive functions, humour processing and theory of mind. The two groups were comparable with respect to affective variables, IQ, gender and age. Group comparisons revealed cognitive as well as affective humour processing deficits of alcoholics in comparison with HC. The observed impairments were related to theory of mind and executive functions. The deficits may contribute to interpersonal problems and are thus of relevance to rehabilitation.
Full Text Available Cognitive training has been shown to improve executive functions in middle childhood and adulthood. However, fewer studies have targeted the preschool years – a time when executive functions undergo rapid development. The present study tested the effects of a short four session executive function training program in 54 four-year-olds. The training group significantly improved their working memory from pre-training relative to an active control group. Notably, this effect extended to a task sharing few surface features with the trained tasks, and continued to be apparent three months later. In addition, the benefits of training extended to a measure of mathematical reasoning three months later, indicating that training executive functions during the preschool years has the potential to convey benefits that are both long-lasting and wide-ranging.
Lamberts, Kirsten F.; Evans, Jonathan J.; Spikman, Jacoba M.
A major goal of neuropsychological assessment is predicting a person's level of functioning in daily life. Making predictions about everyday executive functioning based on tests is problematic because of the contrast between demands made in the test environment and demands made in everyday life
Loprinzi, Paul D.; Allison Nooe
Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study?s purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female). Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred....
Plotnikoff, Gregory; Barber, Melissa
Single-disorder or single-organ-system clinical practice guidelines are often of limited usefulness in guiding effective management of patients with chronic multidimensional signs and symptoms. The presence of multiple long-standing medical problems in a given patient despite intensive medical effort suggests that addressing systemic core imbalances could complement more narrowly focused approaches. A 72-year-old man experiencing longstanding depression, fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, and chronic pain in the context of additional refractory illnesses was assessed and treated, guided by a system-oriented approach to underlying core imbalances termed functional medicine. This patient was referred from a team of clinicians representing primary care, cardiology, gastroenterology, hematology, and psychology. Prior treatment had been unsuccessful in managing multiple chronic comorbidities. Diagnostic assessment included comprehensive stool and nutritional/metabolic laboratory testing. The blood-, urine-, or stool-based measurements of relevant markers for multiple systemic issues, including digestion/absorption, inflammation, oxidative stress, and methylation, identified previously unrecognized root causes of his constellation of symptoms. These functional measurements guided rational recommendations for dietary choices and supplementation. The patient experienced steady and significant improvement in his mental health, fatigue, chronic pain, and irritable bowel syndrome-as well as the unexpected resolution of his chronic idiopathic pancytopenia. The success in this case suggests that other patients with chronic, complex, and treatment-refractory illness may benefit from a system-oriented assessment of core imbalances guided by specialized nutritional/metabolic and digestive laboratory testing.
Tucker, Adrienne M.; Whitney, Paul; Belenky, Gregory; Hinson, John M.; Van Dongen, Hans P.A.
Study Objectives: We studied the effects of sleep deprivation on executive functions using a task battery which included a modified Sternberg task, a probed recall task, and a phonemic verbal fluency task. These tasks were selected because they allow dissociation of some important executive processes from non-executive components of cognition. Design: Subjects were randomized to a total sleep deprivation condition or a control condition. Performance on the executive functions task battery was assessed at baseline, after 51 h of total sleep deprivation (or no sleep deprivation in the control group), and following 2 nights of recovery sleep, at fixed time of day (11:00). Performance was also measured repeatedly throughout the experiment on a control task battery, for which the effects of total sleep deprivation had been documented in previously published studies. Setting: Six consecutive days and nights in a controlled laboratory environment with continuous behavioral monitoring. Participants: Twenty-three healthy adults (age range 22–38 y; 11 women). Twelve subjects were randomized to the sleep deprivation condition; the others were controls. Results: Performance on the control task battery was considerably degraded during sleep deprivation. Overall performance on the modified Sternberg task also showed impairment during sleep deprivation, as compared to baseline and recovery and compared to controls. However, two dissociated components of executive functioning on this task—working memory scanning efficiency and resistance to proactive interference—were maintained at levels equivalent to baseline. On the probed recall task, resistance to proactive interference was also preserved. Executive aspects of performance on the phonemic verbal fluency task showed improvement during sleep deprivation, as did overall performance on this task. Conclusion: Sleep deprivation affected distinct components of cognitive processing differentially. Dissociated non-executive
Cragg, Lucy; Keeble, Sarah; Richardson, Sophie; Roome, Hannah E; Gilmore, Camilla
Achievement in mathematics is predicted by an individual's domain-specific factual knowledge, procedural skill and conceptual understanding as well as domain-general executive function skills. In this study we investigated the extent to which executive function skills contribute to these three components of mathematical knowledge, whether this mediates the relationship between executive functions and overall mathematics achievement, and if these relationships change with age. Two hundred and ninety-three participants aged between 8 and 25years completed a large battery of mathematics and executive function tests. Domain-specific skills partially mediated the relationship between executive functions and mathematics achievement: Inhibitory control within the numerical domain was associated with factual knowledge and procedural skill, which in turn was associated with mathematical achievement. Working memory contributed to mathematics achievement indirectly through factual knowledge, procedural skill and, to a lesser extent, conceptual understanding. There remained a substantial direct pathway between working memory and mathematics achievement however, which may reflect the role of working memory in identifying and constructing problem representations. These relationships were remarkably stable from 8years through to young adulthood. Our findings help to refine existing multi-component frameworks of mathematics and understand the mechanisms by which executive functions support mathematics achievement. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Sastre-Riba, S; Merino-Moreno, N; Poch-Olivé, M L
Cognitive control improve planning, action selection to get a goal (flexibly) and their modifiability. Executive functions are a functional construct related with solving process and goal maintenance. Among executive functions we will study the resistance of interference, stopping irrelevant information and the inhibition of a dominant but inapropiate scheme as well as the influence of the type of tutoring during action execution. We studied 15 infants with alternative courses of development (typical babies and Down' syndrome babies) at a developmental level equivalent to 15 months old, and 6 months later. Infant' spontaneous activity is videotaped longitudinally for a 15 minutes period, activity units are codified by a mixed system of categories and quantified in order to know the significative differences on tutoring types, their dynamic an effects associated with infant's executive functions. a) Adult's directive tutoring is more frequent with Down's syndrome babies than with typical babies; b) Directive tutoring is less adjusted and produces more interferences; c) There is a differential capacity to interference resistance, less present in the Down's syndrome babies; d) Executive functioning shows developmental and differential trends. If development is individual and socially influenced, the individual differential efficacy of executive functions and the type of tutoring contributes to typical or atypical developmental course. Educational and health consequences are proposed.
Wagner, Clara A; Alloy, Lauren B; Abramson, Lyn Y
Although deficits in executive functions have been linked with both depression and rumination in adulthood, the nature of the relationship between these constructs is not well understood and remains understudied in adolescence. The present study examined the relationship of rumination and depression to deficits in executive functions in early adolescence, a critical developmental period for the emergence of depression and rumination and the development of executive functions. Participants were 486 early adolescents (52.7% female; 47.1% African American, 48.8% Caucasian; 4.2% Biracial/Multiracial/Other; M age = 12.88 years; SD = .62) and their mothers, recruited through local schools. Measures included (a) a semi-structured diagnostic interview of the mother and adolescent, (b) youth self-report forms assessing depressive symptoms and trait rumination, (c) mother-report forms assessing demographic information, and (d) behavioral tests of executive function (sustained, selective and divided attention, attentional set shifting, and working memory). Gender moderated rumination-set shifting associations, such that rumination predicted better set shifting in boys only. The current level of depressive symptoms moderated rumination-sustained attention associations, such that rumination predicted better sustained attention in those with low levels of depressive symptoms and worse sustained attention in those with high levels of depressive symptoms. Rumination did not predict performance on other measures of executive functions. Likewise, depressive symptoms and diagnosis were not associated with executive functions. Implications for future research are discussed.
Marien, Hans; Custers, Ruud; Hassin, Ran R; Aarts, Henk
Building on research on unconscious human goal pursuit and the dynamic nature of our mental and physical world, this study examined the idea that an unconsciously activated goal hijacks executive control for its own attainment. This "hijacking" of the executive function by an unconscious goal should be evidenced by impaired performance on an unrelated task relying on executive control. The results of 6 experiments show that subliminal activation of a socializing goal, or an idiosyncratic personal goal, or an academic goal, harmed participants' performance on an executive function task, such as inhibition of prepotent responses and detection of text errors during reading. These effects were unique to executive control, were similar when the goal was activated consciously, and were independent of task motivation and perceived inter-goal relatedness between the primed goal and task goal. Furthermore, an unconscious goal occupied executive control to advance itself more strongly when the goal had personal value. Implications for theory and research on unconscious goal pursuit and the executive function are discussed.
The pathophysiology of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is believed to involve alterations in the brain-gut axis; however, the etiological triggers and mechanisms by which these changes lead to symptoms of IBS remain poorly understood. Although IBS is often considered a condition without an identified “organic” etiology, emerging evidence suggests that alterations in the gastrointestinal microbiota and altered immune function may play a role in the pathogenesis of the disorder. These recent data suggest a plausible model in which changes in the intestinal microbiota and activation of the enteric immune system may impinge upon the brain-gut axis, causing the alterations in gastrointestinal function and the clinical symptoms observed in patients with IBS. This review summarizes the current evidence for altered intestinal microbiota and immune function in IBS. It discusses the potential etiological role of these factors, suggests an updated conceptual model for the pathogenesis of the disorder, and identifies areas for future research. PMID:23886861
Fernanda Rasch Czermainski
Full Text Available The literature has shown a strong relationship between executive dysfunction and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD, although there is no consensus on which subprocesses of executive functioning are impaired and/or preserved in this condition. This study aimed to investigate executive function and working memory in children and adolescents with ASD (n = 11 compared to children and adolescents with typical development (n = 19 matched by age, formal education, and nonverbal IQ. The tests used were: Raven’s Colored Progressive Matrices, Stroop Test, Trail Making Test, Rey’s Complex Figure Test, Digit span, Pseudowords span, Working memory, Verbal fluency (orthographic and semantic and Go/no go. The results demonstrate impairment of executive function in the clinical group, especially in planning, flexibility, inhibition, and also visuospatial working memory.
Incera, Sara; McLennan, Conor T
We analyzed the effects of bilingualism and age on executive function. We examined these variables along a continuum, as opposed to dichotomizing them. We investigated the impact that bilingualism and age have on two measures of executive control (Stroop and Flanker). The mouse-tracking paradigm allowed us to examine the continuous dynamics of the responses as participants completed each trial. First, we found that the Stroop effect was reduced with younger age and higher levels of bilingualism; however, no Bilingualism by Age interaction emerged. Second, after controlling for baseline, the Flanker effect was not influenced by bilingualism or age. These results support the notion that bilingualism is one way of enhancing some aspects of executive function - specifically those related to the Stroop task - across the adult life span. In sum, different levels of bilingualism, and different ages, result in varying degrees of executive function as measured by the Stroop task.
Fjell, Anders M; Sneve, Markus H; Grydeland, Håkon; Storsve, Andreas B; Walhovd, Kristine B
Higher order speeded cognitive abilities depend on efficient coordination of activity across the brain, rendering them vulnerable to age reductions in structural and functional brain connectivity. The concept of "disconnected aging" has been invoked, suggesting that degeneration of connections between distant brain regions cause cognitive reductions. However, it has not been shown that changes in cognitive functions over time can be explained by simultaneous changes in brain connectivity. We followed 119 young and middle-aged (23-52 years) and older (63-86 years) adults for 3.3 years with repeated assessments of structural and functional brain connectivity and executive functions. We found unique age-related longitudinal reductions in executive function over and above changes in more basic cognitive processes. Intriguingly, 82.5% of the age-related decline in executive function could be explained by changes in connectivity over time. While both structural and functional connectivity changes were related to longitudinal reductions in executive function, only structural connectivity change could explain the age-specific decline. This suggests that the major part of the age-related reductions in executive function can be attributed to micro- and macrostructural alterations in brain connectivity. Although correlational in nature, we believe the present results constitute evidence for a "disconnected brain" view on cognitive aging. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Full Text Available Recent research indicates that stress can affect executive functioning. However, previous results are mixed with respect to the direction and size of effects, especially when considering different subcomponents of executive functions. The current study systematically investigates the effects of stress on the five components of executive functions proposed by Smith and Jonides (1999: Attention and inhibition; task management; planning; monitoring; and coding. Healthy participants (N = 40 were either exposed to the computerized version of the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test as a stressor (N = 20, or to a rest condition (N = 20. Stress reactions were assessed with heart rate and subjective measures. After the experimental manipulation, all participants performed tasks that measure the different executive functions. The manipulation check indicates that stress induction was successful (i.e., the stress group showed a higher heart rate and higher subjective responses than the control group. The main results demonstrate that stressed participants show a poorer performance compared with unstressed participants in all executive subcomponents, with the exception of monitoring. Effect sizes for the tasks that reveal differences between stressed and unstressed participants are high. We conclude that the laboratory stressor used here overall reduced executive functioning.
Ayers, Catherine R; Wetherell, Julie Loebach; Schiehser, Dawn; Almklov, Erin; Golshan, Shahrokh; Saxena, Sanjaya
Hoarding disorder (HD) is a chronic and debilitating psychiatric condition. Midlife HD patients have been found to have neurocognitive impairment, particularly in areas of executive functioning, but the extent to which this is due to comorbid psychiatric disorders has not been clear. The purpose of the present investigation was to examine executive functioning in geriatric HD patients without any comorbid Axis I disorders (n = 42) compared with a healthy older adult comparison group (n = 25). We hypothesized that older adults with HD would perform significantly worse on measures of executive functioning (Wisconsin Card Sort Task [Psychological Assessment Resources, Lutz, Florida, USA] ( Psychological Assessment Resources, 2003) and the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-IV digit span and letter-number sequencing tests [Pearson, San Antonio, TX, USA]). Older adults with HD showed significant differences from healthy older controls in multiple aspects of executive functioning. Compared with healthy controls, older adults with HD committed significantly more total, non-perseverative errors and conceptual level responses on the Wisconsin Card Sort Task and had significantly worse performance on the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-IV digit span and letter-number sequencing tests. Hoarding symptom severity was strongly correlated with executive dysfunction in the HD group. Compared with demographically-matched controls, older adults with HD have dysfunction in several domains of executive functioning including mental control, working memory, inhibition, and set shifting. Executive dysfunction is strongly correlated with hoarding severity and is not because of comorbid psychiatric disorders in HD patients. These results have broad clinical implications suggesting that executive functioning should be assessed and taken into consideration when developing intervention strategies for older adults with HD. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Among functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorders, functional dyspepsia (FD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are important to public health around the world and are frequently encountered in general practice. Upper GI symptoms such as heartburn, postprandial fullness, early satiety, epigastric pain or burning and lower GI symptoms such as constipation and diarrhea often coexist. Although the prevalence of FD-IBS overlap would be influenced by the selection of the study population, the overlap rate of FD-IBS could be in the range of 11%-27%. Specifically, FD-IBS overlap is associated with more severe symptoms than FD alone or IBS alone. Since clinical overlap, especially FD-IBS overlap, is very common, the 2 syndromes should not be treated in a mutually exclusive fashion. PMID:22148104
Park, Jennifer M; Samuels, Jack F; Grados, Marco A; Riddle, Mark A; Bienvenu, O Joseph; Goes, Fernando S; Cullen, Bernadette; Wang, Ying; Krasnow, Janice; Murphy, Dennis L; Rasmussen, Steven A; McLaughlin, Nicole C; Piacentini, John; Pauls, David L; Stewart, S Evelyn; Shugart, Yin-Yao; Maher, Brion; Pulver, Ann E; Knowles, James A; Greenberg, Benjamin D; Fyer, Abby J; McCracken, James T; Nestadt, Gerald; Geller, Daniel A
Hoarding is common among youth with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), with up to 26% of OCD youth exhibiting hoarding symptoms. Recent evidence from adult hoarding and OCD cohorts suggests that hoarding symptoms are associated with executive functioning deficits similar to those observed in subjects with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, while hoarding behavior often onsets during childhood, there is little information about executive function deficits and ADHD in affected children and adolescents. The study sample included 431 youths (ages 6-17 years) diagnosed with OCD who participated in the OCD Collaborative Genetics Study and the OCD Collaborative Genetics Association Study and completed a series of clinician-administered and parent report assessments, including diagnostic interviews and measures of executive functioning (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning; BRIEF) and hoarding severity (Hoarding Rating Scale-Interview; HRS-I). 113 youths (26%) had clinically significant levels of hoarding compulsions. Youths with and without hoarding differed significantly on most executive functioning subdomains and composite indices as measured by the parent-rated BRIEF. Groups did not differ in the frequency of full DSM-IV ADHD diagnoses; however, the hoarding group had significantly greater number of inattention and hyperactivity symptoms compared to the non-hoarding group. In multivariate models, we found that overall BRIEF scores were related to hoarding severity, adjusting for age, gender and ADHD symptoms. These findings suggest an association between hoarding and executive functioning deficits in youths with OCD, and assessing executive functioning may be important for investigating the etiology and treatment of children and adolescents with hoarding and OCD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available In this Clinical Practice Guideline we discuss the diagnostic and therapeutic approach of adult patients with constipation and abdominal complaints at the confluence of the irritable bowel syndrome spectrum and functional constipation. Both conditions are included among the functional bowel disorders, and have a significant personal, healthcare, and social impact, affecting the quality of life of the patients who suffer from them. The first one is the irritable bowel syndrome subtype, where constipation represents the predominant complaint, in association with recurrent abdominal pain, bloating, and abdominal distension. Constipation is characterized by difficulties with or low frequency of bowel movements, often accompanied by straining during defecation or a feeling of incomplete evacuation. Most cases have no underlying medical cause, and are therefore considered as a functional bowel disorder. There are many clinical and pathophysiological similarities between both disorders, and both respond similarly to commonly used drugs, their primary difference being the presence or absence of pain, albeit not in an "all or nothing" manner. Severity depends not only upon bowel symptom intensity but also upon other biopsychosocial factors (association of gastrointestinal and extraintestinal symptoms, grade of involvement, and perception and behavior variants. Functional bowel disorders are diagnosed using the Rome criteria. This Clinical Practice Guideline has been made consistent with the Rome IV criteria, which were published late in May 2016, and discuss alarm criteria, diagnostic tests, and referral criteria between Primary Care and gastroenterology settings. Furthermore, all the available treatment options (exercise, fluid ingestion, diet with soluble fiber-rich foods, fiber supplementation, other dietary components, osmotic or stimulating laxatives, probiotics, antibiotics, spasmolytics, peppermint essence, prucalopride, linaclotide, lubiprostone
Mearin, F; Ciriza, C; Mínguez, M; Rey, E; Mascort, J J; Peña, E; Cañones, P; Júdez, J
In this Clinical practice guide we examine the diagnostic and therapeutic management of adult patients with constipation and abdominal discomfort, at the confluence of the spectrum of irritable bowel syndrome and functional constipation. Both fall within the framework of functional intestinal disorders and have major personal, health and social impact, altering the quality of life of the patients affected. The former is a subtype of irritable bowel syndrome in which constipation and altered bowel habit predominate, often along with recurring abdominal pain, bloating and abdominal distension. Constipation is characterised by infrequent or hard-to-pass bowel movements, often accompanied by straining during defecation or the sensation of incomplete evacuation. There is no underlying organic cause in the majority of cases; it being considered a functional bowel disorder. There are many clinical and pathophysiological similarities between the two conditions, the constipation responds in a similar way to commonly used drugs, the fundamental difference being the presence or absence of pain, but not in an "all or nothing" way. The severity of these disorders depends not only on the intensity of the intestinal symptoms but also on other biopsychosocial factors: association of gastrointestinal and extraintestinal symptoms, degree of involvement, forms of perception and behaviour. Functional bowel disorders are diagnosed using the Rome criteria. This Clinical practice guide adapts to the Rome IV criteria published at the end of May 2016. The first part (96, 97, 98) examined the conceptual and pathophysiological aspects, alarm criteria, diagnostic test and referral criteria between Primary Care and Gastroenterology. This second part reviews all the available treatment alternatives (exercise, fluid ingestion, diet with soluble fibre-rich foods, fibre supplements, other dietary components, osmotic or stimulating laxatives, probiotics, antibiotics, spasmolytics, peppermint
Was, Christopher A.
The current study presents a comparison of 2 structural equation models describing the relationship between the executive functions of updating and inhibiting. Although it has been argued that working memory capacity is defined by one?s ability to control the focus of attention, the findings of the current study support a view of the executive control of attention that reflects updating and inhibiting as not entirely dependent on the same resources.
Thomas Andrew Doherty
Full Text Available Current standardised neuropsychological tests may fail to accurately capture real-world executive deficits. We developed a computer-based Cooking Task assessment of executive functions and trialled the measure with a normative group before use with a head-injured population. Forty six participants completed the computerised Cooking Task and subtests from standardised neuropsychological tasks, including the Tower and Sorting Tests of executive function from the D-KEFS, and the CAMPROMPT measure of prospective memory, in order to examine whether standardised executive function tasks, predicted performance on measurement indices from the Cooking Task. Findings showed that verbal comprehension, rule detection and prospective memory contributed to measures of prospective planning accuracy and strategy implementation of the Cooking Task. Results also showed that functions necessary for cooking efficacy differ as an effect of task demands (difficulty levels. Performance on rule detection, strategy implementation and flexible thinking EF measures contributed to accuracy on the Cooking Task Findings raise questions about the functions captured by present standardised tasks particularly at varying levels of difficulty and during dual-task performance. Our preliminary findings also indicate that Cooking Task measures can effectively distinguish between EF and FSIQ abilities. Results of the present study indicate that the Cooking Task shows promise as an ecologically valid measure of executive function for future use with a head-injured population and indexes selective EF’s captured by standardised tests.
Collette, Fabienne; Angel, Lucie
The existence of processes common to memory systems and executive functioning was evidenced by studies in the domain of cerebral neuroimaging, individual differences (mainly in normal aging) and, to a lesser extent, neuropsychology. Executive functioning depends on a large antero-posterior brain network, some regions of which (the middle dorsolateral and ventrolateral cortex, the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex) are involved in a series of executive processes, but also in encoding and retrieval of information in episodic memory and short-term memory. A consequence of lesions in frontal areas is to impair strategical organization of the information to-be-processed (an executive process) and thus leads to a lower memory capacity in frontal patients. Moreover, executive abilities will influence both memory efficiency and the associated brain networks even in people without brain pathology. These data attest to the importance of the relationships between executive and memory processes for an optimal cognitive functioning. Recent advances in neuroimaging and electrophysiology data acquisition and analysis techniques should allow us to better determine and understand the fashion in which these relationships work. © Société de Biologie, 2016.
Spencer, Robert J; Kitchen Andren, Katherine A; Tolle, Kathryn A
The Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS) is a cognitive battery that contains scales of several cognitive abilities, but no scale in the instrument is exclusively dedicated to executive functioning. Although the subtests allow for observation of executive-type errors, each error is of fairly low base rate, and healthy and clinical normative data are lacking on the frequency of these types of errors, making their significance difficult to interpret in isolation. The aim of this project was to create an RBANS executive errors scale (RBANS EE) with items comprised of qualitatively dysexecutive errors committed throughout the test. Participants included Veterans referred for outpatient neuropsychological testing. Items were initially selected based on theoretical literature and were retained based on item-total correlations. The RBANS EE (a percentage calculated by dividing the number of dysexecutive errors by the total number of responses) was moderately related to each of seven established measures of executive functioning and was strongly predictive of dichotomous classification of executive impairment. Thus, the scale had solid concurrent validity, justifying its use as a supplementary scale. The RBANS EE requires no additional administration time and can provide a quantified measure of otherwise unmeasured aspects of executive functioning.
Donna P. Mann
Full Text Available BACKGROUND. Student role performance for academic success in secondary education is under represented in the occupational therapy literature, despite the persistently high dropout rate in the United States (Stillwell & Sable, 2013. Executive dysfunction is one of many possible contributors to difficulties in the classroom (Dirette & Kolak, 2004 and is a better indicator of school performance than IQ (Diamond, 2012. This research examined executive functioning of both alternative and traditional high school students to determine if there is a relationship between executive function and academic success as measured by cumulative grade point average. METHOD. 132 high school students from three different school settings were given the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Self Report (BRIEF-SR. The Global Executive Composite (GEC and individual subscale scores were compared to GPA. RESULTS. No significant difference in GEC scores was found among settings. Subscale scores for “inhibition” and “task completion” were significantly different in the alternative school setting. A weak negative correlation was seen between the GEC and GPA. However, academically unsuccessful students scored statistically lower on the GEC. CONCLUSION. Global executive dysfunction was not predicted by setting but was seen in academically unsuccessful students.
Meijers, J.; Harte, J.M.; Meynen, G.; Cuijpers, W.J.M.J.
Background: Executive dysfunction appears to be related to increased recidivism. Of note is that sleep disturbances, which are highly prevalent in prisons, may attenuate executive functions. Thus, improving executive functions, either directly or indirectly through the improvement of sleep, may
Full Text Available Bullying is characterized by intentional, repetitive, and persistent aggressive behavior that causes damage to the victim. Many studies investigate the social and emotional aspects related to bullying, but few assess the cognitive aspects it involves. Studies with aggressive individuals indicate impairment in executive functioning and decision-making. The objective of this study was to assess hot and cold executive functions in children who experience bullying. A total of 60 children between 10 and 11 years of age were included in the study. They were divided into four groups: aggressors (bullies, victims, bully-victims, and control. Tests for decision-making, inhibitory control, working memory, and cognitive flexibility were used. The bully group made more unfavorable choices on the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT, which may indicate difficulties in the decision-making process. The victim group took longer to complete the Trail Making Test (Part B than aggressors, suggesting lower cognitive flexibility in victims. The hypothesis that aggressors would have lower performance in other executive functions such as inhibitory control, working memory and cognitive flexibility has not been confirmed. This study indicates that bullies have an impairment of hot executive functions whereas victims have a comparatively lower performance in cold executive functions. In addition to social and cultural variables, neurocognitive and emotional factors seem to influence the behavior of children in bullying situations.
Mohammad Reza khodaei-Ardakani
Full Text Available Objective: There is evidence for differential executive function in Bipolar I Disorder (BID and schizophrenia that may tend different cognitive deficits and abnormalities. The objective of this sudsy was to compare the executive function of BID and schizophrenic patients. Materials & Methods: We studied 50 patients with BID, and 50 with schizophrenia participants in outpatients' clinic of Rouzbeh hospital. All participants completed the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST the Persian version. The participants were mach in three basic variables which had most contributions in cognitive conditions in patients. They were Age, educational status and period of illness. Results: The two patient groups had compared performance on the WCST in compared with general population (P<0/05. In the WCST, schizophrenic patients showed impairment executive function than BID patients (P<0/05. Conclusion: findings indicated that schizophrenic patients had more dysfunctions executive function than the Bipolar disorder I patients. Although, both disorders may show impairment in executive function, but the dysfunction in schizophrenia greater than Bipolar I Disorder patients.
Holley, Sarah R; Ewing, Scott T; Stiver, Jordan T; Bloch, Lian
Emotion regulation deficits and executive functioning deficits have independently been shown to increase vulnerability toward engaging in aggressive behaviors. The effects of these risk factors, however, have not been evaluated in relation to one another. This study evaluated the degree to which each was associated with aggressive behaviors in a sample of 168 undergraduate students. Executive functioning (cognitive inhibition and mental flexibility) was assessed with a Stroop-like neuropsychological task. Emotion regulation and aggressive behaviors were assessed via self-report inventories. Results showed main effects for both emotion regulation and executive functioning, as well as a significant interaction, indicating that those who scored lowest in both domains reported engaging in aggressive behaviors the most frequently. When different types of aggression were examined, this interaction was only significant for acts of physical aggression, not for acts of verbal aggression. Therefore, for physical aggression, emotion regulation and executive functioning exerted a moderating effect on one another. The implications are that, at least for acts of physical aggression, relatively strong capabilities in either domain may buffer against tendencies to engage in aggressive behaviors. Thus, both emotion regulation skills and executive functioning abilities may be valuable targets for interventions aiming to reduce aggressive behaviors. © The Author(s) 2015.
Loprinzi, Paul D; Nooe, Allison
Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study's purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female). Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred. Executive function was assessed using the Parametric Go/No-Go (PGNG) computer task. From this, 2 primary executive function outcome parameters were evaluated, including the Simple Rule and Repeating Rule. Results: After adjusting for baseline sedentary behavior, age, gender, body mass index and baseline moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), for every 25% increase in the number of correctly identified targets for the Repeating rule at the baseline assessment, participants engaged in 91.8 fewer minutes of sedentary behavior at the follow-up assessment (β = -91.8; 95% CI: -173.5, -10.0; P = 0.03). Results were unchanged when also adjusting for total baseline or follow-up physical activity. Conclusion: Greater executive function is associated with less follow-up sedentary behavior.
Paul D. Loprinzi
Full Text Available Background: No study has evaluated the effects of executive function on follow-up sedentary behavior, which was this study’s purpose. Methods: A longitudinal design was employed among 18 young adult college students (Mage = 23.7 years; 88.9% female. Accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity, along with executive function, were assessed at baseline. Approximately 8 weeks later, re-assessment of accelerometer-determined sedentary behavior and physical activity occurred. Executive function was assessed using the Parametric Go/No-Go (PGNG computer task. From this, 2 primary executive function outcome parameters were evaluated, including the Simple Rule and Repeating Rule. Results: After adjusting for baseline sedentary behavior, age, gender, body mass index and baseline moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA, for every 25% increase in the number of correctly identified targets for the Repeating rule at the baseline assessment, participants engaged in 91.8 fewer minutes of sedentary behavior at the follow-up assessment (β = -91.8; 95% CI: -173.5, -10.0; P = 0.03. Results were unchanged when also adjusting for total baseline or follow-up physical activity. Conclusion: Greater executive function is associated with less follow-up sedentary behavior.
Verte, S; Geurts, H.M.; Roeyers, H.; Oosterlaan, J.; Sergeant, J.A.
The main aims of this study were to investigate if children with high-functioning autism (HFA) and children with Tourette syndrome (TS) can be differentiated in their executive functioning (EF) profile compared to normal controls (NCs) and compared to each other and to investigate whether children
Verte, S; Geurts, H.M.; Roeyers, H.; Oosterlaan, J.; Sergeant, J.A.
The main aims of this study were to investigate if children with high-functioning autism (HFA) and children with Tourette syndrome (TS) can be differentiated in their executive functioning (EF) profile compared to normal controls (NCs) and compared to each other and to investigate whether children
Hayes, Sara; Donnellan, Claire; Stokes, Emma
Associations between executive function and physical function poststroke have not been extensively studied. More complex physiotherapy interventions poststroke require a greater degree of cognitive ability, especially executive function. This pilot study aimed to inform the methodology of a larger study by examining the associations between executive function and the performance of basic and complex gait tasks in people poststroke. A cross-sectional pilot study was conducted in a convenience sample of 20 participants recruited from a community-based voluntary stroke organisation and from the outpatient services of two urban hospitals. A battery of tests was used to measure executive function (Trail Making Test, Stroop Word-Colour Test, Zoo Map test, Frontal Assessment Battery and Digit Span backward test). Basic and complex 10metre gait tests were used to mimic aspects of physiotherapy intervention poststroke. Other measures included the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and the Motor Assessment Scale (MAS). Observational comparisons between participant executive function scores and age- and/or education-matched normative data demonstrated that executive dysfunction ranged between 55% and 100%. Poorer performance in measures of executive function was more frequently associated with poorer performance in complex gait tests compared with basic gait tests. The MAS was not significantly associated with any measure of executive function. Executive dysfunction is a common sequel poststroke which may negatively affect physical performance. Physiotherapists should consider executive dysfunction when developing rehabilitation strategies to improve physical function poststroke. Copyright © 2012 Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Weiss, Karen E; Harbeck-Weber, Cynthia; Zaccariello, Michael J; Kimondo, Jacqueline N; Harrison, Tracy E; Bruce, Barbara K
Despite ample research documenting deficits in executive functioning for adults with chronic pain, the literature on pediatric patients with chronic pain is limited and provides mixed results. The current study sought to further investigate the nature of executive dysfunction in this population and also examine the relationships between pain intensity, duration, and catastrophizing with sustained attention, working memory, and self- and parent-report of executive functioning. Pediatric pain clinic and rehabilitation program. Forty adolescents with chronic pain and their parents participated in this study. Participants completed neuropsychological measures and standardized self-report questionnaires during a 45- to 60-minute testing session. Fifty percent of this sample of adolescents with chronic pain demonstrated significant difficulties on at least one measure, with nine participants indicating difficulties on multiple measures. Pain significantly increased during the testing session. Pain variables of intensity, duration, and catastrophizing are related to sustained attention and working memory. This study adds support to previous findings suggesting subclinical struggles with executive functioning for adolescents with chronic pain. One-half of the sample indicated difficulties in either sustained attention and/or working memory. Future studies that would more thoroughly examine more complex executive functioning skills in this population would be helpful to further guide multidisciplinary treatment of these patients, particularly regarding whether or not school accommodations are warranted.
Russell Jay Hendel
Full Text Available A recent approach to pedagogic challenge, contrastive to the hierarchy approach of Bloom, Anderson, Gagne, Van Hiele, Marzano, Webb and many others, identifies pedagogic challenge with executive function: Pedagogy is defined as challenging if it addresses executive function. Executive function, in turn, is defined by the presence of multiple modalities of topic approach and a multi-parameter development of the topic. This paper discusses operational issues in implementing a teaching methodology based on multi-parameter problems. This paper advocates teaching a multi-parameter topic using a step-by-step incremental approach, introducing one parameter at a time. Examples are presented from trigonometry, actuarial mathematics, statistics and (biblical literary analysis. The paper also discusses the use of the incremental approach for problem creation and remediation.
Sheehan, Whitley A; Iarocci, Grace
Adjusting well academically and socially has been associated with enhanced academic performance and student retention. The purpose of this study was to examine subthreshold levels of ADHD symptoms such as inattention, hyperactivity, and executive functioning as potential predictors of academic and social adjustment in a healthy sample of university students. Participants were 135 undergraduate university students who completed self-report questionnaires. Hierarchical regression analyses revealed that metacognition (an aspect of executive function), gender, and age were significant predictors of academic adjustment beyond hyperactivity, inattention, and depression. Depression was the only significant predictor of social adjustment. The BASC-College form may identify depression symptoms predictive of social adjustment, but symptoms of inattention or hyperactivity are not sufficiently sensitive to predict academic adjustment. Measures of executive function that include metacognition such as the BRIEF-A may be most promising in identifying skills predictive of academic adjustment. © The Author(s) 2015.
Granvald, Viktor; Marciszko, Carin
The present study examined relationships between three key executive functions (working memory, inhibition, and mental set-shifting) and multiple types of aggression in a general population sample of 9-year-old children. One hundred and forty-eight children completed a battery of executive function tasks and were rated on aggression by their primary teachers. All executive function (EF) composites were related to a composite measure of aggression. Working memory (WM) was most consistently related to the different types of aggression (overt, relational, reactive, and proactive), whereas inhibition and mental set-shifting only were related to relational and reactive aggression, respectively. Specificity in relations (studied as independent contributions) was generally low with the exception of the relation between WM and relational aggression. Taken together, our results highlight the roles of WM and relational aggression in EF-aggression relations in middle childhood.
Ana Luisa Silva de Oliveira
Full Text Available Abstract Visual-motor maturity and executive functions are closely related in the child development process. This study aimed to investigate the relation between visual-motor abilities and executive functions in 83 healthy children between 7 and 10 years old. The tools used were the Bender Gestalt Visual-Motor Test - Gradual Scoring System (B-GSS, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST, Raven's Progressive Matrices (RPM, and Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure (ROCF. The correlation between the B-GSS and WCST scores was significantly negative (r = -.23, p < .033, while ROCF variables, such as Total Memory and Total Copy, had a moderate, significant correlation with total B-GSS score (r = -.55, p < .001; r = -.44, p < .001, respectively. The results empirically show the relation between executive functions and visual-motor maturity and are discussed in face of developmental neuropsychology.
Geurts, H.M.; Vissers, M.E.
Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy
Geurts, Hilde M.; Vissers, Marlies E.
Cognitive autism research is mainly focusing on children and young adults even though we know that autism is a life-long disorder and that healthy aging already has a strong impact on cognitive functioning. We compared the neuropsychological profile of 23 individuals with autism and 23 healthy controls (age range 51-83 years). Deficits were…
Van Oudenhove, Lukas; Vandenberghe, Joris; De Vos, Rita; Holvoet, Lieselot; Tack, Jan
BACKGROUND: It is unclear which factors explain the high co-morbidity between functional dyspepsia (FD) and other functional somatic syndromes. The aim of this study is to investigate the association between gastric sensorimotor function, psychosocial factors and 'somatization' on the one hand, and co-morbid irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and chronic fatigue (CF)-like symptoms on the other, in FD. METHODS: In 259 tertiary care FD patients, we studied gastric sensorimotor function w...
Gelonch, Olga; Garolera, Maite; Valls, Joan; Rosselló, Lluís; Pifarré, Josep
There is evidence to suggest the existence of an executive dysfunction in people diagnosed with fibromyalgia, although there are certain inconsistencies between studies. Here, we aim to compare executive performance between patients with fibromyalgia and a control group by using subjective and objective cognitive tests, analyzing the influence of patient mood on the results obtained, and studying associations between the two measures. 82 patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia and 42 healthy controls, matched by age and years of education, were assessed using the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function - Adult Version (BRIEF-A) as a subjective measure of executive functioning. A selection of objective cognitive tests were also used to measure a series of executive functions and to identify symptoms of depression and anxiety. Patients with fibromyalgia perceived greater difficulties than the control group on all of the BRIEF-A scales. However, after adjustments were made for depression and anxiety the only differences that remained were those associated with the working memory scale and the Metacognition and Global Executive Composite index. In the case of the objective cognitive tests, a significantly worse overall performance was evidenced for the fibromyalgia patients. However, this also disappeared when adjustments were made for depression and anxiety. After this adjustment, fibromyalgia patients only performed significantly worse for the interference effect in the Stroop Test. Although there were no significant associations between most of the objective cognitive tests and the BRIEF-A scales, depression and anxiety exhibited strong associations with almost all of the BRIEF-A scales and with several of the objective cognitive tests. Patients with fibromyalgia showed executive dysfunction in subjective and objective measures, although most of this impairment was associated with mood disturbances. Exceptions to this general rule were observed in the
Perrone-Bertolotti, Marcela; Tassin, Maxime; Meunier, Fanny
This present study investigated the link between speech-in-speech perception capacities and four executive function components: response suppression, inhibitory control, switching and working memory. We constructed a cross-modal semantic priming paradigm using a written target word and a spoken prime word, implemented in one of two concurrent auditory sentences (cocktail party situation). The prime and target were semantically related or unrelated. Participants had to perform a lexical decision task on visual target words and simultaneously listen to only one of two pronounced sentences. The attention of the participant was manipulated: The prime was in the pronounced sentence listened to by the participant or in the ignored one. In addition, we evaluate the executive function abilities of participants (switching cost, inhibitory-control cost and response-suppression cost) and their working memory span. Correlation analyses were performed between the executive and priming measurements. Our results showed a significant interaction effect between attention and semantic priming. We observed a significant priming effect in the attended but not in the ignored condition. Only priming effects obtained in the ignored condition were significantly correlated with some of the executive measurements. However, no correlation between priming effects and working memory capacity was found. Overall, these results confirm, first, the role of attention for semantic priming effect and, second, the implication of executive functions in speech-in-noise understanding capacities.
Full Text Available Alcohol consumption in adolescents causes negative effects on familiar, social, academic life, as well as neurocognitive alterations. The binge drinking (BD pattern of alcohol is characterized by the alternation of episodes of heavy drinking in a short interval of time, and periods of abstinence, a practice that can result in important brain alterations; even more than regular alcohol consumption. The prefrontal cortex, which acts as neural support for the executive processes, is particularly affected by alcohol; however, not all studies are in agreement about how BD alcohol consumption affects executive functioning. Some research has found that alcohol consumption in adolescence does not significantly affect executive functioning while others found it does. It is possible that these discrepancies could be due to the history of alcohol consumption, that is, at what age the subjects started drinking. The aim of our study is to assess the performance on executive functioning tasks of 13–19-year-old adolescents according to their pattern of alcohol consumption. We hypothesize that BD adolescents will perform worse than non-BD subjects in tasks that evaluate executive functions, and these differences will increase depending on how long they have been consuming alcohol. Three hundred and twenty-two students (48.14% females; age range 13–22 years; mean aged 16.7 ± 2.59 participated in the study; all of them had begun drinking at the age of 13 years. Participant were divided into three groups, according to their age range (13–15, 16–18, and 19–22 years and divided according to their pattern of alcohol consumption (BD and control groups. Then, the subjects were evaluated with neuropsychological tasks that assess executive functions like working memory, inhibition, cognitive flexibility, or self-control among others. The entire sample showed a normal improvement in their executive performance, but this improvement was more stable and robust in
Gil-Hernandez, Soledad; Mateos, Patricia; Porras, Claudia; Garcia-Gomez, Raquel; Navarro, Enrique; Garcia-Moreno, Luis M
Alcohol consumption in adolescents causes negative effects on familiar, social, academic life, as well as neurocognitive alterations. The binge drinking (BD) pattern of alcohol is characterized by the alternation of episodes of heavy drinking in a short interval of time, and periods of abstinence, a practice that can result in important brain alterations; even more than regular alcohol consumption. The prefrontal cortex, which acts as neural support for the executive processes, is particularly affected by alcohol; however, not all studies are in agreement about how BD alcohol consumption affects executive functioning. Some research has found that alcohol consumption in adolescence does not significantly affect executive functioning while others found it does. It is possible that these discrepancies could be due to the history of alcohol consumption, that is, at what age the subjects started drinking. The aim of our study is to assess the performance on executive functioning tasks of 13-19-year-old adolescents according to their pattern of alcohol consumption. We hypothesize that BD adolescents will perform worse than non-BD subjects in tasks that evaluate executive functions, and these differences will increase depending on how long they have been consuming alcohol. Three hundred and twenty-two students (48.14% females; age range 13-22 years; mean aged 16.7 ± 2.59) participated in the study; all of them had begun drinking at the age of 13 years. Participant were divided into three groups, according to their age range (13-15, 16-18, and 19-22 years) and divided according to their pattern of alcohol consumption (BD and control groups). Then, the subjects were evaluated with neuropsychological tasks that assess executive functions like working memory, inhibition, cognitive flexibility, or self-control among others. The entire sample showed a normal improvement in their executive performance, but this improvement was more stable and robust in the control group
Faure, C.; Patey, N.; Gauthier, C.; Brooks, E.M.; Mawe, G.M.
In adults, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional dyspepsia (FD) are chronic conditions that often start during childhood. We investigated mucosal serotonin (5-HT) signalling in children with the idea that data from subjects with a shorter history may improve our understanding of underlying pathophysiological mechanisms.
Koustenis, Elisabeth; Hernáiz Driever, Pablo; de Sonneville, Leo; Rueckriegel, Stefan M
Besides motor function the cerebellum subserves frontal lobe functions. Thus, we investigated executive functions in pediatric posterior fossa tumor survivors. We tested information processing, aspects of attention, planning and intelligence in 42 pediatric posterior fossa tumor survivors (mean age 14.63 yrs, SD 5.03). Seventeen low-grade tumor patients (LGCT) were treated with surgery only and 25 high-grade tumors patients (HGCT) received postsurgical adjuvant treatment. We evaluated simple reaction time, executive functioning, i.e. visuospatial memory, inhibition, and mental flexibility using the Amsterdam Neuropsychological Tasks program, whereas forward thinking was assessed with the Tower of London-test. Intelligence was determined using the Wechsler Intelligence Scale. Ataxia was assessed with the International Cooperative Ataxia Rating Scale. About one third of each patient group showed forward thinking scores below one standard deviation of the norm. Impaired forward thinking correlated significantly with degree of ataxia (r = -0.39, p = 0.03) but not with fluid intelligence. Both patient groups exhibited executive function deficits in accuracy and reaction speed in more difficult tasks involving information speed and attention flexibility. Still, HGCT patients were significantly slower and committed more errors. Working memory was inferior in HGCT patients. Pediatric cerebellar tumor survivors with different disease and treatment related brain damage exhibit similar patterns of impairment in executive functioning, concerning forward thinking, inhibition and mental flexibility. The deficits are larger in high-grade tumor patients. The pattern of function loss seen in both groups is most probably due to comparable lesions to cerebro-cerebellar circuits that are known to modulate critical executive functions. Copyright © 2015 European Paediatric Neurology Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Morton, J Bruce
Okanda, et al. (2010) reported new evidence concerning associations between language ability, bilingualism, and executive functioning early in development. The paper adds to a growing body of literature suggesting that bilingualism is associated with advantages in executive functioning generally, and the Dimensional Change Card Sort task in particular. However, as with all findings that hinge on between-group comparisons, there is a need to exercise caution before drawing firm conclusions about the effects of bilingualism on the development of executive control. Several lines of recent evidence are outlined that challenge key assumptions underlying the standard account of the bilingual advantage. Okanda, et al.'s findings are discussed in light of this evidence.
Zhang, Bing; Huang, Guoyan; Wang, Yuqian; He, Haitao; Ren, Jiadong
As the quality of crucial entities can directly affect that of software, their identification and protection become an important premise for effective software development, management, maintenance and testing, which thus contribute to improving the software quality and its attack-defending ability. Most analysis and evaluation on important entities like codes-based static structure analysis are on the destruction of the actual software running. In this paper, from the perspective of software execution process, we proposed an approach to mine dynamic noteworthy functions (DNFM)in software execution sequences. First, according to software decompiling and tracking stack changes, the execution traces composed of a series of function addresses were acquired. Then these traces were modeled as execution sequences and then simplified so as to get simplified sequences (SFS), followed by the extraction of patterns through pattern extraction (PE) algorithm from SFS. After that, evaluating indicators inner-importance and inter-importance were designed to measure the noteworthiness of functions in DNFM algorithm. Finally, these functions were sorted by their noteworthiness. Comparison and contrast were conducted on the experiment results from two traditional complex network-based node mining methods, namely PageRank and DegreeRank. The results show that the DNFM method can mine noteworthy functions in software effectively and precisely.
Hamilton, Jackie; Radlak, Bogna; Morris, Paul G; Phillips, Louise H
Cognitive deficits following stroke are well documented, but less is known about problems with social skills such as understanding others' thoughts and feelings. This study investigated the effect of stroke on a visual-affective measure of social understanding: the Reading the Mind in the Eyes test (RMET). The aims were to investigate whether right hemisphere stroke was particularly detrimental to this aspect of Theory of Mind (ToM), and investigate the relationship between ToM ability and executive function following stroke. Performance of stroke patients (right hemisphere stroke, n = 15; left hemisphere stroke, n = 15) was compared to that of controls (n = 40) matched for age, years of education, and IQ on tasks measuring ToM and executive functioning. Right hemisphere stroke was associated with impaired ToM ability, but left hemisphere stroke was not. There was no effect of stroke on a matched non-ToM control task. High correlations were found between performance on the RMET and some measures of executive functioning in participants with right hemisphere stroke only. Further analyses suggested that deficits in executive functioning could not statistically explain all of the difficulties shown by stroke participants on the RMET. A reduction in the ability to attribute mental states to others following right hemisphere stroke may adversely affect psychosocial functioning, disrupt interpersonal relationships, and lead to reduced quality of life. The clinical importance of these findings, implications for clinical practice and future research are discussed.
Whittingham, Koa; Bodimeade, Harriet L; Lloyd, Owen; Boyd, Roslyn N
To identify whether executive functioning mediates the effect of having unilateral cerebral palsy (CP) on executive functioning in everyday life, psychological functioning, and social functioning. A cross-sectional cohort of 46 children with unilateral CP (25 males, 21 females; mean age 11y 1mo, SD 2y 5mo; 24 right-sided, 22 left-sided) and 20 children with typical development (nine males, 11 females; mean age 10y 10mo, SD 2y 4mo). Cognitive executive functioning was tested using a neuropsychological battery. Executive functioning in everyday life was measured with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF; teacher and parent reports) and psychological and social functioning by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). Analysis included analysis of covariance and bootstrapping. Children with unilateral CP were found to have significantly decreased functioning, compared with children with typical development, on the BRIEF Behavioral Regulation Index, the BRIEF Metacognition Index, and on the SDQ emotion, conduct, hyperactivity, and peer problems subscales. Group differences were mediated by cognitive executive functioning for the BRIEF Metacognition Index (teacher and parent report), the BRIEF Behavioral Regulation Index (parent report only), the SDQ conduct subscale, and the SDQ hyperactivity subscale. This study suggests that the increased risk of children with unilateral CP experiencing executive functioning difficulties in everyday life, conduct problems, and hyperactivity can be partly explained by decreased cognitive executive functioning abilities relative to children with typical development. © 2014 Mac Keith Press.
Full Text Available Neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that irritable bowel syndrome (IBS—a relapsing functional bowel disorder—presents with disrupted brain connections. However, little is known about the alterations of interhemispheric functional connectivity and underlying structural connectivity in IBS. This study combined resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI to investigate changes in interhemispheric coordination in IBS patients. Resting-state functional and structural magnetic resonance images were acquired from 65 IBS patients and 67 healthy controls (matched for age, sex and educational level. Interhemispheric voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC was calculated and compared between groups. Homotopic regions showing abnormal VMHC in patients were targeted as regions of interest for analysis of DTI tractography. The fractional anisotropy, fiber number, and fiber length were compared between groups. Statistical analysis was also performed by including anxiety and depression as covariates to evaluate their effect. A Pearson correlation analysis between abnormal interhemispheric connectivity and clinical indices of IBS patients was performed. Compared to healthy controls, IBS patients had higher interhemispheric functional connectivity between bilateral thalami, cuneus, posterior cingulate cortices, lingual gyri and inferior occipital/cerebellum lobes, as well as lower interhemispheric functional connectivity between bilateral ventral anterior cingulate cortices (vACC and inferior parietal lobules (IPL. The inclusion of anxiety and depression as covariates abolished VMHC difference in vACC. Microstructural features of white matter tracts connecting functionally abnormal regions did not reveal any differences between the groups. VMHC values in vACC negatively correlated with the quality of life scores of patients. In conclusion, this study provides preliminary evidence of the disrupted
Geurts, H.; Sinzig, J.; Booth, R.; Happé, F.
In most research it is common to report results on a group level. For example, various studies report that children and adults with autism show executive function deficits. However, studies often differ in the pattern of findings. We believe this might be partly due to the heterogeneity of the
Brown, Thomas E.; Reichel, Philipp C.; Quinlan, Donald M.
Objectives: To demonstrate that high IQ adults diagnosed with ADHD suffer from executive function (EF) impairments that: a) can be identified with a combination of standardized measures and self-report data; and b) occur more commonly in this group than in the general population. Method: 157 ADHD adults with IQ greater than or equal to 120 were…
Wingo, Jana; Kalkut, Erica; Tuminello, Elizabeth; Asconape, Josefina; Han, S Duke
Many students have difficulty adjusting to college, and the contribution of academic and relational factors have been considered in previous research. In particular, depression commonly emerges among college women at this time and could be related to poor adjustment to college. This study examined the relationship between executive functions, depressive symptoms, and college adjustment in college women. Seventy-seven female participants from a midsize urban university completed the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence, College Adjustment Scale, Beck Depression Inventory-Second Edition, Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Adult Version, and four subtests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System: the Trail-Making Test, Design Fluency Test, Verbal Fluency Test, and Color-Word Interference Test. After controlling for IQ score, hierarchical regression analyses showed that subjective and objective measures of executive functioning and depressive symptoms were significantly related to college adjustment problems in academic, relational, and psychological areas. The current study provides evidence for a relationship between cognitive abilities, psychiatric symptoms, and college adjustment.
Duh, Shinchieh; Paik, Jae H.; Miller, Patricia H.; Gluck, Stephanie C.; Li, Hui; Himelfarb, Igor
Cross-cultural research on children's theory of mind (ToM) understanding has raised questions about its developmental sequence and relationship with executive function (EF). The current study examined how ToM develops (using the tasks from Wellman & Liu, 2004) in relation to 2 EF skills (conflict inhibition, working memory) in 997 Chinese…
Jacobson, Lisa A.; Koriakin, Taylor; Lipkin, Paul; Boada, Richard; Frijters, Jan C.; Lovett, Maureen W.; Hill, Dina; Willcutt, Erik; Gottwald, Stephanie; Wolf, Maryanne; Bosson-Heenan, Joan; Gruen, Jeffrey R.; Mahone, E. Mark
Competent reading requires various skills beyond those for basic word reading (i.e., core language skills, rapid naming, phonological processing). Contributing "higher-level" or domain-general processes include information processing speed and executive functions (working memory, strategic problem solving, attentional switching).…
Kazemeini, Toktam; Fadardi, Javad Salehi
The study aimed to examine whether Kurdish-Persian early Bilingual university students (EBL) and Persian Monolingual university students (ML) differ on tasks of executive function (EF). Thirty male EBL and 30 male ML students from Ferdowsi University of Mashhad completed a Persian Stroop Color-Word task (SCWT), Backward Digit Span Test (BDST),…
Vugs, B.A.M.; Knoors, H.E.T.; Cuperus, J.M.; Hendriks, M.P.H.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a computer-based executive function (EF) training in children with specific language impairment (SLI). Ten children with SLI, ages 8 to 12 years, completed a 25-session training of visuospatial working memory, inhibition and cognitive
Davidse, Neeltje Joanne
The current study extended research on working memory, attention shifting, and inhibitory control problems –indicated as executive functions (EF) – that may play a role in acquiring early literacy and numeracy skills. Four research questions were targeted: 1. Do EF skills interfere with benefiting
Full Text Available With regard to conceptual similarity between executive functions and intelligence, the aim of this research was to determine their correlation in typically developing children. The sample included 114 children of both sexes (59/51.8% of girls, between 8.7 and 10.8 years of age (M=9.80; SD=0.57. Dodrill's Stroop Test, Go/No-Go Task, Listening Span Task, Digit Span Backward, Odd-one-out span, Figure Span Backward, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Twenty Questions Task and Tower of London were used for the assessment of executive functions. Intelligence was assessed by Raven's Progressive Matrices. Pearson's correlation and partial correlation coefficients were used in statistical analysis of the results. A low to moderate correlation was determined between intelligence and the variables of all applied executive functions tasks, both in verbal and non-verbal domain (p≤0.000-0.05. Inhibitory control, cognitive flexibility, and planning ability correlated with fluid intelligence in the range of r=0.20-0.30, while the correlation with working memory was in the range of r=0.40-0.50. The obtained results confirmed the assumption that intelligence and executive functions were different constructs regardless of their conceptual similarity.
Johnson, Joseph; Reid, Robert
Academic problems are common among students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). One reason for academic problems is the difficulties in executive functions (EF) that are necessary for complex goal-oriented behaviors. Students with ADHD often exhibit EF deficits and as a result have difficulties with tasks that require planning,…
Yang, Hui-Chun; Gray, Shelley
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether preschoolers with primary language impairment (PLI) show deficits in executive function (EF) compared with their peers with typical development (TD) when inhibition, updating, and mental-set shifting are examined using both linguistically based and visually based tasks. Method: Twenty-two…
Martins, Eva Costa; Osório, Ana; Veríssimo, Manuela; Martins, Carla
This investigation was aimed at studying the relations between executive functions (EFs) and categorical emotion understanding while controlling for preschoolers' IQ, language ability and theory of mind (ToM). Specifically, we wanted to analyse the association between emotion understanding and set shifting, due to the lack of studies with this EF.…
Nathanson, Amy I.; Aladé, Fashina; Sharp, Molly L.; Rasmussen, Eric E.; Christy, Katheryn
This study investigated the relations between television exposure during the preschool years and the development of executive function (EF). Data were gathered from 107 parents of preschoolers who provided information on children's television viewing, background television exposure, exposure to specific televised content, and the age at which…
Zelazo, Philip David; Blair, Clancy B.; Willoughby, Michael T.
Executive function (EF) skills are the attention-regulation skills that make it possible to sustain attention, keep goals and information in mind, refrain from responding immediately, resist distraction, tolerate frustration, consider the consequences of different behaviors, reflect on past experiences, and plan for the future. As EF research…
The results indicate that the rigid temperament subtype reacted slower to both complex (executive functioning) and less complex tasks (attention and working memory) than the impulsive temperament subtype. ... Significant differences were maintained with analyses of intelligence and parental education as covariates.
Schoemaker, Kim; Bunte, Tessa; Wiebe, Sandra A.; Espy, Kimberly Andrews; Dekovic, Maja; Matthys, Walter
Background: Impairments in executive functions (EF) are consistently associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and to a lesser extent, with disruptive behavior disorder (DBD), that is, oppositional defiant disorder or conduct disorder, in school-aged children. Recently, larger numbers of children with these disorders are…
Willoughby, Michael T; Kupersmidt, Janis B; Voegler-Lee, Mary E
The primary objective of this study was to reevaluate the well-established result that preschoolers' performance on executive function tasks are positively associated with their performance on academic achievement tests. The current study replicated the previously established concurrent associations between children's performance on EF tasks and academic achievement tests. Specifically, children's performance on measures of inhibitory and motor control were positively associated with their performance on tests of reading, writing, and mathematics achievement (rs = .2-.5); moreover, although diminished in magnitude, most of these associations held up even after including an earlier measure of academic achievement as a covariate (rs = .1-.3). However, the application of an alternative analytic method, fixed effects analysis, a method that capitalizes on repeated measures data to control for all time stable measured and unmeasured covariates, rendered the apparent positive associations between executive function and academic achievement nonsignificant (rs = .0-.1). Taken together, these results suggest that the well-replicated association between executive function abilities and academic achievement may be spurious. Results are discussed with respect to the importance of utilizing analytic methods and research designs that facilitate strong causal inferences between executive function and academic achievement in early childhood, as well as the limitations of making curriculum development recommendations and/or public policy decisions based on studies that have failed to do so.
A.M. Boonstra (Marije); J. Oosterlaan (Jaap); J.A. Sergeant (Joseph); J.K. Buitelaar (Jan)
textabstractBackground: Several theoretical explanations of ADHD in children have focused on executive functioning as the main explanatory neuropsychological domain for the disorder. In order to establish if these theoretical accounts are supported by research data for adults with ADHD, we compared
Bishara, Saied; Kaplan, Shani
The goal of the research was to examine executive functioning and figurative language comprehension among students with learning disabilities as compared to students without learning disabilities. As part of the research, we examined 20 students with learning disabilities and 21 students with no learning disabilities, both groups of students…
Poulin-Dubois, Diane; Blaye, Agnes; Coutya, Julie; Bialystok, Ellen
Bilingual children have been shown to outperform monolingual children on tasks measuring executive functioning skills. This advantage is usually attributed to bilinguals' extensive practice in exercising selective attention and cognitive flexibility during language use because both languages are active when one of them is being used. We examined…
Boonstra, A.M.; Oosterlaan, J.; Sergeant, J.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.
Background. Several theoretical explanations of ADHD in children have focused on executive functioning as the main explanatory neuropsychological domain for the disorder. In order to establish if these theoretical accounts are supported by research data for adults with ADHD, we compared
Towe-Goodman, Nissa R.; Willoughby, Michael; Blair, Clancy; Gustafsson, Hanna C.; Mills-Koonce, W. Roger; Cox, Martha J.
Using data from a diverse sample of 620 families residing in rural, predominately low-income communities, this study examined longitudinal links between fathers’ sensitive parenting in infancy and toddlerhood and children’s early executive functioning, as well as the contribution of maternal sensitive parenting. After accounting for the quality of concurrent and prior parental care, children’s early cognitive ability, and other child and family factors, fathers’ and mothers’ sensitive and supportive parenting during play at 24-months predicted children’s executive functioning at 3-years of age. In contrast, paternal parenting quality during play at 7-months did not make an independent contribution above that of maternal care, but the links between maternal sensitive and supportive parenting and executive functioning seemed to operate in similar ways during infancy and toddlerhood. These findings add to prior work on early experience and children’s executive functioning, suggesting that both fathers and mothers play a distinct and complementary role in the development of these self-regulatory skills. PMID:25347539
Boonstra, A.M.; Oosterlaan, J.; Sergeant, J.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.
BACKGROUND: Several theoretical explanations of ADHD in children have focused on executive functioning as the main explanatory neuropsychological domain for the disorder. In order to establish if these theoretical accounts are supported by research data for adults with ADHD, we compared
O'Donnell, Patrick S.
The current study attempted to answer whether a specific executive functioning profile for individuals with test anxiety exists and whether deficits in working memory are associated with an earlier onset of test anxiety. Two hundred eighty-four undergraduate students completed a survey on test anxiety and self-report measures of test anxiety and…
Kalashnikova, Marina; Mattock, Karen
Previous research has demonstrated that being bilingual from birth is advantageous for the development of skills of social cognition, executive functioning, and metalinguistic awareness due to bilingual children's extensive experience of processing and manipulating two linguistic systems. The present study investigated whether these cognitive…
Neuenschwander, Regula; Friedman-Krauss, Allison; Raver, Cybele; Blair, Clancy
Research Findings: Recent research has explored relations between classroom quality and child executive function (EF), but little is known about how teachers' well-being, including stress, relates to child EF--a crucial component of self-regulation. We hypothesized that teacher stress is negatively or curvilinearly related to child EF and…
Beck, Danielle M.; Schaefer, Catherine; Pang, Karen; Carlson, Stephanie M.
Research suggests that executive function (EF) may distinguish between children who are well- or ill-prepared for kindergarten; however, little is known about the test-retest reliability of measures of EF for children. We aimed to establish a battery of EF measures that are sensitive to both development and individual differences across the…
Kolkman, Meijke E.; Hoijtink, Herbert J. A.; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Leseman, Paul P. M.
Executive functions (EF) are closely related to math performance. Little is known, however, about the role of EF in numerical magnitude skills (NS), although these skills are widely acknowledged to be important precursors of math learning. The current study focuses on the different roles of updating, shifting, and inhibition in NS. EF and NS were…
Aken, L. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Wingbermühle, P.A.M.; Veld, W.M. van der; Egger, J.I.M.
Objective Fluid intelligence (Gf) has been related to executive functioning (EF) in previous studies, and it is also known to be correlated with crystallized intelligence (Gc). The present study includes representative measures of Gf, Gc, and EF frequently used in clinical practice to examine this
Lizarraga, Maria Luisa Sanz de Acedo; Baquedano, Maria Teresa Sanz de Acedo; Villanueva, Oscar Ardaiz
The central issue of this paper is to review the possible relationships between the constructs of critical thinking and executive functions. To do this, we first analyse the essential components of critical thinking from a psychological and neurological point of view. Second, we examine the scope of the cognitive and neurological nature of…
Vugs, Brigitte; Knoors, Harry; Cuperus, Juliane; Hendriks, Marc; Verhoeven, Ludo
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a computer-based executive function (EF) training in children with specific language impairment (SLI). Ten children with SLI, ages 8 to 12 years, completed a 25-session training of visuospatial working memory, inhibition and cognitive flexibility over a 6-week period. Treatment outcome was…
Williams, Tricia S.; Westmacott, Robyn; Dlamini, Nomazulu; Granite, Leeor; Dirks, Peter; Askalan, Rand; MacGregor, Daune; Moharir, Mahendranath; Deveber, Gabrielle
Aim: Moyamoya vasculopathy is characterized by progressive stenosis of the major arteries of the Circle of Willis, resulting in compromised cerebral blood flow and increased risk of stroke. The objectives of the current study were to examine intellectual and executive functioning of children with moyamoya and to evaluate the impact of moyamoya…
Scherder, E. J. A.; Eggermont, L. H. P.; Geuze, R. H.; Vis, J.; Verkerke, G. J.
Objective: The aim of this study is to answer the question whether the strength of the knee extensor musculus quadriceps (m. quadriceps), in particular, is related to specific executive functions and whether this relationship is independent of aerobic fitness. The clinical relevance of this question
Marschark, Marc; Kronenberger, William G.; Rosica, Mark; Borgna, Georgianna; Convertino, Carol; Durkin, Andreana; Machmer, Elizabeth; Schmitz, Kathryn L.
Two experiments examined relations among social maturity, executive function, language, and cochlear implant (CI) use among deaf high school and college students. Experiment 1 revealed no differences between deaf CI users, deaf nonusers, and hearing college students in measures of social maturity. However, deaf students (both CI users and…
Nouwens, S.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
In the current study we investigated the contribution of storage and separate measures of executive functions to reading comprehension in Dutch 5th graders, while controlling for word recognition and vocabulary. In addition we investigated the relationship between this model and working memory as
Welsh, Marilyn C.; And Others
Early-treated phenylketonuria (PKU) children and unaffected peers were evaluated on four executive function (EF) tasks and one nonexecutive task. The PKU children scored lower than unaffected children on EF tasks, but not on the nonexecutive task. The PKU children's composite EF score was correlated with concurrent and mean lifetime phenylalanine…
de Greeff, Johannes Wilhelmus
There is increasing evidence that physical activity can improve cognitive functions of primary school children, especially the executive functions (functions that are important for goal directed cognition and behavior). Physically active academic lessons, however, do not improve executive functions
Bellaj, Tarek; Salhi, Imen; Le Gall, Didier; Roy, Arnaud
Research regarding executive functioning (EF) in children rarely focuses on populations in African or Middle-Eastern Arabic-speaking countries. The current study used a cross-sectional design to examine the developmental trajectories of school-age Tunisian children in three domains of executive control (inhibition of prepotent responses, cognitive flexibility, and working memory) as well as their mutual interactions and the effects of gender and parents' education level. Inhibitory processes, cognitive flexibility, and working memory were assessed using the Stroop test, a version of the Hayling test adapted for children, simple and alternating tasks of verbal fluency, and verbal and visuospatial span tasks (forward and backward spans). The study population included 120 7- to 12-year-old Tunisian children (60 girls, 60 boys) who were grouped and matched for age, gender, and parents' education level. The results revealed an overall effect of age on executive performance, whereas gender and parents' education level showed non-significant effects. In addition, executive indices were significantly associated with fluid intelligence level. Partial correlation analyses (controlled for age) found significant links between indices that assessed the same executive process, except for inhibitory processes; the temporal indices for inhibitory processes showed relative independence. The correlations between indices that assessed distinct executive processes were weaker (but significant). Overall, the results suggest that executive components in school-age Tunisian children operate according to relatively homogeneous developmental trajectories, marked by peaks of maturity that differ according to the assessed index. A transcultural approach to EF is discussed in terms of the unity and diversity of its components.
Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic medical condition that is dependent upon patients self-caring and managing their condition to achieve optimal control. Adherence to medical therapy, making decisions related to lifestyle changes, and self-treating hypoglycaemia for example, require planning and organisational skills that are under the control of a specific domain of cognitive function known as executive function. Executive function has been shown by functional imaging studies such as magnetic resonance imaging to be under the influence of the frontal and prefrontal cortical system. It is now recognised that even in subjects with apparently normal cognition, DM may be associated with impaired executive function (IEF). The exact cause of IEF in DM is still not fully understood. However cerebral microvascular disease and chronic dysglycaemia have been postulated as possible factors contributing to functional neuronal dysfunction leading to IEF. IEF may adversely affect patients\\' abilities to self-manage their diabetes care, potentially cause worsening glycaemic control and difficulty managing risk factors. Several bedside assessment tools to screen for IEF are currently available and have been shown to correlate with functional status. However, more studies are needed to validate these tests against diabetes self-care assessment tools. Until then, clinicians and healthcare workers managing patients with DM should be aware of the potential for IEF in their patients as specific behaviour and education intervention may be needed to help manage patients with diabetes and IEF.
Hammers, Dustin; Ramirez, Gabriela; Persad, Carol; Heidebrink, Judith; Barbas, Nancy; Giordani, Bruno
Limited research exists to explain differential executive functioning impairment in clinical populations, particularly between the Wisconsin Card Sorting Task (WCST) and the Trail Making Test (TMT). The distribution of clinical diagnoses was examined in patients failing none, one, or both tasks, and executive task performance was compared among dementia-related diagnoses. Two hundred and sixty-six participants received evaluations through an Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, which included executive tasks. Dementia-related diagnoses were established through consensus. Chi-square analyses indicated that TMT failure, with or without WCST failure, possessed higher associations with dementia diagnoses. Repeated measures analysis of variance similarly indicated that participants with dementia, especially mild and moderate severity, performed worse on TMT. Executive dysfunction was observed in dementia-related diagnoses, and TMT failure was implicated in dementia in higher proportions than WCST impairment. Trail Making Test appears more sensitive than WCST for assessing executive impairment across diagnoses, especially when time and resources are limited in screening and clinical settings. © The Author(s) 2015.
Full Text Available The aim of this investigation was to evaluate improvement of executive functions after shunt surgery in patients with early normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH. Patients with NPH were assessed before and after shunt surgery with tests shown to be sensitive to damage to the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Significant differences were found between basal and follow-up performances on the Boston Naming Test, the backwards digits span, Part B of the Trail Making Test, and the number of words produced on the phonological fluency task. In conclusion, our study reveals that patients with NPH who respond positively to continuous slow lumbar cerebral spinal fluid drainage and receive a ventriculoperitoneal shunt implant, improve their performance on tasks of executive function. Due to the high demand for this form of mental processing in real-life complex scenarios, and based on the severe executive deficits present in both demented and non-demented NPH patients, we encourage the assessment of executive functions in this clinical group.
Paloscia, Claudio; Baglioni, Valentina; Alessandrelli, Riccardo; Rosa, Caterina; Guerini, Rossella; Aceti, Franca; Pasini, Augusto
The aim of this study is to evaluate the executive functioning of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder combined subtype (ADHD-C) and Asperger syndrome (AS) compared to a control group. A sample of 79 children (28 ADHD-C; 24 AS; 27 subjects with typical development) was tested on a wide range of tasks related to major domains of executive functioning: inhibition response (prepotent and interference), visual working memory, planning and cognitive flexibility. Patients with AS showed deficits on visual working memory and cognitive flexibility. ADHD-C children were impaired on inhibition control (prepotent response) but also showed deficits on working memory and cognitive flexibility. The only executive functioning measure that differentiated ADHD from AS was inhibition of prepotent response and a more high deficit in cognitive flexibility and working memory in AS compared to ADHD-C. This study confirms recent evidence about the identification of specific executive profiles in these disorders. Other studies are warranted to evaluate the presence and specifity of a dysexecutive syndrome in ADHD and AS in a larger sample with girls.
Lahmann, Claas; Röhricht, Frank; Sauer, Nina; Noll-Hussong, Michael; Ronel, Joram; Henrich, Gerhard; von Arnim, Angela; Loew, Thomas
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a frequently disabling and almost invariably distressing disease with a high overall prevalence. Numerous trials identified the importance of psychogenic and emotional etiological factors, and this is obvious in clinical practice. Although relaxation techniques are frequently recommended, there is still a lack of evidence for their efficacy in the management of IBS. This study therefore aims to determine the efficacy of functional relaxation (FR) in IBS. The subjects were 80 patients with IBS. Participants were randomly allocated either to FR or to enhanced medical care (EMC: treatment as usual plus two counseling interviews) as control intervention with 2 weekly sessions over the 5-week trial each. Thirty-nine (39) patients completed FR and 39 received EMC. An impairment-severity score (IS) was employed as the primary outcome parameter with assessment at baseline, after treatment, and again after 3-month follow-up. FR was significantly superior to EMC with a standardized effect size of 0.85. The achieved effects through FR remained stable in terms of psychic and bodily impairment after 3-month follow-up. The results of our trial suggest a positive effect of FR training on subjective functional impairment in the IS, if provided in addition to treatment as usual (TAU). There appears to be a clinically relevant long-term benefit of FR as a nonpharmacological and complementary therapy approach in IBS.
Iturrino, Johanna; Camilleri, Michael; Busciglio, Irene; Burton, Duane; Zinsmeister, Alan R.
Background In prior studies, pregabalin reduced rectal or colonic pain in patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and healthy adults, suggesting reduction of afferent function. Aim To assess effects of pregabalin on colonic compliance, sensory and motor functions in patients with constipation-predominant IBS (IBS-C). Methods In a pilot, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study, we tested oral pregabalin, 200mg, in 18 IBS-C adults. With a barostatically-controlled polyethylene balloon in the left colon, we assessed sensation thresholds and colonic compliance using ascending method of limits, sensation ratings over 4 levels of distension, fasting and postprandial colonic tone and phasic motility. ANCOVA (adjusted for the corresponding pre-drug response) was used to compare placebo and pregabalin. After 45% participants completed studies, we conducted an interim analysis to assess the conditional power to detect pre-specified treatment effects given the observed variation and treatment group differences based on the planned sample size for the trial. Results Pregabalin did not significantly affect colonic compliance, sensation thresholds, sensation ratings, fasting or postprandial tone or motility index. The study was stopped for futility to detect an effect on visceral pain with the planned design and sample size. Conclusion Pregabalin, 200mg, might not reduce distension-related colonic pain in IBS-C patients. PMID:24095618
Downs, Ian A; Aroniadis, Olga C; Kelly, Libusha; Brandt, Lawrence J
Postinfection irritable bowel syndrome (PI-IBS) is a diarrheal disease that develops after infectious gastroenteritis (IGE). Profound alterations in the microbiota accompany IGE yet only 10% of IGE patients progress to PI-IBS. This review explores research linking IGE severity, psychological comorbidity, PI-IBS, and the microbiome in various patient populations. Selective pressures caused by inflammation and increased gastrointestinal motility during gastroenteritis can alter intestinal bacterial phyla including Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, and Proteobacteria. More specifically, classes such as Bacteroides and Clostridia are differentially abundant in many PI-IBS patients. Altered microbiota may perpetuate a cycle of enteric and systemic inflammation, potently activating neural afferent signaling in the enteric nervous system and causing pain and diarrhea in PI-IBS patients. Altered production of microbial metabolites, for example short chain fatty acids, may have enteric and systemic effects on the host. Longitudinal sampling to characterize changes in the microbiota's genetic, metabolic, and transcriptional activities over time from IGE to PI-IBS may enable improved diagnosis and classification of PI-IBS cases into subtypes, allowing for targeted antibiotic, probiotic, and prebiotic treatments. PI-IBS is a heterogenous and largely organic disease marked by specific alterations in functions of the microbiota and is an important model for studying microbial influences on intestinal, neurological, and psychological host functions.
Wolters Gregório, Gisela; Ponds, Rudolf W H M; Smeets, Sanne M J; Jonker, Frank; Pouwels, Climmy G J G; Verhey, Frans R; van Heugten, Caroline M
To examine the relationships between executive functioning, coping, depressive symptoms, and quality of life in individuals with neuropsychiatric symptoms after acquired brain injury (ABI). Cross-sectional study. Individuals (n = 93) in the post-acute and chronic phase (>3 months) after ABI and their significant others (N = 58) were recruited from outpatient clinics of four mental health centres in the Netherlands. Outcome measures were the Trail Making Test, Stroop Colour Word Test, Frontal Systems Behavioural Scale, Utrecht Coping List, Patient Health Questionnaire, and Life Satisfaction Questionnaire. Data were analysed with multiple regression analyses. Self-reported executive dysfunction was associated with greater use of passive coping styles (β = .37, p executive functioning (β = -.94, p executive functioning tests were not associated with coping, depressive symptoms, or quality of life. For clinicians, these data indicate that individuals who report greater difficulties with executive functioning after ABI are inclined to use maladaptive passive coping styles, which should be targeted in treatment. In comparison, individuals who report greater difficulties with executive functioning should not be prompted to use problem-focused coping styles. These individuals may benefit from other coping styles, such as the use of seeking social support or acceptance of problems. Coping influences the association between executive functioning and quality of life. Individuals who report difficulties with executive functioning after ABI may be inclined to use passive coping styles, which are maladaptive. Problem-focused coping strategies may be more useful for individuals who have strong executive abilities. This study was a cross-sectional study; thus, a cause-and-effect relationship could not be established between executive functioning, coping, and psychosocial functioning. As this research was part of standard clinical care, non-traditional tests for executive
Emily J. Helder
Full Text Available Normal aging is associated with a number of cognitive deficits, including changes in executive functioning. Cabeza (Cabeza, 2002 proposed that hemispheric asymmetry during certain tasks becomes less pronounced in the elderly, reflected in greater bilateral patterns of cortical activation among older adults. Forty-two younger adults and 35 older adults were administered a battery of neuropsychological tests sensitive to frontal functioning. In addition, they completed a lexical decision task to assess lateralized implicit priming at two Stimulus Onset Asynchronies (SOAs (50 ms and 750 ms. Results of accuracy and reaction time data support Cabeza’s model of reduced asymmetry in older adults completing a semantic priming task. Analysis of the contribution of executive functioning revealed its importance in semantic memory processing.
Favre, Tricia; Hughes, Carroll; Emslie, Graham; Stavinoha, Peter; Kennard, Beth; Carmody, Thomas
The present investigation examined neurocognitive functioning, focusing on executive functioning (EF), in 39 children and adolescents with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and 24 healthy control subjects all ages 8 to 17 years. The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Third Edition along with several measures of executive functioning including the Wisconsin Card Sorting Task, Trail Making Test, Controlled Oral Word Association Test, and the Stroop Color Word Test were administered. The neurocognitive profiles for the group of depressed children and adolescents were grossly intact as most scores on intellectual and EF measures fell within the average range and did not differ from the comparison group. Mental processing speed was decreased in the MDD versus normal control group and 27% of the depressed group performed below average on the Trail Making Test. This investigation provided a good base from which to compare future literature on EF in outpatients with early-onset MDD.
Jones, R H; Holtmann, G; Rodrigo, L; Ehsanullah, R S; Crompton, P M; Jacques, L A; Mills, J G
Irritable bowel syndrome is one of the most common gastrointestinal disorders, yet no therapy convincingly controls the multiple symptoms of this syndrome. To compare the efficacy and tolerability of the new 5-HT3-receptor antagonist alosetron and the smooth muscle relaxant mebeverine in a double-blind, multicentre, randomized trial. Six hundred and twenty-three nonconstipated females with irritable bowel syndrome were randomized to receive alosetron 1 mg twice daily (n=319) or mebeverine 135 mg three times daily (n=304) for 12 weeks, followed by a 4-week post-treatment period. The primary efficacy end-point was monthly responders for adequate relief of irritable bowel syndrome related abdominal pain and discomfort (defined as patients reporting adequate relief on at least 2 out of 4 weeks). Secondary end-points included assessments of bowel function, including urgency, stool frequency and stool consistency. There were significantly more responders in the alosetron group compared with mebeverine at months 2 and 3 (P mebeverine, the alosetron group experienced significant decreases in proportion of days with urgency and mean stool frequency, and had firmer stools within 1 week of starting treatment. A similar proportion of patients reported adverse events in the two treatment groups. In nonconstipated female irritable bowel syndrome patients, alosetron is significantly more effective than mebeverine in improving symptoms.
Full Text Available Recent studies have reported improvements in a variety of cognitive functions following sole working memory (WM training. In spite of the emergence of several successful training paradigms, the scope of transfer effects has remained mixed. This is most likely due to the heterogeneity of cognitive functions that have been measured and tasks that have been applied. In the present study, we approached this issue systematically by investigating transfer effects from WM training to different aspects of executive functioning. Our training task was a demanding WM task that requires simultaneous performance of a visual and an auditory n-back task, while the transfer tasks tapped WM updating, coordination of the performance of multiple simultaneous tasks (i.e., dual-tasks and sequential tasks (i.e., task switching, and the temporal distribution of attentional processing. Additionally, we examined whether WM training improves reasoning abilities; a hypothesis that has so far gained mixed support. Following training, participants showed improvements in the trained task as well as in the transfer WM updating task. As for the other executive functions, trained participants improved in a task switching situation and in attentional processing. There was no transfer to the dual-task situation or to reasoning skills. These results therefore confirm previous findings that WM can be trained, and additionally, they show that the training effects can generalize to various other tasks tapping on executive functions.
Roca, María; Manes, Facundo; Cetkovich, Marcelo; Bruno, Diana; Ibáñez, Agustín; Torralva, Teresa; Duncan, John
An enduring question is unity vs. separability of executive deficits resulting from impaired frontal lobe function. In previous studies, we have asked how executive deficits link to a conventional measure of fluid intelligence, obtained either by standard tests of novel problem-solving, or by averaging performance in a battery of novel tasks. For some classical executive tasks, such as the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST), Verbal Fluency, and Trail Making Test B (TMTB), frontal deficits are entirely explained by fluid intelligence. However, on a second set of executive tasks, including tests of multitasking and decision making, deficits exceed those predicted by fluid intelligence loss. In this paper we discuss how these results shed light on the diverse clinical phenomenology observed in frontal dysfunction, and present new data on a group of 15 schizophrenic patients and 14 controls. Subjects were assessed with a range of executive tests and with a general cognitive battery used to derive a measure of fluid intelligence. Group performance was compared and fluid intelligence was introduced as a covariate. In line with our previous results, significant patient-control differences in classical executive tests were removed when fluid intelligence was introduced as a covariate. However, for tests of multitasking and decision making, deficits remained. We relate our findings to those of previous factor analytic studies describing a single principal component, which accounts for much of the variance of schizophrenic patients' cognitive performance. We propose that this general factor reflects low fluid intelligence capacity, which accounts for much but not all cognitive impairment in this patient group. Partialling out the general effects of fluid intelligence, we propose, may clarify the role of additional, more specific cognitive impairments in conditions such as schizophrenia.
Blanco, Nathaniel J; Maddox, W Todd; Gonzalez-Lima, Francisco
Transcranial infrared laser stimulation is a new non-invasive form of low-level light therapy that may have a wide range of neuropsychological applications. It entails using low-power and high-energy-density infrared light from lasers to increase metabolic energy. Preclinical work showed that this intervention can increase cortical metabolic energy, thereby improving frontal cortex-based memory function in rats. Barrett and Gonzalez-Lima (2013, Neuroscience, 230, 13) discovered that transcranial laser stimulation can enhance sustained attention and short-term memory in humans. We extend this line of work to executive function. Specifically, we ask whether transcranial laser stimulation enhances performance in the Wisconsin Card Sorting Task that is considered the gold standard of executive function and is compromised in normal ageing and a number of neuropsychological disorders. We used a laser of a specific wavelength (1,064 nm) that photostimulates cytochrome oxidase - the enzyme catalysing oxygen consumption for metabolic energy production. Increased cytochrome oxidase activity is considered the primary mechanism of action of this intervention. Participants who received laser treatment made fewer errors and showed improved set-shifting ability relative to placebo controls. These results suggest that transcranial laser stimulation improves executive function and may have exciting potential for treating or preventing deficits resulting from neuropsychological disorders or normal ageing. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.
Hayashi, Yusuke; Rivera, Esteban A; Modico, James G; Foreman, Anne M; Wirth, Oliver
The purpose of the present study was to investigate the cognitive processes underlying texting while driving. A sample of 120 college students completed a survey to assess how frequently they send and read a text message while driving. Based on this information, students were assigned to one of two groups: 20 students who frequently text while driving and 20 matched-control students who infrequently text while driving but were similar in gender, age, years of education, and years driving. The groups were compared on the extent to which they differed in self-reported measures of executive function and impulsivity. The groups were also compared on a behavioral measure of impulsivity: the extent to which they discounted hypothetical monetary rewards as a function of the delay. For this measure, the students made repeated choices between smaller monetary rewards available immediately and larger rewards available after delays ranging from 1 week to 6 months. The results show that the group of students who frequently text while driving showed (a) significantly lower levels of executive function and (b) higher levels of self-reported impulsivity, although the groups did not differ significantly on the behavioral measure of impulsivity. These results support a general conclusion that drivers with lower levels of executive function and higher levels of impulsivity are more likely to text while driving. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Tillman, Carin M; Bohlin, Gunilla; Sørensen, Lin; Lundervold, Astri J
This study aimed to specify the deficit in intellectual ability in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), by studying the mediating role of impairments in central executive function (EF)-related components (working memory, inhibition, sustained attention) and non-EFs (short-term memory and processing speed). Two hundred and thirty children aged 8-11 years from a population-based sample were assigned to either the ADHD group, the clinical comparison group, or the normal comparison group. The results showed that children with ADHD had poorer fluid and crystallized intelligence, relative to both comparison groups. Further, regarding fluid intelligence, these deficits were not fully mediated by, but rather went beyond, poorer functioning on the studied EF-related components and non-EFs. We tentatively interpret these fluid deficits in children with ADHD as representing deficiencies in a general intellectual resource reflecting executive attentional processes. Concerning crystallized ability, in contrast, the deficit signified impairment in the studied cognitive functions, as indicated by the significant full mediation effect.
Bernardo Kolling Limberger
Full Text Available Studies have shown that bilinguals and multilinguals have superior performance compared to monolinguals in nonlinguistic tasks that tap into executive functioning. However, studies of bilingual and multilingual advantages in linguistic tasks are fewer and the results are less consensual. In Brazil, the positive effects of executive functions in bilingualism have not been consistently identified in the bilingual populations, especially in speakers of the minority language Hunsrückisch (a German dialect. The main goal of this study was to investigate the performance of bilinguals and multilinguals speakers of Hunsrückisch compared to monolinguals in a nonlinguistic task, the Attentional Network Task, and in a linguistic task, the Sentence Comprehension Task. The results show that multilinguals were faster in comparison to monolinguals in the nonlinguistic task. The results for the linguistic task, in turn, show that the monolinguals had more facility to inhibiting the linguistic interference.
Sorel, Olivier; Pennequin, Valerie
This study tested whether the aging of executive functioning is linked to the decline in planning performance. Participants were divided into three groups: group 1 composed of 15 adults with a mean age of 22.7 years, group 2 composed of 15 adults with a mean age of 68.1 years and group 3 composed of 16 adults with a mean age of 78.75 years. Each…
Crivello, Cristina; Kuzyk, Olivia; Rodrigues, Monyka; Friend, Margaret; Zesiger, Pascal; Poulin-Dubois, Diane
The mastery of two languages provides bilingual speakers with cognitive benefits over monolinguals, particularly on cognitive flexibility and selective attention. However, extant research is limited to comparisons between monolinguals and bilinguals at a single point in time. This study investigated whether growth in bilingual proficiency, as shown by an increased number of translation equivalents (TEs) over a 7-month period, improves executive function. We hypothesized that bilingual toddlers with a larger increase of TEs would have more practice in switching across lexical systems, boosting executive function abilities. Expressive vocabulary and TEs were assessed at 24 and 31 months of age. A battery of tasks, including conflict, delay, and working memory tasks, was administered at 31 months. As expected, we observed a task-specific advantage in inhibitory control in bilinguals. More important, within the bilingual group, larger increases in the number of TEs predicted better performance on conflict tasks but not on delay tasks. This unique longitudinal design confirms the relation between executive function and early bilingualism. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Crivello, Cristina; Kuzyk, Olivia; Rodrigues, Monyka; Friend, Margaret; Zesiger, Pascal; Poulin-Dubois, Diane
The mastery of two languages provides bilingual speakers with cognitive benefits over monolinguals, particularly on cognitive flexibility and selective attention. However, extant research is limited to comparisons between monolinguals and bilinguals at a single point in time. This study investigated whether growth in bilingual proficiency, as shown by an increased number of translation equivalents (TEs) over a 7-month period, improves executive function. We hypothesized that bilingual toddlers with a larger increase of TEs would have more practice in switching across lexical systems, boosting executive function abilities. Expressive vocabulary and TEs were assessed at 24 and 31 months of age. A battery of tasks, including conflict, delay, and working memory tasks, was administered at 31 months. As expected, we observed a task-specific advantage in inhibitory control in bilinguals. More important, within the bilingual group, larger increases in the number of TEs predicted better performance on conflict tasks but not on delay tasks. This unique longitudinal design confirms the relation between executive function and early bilingualism. PMID:26402219
Murphy, Yolanda E; Luke, Anna; Brennan, Elle; Francazio, Sarah; Christopher, Isabella; Flessner, Christopher A
Although science's understanding (e.g., etiology, maintaining factors, etc.) of pediatric anxiety and related problems has grown substantially over recent years, several aspects to anxiety in youths remain elusive, particularly with relation to executive functioning. To this end, the current study sought to examine several facets to executive functioning (i.e., cognitive flexibility, inhibition, planning, working memory) within a transdiagnostic sample of youths exhibiting varying degrees of anxiety symptoms. One hundred six youths completed a comprehensive battery, including several self-report measures (e.g., Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children [MASC] or MASC-2) and an automated neurocognitive battery of several executive functioning tasks (Intradimensional/Extradimensional [IDED], Stop Signal [SST], Spatial Span [SSP], Stockings of Cambridge [SOC] tasks). Regression analyses indicated that youths exhibiting marked anxiety symptoms demonstrated increased planning time and probability of inhibition compared with youths with minimal or no anxiety symptoms. Youths with marked anxiety symptoms similarly demonstrated better cognitive flexibility (i.e., set shifting) compared with youths with minimal anxiety. In addition, analyses indicated a trend such that youths exhibiting marked anxiety symptoms demonstrated poorer working memory compared with youths with no anxiety symptoms. Group classification did not predict remaining outcomes. Limitations and future areas of research are discussed.
Fatima, Shameem; Sharif, Imran
The main focus of the current study was to assess whether executive functions (EFs) moderate the effect of parental punishment on adolescent aggression. The sample were 370 participants (53% girls, 47% boys) enrolled at secondary and higher secondary levels and ranged in age between 13-19 years (M = 15.5, SD = 1.3). Participants were assessed on a self-report measure of aggression and two punishment measures, in addition to a demographic sheet. Then, they were individually assessed on four tests taken from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functions System (D-KEFS) namely Trial Making Test (TMT), Design Fluency Test (DFT), Color Word Interference Test (CWIT), and Card Sorting Test (CST) to assess cognitive flexibility, nonverbal fluency, inhibition, and problem-solving ability, respectively. Correlation coefficients indicated that all four executive functioning measures and the two punishment measures were significantly correlated with aggression. Moderation analysis indicated that all EFs moderated the relationship between physical punishment and aggression, and only inhibition and problem-solving ability, but not cognitive flexibility and nonverbal fluency, moderated the relations between symbolic punishment and aggression. The findings support the hypothesis that EFs are protective personal factors that promote healthy adolescent adjustment in the presence of challenging environmental factors.
Costanzo, Floriana; Varuzza, Cristiana; Menghini, Deny; Addona, Francesca; Gianesini, Tiziana; Vicari, Stefano
Executive functions are a set of high cognitive abilities that control and regulate other functions and behaviors and are crucial for successful adaptation. Deficits in executive functions are frequently described in developmental disorders, which are characterized by disadaptive behavior. However, executive functions are not widely examined in…
Full Text Available Executive Function (EF is a multidimensional construct. It includes a set of abilities that allows to execute actions with a purpose, aimed to a goal, in an efficient way. The objective of this work is to explore some of the cognitive abilities that constitute a common factor for EF in 9 years-old children. The chosen instruments: Batería de Evaluación Neuropsicológica de la Función Ejecutiva en niños (ENFEN (Battery of Neuropsychological Assessment for Executive Function in Children, along with the Backward Digits Subtestfrom the WISC-III, were administered to 101 children from private schools of Buenos Aires State, Argentina. The ENFEN consists on EF tasks, including Phonological and Semantic Fluency, Trail Making Test versions for children (gray and colored sets, Interference Task, and Planning disc movements according to a model. An initial confirmatory factor analysis didn’t show significant fit indexes, being the Inhibitory control the variable with the lower and non significant factorial weight. A second model excluding the Inhibitory control measure was conducted, and it showed excellent fit indexes. Therefore, it can be concluded that at this age, some of the cognitive abilities included on the EF are: Phonological and Semantic Fluency, Sustained and Selective attention, Planning and Working memory; which is not the case for Inhibitory Control (measured by the Interference Task in the ENFEN.
Full Text Available Neuropsychological deficits associated with unipolar depression are seen in a broad range of cognitive domains. Executive deficits may be prominent in depression. Investigation of executive functions in younger adult patients with unipolar depression has been the focus of our study. Twenty-two consecutively depressive inpatients (24-36 years and 21 healthy control subjects, matched on age, gender, education and verbal IQ were included in the study. Neuropsychological tests for executive functions were applied to all subjects. Unipolar young depressives showed significantly reduced number of completed categories and more trials for completion of the first category on Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST. No difference of tasks assessing the short-term memory, total errors on WCST, perseverative and non-perseverative errors, and of both phonemic and semantic conditions of verbal fluency was found between groups. The results suggested that unipolar depressives had specific cognitive style characterized by "negative cognitive set" (stronger negative reaction to negative feedback and by failure to use negative feedback to improve their performance.
Hogan, Alexandra M.; Telfer, Paul T.; Kirkham, Fenella J.; de Haan, Michelle
Executive dysfunction occurs in sickle cell anemia, but there are few early data. Infants with sickle cell anemia (n = 14) and controls (n = 14) performed the “A-not-B” and Object Retrieval search tasks, measuring precursors of executive function at 9 and 12 months. Significant group differences were not found. However, for the A-not-B task, 7 of 11 sickle cell anemia infants scored in the lower 2 performance categories at 9 months, but only 1 at 12 months (P = .024); controls obtained scores at 12 months that were statistically comparable to the scores they had already obtained at 9 months. On the Object Retrieval task, 9- and 12-month controls showed comparable scores, whereas infants with sickle cell anemia continued to improve (P = .027); at 9 months, those with lower hemoglobin oxygen saturation passed fewer trials (R s = 0.670, P = .024) and took longer to obtain the toy (R s = –0.664, P = .013). Subtle delays in acquiring developmental skills may underlie abnormal executive function in childhood. PMID:22859700
Almasi, Gheorghe; Archer, Charles J.; Giampapa, Mark E.; Gooding, Thomas M.; Heidelberger, Philip; Parker, Jeffrey J.
Executing application function calls in response to an interrupt including creating a thread; receiving an interrupt having an interrupt type; determining whether a value of a semaphore represents that interrupts are disabled; if the value of the semaphore represents that interrupts are not disabled: calling, by the thread, one or more preconfigured functions in dependence upon the interrupt type of the interrupt; yielding the thread; and if the value of the semaphore represents that interrupts are disabled: setting the value of the semaphore to represent to a kernel that interrupts are hard-disabled; and hard-disabling interrupts at the kernel.
van der Niet, Anneke G.; Smith, Joanne; Scherder, Erik J. A.; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Hartman, Esther; Visscher, Chris
Objectives: While there is some evidence that aerobic fitness is positively associated with executive functioning in children, evidence for a relation between children's daily physical activity and their executive functioning is limited. The objective was to examine associations between objectively
Polak, A. Rosaura; Witteveen, Anke B.; Reitsma, Johannes B.; Olff, Miranda
Background: Although posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with disturbances in verbal memory, studies examining executive functioning in PTSD show mixed results. Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis were performed to compare executive functioning in patients with
Miller, Alison L.; Jong, Hannah; Lumeng, Julie C.
There is a growing focus on links between obesity and cognitive decline in adulthood, including Alzheimer’s disease. It is also increasingly recognized that obesity in youth is associated with poorer cognitive function, specifically executive functioning skills such as inhibitory control and working memory, which are critical for academic achievement. Emerging literature provides evidence for possible biological mechanisms driven by obesity; obesity-associated biomarkers such as adipokines, obesity-associated inflammatory cytokines, and obesity-associated gut hormones have been associated with learning, memory, and general cognitive function. To date, examination of obesity-associated biology with brain function has primarily occurred in animal models. The few studies examining such biologically-mediated pathways in adult humans have corroborated the animal data, but this body of work has gone relatively unrecognized by the pediatric literature. Despite the fact that differences in these biomarkers have been found in association with obesity in children, the possibility that obesity-related biology could affect brain development in children has not been actively considered. We review obesity-associated biomarkers that have shown associations with neurocognitive skills, specifically executive functioning skills which have far-reaching implications for child development. Understanding such gut-brain associations early in the lifespan may yield unique intervention implications. PMID:25310758
Chen, Yong; Kanju, Patrick; Fang, Quan; Lee, Suk Hee; Parekh, Puja K; Lee, Whasil; Moore, Carlene; Brenner, Daniel; Gereau, Robert W; Wang, Fan; Liedtke, Wolfgang
Detection of external irritants by head nociceptor neurons has deep evolutionary roots. Irritant-induced aversive behavior is a popular pain model in laboratory animals. It is used widely in the formalin model, where formaldehyde is injected into the rodent paw, eliciting quantifiable nocifensive behavior that has a direct, tissue-injury-evoked phase, and a subsequent tonic phase caused by neural maladaptation. The formalin model has elucidated many antipain compounds and pain-modulating signaling pathways. We have adopted this model to trigeminally innervated territories in mice. In addition, we examined the involvement of TRPV4 channels in formalin-evoked trigeminal pain behavior because TRPV4 is abundantly expressed in trigeminal ganglion (TG) sensory neurons, and because we have recently defined TRPV4's role in response to airborne irritants and in a model for temporomandibular joint pain. We found TRPV4 to be important for trigeminal nocifensive behavior evoked by formalin whisker pad injections. This conclusion is supported by studies with Trpv4(-/-) mice and TRPV4-specific antagonists. Our results imply TRPV4 in MEK-ERK activation in TG sensory neurons. Furthermore, cellular studies in primary TG neurons and in heterologous TRPV4-expressing cells suggest that TRPV4 can be activated directly by formalin to gate Ca(2+). Using TRPA1-blocker and Trpa1(-/-) mice, we found that both TRP channels co-contribute to the formalin trigeminal pain response. These results imply TRPV4 as an important signaling molecule in irritation-evoked trigeminal pain. TRPV4-antagonistic therapies can therefore be envisioned as novel analgesics, possibly for specific targeting of trigeminal pain disorders, such as migraine, headaches, temporomandibular joint, facial, and dental pain, and irritation of trigeminally innervated surface epithelia. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Anderson, Basil; Storfer-Isser, Amy; Taylor, H Gerry; Rosen, Carol L; Redline, Susan
Sleep deprivation and sleepiness are associated with poorer school performance, impaired neurobehavioral functioning, and behavioral problems. To determine if adolescents with high levels of sleepiness or short sleep duration have impaired executive functioning. Ours was a cross-sectional analysis of data from 236 healthy adolescents in a community-based cohort study. Sleepiness was measured by using a modified version of the Epworth Sleepiness Scale. Participants underwent 5- to 7-day wrist actigraphy at home before overnight polysomnography. Exposure variables were excessive sleepiness (Epworth Sleepiness Scale > or = 11) and weekday mean sleep duration. The main outcome measures were the global executive composite scale from the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function and the tower test-total achievement score from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System. Participants (N = 236) were 13.7 +/- 0.8 years of age, and 52.1% were boys. Mean weekday sleep duration was 7.70 +/- 1.03 hours; 11% slept adolescents had poorer executive functioning on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function global executive composite scale and the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System tower test-total achievement. Analyses adjusted for potential confounders resulted in a modest attenuation of the association with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function and a larger attenuation for the Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System. Caregiver education modified the association between sleepiness and the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function outcomes. Among sleepy adolescents, those with less-educated caregivers had greater impairment on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function global executive composite scale. Sleep duration was not significantly associated with executive functioning outcomes. Decrements in selected executive function scales are associated with subjective sleepiness, but not sleep duration, in adolescents. The
Friedman, Naomi P.; Miyake, Akira; Young, Susan E.; DeFries, John C.; Corley, Robin P.; Hewitt, John K.
Recent psychological and neuropsychological research suggests that executive functions--the cognitive control processes that regulate thought and action--are multifaceted and that different types of executive functions are correlated but separable. The present multivariate twin study of 3 executive functions (inhibiting dominant responses,…
Veer, Ilona Maria; van Tuijl, Cathy; Luyten, Johannes W.; Sleegers, P.J.C.
Although previous studies have shown that executive functions can affect student learning, longitudinal studies into how executive functions develop in toddlerhood are still scarce. To get more insights into the developmental nature of executive functions , more research is needed into the
Verlinden, Marina; Veenstra, René; Ghassabian, Akhgar; Jansen, P.W.; Hofman, Albert; Jaddoe, Vincent W. V.; Verhulst, F.C.; Tiemeier, Henning
Executive function and intelligence are negatively associated with aggression, yet the role of executive function has rarely been examined in the context of school bullying. We studied whether different domains of executive function and non-verbal intelligence are associated with bullying
Soar, Kirstie; Chapman, E.; Sivakuma, N.; Jansari, A.S.; Turner, John J.D.
Objective: Caffeine has been shown to have effects on certain areas of cognition, but in\\ud executive functioning the research is limited and also inconsistent. One reason could be the\\ud need for a more sensitive measure to detect the effects of caffeine on executive function. This\\ud study used a new non-immersive virtual reality assessment of executive functions known as\\ud JEF© (the Jansari Assessment of Executive Function) alongside the ‘classic’ Stroop Colour-\\ud Word task to assess the...
Rachel K. Peterson
Full Text Available Adaptive skills are often defined as a set of behaviors or constellation of skills that allow for an individual to function independently and meet environmental demands. Adaptive skills have been linked with an array of social and academic outcomes. Executive functions (EF have been defined as a set of “capacities that enable a person to engage successfully in independent, purposive, self-serving behavior”. While the literature has demonstrated some overlap in the definitions of adaptive skills and the purpose of executive functions, little has been done to investigate the relationship between the two. The current study sought to investigate this relationship within Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD, a clinical grouping that has demonstrated a predisposition towards deficits within both of these functional domains. ASD are oftentimes associated with EF deficits, especially in the domains of cognitive flexibility, planning, and working memory. Deficits in adaptive skills have also been commonly reported in relation to ASD, with a wide range of abilities being noted across previous studies. The purpose of this study was to examine relationships between adaptive skills and EF in individuals with ASD with the idea that an understanding of such relationships may offer insight into possible focus for intervention.
Parada, María; Corral, Montserrat; Mota, Nayara; Crego, Alberto; Rodríguez Holguín, Socorro; Cadaveira, Fernando
Binge drinking (BD) is prevalent among college students. Studies on alcoholism have shown that the prefrontal cortex is vulnerable to the neurotoxic effects of alcohol. The prefrontal cortex undergoes both structural and functional changes during adolescence and young adulthood. Sex differences have been observed in brain maturation and in alcohol-induced damage. The objective of the present study was to analyze the relationship between BD and cognitive functions subserved by the prefrontal cortex in male and female university students. The sample comprised 122 undergraduates (aged 18 to 20 years): 62 BD (30 females) and 60 non-BD (29 females). Executive functions were assessed by WMS-III (Backward Digit Span and Backward Spatial Span), SOPT (abstract designs), Letter Fluency (PMR), BADS (Zoo Map and Key Search) and WCST-3. BD students scored lower in the Backward Digit Span Subtest and generated more perseverative responses in the SOPT In relation to interaction BD by sex, BD males scored lower in the Backward Digit Span test than BD females and non-BD males. BD is associated with poorer performance of executive functions subserved by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. The results do not support enhanced vulnerability of women to alcohol neurotoxic effects. These difficulties may reflect developmental delay or frontal lobe dysfunction. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Researchers and clinicians often measure executive function in patients and normal samples. In addition to cognitive tests that objectively measure executive function, several instruments have been developed that address individuals' everyday experience of executive problems. Such self-report measures of executive problems may have value, but there are questions about the extent to which they tap objectively measurable executive problems or are influenced by variables such as personality. Relationships between self-reported executive problems, personality, and cognitive test performance were assessed in 3 separate, well-powered, methodologically distinct correlational studies using nonclinical samples. These studies used multiple measures of personality and self-reported executive function problems. Across all 3 studies, self-reported executive function problems were found to correlate with neuroticism and with low conscientiousness, with medium to large effect sizes. However self-reported problems did not correlate with performance on Trail Making, Phonemic Fluency, Semantic Fluency, or Digit Span tests tapping executive function. A key implication of these findings is that in nonclinical samples, self-report questionnaires may not be proxies for executive functioning as measured by neuropsychological tests. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved.
Full Text Available There is growing evidence indicating positive, causal effects of acute physical activity on cognitive performance of school children, adolescents, and adults. However, only a few studies examined these effects in kindergartners, even though correlational studies suggest moderate relationships between motor and cognitive functions in this age group. One aim of the present study was to examine the correlational relationships between motor and executive functions among 5- to 6-year-olds. Another aim was to test whether an acute coordinative intervention, which was adapted to the individual motor functions of the children, causally affected different executive functions (i.e., motor inhibition, cognitive inhibition, and shifting. Kindergartners (N = 102 were randomly assigned either to a coordinative intervention (20 min or to a control condition (20 min. The coordination group performed five bimanual exercises (e.g., throwing/kicking balls onto targets with the right and left hand/foot, whereas the control group took part in five simple activities that hardly involved coordination skills (e.g., stamping. Children’s motor functions were assessed with the Movement Assessment Battery for Children 2 (Petermann, 2009 in a pre-test (T1, 1 week before the intervention took place. Motor inhibition was assessed with the Simon says task (Carlson and Wang, 2007, inhibition and shifting were assessed with the Hearts and Flowers task (Davidson et al., 2006 in the pre-test and again in a post-test (T2 immediately after the interventions. Results revealed significant correlations between motor functions and executive functions (especially shifting at T1. There was no overall effect of the intervention. However, explorative analyses indicated a three-way interaction, with the intervention leading to accuracy gains only in the motor inhibition task and only if it was tested directly after the intervention. As an unexpected effect, this result needs to be treated
Choi, Yoon Jin; Kim, Nayoung; Yoon, Hyuk; Shin, Cheol Min; Park, Young Soo; Kim, Jin-Wook; Kim, Yong Sung; Lee, Dong Ho; Jung, Hyun Chae
Coexistent gastrointestinal symptom profiles and prevalence or associated factors for the overlap between each functional dyspepsia (FD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) group remain unclear. Thus, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the clinicodemographic features of FD, IBS, and IBS-FD overlap and assess the risk factors thereof, including subtype and genetic polymorphisms for IBS-FD. Consecutive patients were enrolled from the outpatient Gastroenterology clinics of Bundang Seoul National University Hospitals in Korea. All gastrointestinal symptoms occurring at least once per week in the previous 3 months were recorded. Diagnostic criteria of functional gastrointestinal disorders were based on the Rome III criteria. Risk factors including genetic polymorphisms of 5-HTTLPR and ADRA2A 1291 G alleles and CCK-1R intron 779T>C were assessed using a multivariate logistic regression model. A total of 632 subjects (278 control subjects, 308 FD, 156 IBS, and 110 who met the criteria for both FD and IBS) were included in this study. Patients with IBS-FD overlap had more severe symptoms (such as bloating, nausea, vomiting, hard or lumpy stools, defecation straining, and a feeling of incomplete bowel movement) and higher depression scores compared with non-overlap patients. Single/divorced or widowed marital status, nausea, bloating, and a feeling of incomplete emptying after bowel movements were independent risk factors for IBS-FD overlap among IBS patients. In contrast, young age, depression, bloating, and postprandial distress syndrome were positively associated with IBS-FD overlap among FD patients. 5-HTTLPR L/L was a risk factor for the co-occurrence of IBS-C among FD patients (OR: 12.47; 95% CI: 2.00-77.75; P = 0.007). Bloating was a risk factor for IBS-FD overlap. Patients with postprandial distress syndrome have a higher risk of coexisting IBS, particularly constipation-dominant IBS. © 2017 Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Foundation and
Cohen, K; Kapitány-Fövény, M; Mama, Y; Arieli, M; Rosca, P; Demetrovics, Z; Weinstein, A
There is a growing use of novel psychoactive substances (NPSs) including synthetic cannabinoids. Synthetic cannabinoid products have effects similar to those of natural cannabis but the new synthetic cannabinoids are more potent and dangerous and their use has resulted in various adverse effects. The purpose of the study was to assess whether persistent use of synthetic cannabinoids is associating with impairments of executive function in chronic users. A total of 38 synthetic cannabinoids users, 43 recreational cannabis users, and 41 non-user subjects were studied in two centers in Hungary and Israel. Computerized cognitive function tests, the classical Stroop word-color task, n-back task, and a free-recall memory task were used. Synthetic cannabinoid users performed significantly worse than both recreational and non-cannabis users on the n-back task (less accuracy), the Stroop task (overall slow responses and less accuracy), and the long-term memory task (less word recall). Additionally, they have also shown higher ratings of depression and anxiety compared with both recreational and non-users groups. This study showed impairment of executive function in synthetic cannabinoid users compared with recreational users of cannabis and non-users. This may have major implications for our understanding of the long-term consequences of synthetic cannabinoid based drugs.
Visu-Petra, Laura; Miclea, Mircea; Visu-Petra, George
The relationship between individual differences in anxiety and executive functioning was investigated in a sample of young adults. Verbal and spatial working memory, resistance to interference, negative priming, and task-switching measures were used to assess three executive functioning dimensions: updating, inhibition, and shifting. An additional index of basic psychomotor speed was added to this cognitive battery. According to the multidimensional interaction model of anxiety proposed by Endler (1997), state (cognitive-worry and autonomic-emotional) and trait (related to social evaluation, physical danger, ambiguous situations, and daily routines) anxiety were assessed in this evaluation context. Results indicated that shifting and inhibition (negative priming) efficiency were negatively related to state (cognitive-worry) and trait (related to social evaluation) anxiety. However, there was a relative advantage of subjects higher in social evaluation apprehensions in their memory updating performance. The results are consistent with several predictions of the attentional control theory (Eysenck, Derakshan, Santos, & Calvo, 2007), and are relevant for research regarding the interaction of situational, personality, and cognitive functioning dimensions.
Nathan F. Johnson
Full Text Available Age-related declines in endothelial function can lead to cognitive decline. However, little is known about the relationships between endothelial function and specific neurocognitive functions. This study explored the relationship between measures of endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index; RHI, white matter (WM health (fractional anisotropy, FA, and WM hyperintensity volume, WMH, and executive function (Trail Making Test (TMT; Trail B − Trail A. Participants were 36 older adults between the ages of 59 and 69 (mean age = 63.89 years, SD = 2.94. WMH volume showed no relationship with RHI or executive function. However, there was a positive relationship between RHI and FA in the genu and body of the corpus callosum. In addition, higher RHI and FA were each associated with better executive task performance. Tractography was used to localize the WM tracts associated with RHI to specific portions of cortex. Results indicated that the RHI-FA relationship observed in the corpus callosum primarily involved tracts interconnecting frontal regions, including the superior frontal gyrus (SFG and frontopolar cortex, linked with executive function. These findings suggest that superior endothelial function may help to attenuate age-related declines in WM microstructure in portions of the corpus callosum that interconnect prefrontal brain regions involved in executive function.
Johnson, Nathan F; Gold, Brian T; Brown, Christopher A; Anggelis, Emily F; Bailey, Alison L; Clasey, Jody L; Powell, David K
Age-related declines in endothelial function can lead to cognitive decline. However, little is known about the relationships between endothelial function and specific neurocognitive functions. This study explored the relationship between measures of endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index; RHI), white matter (WM) health (fractional anisotropy, FA, and WM hyperintensity volume, WMH), and executive function (Trail Making Test (TMT); Trail B - Trail A). Participants were 36 older adults between the ages of 59 and 69 (mean age = 63.89 years, SD = 2.94). WMH volume showed no relationship with RHI or executive function. However, there was a positive relationship between RHI and FA in the genu and body of the corpus callosum. In addition, higher RHI and FA were each associated with better executive task performance. Tractography was used to localize the WM tracts associated with RHI to specific portions of cortex. Results indicated that the RHI-FA relationship observed in the corpus callosum primarily involved tracts interconnecting frontal regions, including the superior frontal gyrus (SFG) and frontopolar cortex, linked with executive function. These findings suggest that superior endothelial function may help to attenuate age-related declines in WM microstructure in portions of the corpus callosum that interconnect prefrontal brain regions involved in executive function.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS and functional dyspepsia (FD show considerable overlap and are both associated with psychiatric comorbidity. The present study aimed to investigate whether IBS patients with FD show higher levels of psychopathology than those without FD. As a preliminary analysis, it also evaluated the psychopathological differences, if any, between IBS patients featuring the two Rome III-defined FD subtypes, i.e. postprandial distress syndrome (PDS and epigastric pain syndrome (EPS. Methods Consecutive outpatients (n = 82, F = 67, mean age 41.6 ± 12.7 years referred to our third level gastroenterological centre, matching the Rome III criteria for IBS and, if present, for concurrent FD, were recruited. They were asked to complete a 90-item self-rating questionnaire, the Symptom Checklist 90 Revised (SCL-90-R, in order to assess the psychological status. Comparisons between groups were carried out using the non-parametric Mann-Whitney U test. Results Patients with IBS only were 56 (68.3%, F = 43, mean age 41.6 ± 13.3 years and patients with both IBS and FD were 26 (31.7%, F = 24, mean age 41.8 ± 11.5 years, 17 of whom had PDS and 9 EPS. Patients with both IBS and FD scored significantly higher on the SCL-90-R GSI and on eight out of the nine subscales than patients with IBS only (P ranging from 0.000 to 0.03. No difference was found between IBS patients with PDS and IBS patients with EPS (P ranging from 0.07 to 0.97, but this result has to be considered provisional, given the small sample size of the two subgroups. Conclusions IBS-FD overlap is associated with an increased severity of psychopathological features. This finding suggests that a substantial subset of patients of a third level gastroenterological centre with both IBS and FD may benefit from psychological assessment and treatment.
van Aken, Loes; Kessels, Roy P C; Wingbermühle, Ellen; van der Veld, William M; Egger, Jos I M
Fluid intelligence (Gf) has been related to executive functioning (EF) in previous studies, and it is also known to be correlated with crystallized intelligence (Gc). The present study includes representative measures of Gf, Gc, and EF frequently used in clinical practice to examine this Gf-EF relation. It is hypothesised that the Gf-EF relation is higher than the Gc-EF relation, and that working memory in particular (as a measure of EF) shows a high contribution to this relation. Confirmatory factor analysis was performed on a mixed neuropsychiatric and non-clinical sample consisting of 188 participants, using the Kaufman Adolescent and Adult Intelligence Test, and three executive tasks of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery, covering working memory, planning skills, and set shifting. The model fitted the data well [χ²(24)=35.25, p=0.07, RMSEA=0.050]. A very high correlation between Gf and EF was found (0.91), with working memory being the most profound indicator. A moderate to high correlation between Gc and EF was present. Current results are consistent with findings of a strong relation between Gf and working memory. Gf and EF are highly correlated. Gf dysfunction in neuropsychiatric patients warrants further EF examination and vice versa. It is discussed that results confirm the need to distinguish between specific versus general fluid/executive functioning, the latter being more involved when task complexity and novelty increase. This distinction can provide a more refined differential diagnosis and improve neuropsychiatric treatment indication.
King, Alan R; Breen, Cody M; Russell, Tiffany D; Nerpel, Brady P; Pogalz, Colton R
Neuropsychological research can be advanced through a better understanding of relationships between executive functioning (EF) behavioral competencies and the expression of aggressive behavior. While performance-based EF measures have been widely examined, links between self-report indices and practical real-life outcomes have not yet been established. Executive Functioning Index subscale scores in this sample (N = 579) were linked to trait hostility (Buss-Perry Aggression Questionnaire), aggression in the natural environment (Lifetime Acts of Violence Assessment), and conduct disorder symptoms prior to age 15. Significant associations were found between all of the EFI subscales (Motivational Drive, Organization, Strategic Planning, Impulse Control, and Empathy), trait aggression, and conduct disturbance. Lifetime acts of aggression were predicted by all but Organization scores. Physical injuries inflicted on other(s) were 2 to 4 times more likely to occur among respondents generating low (z < -1) EFI subscale scores. While these EFI relationships were modest in size, they are pervasive in scope. These findings provide support for the potential role of perceived EF deficits in moderating lifetime aggression.
Full Text Available Executive functions are linked to tobacco dependence and craving. In this cross-sectional study, we assessed the impact of three executive functions: updating, inhibition and shifting processes on tobacco craving and dependence.134 tobacco consumers were included in this study: 81 moderately (Fagerström score 7. Dependence was assessed with the Fagerström test and craving with the tobacco craving questionnaire (TCQ 12. We used the Stroop test and the Hayling test to measure inhibition, the Trail Making Test to measure shifting processes and the n-back test to measure updating processes. A multivariate logistic model was used to assess which variables explained best the level of nicotine dependence.Inhibition (p = 0.002 and updating (p = 0.014 processes, but not shifting processes, were associated with higher tobacco dependence. Inhibition capacity had a significant effect on the nicotine dependence level independently of age, education, time since last cigarette, intellectual quotient, craving, updating and shifting process.Nicotine dependence level seems better explained by inhibition capacities than by craving and updating effects. The capacity to inhibit our behaviours is a good predictor of the severity of tobacco dependence. Our results suggest a prefrontal cortex dysfunction affecting the inhibitory capacities of heavy tobacco dependent smokers. Further studies are needed to investigate the application of these findings in the treatment of tobacco dependence.
Mondéjar, Tania; Hervás, Ramón; Johnson, Esperanza; Gutierrez, Carlos; Latorre, José Miguel
This paper addresses a different point of view of videogames, specifically serious games for health. This paper contributes to that area with a multidisciplinary perspective focus on neurosciences and computation. The experiment population has been pre-adolescents between the ages of 8 and 12 without any cognitive issues. The experiment consisted in users playing videogames as well as performing traditional psychological assessments; during these tasks the frontal brain activity was evaluated. The main goal was to analyse how the frontal lobe of the brain (executive function) works in terms of prominent cognitive skills during five types of game mechanics widely used in commercial videogames. The analysis was made by collecting brain signals during the two phases of the experiment, where the signals were analysed with an electroencephalogram neuroheadset. The validated hypotheses were whether videogames can develop executive functioning and if it was possible to identify which kind of cognitive skills are developed during each kind of typical videogame mechanic. The results contribute to the design of serious games for health purposes on a conceptual level, particularly in support of the diagnosis and treatment of cognitive-related pathologies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Nieto, Marta; Ros, Laura; Medina, Gloria; Ricarte, Jorge J; Latorre, José M
Over the last two decades, there has been a growing interest in the study of the development of executive functions (EF) in preschool children due to their relationship with different cognitive, psychological, social and academic domains. Early detection of individual differences in executive functioning can have major implications for basic and applied research. Consequently, there is a key need for assessment tools adapted to preschool skills: Shape School has been shown to be a suitable task for this purpose. Our study uses Shape School as the main task to analyze development of inhibition, task-switching and working memory in a sample of 304 preschoolers (age range 3.25-6.50 years). Additionally, we include cognitive tasks for the evaluation of verbal variables (vocabulary, word reasoning and short-term memory) and performance variables (picture completion and symbol search), so as to analyze their relationship with EFs. Our results show age-associated improvements in EFs and the cognitive variables assessed. Furthermore, correlation analyses reveal positive relationships between EFs and the other cognitive variables. More specifically, using structural equation modeling and including age direct and indirect effects, our results suggest that EFs explain to a greater extent performance on verbal and performance tasks. These findings provide further information to support research that considers preschool age to be a crucial period for the development of EFs and their relationship with other cognitive processes.
Full Text Available Executive functioning is supposed to have an important role in decision making under risk. Several studies reported that more advantageous decision-making behavior was accompanied by better performance in tests of executive functioning and that the decision-making process was accompanied by activations in prefrontal and subcortical brain regions associated with executive functioning. However, to what extent different components of executive functions contribute to decision making is still unclear. We tested direct and indirect effects of three executive functions on decision-making performance in a laboratory gambling task, the Game of Dice Task (GDT. Using Brand’s model of decisions under risk (2006 we tested seven structural equation models with three latent variables that represent executive functions supposed to be involved in decision making. The latent variables were general control (represented by the general ability to exert attentional and behavioral self-control that is in accordance with task goals despite interfering information, concept formation (represented by categorization, rule detection, and set maintenance, and monitoring (represented by supervision of cognition and behavior. The seven models indicated that only the latent dimension general control had a direct effect on decision making under risk. Concept formation and monitoring only contributed in terms of indirect effects, when mediated by general control. Thus, several components of executive functioning seem to be involved in decision making under risk. However, general control functions seem to have a key role. They may be important for implementing the calculative and cognitively controlled processes involved in advantageous decision making under risk.
Joyner, Krystle B.; Silver, Cheryl H.; Stavinoha, Peter L.
Executive functioning is important to assess in children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Parent report is used to obtain information about a child's executive functioning; however, parent report can be influenced by many factors. This study's hypothesis was that higher ratings of children's executive dysfunction are…
Wittke, Kacie; Spaulding, Tammie J.; Schechtman, Calli J.
Purpose: The current study used the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function--Preschool Version (BRIEF-P; Gioia, Espy, & Isquith, 2003), a rating scale designed to investigate executive behaviors in everyday activities, to examine the executive functioning of preschool children with specific language impairment (SLI) relative to their…
Eslami, Ali; Jahshan, Carol; Cadenhead, Kristin S.
Predictors of social functioning deficits were assessed in 22 individuals “at risk” for psychosis. Disorganized symptoms and executive functioning predicted social functioning at follow-up. Early intervention efforts that focus on social and cognitive skills are indicated in this vulnerable population.
Riggs, Nathaniel R; Shin, Hee-Sung; Unger, Jennifer B; Spruijt-Metz, Donna; Pentz, Mary Ann
The study purpose was to test 1-year prospective associations between English-Spanish bilingualism and executive function in 5th to 6th grade students while controlling for biculturalism. Participants included 182 US Latino students (50 % female). Self-report surveys assessed biculturalism, bilingualism, and executive function (i.e., working memory, organizational skills, inhibitory control, and emotional control, as well as a summary executive function score). General linear model regressions demonstrated that bilingualism significantly predicted the summary executive function score as well as working memory such that bilingual proficiency was positively related to executive function. Results are the first to demonstrate (a) prospective associations between bilingualism to executive function while controlling for the potential third variable of biculturalism, and (b) a principal role for working memory in this relationship. Since executive function is associated with a host of health outcomes, one implication of study findings is that bilingualism may have an indirect protective influence on youth development.
Full Text Available Executive function (EF refers to the ability to execute appropriate actions and to inhibit inappropriate actions for the attainment of a specific goal. Research has shown that this ability develops rapidly during the preschool years. Recently, it has been proposed that research on executive function should consider the importance of social interaction. In this article, recent evidence regarding the early development of executive function and its relation to social interaction has been reviewed. Research consistently showed that social interaction can influence executive function skills in young children. However, the development of executive function may facilitate the cognitive skills that are important for social interaction. Taken together, there might be functional dependency between the development of executive function and social interaction.
Huizinga, M.; Smidts, D.P.
This study examined age-related change in executive function by using a Dutch translation of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF; Gioia et al., 2000) that was applied to a normative sample (age range 5-18 years). In addition, we examined the reliability and factorial
Cherek, D R
P. R. Giancola (2000) postulated executive cognitive functioning (ECF) as a mechanism to explain the association between alcohol consumption and aggression. Alcohol intoxication disrupts ECF, which heightens the probability of aggression. This is most likely to occur in individuals with low ECF. These propositions are found lacking. The disruption in ECF by alcohol would be greatest among individuals with high ECF, and low-ECF individuals presumably would not experience much further disruption as result of low baseline functioning. These 2 premises appear to be inconsistent. The concept of ECF suffers from the problems associated with hypothetical constructs. Patterns of aggression emerge in young children before the development of cognitive skills associated with ECF, and the association of aggression and low ECF occur as results of environmental risk factors. ECF is neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition to explain aggression following alcohol drinking.
Follmer, D Jake; Sperling, Rayne A
Researchers have demonstrated significant relations among executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning. However, prior research emphasized the use of indirect measures of executive function and did not evaluate how specific executive functions are related to participants' self-regulated learning. The primary goals of the current study were to examine and test the relations among executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning as well as to examine how self-regulated learning is informed by executive function. The sample comprised 117 undergraduate students attending a large, Mid-Atlantic research university in the United States. Participants were individually administered direct and indirect measures of executive function, metacognition, and self-regulated learning. A mediation model specifying the relations among the regulatory constructs was proposed. In multiple linear regression analyses, executive function predicted metacognition and self-regulated learning. Direct measures of inhibition and shifting accounted for a significant amount of the variance in metacognition and self-regulated learning beyond an indirect measure of executive functioning. Separate mediation analyses indicated that metacognition mediated the relationship between executive functioning and self-regulated learning as well as between specific executive functions and self-regulated learning. The findings of this study are supported by previous research documenting the relations between executive function and self-regulated learning, and extend prior research by examining the manner in which executive function and self-regulated learning are linked. The findings provide initial support for executive functions as key processes, mediated by metacognition, that predict self-regulated learning. Implications for the contribution of executive functions to self-regulated learning are discussed. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.
Kudlicka, Aleksandra; Hindle, John V; Spencer, Laura E; Clare, Linda
Executive function is the key area of cognitive impairment in Parkinson's disease. This study investigated how cognitive difficulties impact on everyday life of people with Parkinson's disease and their carers, and whether they explicitly mention executive-type difficulties. Semistructured interviews with 11 people with Parkinson's disease and six carers were analyzed thematically. People with Parkinson's disease performed within the normal range on cognitive screening tests, but all had abnormal scores on tests of executive function. Despite relatively mild executive deficits and no global cognitive impairment, participants described executive-type difficulties as well as a range of problems in other cognitive domains, such as memory, processing speed and apathy. Cognitive difficulties had a far-reaching impact on everyday life and their significance depended on personal circumstances, such as the level of responsibilities of the person with Parkinson's disease and the extent of available support. By presenting subjective accounts of living with Parkinson's disease and cognitive difficulties, this study improves our understanding of how the observed level of cognitive impairment translates into everyday functioning. The study results have implications for recognizing cognitive difficulties and for planning support for people with Parkinson's disease and their families, and can help identify ways of promoting effective self-management. Implications for rehabilitation Treatment of Parkinson's disease tends to focus on the movement disorder, meaning that cognitive difficulties and their impact can be overlooked. Participants in this study had only relatively mild executive deficits but described a range of cognitive problems, including executive-type difficulties. Cognitive difficulties have an emotional impact and can cause a range of challenges in everyday life, adding to the burden of physical symptoms of Parkinson's disease. Results of this study provide insights
Nathan F. Johnson; Brian T. Gold; Brown, Christopher A.; Anggelis, Emily F.; Bailey, Alison L.; Clasey, Jody L.; Powell, David K.
Age-related declines in endothelial function can lead to cognitive decline. However, little is known about the relationships between endothelial function and specific neurocognitive functions. This study explored the relationship between measures of endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index; RHI), white matter (WM) health (fractional anisotropy, FA, and WM hyperintensity volume, WMH), and executive function (Trail Making Test (TMT); Trail B − Trail A). Participants were 36 older adults b...
Friend, Margaret; Bates, Raven Phoenix
Oral narrative production develops dramatically from 3 to 5 years of age, and is a key factor in a child's ability to communicate about the world. Concomitant with this are developments in executive function (EF). For example, executive attention and behavioral inhibition show marked development beginning around 4 years of age. Both EF and oral narrative abilities have important implications for academic success, but the relationship between them is not well understood. The present paper utilizes a cross-lagged design to assess convergent and predictive relations between EF and narrative ability. As a collateral measure, we collected a Language Sample during 10 min of free play. Language Sample did not share significant variance with Narrative Production, thus general language growth from Wave 1 to Wave 2 cannot account for the predictive relations between EF and Narrative. Our findings suggest that although EF and Narrative ability appear independent at each Wave, they nevertheless support each other over developmental time. Specifically, the ability to maintain focus at 4 years supports subsequent narrative ability and narrative ability at 4 years supports subsequent facility and speed in learning and implementing new rules. PMID:24872811
Floresco, Stan B; Jentsch, James D
Investigating how different pharmacological compounds may enhance learning, memory, and higher-order cognitive functions in laboratory animals is the first critical step toward the development of cognitive enhancers that may be used to ameliorate impairments in these functions in patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders. Rather than focus on one aspect of cognition, or class of drug, in this review we provide a broad overview of how distinct classes of pharmacological compounds may enhance different types of memory and executive functioning, particularly those mediated by the prefrontal cortex. These include recognition memory, attention, working memory, and different components of behavioral flexibility. A key emphasis is placed on comparing and contrasting the effects of certain drugs on different cognitive and mnemonic functions, highlighting methodological issues associated with this type of research, tasks used to investigate these functions, and avenues for future research. Viewed collectively, studies of the neuropharmacological basis of cognition in rodents and non-human primates have identified targets that will hopefully open new avenues for the treatment of cognitive disabilities in persons affected by mental disorders.
Alloway, T. P.
Background: The aim of the present study was to investigate the following issues: (1) Do students with borderline intellectual functioning have a pervasive pattern of impaired working memory skills across both verbal and visuo-spatial domains? (2) Is there evidence for impairment in executive function skills, and which tasks indicate greater…
Scherder, E; Posthuma, W; Bakker, T; Vuijk, P J; Lobbezoo, F
Findings from human experimental studies suggest that mastication positively influences cognitive function. The participants in those studies were relatively young. The goal of this study was to examine the relationship between the functional status of the masticatory system, episodic memory, and executive functions in elderly people. The participants, elderly people living independently at home, were divided into two groups. One group had a full complement of natural teeth (n = 19) and the other group had full dentures (n = 19). The functional status of the masticatory system was assessed by measuring mandibular excursions (i.e. the distances over which the mandible can move in the open, lateral, and forward directions), bite force, number of occluding pairs and complaints of the masticatory system (facial pain, headaches/migraine). Executive functions and episodic memory were assessed by neuropsychological tests. Backward regression analysis showed that only in the group of elderly people with full dentures, 22% of executive functions were predicted by complaints of the masticatory system and 19.4% of episodic memory was predicted by masticatory performance (composed of mandibular excursions and bite force). The conclusion of this study is that only in older persons with full dentures the relationship between mastication, episodic memory, and executive function becomes evident when the functional status of the masticatory system decreases.
Mor, Billy; Yitzhaki-Amsalem, Sarin; Prior, Anat
The current study investigated the combined effect of ADHD, previously associated with executive function (EF) deficits, and of bilingualism, previously associated with EF enhancement, on EF. Eighty University students, Hebrew monolinguals and Russian Hebrew bilinguals, with and without ADHD participated. Inhibition tasks were a Numeric Stroop task and a Simon arrows task. Shifting tasks were the Trail Making Test (TMT) and a task-switching paradigm. Participants with ADHD performed worse than controls, but we did not find a bilingual advantage in EF. The negative impact of ADHD was more pronounced for bilinguals than for monolinguals, but only in interference suppression tasks. Bilingual participants with ADHD had the lowest performance. Bilingualism might prove to be an added burden for adults with ADHD, leading to reduced EF abilities. Alternatively, the current findings might be ascribed to over- or under-diagnosis of ADHD due to cultural differences between groups. These issues should be pursued in future research. © 2014 SAGE Publications.
Full Text Available This study aimed to investigate if an executive functions (EF intervention could promote these skills in individuals with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD. Eighteen children and adolescents, 7-13 years old, divided into experimental (EG, N = 8 and control (CG, N = 10 groups, were assessed in the Block Design and Vocabulary subtests of the WISC III and seven tests of EF. Parents answered two scales, measuring EF and inattention and hyperactivity signs. EG children participated in a program to promote EF in twice-weekly group sessions of one hour each. After 8 months of intervention, groups were assessed again. ANCOVA, controlling for age, intelligence quotient and pretest performance, revealed gains in attention/inhibition and auditory working memory measures for the EG. No effect was found for scales or measures of more complex EF. Results are not conclusive, but they illustrate some promising data about EF interventions in children and adolescents with ADHD.
Prager, Emily O; Sera, Maria D; Carlson, Stephanie M
Executive function (EF) has been highlighted as a potentially important factor for mathematical understanding. The relation has been well established in school-aged children but has been less explored at younger ages. The current study investigated the relation between EF and mathematics in preschool-aged children. Participants were 142 typically developing 3- and 4-year-olds. Controlling for verbal ability, a significant positive correlation was found between EF and general math abilities in this age group. Importantly, we further examined this relation causally by varying the EF load on a magnitude comparison task. Results suggested a developmental pattern where 3-year-olds' performance on the magnitude comparison task was worst when EF was taxed the most. Conversely, 4-year-olds performed well on the magnitude task despite varying EF demands, suggesting that EF might play a critical role in the development of math concepts. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Cuevas, Kimberly; Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Kim-Spoon, Jungmeen; Wang, Zhe; Morasch, Katherine C; Bell, Martha Ann
Despite the importance of executive function (EF) in both clinical and educational contexts, the aetiology of individual differences in early childhood EF remains poorly understood. This study provides the first longitudinal intergenerational analysis of mother-child EF associations during early childhood. A group of children and their mothers (n = 62) completed age-appropriate EF tasks. Mother and child EFs were modestly correlated by 24 months of age, and this association was stable through 48 months. Importantly, maternal-child EF associations were still robust after controlling for verbal ability (potential indicator of verbal/crystallized intelligence) and maternal education (correlate of socio-economic status and verbal intelligence). Potential implications of these findings as well as underlying mechanisms of the maternal-child EF association (gene-environment interplay) are discussed. © 2013 The British Psychological Society.
Executive function often refers to control behaviors such as "initiating," "sustaining," "inhibiting," and "switching." These mechanisms contribute to regulation of thinking and emotion but can be observed most clearly in the motor system. Neuropsychology has been influenced by "top-down" models of cognitive control that emerged from information-processing theories of cognition. In fact, neural models provide evidence that control processes are highly interactive within the cortico-striatal-cerebellar circuits. Cognition unfolds in response to motor-driven adaptation, and evidence exists for similar firing of brain cells and circuits during "imagined action" as in actual motor behavior. The motor system develops early and yet is not routinely assessed in neuropsychological evaluation of children with neurodevelopmental disorders. This article reviews some of the approaches to motor assessment that have sensitivity to neurodevelopmental disorders, and advocates for inclusion of motor assessment, particularly in evaluating control processes independent of culture, language, and other confounders.
Full Text Available The rise in dementia and the evidence of cognitive benefits of exercise for the older adult population together make salient the research into variables affecting cognitive benefit and exercise behavior. One promising avenue for increasing exercise participation has been the introduction of exergaming, a type of exercise that works in combination with virtual reality to enhance both the exercise experience and health outcomes. Past research has revealed that executive function (EF was related to greater use of self-regulatory strategies, which in turn was related to greater adherence to exercise following an intervention (McAuley et al., 2011. Best et al. (2014 found improvement in EF related to adherence to exercise post- intervention. Anderson-Hanley et al. (2012 found that for older adults aerobic exergaming yielded greater cognitive benefit than traditional exercise alone; however, questions remain as to the possible impact of greater cognitive benefit and other factors on participants’ involvement in exercise following the end of an intervention. The current study presents follow-up data exploring the relationship between change in EF, self-regulation, and exercise adherence in the post-intervention (naturalistic period. Herein, it was predicted that improvement in EF during an exercise intervention, would predict subsequent exercise with an exergame during the naturalistic window. Contrary to expectations, results suggest that those with EF decline during the intervention used the exergame more frequently. The results of this study contradict previous literature, but suggest an interesting relationship between change in executive function, self-regulation, and exercise behaviors when exergaming is employed, particularly with older adults with some cognitive decline. We hypothesize that other factors may be at work; perhaps expectation of cognitive benefit might act as a unique motivator or caregivers may be instrumental in adherence.
Rose-Jacobs, Ruth; Richardson, Mark A; Buchanan-Howland, Kathryn; Chen, Clara A; Cabral, Howard; Heeren, Timothy C; Liebschutz, Jane; Forman, Leah; Frank, Deborah A
Executive functioning (EF), an umbrella construct encompassing gradual maturation of cognitive organization/management processes, is important to success in multiple settings including high school. Intrauterine tobacco exposure (IUTE) correlates with negative cognitive/behavioral outcomes, but little is known about its association with adolescent EF and information from real-life contexts is sparse. We evaluated the impact of IUTE on teacher-reported observations of EF in urban high school students controlling for covariates including other intrauterine and adolescent substance exposures. A prospective low-income birth cohort (51% male; 89% African American/Caribbean) was followed through late adolescence (16-18 years old). At birth, intrauterine exposures to cocaine and other substances (52% cocaine, 52% tobacco, 26% marijuana, 26% alcohol) were identified by meconium and/or urine assays, and/or maternal self-report. High school teachers knowledgeable about the student and unaware of study aims were asked to complete the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning-Teacher Form (BRIEF-TF) annually. Teachers completed at least one BRIEF-TF for 131 adolescents. Multivariable analyses included controls for: demographics; intrauterine cocaine, marijuana, and alcohol exposures; early childhood exposures to lead; and violence exposure from school-age to adolescence. IUTE was associated with less optimal BRIEF-TF Behavioral Regulation scores (p <0.05). Other intrauterine substance exposures did not predict less optimal BRIEF-TF scores, nor did exposures to violence, lead, nor adolescents' own substance use. IUTE is associated with offspring's less optimal EF. Prenatal counseling should emphasize abstinence from tobacco, as well as alcohol and illegal substances. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Voos, Mariana Callil; Custódio, Elaine Bazilio; Malaquias, Joel
The Berg Balance Scale (BBS) is frequently used to assess functional balance in older adults. The relationship of executive function and level of education with the BBS performance has not been described. The aim of this study was to determine whether (1) the performance on a task requiring executive function (part B of the Trail Making Test, TMT-B) influences results of motor and cognitive tests and (2) the number of years of formal education could be related to performance on BBS in older adults. We also explored whether there would be differences, based on performance on TMT-B (high vs low) in motor function (BBS, the timed up and go [TUG]) or cognitive function (TMT-A and TMTDELTA), the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), as well as years of education. Participants included 101 older adults (age range, 60-80 years) residing in São Paulo, Brazil. Functional balance was assessed using BBS and TUG. Executive function was assessed using the TMT and MMSE. Educational status was determined by self-report of participant's total number of years of formal education. The BBS scores were inversely related to TMT-A time (r = -0.63, r = 0.40, P education (r = 0.48, r = 0.23, P education, and lower TMT-A, TMTDELTA and TUG scores (P < .001) than the lower functioning group. Individuals with higher capacity on tasks requiring visuospatial abilities, psychomotor speed, and executive function, such as the TMT, had better performance on BBS. Individuals with a high executive function, measured by TMT-B, also performed better on other motor and cognitive tests.
Best, Michael W; Gale, Daniel; Tran, Tanya; Haque, Mashal K; Bowie, Christopher R
Executive Functioning (EF) is an important factor for community functioning for people with severe mental illness. Cognitive remediation programs often improve EF, but do so by using multiple therapeutic techniques. Little is known regarding how individual treatment elements promote cognitive improvement. Oscillatory brain activity is a potential neurophysiological mechanism that may change as a result of targeted training on computerized exercises. The current study aimed to examine the effects of a brief EF training program on EEG and neurocognitive measures. 25 people with severe mental illness were randomized to either 2weeks of computerized EF training or control training. Training consisted of 1h training sessions 3 times per week and 40min of daily home training. Assessments examined EEG theta and alpha band oscillatory power during EF tasks and neurocognitive measures of EF. EF training resulted in greater frontal theta power and reduced posterior alpha power during computerized EF tasks than control training. Power in the alpha frequency band over frontal electrode sites did not significantly differ between the two groups as a result of training. Additionally, participants in the EF training experienced significantly greater improvement in EF ability as measured by neurocognitive tests than the control condition. Two weeks of EF training is sufficient to produce neurophysiological and neurocognitive change. Frontal theta power and posterior alpha power may be important neurophysiological markers to consider in cognitive remediation studies, and the addition of a brief executive function training procedure to other psychosocial interventions is worth examining. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Marquardt, Kristin; Sigdel, Rahul; Caldwell, Kevin; Brigman, Jonathan L
Despite evidence that prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) can lead to a wide range of impairments in cognitive, social, and emotional behaviors, drinking during pregnancy remains common. Although there is a general understanding that high levels of drinking during pregnancy are unsafe, conflicting evidence regarding the impact of low intake may account for the persistence of this behavior. To investigate the effects of PAE on learning and executive control, we utilized a voluntary paradigm where pregnant mice had access to a saccharin-sweetened 10% alcohol solution for 4 hours, during the dark cycle, throughout gestation. Male and female offspring were tested as adults on a touch-screen discrimination and reversal task mediated by corticostriatal circuits. Consistent with previous findings, PAE did not lead to gross morphological, motor, or sensory alterations in offspring. Both PAE and saccharin control female mice were slower to acquire the discrimination than males, but PAE did not impair associative learning in either sex. During reversal, PAE led to a specific and significant impairment in the early phase, where cortical control is most required to flexibly alter choice behavior. PAE mice showed a significant increase in maladaptive perseverative responses but showed intact learning of the new association during late reversal. Previously, data from clinical studies have suggested that executive control deficits may underlie cognitive, as well as social, problems seen in adolescents with documented PAE. These data demonstrate that even more moderate alcohol exposure during development can lead to impaired cognitive functioning well into adulthood. Copyright © 2015 by the Research Society on Alcoholism.
Holmes, Christopher J.; Kim-Spoon, Jungmeen; Deater-Deckard, Kirby
Peer interactions and executive function play central roles in the development of healthy children, as peer problems have been indicative of lower cognitive competencies such as self-regulatory behavior and poor executive function has been indicative of problem behaviors and social dysfunction. However, few studies have focused on the relation between peer interactions and executive function and the underlying mechanisms that may create this link. Using a national sample (n = 1,164, 48.6% fem...
Cox, Simon R.; Bak, Thomas H.; Allerhand, Michael; Redmond, Paul; Starr, John M.; Deary, Ian J.; MacPherson, Sarah E.
The influence of bilingualism on cognitive functioning is currently a topic of intense scientific debate. The strongest evidence for a cognitive benefit of bilingualism has been demonstrated in executive functions. However, the causal direction of the relationship remains unclear: does learning other languages improve executive functions or are people with better executive abilities more likely to become bilingual? To address this, we examined 90 male participants of the Lothian Birth Cohort ...
Presentación Herrero, María Jesús; Siegenthaler Hierro, Rebeca; Pinto Tena, Vicente; Mercader, Jessica; Miranda Casas, Ana
This study compares the relationship between executive functioning, analyzed with clinical and ecological tests, and math skills in preschoolers. The children (255 children 5 to 6 years old) were evaluated using neuropsychological tests of inhibition, and working memory and the TEDI-MATH to estimate basic mathematical skills. The ecological evaluation of the executive functioning by the parents and teachers was carried out with the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF). Co...
Shuai, Lan; Daley, David; Wang, Yu-Feng; Zhang, Jin-Song; Kong, Yan-Ting; Tan, Xin; Ji, Ning
Accumulating evidence indicates that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with core deficits in executive function (EF) which predicts poorer academic and occupational functioning. This makes early intervention targeting EF impairments important to prevent long-term negative outcomes. Cognitive training is a potential ADHD treatment target. The present study aimed to explore the efficacy, feasibility, and acceptability of a cognitive training program (targeting child's multiple EF components and involving parent support in daily life), as a nonpharmacological intervention for children with ADHD. Forty-four school -age children with ADHD and their parents participated in 12 sessions of EF training (last for 12 weeks) and 88 health controls (HC) were also recruited. Training effects were explored using both neuropsychological tests (Stroop color-word test, Rey-Osterrieth complex figure test, trail making test, tower of Hanoi, and false-belief task) and reports of daily life (ADHD rating scale-IV, Conners' parent rating scale, and behavior rating inventory of executive function [BRIEF]) by analysis of paired sample t-test and Wilcoxon signed-rank test. The differences on EF performances between children with ADHD after training and HC were explored using multivariate analysis. The results (before vs. after EF training) showed that after intervention, the children with ADHD presented better performances of EF both in neuropsychological tests (word interference of Stroop: 36.1 ± 14.6 vs. 27.1 ± 11.1, t = 4.731, P training could match with the level of HC children. The ADHD symptoms (ADHD rating scale total score: 32.4 ± 8.9 vs. 22.9 ± 8.2, t = 6.331, P training program was feasible to administer and acceptable. The EF training program was feasible and acceptable to children with ADHD and parents. Although replication with a larger sample and an active control group are needed, EF training program with multiple EF focus and parent involving
Law, Nicole; Smith, Mary Lou; Greenberg, Mark; Bouffet, Eric; Taylor, Michael D; Laughlin, Suzanne; Malkin, David; Liu, Fang; Moxon-Emre, Iska; Scantlebury, Nadia; Mabbott, Donald
Executive functions (EFs) are involved in the attainment, maintenance, and integration of information; these functions may play a key role in cognitive and behavioural outcomes in children treated for medulloblastoma (MB). At present, it remains unclear which EFs are most sensitive to the treatment effects for MB and whether damage to cerebrocerebellar circuitry is associated with EF. We completed a comprehensive evaluation of EF in 24 children treated for MB and 20 age-matched healthy children (HC) and distilled these measures into components. Six components (C1-C6) were extracted from our model, reflecting dissociable constructs of EF: C1 = cognitive efficiency; C2 = planning/problem-solving; C3 = positive cognitive emotion regulation; C4 = working memory; C5 = negative cognitive emotion regulation; and C6 = mixed cognitive emotion regulation. Group differences were found for C1, C2, C3, and C4; the MB group showed poorer performance on EF tasks and made less use of positive cognitive emotion regulation strategies relative to HC. Compromise to cerebrocerebellar microstructure - cerebro-ponto-cerebellar and cerebello-thalamo-cerebral pathways - was evident in children treated for MB compared to HC. We found that cerebrocerebellar circuitry has a mediating effect on one component of EF following treatment for MB - working memory. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.
Francisco Wilson Nogueira Holanda Júnior
Full Text Available ABSTRACT Introduction: A recent increase in studies suggests a role of age-related sleep changes in executive functions (EF. However, this relationship remains unclear and mixed results have emerged. Objective: To investigate how age-related sleep changes may play an important role in the extent to which healthy older adults exhibit decline in EF. Methods: A systematic strategy was employed to identify the available literature on age-related sleep changes and EF. Results: Of the 465 studies identified, 26 were included. Results suggest that multiple sleep parameters differ in the way they benefit or impair EF. Parameters such as greater wake after sleep onset and lower sleep efficiency, in addition to circadian fragmentation of sleep, showed more consistent results and are potentially correlated with worsening in EF measures. However, other results seem inconclusive. Conclusion: These findings were discussed based on the prefrontal circuitry vulnerability model, in which sleep has been identified as a beneficial factor for prefrontal cortex functioning and hence for EF, which relies mostly on this brain area and its related networks.
Joppich, Gregor; Däuper, Jan; Dengler, Reinhard; Johannes, Sönke; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni; Münte, Thomas F
The generation of random sequences is considered to tax different executive functions. To explore the involvement of these functions further, brain potentials were recorded in 16 healthy young adults while either engaging in random number generation (RNG) by pressing the number keys on a computer keyboard in a random sequence or in ordered number generation (ONG) necessitating key presses in the canonical order. Key presses were paced by an external auditory stimulus to yield either fast (1 press/800 ms) or slow (1 press/1300 ms) sequences in separate runs. Attentional demands of random and ordered tasks were assessed by the introduction of a secondary task (key-press to a target tone). The P3 amplitude to the target tone of this secondary task was reduced during RNG, reflecting the greater consumption of attentional resources during RNG. Moreover, RNG led to a left frontal negativity peaking 140 ms after the onset of the pacing stimulus, whenever the subjects produced a true random response. This negativity could be attributed to the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and was absent when numbers were repeated. This negativity was interpreted as an index for the inhibition of habitual responses. Finally, in response locked ERPs a negative component was apparent peaking about 50 ms after the key-press that was more prominent during RNG. Source localization suggested a medial frontal source. This effect was tentatively interpreted as a reflection of the greater monitoring demands during random sequence generation.
Silver, Cheryl H
Accurate measurement of a child's executive functioning (EF) is important for diagnosis, description of functional impairment, and treatment planning. EF assessment typically consists of administration of a battery of performance-based tests involving abilities such as attention, inhibition, reasoning, planning, and mental flexibility. In recent years, observer (e.g., parent) rating scales have been added to the typical EF battery. However, research has revealed that performance-based tests and parent rating scales are not highly correlated. In other words, level of impairment indicated by one source of data often does not match level of impairment indicated by the other source of data. This disagreement places the clinician in a difficult situation when attempting to interpret evaluation results. The profession of pediatric neuropsychology needs to provide guidance about handling this disagreement. Using the current assessment tools, specific EF subdomains may need to be examined systematically to identify precisely where the disagreements lie. Perhaps the relative validity of the two data sources can be determined, and decisions can be made about what to emphasize and what/when to interpret cautiously. Alternatively, perhaps the goal should be to develop and/or refine measurement tools to increase agreement in order to improve accuracy and validity of test interpretation. At this time, the results of performance-based tests and rating scales of EF are being used together but are not being integrated. Evidence-based practice requires that more work be done to enhance the use of these two sources of data.
Kluwe-Schiavon, Bruno; Viola, Thiago W.; Sanvicente-Vieira, Breno; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F.; Grassi-Oliveira, Rodrigo
Recently, there has been growing interest in understanding how executive functions are conceptualized in psychopathology. Since several models have been proposed, the major issue lies within the definition of executive functioning itself. Theoretical discussions have emerged, narrowing the boundaries between “hot” and “cold” executive functions or between self-regulation and cognitive control. Nevertheless, the definition of executive functions is far from a consensual proposition and it has been suggested that these models might be outdated. Current efforts indicate that human behavior and cognition are by-products of many brain systems operating and interacting at different levels, and therefore, it is very simplistic to assume a dualistic perspective of information processing. Based upon an adaptive perspective, we discuss how executive functions could emerge from the ability to solve immediate problems and to generalize successful strategies, as well as from the ability to synthesize and to classify environmental information in order to predict context and future. We present an executive functioning perspective that emerges from the dynamic balance between automatic-controlled behaviors and an emotional-salience state. According to our perspective, the adaptive role of executive functioning is to automatize efficient solutions simultaneously with cognitive demand, enabling individuals to engage such processes with increasingly complex problems. Understanding executive functioning as a mediator of stress and cognitive engagement not only fosters discussions concerning individual differences, but also offers an important paradigm to understand executive functioning as a continuum process rather than a categorical and multicomponent structure. PMID:28154541
Kluwe-Schiavon, Bruno; Viola, Thiago W; Sanvicente-Vieira, Breno; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F; Grassi-Oliveira, Rodrigo
Recently, there has been growing interest in understanding how executive functions are conceptualized in psychopathology. Since several models have been proposed, the major issue lies within the definition of executive functioning itself. Theoretical discussions have emerged, narrowing the boundaries between "hot" and "cold" executive functions or between self-regulation and cognitive control. Nevertheless, the definition of executive functions is far from a consensual proposition and it has been suggested that these models might be outdated. Current efforts indicate that human behavior and cognition are by-products of many brain systems operating and interacting at different levels, and therefore, it is very simplistic to assume a dualistic perspective of information processing. Based upon an adaptive perspective, we discuss how executive functions could emerge from the ability to solve immediate problems and to generalize successful strategies, as well as from the ability to synthesize and to classify environmental information in order to predict context and future. We present an executive functioning perspective that emerges from the dynamic balance between automatic-controlled behaviors and an emotional-salience state. According to our perspective, the adaptive role of executive functioning is to automatize efficient solutions simultaneously with cognitive demand, enabling individuals to engage such processes with increasingly complex problems. Understanding executive functioning as a mediator of stress and cognitive engagement not only fosters discussions concerning individual differences, but also offers an important paradigm to understand executive functioning as a continuum process rather than a categorical and multicomponent structure.
Gutiérrez-Colina, Ana M; Eaton, Cyd K; Lee, Jennifer L; Reed-Knight, Bonney; Loiselle, Kristin; Mee, Laura L; LaMotte, Julia; Liverman, Rochelle; Blount, Ronald L
OBJECTIVE : To evaluate levels of executive functioning in a sample of adolescent and young adult (AYA) transplant recipients, and to examine executive functioning in association with barriers to adherence and medication nonadherence. METHOD : In all, 41 caregivers and 39 AYAs were administered self- and proxy-report measures. RESULTS : AYA transplant recipients have significant impairments in executive functioning abilities. Greater dysfunction in specific domains of executive functioning was significantly associated with more barriers to adherence and greater medication nonadherence. CONCLUSION : AYA transplant recipients are at increased risk for executive dysfunction. The assessment of executive functioning abilities may guide intervention efforts designed to decrease barriers to adherence and promote developmentally appropriate levels of treatment responsibility. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Pediatric Psychology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Manning, Kevin J; Alexopoulos, George S; Banerjee, Samprit; Morimoto, Sarah Shizuko; Seirup, Joanna K; Klimstra, Sibel A; Yuen, Genevieve; Kanellopoulos, Theodora; Gunning-Dixon, Faith
Executive dysfunction may play a key role in the pathophysiology of late-life depression. Executive dysfunction can be assessed with cognitive tests and subjective report of difficulties with executive skills. The present study investigated the association between subjective report of executive functioning complaints and time to escitalopram treatment response in older adults with major depressive disorder (MDD). 100 older adults with MDD (58 with executive functioning complaints and 42 without executive functioning complaints) completed a 12-week trial of escitalopram. Treatment response over 12 weeks, as measured by repeated Hamilton Depression Rating Scale scores, was compared for adults with and without executive complaints using mixed-effects modeling. Mixed effects analysis revealed a significant group × time interaction, F(1, 523.34) = 6.00, p = 0.01. Depressed older adults who reported executive functioning complaints at baseline demonstrated a slower response to escitalopram treatment than those without executive functioning complaints. Self-report of executive functioning difficulties may be a useful prognostic indicator for subsequent speed of response to antidepressant medication. Copyright © 2015 American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Stadskleiv, K.; Tetzchner, S. von; Batorowicz, B.; Balkom, L.J.M. van; Dahlgren-Sandberg, A.; Renner, G.
Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study
Boyd, Brian A.; McBee, Matthew; Holtzclaw, Tia; Baranek, Grace T.; Bodfish, James W.
This study examined the relationship between repetitive behaviors and sensory processing issues in school-aged children with high functioning autism (HFA). Children with HFA (N = 61) were compared to healthy, typical controls (N = 64) to determine the relationship between these behavioral classes and to examine whether executive dysfunction…
Lewin, Adam B; Larson, Michael J; Park, Jennifer M; McGuire, Joseph F; Murphy, Tanya K; Storch, Eric A
Preliminary research suggests neuropsychological deficits in youth with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) similar to those in adults; however, small samples and methodological confounds limit interpretation. We aimed to examine the rates and clinical correlates of cognitive sequelae in youth with OCD, focusing on executive functioning and memory abilities. Youth ages 7-17 years with OCD (N=96) completed a hypothesis-driven neuropsychological battery (including the Rey-Osterreith Complex Figure, California Verbal Learning Test, and subtests of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System and Wide Range Assessment of Memory and Learning) that primarily assessed executive functioning, memory and processing speed. Cognitive sequelae were identified in 65% of youth (37% using a more stringent definition of impairment). Magnitude of cognitive sequelae was not associated with OCD severity or age; however, greater neuropsychological impairments were found amongst youth prescribed atypical neuroleptics and those diagnosed with comorbid tic disorders. Comorbidity burden was associated with presence of neuropsychological impairment, but was not specific to any single test. Findings suggest that the presence of cognitive sequelae is prevalent amongst treatment-seeking youth with OCD. Deficits were found in executive functioning and non-verbal memory performance but these impairments were not associated with OCD severity. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Anastasia K Kalpakidou
Full Text Available Individuals who were born very preterm (VPT; <33 gestational weeks are at risk of experiencing deficits in tasks involving executive function in childhood and beyond. In addition, the type and severity of neonatal brain injury associated with very preterm birth may exert differential effects on executive functioning by altering its neuroanatomical substrates. Here we addressed this question by investigating with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI the haemodynamic response during executive-type processing using a phonological verbal fluency and a working memory task in VPT-born young adults who had experienced differing degrees of neonatal brain injury. 12 VPT individuals with a history of periventricular haemorrhage and ventricular dilatation (PVH+VD, 17 VPT individuals with a history of uncomplicated periventricular haemorrhage (UPVH, 13 VPT individuals with no history of neonatal brain injury and 17 controls received an MRI scan whilst completing a verbal fluency task with two cognitive loads ('easy' and 'hard' letters. Two groups of VPT individuals (PVH+VD; n = 10, UPVH; n = 8 performed an n-back task with three cognitive loads (1-, 2-, 3-back. Results demonstrated that VPT individuals displayed hyperactivation in frontal, temporal, and parietal cortices and in caudate nucleus, insula and thalamus compared to controls, as demands of the verbal fluency task increased, regardless of type of neonatal brain injury. On the other hand, during the n-back task and as working memory load increased, the PVH+VD group showed less engagement of the frontal cortex than the UPVH group. In conclusion, this study suggests that the functional neuroanatomy of different executive-type processes is altered following VPT birth and that neural activation associated with specific aspects of executive function (i.e., working memory may be particularly sensitive to the extent of neonatal brain injury.
Leung, Rachel C; Vogan, Vanessa M; Powell, Tamara L; Anagnostou, Evdokia; Taylor, Margot J
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by socio-communicative impairments. Executive dysfunction may explain some key characteristics of ASD, both social and nonsocial hallmarks. Limited research exists exploring the relations between executive function and social impairment in ASD and few studies have used a comparison control group. Thus, the objective of the present study was to investigate the relations between executive functioning using the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning (BRIEF), social impairment as measured by the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS), and overall autistic symptomology as measured by the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) in children and adolescents with and without ASD. Seventy children and adolescents diagnosed with ASD and 71 typically developing controls were included in this study. Findings showed that behavioral regulation executive processes (i.e., inhibition, shifting, and emotional control) predicted social function in all children. However, metacognitive executive processes (i.e., initiation, working memory, planning, organization, and monitoring) predicted social function only in children with ASD and not in typically developing children. Our findings suggest a distinct metacognitive executive function-social symptom link in ASD that is not present in the typical population. Understanding components of executive functioning that contribute to the autistic symptomology, particularly in the socio-communicative domain, is crucial for developing effective interventions that target key executive processes as well as underlying behavioral symptoms.
Brodsky, Nancy L.; Brown, Caitlin A.; McKenna, Kathleen A.; Giannetta, Joan M.; Yang, Wei; Romer, Daniel; Hurt, Hallam
Our objectives for this report were to identify trajectories of youth gambling behavior, and to examine their relation to executive cognitive function (ECF) and associated problem behaviors. Philadelphia school children, enrolled at ages 10–12 years (n = 387; 49% male), completed three annual assessments of risk behaviors, ECF, impulsivity, problem behaviors and demographics. Across ages 10–15 years, using methods from Nagin et al., two groups were identified: Early Gamblers (n = 111) initiated early and continued in later assessments, and Later Gamblers (n = 276) initiated at later ages and gambled less. Betting money on cards and sports were the most frequently reported gambling behaviors. Using gambling group as outcome, final backward selection logistic regression model showed Early Gamblers are more likely male (P = 0.001), report more active coping (P = 0.042), impulsive behaviors (P ≤ 0.008), and have friends who gamble (P = 0.001). Groups were similar in ECF, parental monitoring, marital status, SES, and race. Early Gamblers had higher incidence of problem behaviors and drug use (all P ≤ 0.006). Two gambling groups were identified in early adolescence with Early Gamblers showing higher levels of impulsivity and comorbid problems but similar levels of ECF compared to Late Gamblers. As more gambling groups are identified through later adolescence, ECF may emerge as a relevant precursor of problem gambling at this later time. PMID:21698342
Agostino, Alba; Johnson, Janice; Pascual-Leone, Juan
We investigated the extent to which inhibition, updating, shifting, and mental-attentional capacity (M-capacity) contribute to children's ability to solve multiplication word problems. A total of 155 children in Grades 3-6 (8- to 13-year-olds) completed a set of multiplication word problems at two levels of difficulty: one-step and multiple-step problems. They also received a reading comprehension test and a battery of inhibition, updating, shifting, and M-capacity measures. Structural equation modeling showed that updating mediated the relationship between multiplication performance (controlling for reading comprehension score) and latent attentional factors M-capacity and inhibition. Updating played a more important role in predicting performance on multiple-step problems than did age, whereas age and updating were equally important predictors on one-step problems. Shifting was not a significant predictor in either model. Implications of proposing executive function updating as a mediator between mathematical cognition and chronological age and attention resources are discussed. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Monette, Sébastien; Bigras, Marc; Guay, Marie-Claude
Executive function (EF) deficits have yet to be demonstrated convincingly in children with disruptive behaviour disorders (DBD), as only a few studies have reported these. The presence of EF weaknesses in children with DBD has often been contested on account of the high comorbidity between DBD and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and of methodological shortcomings regarding EF measures. Against this background, the link between EF and disruptive behaviours in kindergarteners was investigated using a carefully selected battery of EF measures. Three groups of kindergarteners were compared: (1) a group combining high levels of disruptive behaviours and ADHD symptoms (COMB); (2) a group presenting high levels of disruptive/aggressive behaviours and low levels of ADHD symptoms (AGG); and (3) a normative group (NOR). Children in the COMB and AGG groups presented weaker inhibition capacities compared with normative peers. Also, only the COMB group showed weaker working memory capacities compared with the NOR group. Results support the idea that preschool children with DBD have weaker inhibition capacities and that this weakness could be common to both ADHD and DBD. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.
Full Text Available The pathogenesis of Specific Language Impairment (SLI is still largely beyond our understanding. In this review, a neuropsychological perspective on language impairments in SLI is taken, focusing specifically on executive functioning (EF in preschoolers (age range: 2.6-6.1 years with SLI. Based on the studies described in this review, it can be concluded that similar to school-aged children with SLI, preschoolers with SLI show difficulties in working memory, inhibition and shifting, as revealed by both performance based measures and behavioural ratings. It seems plausible that a complex, reciprocal relationship exists between language and EF throughout development. Future research is needed to examine if, and if yes how, language and EF interact in SLI. Broad neuropsychological assessment in which both language and EF are taken into account may contribute to early detection of SLI. This in turn can lead to early and tailored treatment of children with (suspected SLI aimed not only at stimulating language development but also at strengthening EF.
Genova, Helen M.; DeLuca, John; Chiaravalloti, Nancy; Wylie, Glenn
The primary purpose of the current study was to examine the relationship between performance on executive tasks and white matter integrity, assessed by diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). A second aim was to examine how processing speed affects the relationship between executive functioning and FA. This relationship was examined in two executive tasks that rely heavily on processing speed: the Color-Word Interference Test and Trail-Making Test (Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System). It was hypothesized that reduced fractional anisotropy (FA) is related to poor performance on executive tasks in MS, but that this relationship would be affected by the statistical correction of processing speed from the executive tasks. 15 healthy controls and 25 persons with MS participated. Regression analyses were used to examine the relationship between executive functioning and FA, both before and after processing speed was removed from the executive scores. Before processing speed was removed from the executive scores, reduced FA was associated with poor performance on Color-Word Interference Test and Trail-Making Test in a diffuse network including corpus callosum and superior longitudinal fasciculus. However, once processing speed was removed, the relationship between executive functions and FA was no longer significant on the Trail Making test, and significantly reduced and more localized on the Color-Word Interference Test. PMID:23777468
Spetalen, Signe; Sandvik, Leiv; Blomhoff, Svein; Jacobsen, Morten B
Our aim was to study autonomic function in patients with Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) without constipation and psychiatric comorbidity. Respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) (representing cardiac vagal activity), skin conductance (representing sympathetic activity) and heart rate were measured at baseline and as a response to emotional stress and rectal discomfort in 33 women with IBS and 21 healthy women. Baseline heart rate was higher in the patients than in the healthy volunteers. Both groups had decreased RSA and increased heart rate and skin conductance level when exposed to emotional stress, but the autonomic responses did not differ significantly between the groups. At discomfort threshold the patients had increased heart rate response and skin conductance amplitude when compared to the healthy volunteers. Correlations between autonomic responses and the depression subscale of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression (HAD) score differed markedly between the diarrhea-predominant IBS patients and the IBS patients with alternating stool habits.
Rupp, Claudia I; Fleischhacker, W Wolfgang; Drexler, Arthur; Hausmann, Armand; Hinterhuber, Hartmann; Kurz, Martin
Prior research indicates that chronic alcoholism is accompanied by olfactory deficits. These have been suggested to reflect dysfunctions in olfactory brain regions. The present study investigated the role of neurocognitive functioning in tests (executive function and memory) sensitive to the functional integrity of brain areas that are crucial to olfactory processing in patients with alcohol dependence. Performance on olfactory functions (detection threshold, quality discrimination, identification), executive function (Wisconsin Card Sorting Test), and memory (German version of the California Verbal Learning Test) was assessed in 32 alcohol-dependent patients and 30 healthy comparison subjects, comparable in age, gender, and smoking status. Compared with controls, alcohol-dependent patients were impaired in all 3 domains, olfactory functions, executive function, and memory. In patients, olfactory discrimination ability was positively correlated with executive function performance. Regression analyses conducted to clarify the relation between group (patients vs controls), executive function, memory, and olfactory functions indicated that group was the only significant predictor of olfactory detection threshold and identification, and both group and executive function were found to be the significant predictors of olfactory discrimination. Olfactory deficits in alcohol dependence appear to be associated with prefrontal cognitive dysfunction. Results indicate that olfactory quality discrimination deficits are related to executive function impairment. These findings add to the available research on frontal lobe dysfunction in alcoholism, suggesting that alcohol-related olfactory discrimination deficits may be associated with impairment in the functional integrity of the prefrontal lobe.
Bull, Rebecca; Phillips, Louise H.; Conway, Claire A.
Conflicting evidence has arisen from correlational studies regarding the role of executive control functions in Theory of Mind. The current study used dual-task manipulations of executive functions (inhibition, updating and switching) to investigate the role of these control functions in mental state and non-mental state tasks. The "Eyes"…
Full Text Available Executive function (EF has long been considered to be a unitary, domain-general cognitive ability. However, recent research suggests differentiating ‘hot’ affective and ‘cool’ cognitive aspects of EF. Yet, findings regarding this two-factor construct are still inconsistent. In particular, the development of this factor structure remains unclear and data on school-aged children is lacking. Furthermore, studies linking EF and overweight or obesity suggest that EF contributes to the regulation of eating behavior. So far, however, the links between EF and eating behavior have rarely been investigated in children and non-clinical populations.First, we examined whether EF can be divided into hot and cool factors or whether they actually correspond to a unitary construct in middle childhood. Second, we examined how hot and cool EF are associated with different eating styles that put children at risk of becoming overweight during development. Hot and cool EF were assessed experimentally in a non-clinical population of 1,657 elementary-school children (aged 6-11 years. The ‘food approach’ behavior was rated mainly via parent questionnaires.Findings indicate that hot EF is distinguishable from cool EF. However, only cool EF seems to represent a coherent functional entity, whereas hot EF does not seem to be a homogenous construct. This was true for a younger and an older subgroup of children. Furthermore, different EF components were correlated with eating styles, such as responsiveness to food, desire to drink, and restrained eating in girls but not in boys. This shows that lower levels of EF are not only seen in clinical populations of obese patients but are already associated with food approach styles in a normal population of elementary school-aged girls. Although the direction of effect still has to be clarified, results point to the possibility that EF constitutes a risk factor for eating styles contributing to the development of
Thorell, Lisa B.; Veleiro, Alberto; Siu, Angela F. Y.; Mohammadi, Hiwa
The present study investigated the relation between academic performance and ratings of executive functioning in children aged 6?11 from four countries: Sweden, Spain, Iran, and China. Ratings of executive functioning were made by both parents and teachers using the Childhood Executive Functioning Inventory (CHEXI). The results showed that the Chinese sample was generally rated as having more executive deficits compared to the other samples. The finding that executive functioning deficits are...
Chester, David S; Eisenberger, Naomi I; Pond, Richard S; Richman, Stephanie B; Bushman, Brad J; Dewall, C Nathan
Social rejection often increases aggression, but the neural mechanisms underlying this effect remain unclear. This experiment tested whether neural activity in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and anterior insula in response to social rejection predicted greater subsequent aggression. Additionally, it tested whether executive functioning moderated this relationship. Participants completed a behavioral measure of executive functioning, experienced social rejection while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging and then completed a task in which they could aggress against a person who rejected them using noise blasts . We found that dACC activation and executive functioning interacted to predict aggression. Specifically, participants with low executive functioning showed a positive association between dACC activation and aggression, whereas individuals with high executive functioning showed a negative association. Similar results were found for the left anterior insula. These findings suggest that social pain can increase or decrease aggression, depending on an individual's regulatory capability.
Rydell, Robert J; Van Loo, Katie J; Boucher, Kathryn L
Stereotype threat research shows that women's math performance can be reduced by activating gender-based math stereotypes. Models of stereotype threat assert that threat reduces cognitive functioning, thereby accounting for its negative effects. This work provides a more detailed understanding of the cognitive processes through which stereotype threat leads women to underperform at math and to take risks, by examining which basic executive functions (inhibition, shifting, and updating) account for these outcomes. In Experiments 1 and 2, women under threat showed reduced inhibition, reduced updating, and reduced math performance compared with women in a control condition (or men); however, only updating accounted for women's poor math performance under threat. In Experiment 3, only updating accounted for stereotype threat's effect on women's math performance, whereas only inhibition accounted for the effect of threat on risk-taking, suggesting that distinct executive functions can account for different stereotype threat-related outcomes.
Peeters, Margot; Janssen, T.; Monshouwer, Karin; Boendermaker, Wouter; Pronk, Thomas; Wiers, Reinout; Vollebergh, Wilma
Recently, it has been suggested that impairments in executive functioning might be risk factors for the onset of alcohol use rather than a result of heavy alcohol use. In the present study, we examined whether two aspects of executive functioning, working memory and response inhibition, predicted
Peeters, M.; Janssen, T.; Monshouwer, K.; Boendermaker, W.J.; Pronk, T.; Wiers, R.; Vollebergh, W.
Recently, it has been suggested that impairments in executive functioning might be risk factors for the onset of alcohol use rather than a result of heavy alcohol use. In the present study, we examined whether two aspects of executive functioning, working memory and response inhibition, predicted
Peeters, M.; Janssen, T.; Monshouwer, K.; Boendermaker, W.; Pronk, T.; Wiers, R.; Vollebergh, W.
Background: Executive functioning (EF) has repeatedly been associated with the use and misuse of alcohol and other substances in adolescence. Impairments in executive functions, such as response inhibition and working memory, important for organizing, controlling and planning of behavior have been
Sandgren, Olof; Holmström, Ketty
The clinical assessment of language impairment (LI) in bilingual children imposes challenges for speech-language pathology services. Assessment tools standardized for monolingual populations increase the risk of misinterpreting bilingualism as language impairment. This Perspective article summarizes recent studies on the assessment of bilingual LI and presents new results on including nonlinguistic measures of executive functions in the diagnostic assessment. Executive functions shows clinica...
Designing homework to mediate executive functioning disorders of students with disabilities is critical to their future academic success. The article explains and defines different executive functions of the brain and how these impact students' ability to benefit from homework assignments. Specific strategies are provided for designing…
Hughes, Claire H.; Ensor, Rosie A.
This chapter describes longitudinal findings from a socially diverse sample of 125 British children seen at ages two and four. Four models of social influence on executive function are tested, using multiple measures of family life as well as comprehensive assessments of children's executive functions. Our results confirm the importance of…
Olff, Miranda; Polak, A Rosaura; Witteveen, Anke B; Denys, D.
BACKGROUND: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with neurocognitive deficits, such as impaired verbal memory and executive functioning. Less is known about executive function and the role of comorbid depression in PTSD. Recently, studies have shown that verbal memory impairments
Sequeira, S.S.; Eggermont, L.H.P.; Silliman, R.A.; Bickmore, T.W.; Henault, L.E.; Winter, M.R.; Nelson, K; Paasche-Orlow, M.K.
Limited health literacy is associated with worse executive function, but the association between limited health literacy and decline in executive function has not been established because of a lack of longitudinal studies. The authors aimed to examine this association by studying a prospective
Kegel, Cornelia A. T.; Bus, Adriana G.
Children showing poor executive functioning may not fully benefit from learning experiences at home and school and may lag behind in literacy skills. This hypothesis was tested in a sample of 276 kindergarten children. Executive functions and literacy skills were tested at about 61?months and again a year later. In line with earlier studies,…
Heyl, Vera; Hintermair, Manfred
Introduction: In this study, executive function of school-aged children with visual impairments (that is, those who are blind or have low vision) is examined in the context of behavioral problems and communicative competence. Methods: Teachers assessed the executive function of a sample of 226 visually impaired students from mainstream schools and…
van Beilen, M; van Zomeren, EH; van den Bosch, RJ; Withaar, FK; Bouma, A
Introduction: Executive functioning reflects not only what a patient does, but also how he does it or whether he does it at all [Lezak MD. The problem of assessing executive functions. Int. J. Psychol. 17 (1982) 28 1]. Standard test procedures strongly prompt subjects to certain behavior, so that
Cuevas, Kimberly; Hubble, Morgan; Bell, Martha Ann
Research Findings: This study examined whether children's executive functions before kindergarten would predict variance in executive functions after kindergarten. We obtained behavioral (working memory task performance), parent-reported (temperament-based inhibitory control), and psychophysiological (working memory-related changes in heart rate…
Schroeder, Valarie M.; Kelley, Michelle L.
The present study examines the associations between family environment, parenting practices and executive functions in normally developing children. One hundred parents of children between the ages of 5 and 12 completed the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions from the Family Environment Scale and the Parent-Child Relationship…
Olff, Miranda; Polak, A. Rosaura; Witteveen, Anke B.; Denys, Damiaan
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with neurocognitive deficits, such as impaired verbal memory and executive functioning. Less is known about executive function and the role of comorbid depression in PTSD. Recently, studies have shown that verbal memory impairments may be
St. Clair-Thompson, Helen L.
Previous research has suggested that working memory difficulties play an integral role in children's underachievement at school. However, working memory is just one of several executive functions. The extent to which problems in working memory extend to other executive functions is not well understood. In the current study 38 children with a poor…
Chaimaha, Napalai; Sriphetcharawut, Sarinya; Lersilp, Suchitporn; Chinchai, Supaporn
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of therapeutic programs, an executive function training program and a collaborative program, for students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with executive function deficits (EFDs), especially regarding working memory, planning, and monitoring. The participants were…
Freeman, Laura MacMullen; Locke, Jill; Rotheram-Fuller, Erin; Mandell, David
There is a paucity of literature examining the relationship between executive and social functioning in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Twenty-three school-aged children with ASD participated. Executive functioning was measured using the Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, Second Edition and Differential Ability Scales,…
Kapa, Leah L.; Plante, Elena; Doubleday, Kevin
Purpose: The first goal of this research was to compare verbal and nonverbal executive function abilities between preschoolers with and without specific language impairment (SLI). The second goal was to assess the group differences on 4 executive function components in order to determine if the components may be hierarchically related as suggested…
Buckner, Elizabeth; Kim, Paul
Prior research suggests that exposure to conflict can negatively impact the development of executive functioning, which in turn can affect academic performance. Recognizing the need to better understand the potentially widespread executive function deficiencies among Palestinian students and to help develop educational resources targeted to youth…
Bevins, Shelley; Hurse, Emily
The following article details a piece of service development work undertaken as part of the Plymouth Down Syndrome Screening Programme. The work aimed to review the use of three measures assessing executive functioning skills used within the Programme as well as with people without Down syndrome. Three tasks assessing executive functioning (the…
Wenner, C. J.; Bianchi, J.; Figueredo, A. J.; Rushton, J. Philippe; Jacobs, W. J.
The present work examined predicted relations among Life History strategies, Executive Functions, socially antagonistic attitudes, socially antagonistic behaviors, and general intelligence. Life History (LH) theory predicts that Executive Functions and socially antagonistic attitudes and behaviors underpin an interrelated and coherent set of…
Ayers, Catherine R; Dozier, Mary E; Wetherell, Julie Loebach; Twamley, Elizabeth W; Schiehser, Dawn M
The current investigation utilized mid-life and late-life participants diagnosed with hoarding disorder (HD) to explore the relationship between executive functioning and hoarding severity. Correlational analyses were used to investigate the associations between executive functioning and hoarding severity in nondemented participants. Multiple regression was used to determine if executive functioning had a unique association with HD severity when accounting for depressive symptoms. Participants were recruited from the San Diego area for HD intervention studies. Participants were 113 nondemented adults aged 50-86 years who met DSM-5 criteria for HD. The mean age of the sample utilized in the analyses was 63.76 years (SD, 7.2; range, 51-85 years). The sample was mostly female (72%), Caucasian (81.4%), and unmarried (78%). Hoarding severity was assessed using the Saving Inventory-Revised and the Clutter Image Rating and depression was assessed using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Executive functioning was assessed using the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST-128) and the Trail Making and Verbal Fluency subtests of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System. Executive function (operationalized as perseveration on the WCST-128) was significantly associated with Clutter Image Ratings. In a multivariate context, executive function and depressive symptom severity were both significant predictors of variance in Clutter Image Rating. Our results suggest that executive function is related to severity of HD symptoms and should be considered as part of the conceptualization of HD. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Fuhs, Mary Wagner; Day, Jeanne D.
Research suggests that executive functioning skills may enhance the school readiness of children from disadvantaged homes. Questions remain, however, concerning both the structure and the stability of executive functioning among preschoolers. In addition, there is a lack of research addressing potential predictors of longitudinal change in…
Daunhauer, Lisa A.; Fidler, Deborah J.; Hahn, Laura; Will, Elizabeth; Lee, Nancy Raitano; Hepburn, Susan
We investigated executive functioning (EF) in children with Down syndrome (DS; n = 25) and typically developing (TD) children matched for mental age (MA; n = 23) using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Preschool. We sought to (1) compare children with DS to a developmentally matched control group, and (2) to characterize the EF…
Chevalere, J.; Postal, V.; Jauregui, J.; Copet, P.; Laurier, V.; Thuilleaux, D.
Introduction: The aim of the present study was to determine whether individuals with Prader--Willi syndrome (PWS) have impaired global executive functioning and whether this deficit is linked with intellectual disability. Another objective focussed on the variability in performance of intellectual quotient (IQ) and executive functions (EF)…
de Cock, Evi S.A.; Henrichs, Jens; Klimstra, Theo A.; Janneke, A.; Vreeswijk, Charlotte M.J.M.; Meeus, Wim H.J.; van Bakel, Hedwig J.A.
Early executive functioning is an important predictor for future development of children’s cognitive skills and behavioral outcomes. Parenting behavior has proven to be a key environmental determinant of child executive functioning. However, the association of parental affect and cognitions directed
De Cock, E.S.A.; Henrichs, J.; Klimstra, T.A.; Maas, A.J.B.M.; Vreeswijk, C.M.J.M.; Meeus, W.H.J.; Van Bakel, H.J.A.
Early executive functioning is an important predictor for future development of children’s cognitive skills and behavioral outcomes. Parenting behavior has proven to be a key environmental determinant of child executive functioning. However, the association of parental affect and cognitions directed
Baumgartner, Susanne E.; Weeda, Wouter D.; van der Heijden, Lisa L.; Huizinga, Mariëtte
The increasing prevalence of media multitasking among adolescents is concerning because it may be negatively related to goal-directed behavior. This study investigated the relationship between media multitasking and executive function in 523 early adolescents (aged 11-15; 48% girls). The three central components of executive functions (i.e.,…
Iersel, M.B. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Bloem, B.R.; Verbeek, A.L.M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.
Background. Cognition influences gait and balance in elderly people. Executive functions seem to play a key role in this mechanism. Previous studies used only a single test to probe executive functions, and outcome measures were restricted to gait variables. We extend this prior work by examining
Iersel, M.B. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Bloem, B.R.; Verbeek, A.L.M.; Olde Rikkert, M.G.M.
BACKGROUND: Cognition influences gait and balance in elderly people. Executive functions seem to play a key role in this mechanism. Previous studies used only a single test to probe executive functions, and outcome measures were restricted to gait variables. We extend this prior work by examining
Cartwright, Kelly B.
Research Findings: Executive function begins to develop in infancy and involves an array of processes, such as attention, inhibition, working memory, and cognitive flexibility, which provide the means by which individuals control their own behavior, work toward goals, and manage complex cognitive processes. Thus, executive function plays a…
Abdelgafar, Ghada Mohammed; Moawad, Ruba AbdelMatloub
This study aimed to explore the differences between Arabic-English bilingual and monolingual Arabic children on a battery of executive functions. Prior research on the influence of bilingualism on cognitive abilities and executive functions has shown mixed results. Some results suggested that bilinguals perform significantly better than…
Stringer, Ronald W.; Toplak, Maggie E.; Stanovich, Keith E.
In this study, we investigated the relationships between rapid naming of letters, digits and colours, and reading ability and executive function. We gave fifty-six grade three and four children rapid automatised naming tasks using letters and digits as stimuli, executive function measures including the Stroop task, a working memory task and the…
Fourie, Nicolaas H; Wang, Dan; Abey, Sarah K; Creekmore, Amy L; Hong, Shuangsong; Martin, Christiana G; Wiley, John W; Henderson, Wendy A
Stress is known to perturb the microbiome and exacerbate irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) associated symptoms. Characterizing structural and functional changes in the microbiome is necessary to understand how alterations affect the biomolecular environment of the gut in IBS. Repeated water avoidance (WA) stress was used to induce IBS-like symptoms in rats. The colon-mucosa associated microbiome was characterized in 13 stressed and control animals by 16S sequencing. In silico analysis of the functional domains of microbial communities was done by inferring metagenomic profiles from 16S data. Microbial communities and functional profiles were compared between conditions. WA animals exhibited higher α-diversity and moderate divergence in community structure (β-diversity) compared with controls. Specific clades and taxa were consistently and significantly modified in the WA animals. The WA microbiome was particularly enriched in Proteobacteria and depleted in several beneficial taxa. A decreased capacity in metabolic domains, including energy- and lipid-metabolism, and an increased capacity for fatty acid and sulfur metabolism was inferred for the WA microbiome. The stressed condition favored the proliferation of a greater diversity of microbes that appear to be functionally similar, resulting in a functionally poorer microbiome with implications for epithelial health. Taxa, with known beneficial effects, were found to be depleted, which supports their relevance as therapeutic agents to restore microbial health. Microbial sulfur metabolism may form a key component of visceral nerve sensitization pathways and is therefore of interest as a target metabolic domain in microbial ecological restoration.
Grasberger, Helmut; Chang, Lin; Shih, Wendy; Presson, Angela P.; Sayuk, Gregory S.; Newberry, Rodney D.; Karagiannides, Iordanis; Pothoulakis, Charalabos; Mayer, Emeran; Merchant, Juanita L.
Background & Aims Alterations in 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) signaling have been implicated as a factor contributing to the altered bowel habit of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients. Tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (TPH1) is the rate–limiting enzyme in enterochromaffin cell 5-HT biosynthesis. We hypothesized that genetic variants affecting TPH1 gene expression might alter intestinal 5-HT bioavailability and subsequently the propensity for distinct bowel habit subtypes in IBS. In this study, we assessed the only common TPH1 proximal promoter variant (-347C/A; rs7130929) and its association with bowel habit predominance in IBS. Methods Electrophoretic mobility shift assays were performed to assess whether the -347C/A allele variant affects the DNA-binding of nuclear factors. Genotype distribution was determined for 422 IBS patients subtyped using Rome III criteria and for 495 healthy controls recruited from two university medical centers. Association with bowel habit was tested using a multinomial logistic regression model controlling for race, anxiety, depression, and study site. Results Early growth response factor 1 (EGR-1) bound with higher affinity to a site comprising the minor A-allele of SNP -347C/A. TPH1 genotype frequencies did not differ between IBS patients and controls overall. The CC genotype was more prevalent in the IBS-D subtype (47%) than in the IBS-C (25%) and IBS-M (37%) subtypes (P=0.039) after adjusting for race and other covariates. Colonic biopsies from a small cohort of IBS patients from one center were tested for higher TPH1 mRNA expression in samples with CC compared to CA genotype, but the results did not reach statistical significance. Conclusions The TPH1 promoter SNP -347C/A differentially binds EGR1, correlates with IBS bowel habit subtypes and possibly colonic TPH1 expression consistent with its role in modulating intestinal 5-HT signaling. PMID:24060757
Sosic-Vasic, Zrinka; Keis, Oliver; Lau, Maren; Spitzer, Manfred; Streb, Judith
The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation, and teacher’s autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student’s motivation and their teachers’ autonomy support on student’s executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher’s autonomy support and student’s intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach. PMID:25762958
Full Text Available The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation and teacher’s autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student’s motivation and their teachers’ autonomy support on student’s executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher’s autonomy support and student’s intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach.
Sosic-Vasic, Zrinka; Keis, Oliver; Lau, Maren; Spitzer, Manfred; Streb, Judith
The present study investigates the interplay of executive functions, motivation, and teacher's autonomy support in school context. In a cross-sectional study design 208 students from different school types completed a standardized motivation questionnaire and processed two executive function tasks. All teachers who teach these students were asked about their autonomy supporting behavior by a standardized test. Multilevel analyses assessed the effects of the student's motivation and their teachers' autonomy support on student's executive functions. Our results show considerable relationships between these variables: high executive function capacities came along with teacher's autonomy support and student's intrinsic motivation styles, whereas low executive function capacities were related to external regulation styles. The results indicate the importance of autonomy support in school instruction and disclose the need to popularize the self-regulation approach.
Hackman, Daniel A; Gallop, Robert; Evans, Gary W; Farah, Martha J
Childhood socioeconomic status (SES) predicts executive function (EF), but fundamental aspects of this relation remain unknown: the developmental course of the SES disparity, its continued sensitivity to SES changes during that course, and the features of childhood experience responsible for the SES-EF relation. Regarding course, early disparities would be expected to grow during development if caused by accumulating stressors at a given constant level of SES. Alternatively, they would narrow if schooling partly compensates for the effects of earlier deprivation, allowing lower-SES children to 'catch up'. The potential for later childhood SES change to affect EF is also unknown. Regarding mediating factors, previous analyses produced mixed answers, possibly due to correlation amongst candidate mediators. We address these issues with measures of SES, working memory and planning, along with multiple candidate mediators, from the NICHD Study of Early Childcare (n = 1009). Early family income-to-needs and maternal education predicted planning by first grade, and income-to-needs predicted working memory performance at 54 months. Effects of early SES remained consistent through middle childhood, indicating that the relation between early indicators of SES and EF emerges in childhood and persists without narrowing or widening across early and middle childhood. Changes in family income-to-needs were associated with significant changes in planning and trend-level changes in working memory. Mediation analyses supported the role of early childhood home characteristics in explaining the association between SES and EF, while early childhood maternal sensitivity was specifically implicated in the association between maternal education and planning. Early emerging and persistent SES-related differences in EF, partially explained by characteristics of the home and family environment, are thus a potential source of socioeconomic disparities in achievement and health across
Nash, Kelly; Stevens, Sara; Greenbaum, Rachel; Weiner, Judith; Koren, Gideon; Rovet, Joanne
An extensive body of literature has documented executive function (EF) impairments in children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD); however, few studies have aimed specifically at improving EF. One treatment program that shows promise for children with FASD is the Alert Program for Self-Regulation®, which is a 12-week treatment specifically designed to target self-regulation, a component of EF. The present study sought to examine if Alert would produce improvements in self-regulation that would generalize to other aspects of EF, behavior, and social skills in children with FASD. Twenty-five children aged 8-12 years diagnosed with an FASD were assigned in alternating sequence to either an immediate treatment (TXT) or a delayed treatment control (DTC) group. Both groups received a comprehensive evaluation of EF at baseline and upon completing therapy (TXT), or after a 12- to 14-week interval from baseline (DTC). Parents also completed questionnaires assessing EF and behavior at both time points. For the TXT group only, parent questionnaires were readministered at 6-month follow-up. At the 12-week follow-up, the TXT group displayed significant improvements in inhibitory control and social cognition. Parents of children in the TXT group reported improved behavioral and emotional regulation, as well as reduced externalizing behavior problems. These behavioral improvements along with further improved parent-rated inhibitory control was maintained at the 6-month follow-up. The EF disabilities in children with FASD can be remediated through a targeted treatment approach aimed at facilitating self-regulation skills.
Kuula, Liisa; Pesonen, Anu-Katriina; Heinonen, Kati; Kajantie, Eero; Eriksson, Johan Gunnar; Andersson, Sture; Lano, Aulikki; Lahti, Jari; Wolke, Dieter; Räikkönen, Katri
Experimental sleep deprivation studies suggest that insufficient sleep and circadian misalignment associates with poorer executive function. It is not known whether this association translates to naturally occurring sleep patterns. A total of 512 of full-term-born members of the Arvo Ylppö Longitudinal Study [mean age = 25.3, standard deviation (SD) = 0.65] (44.3% men) wore actigraphs to define sleep duration, its irregularity and circadian rhythm (sleep mid-point) during a 1-week period (mean 6.9 nights, SD = 1.7). Performance-based executive function was assessed with the Trail-Making Test, Conners' Continuous Performance Test and Stroop. The self-rated adult version of Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function was used to assess trait-like executive function. We found that performance-based and self-reported trait-like executive function correlated only modestly (all correlations ≤0.17). Shorter sleep duration associated with more commission errors. Later circadian rhythm associated with poorer trait-like executive function, as indicated by the Brief Metacognitive Index and the Behavior Regulation Index. Those belonging to the group with the most irregular sleep duration performed slower than others in the Trail-Making Test Part A. All associations were adjusted for sex, age, socioeconomic status and body mass index. In conclusion, naturally occurring insufficient sleep and later circadian rhythm showed modest associations with poorer executive function. Shorter habitual sleep duration was associated with lower scores of performance-based tests of executive function, and later circadian rhythm was associated mainly with poorer trait-like executive function characteristics. Our findings suggest additionally that sleep duration and circadian rhythm associate with different domains of executive function, and there are no additive effects between the two. © 2017 European Sleep Research Society.
Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Huster, René J; Herrmann, Christoph S
Cognitive enhancement is a popular topic, attracting attention both from the general public and the scientific research community. Higher cognitive functions are involved in various aspects of everyday life and have been associated with manifest behavioral and psychiatric mental impairments when deteriorated. The improvement of these so-called executive functions (EFs) is of high individual, social, and economic relevances. This review provides a synopsis of two lines of research, investigating the enhancement of capabilities in executive functioning: a) computerized behavioral trainings, and b) approaches for direct neuromodulation (neurofeedback and transcranial electrostimulation). Task switching, memory updating, response inhibition, and dual task performance are addressed in terms of cognitive functions. It has been shown that behavioral cognitive training leads to enhanced performance in task switching, memory updating, and dual tasks. Similarly, direct neurocognitive modulation of brain regions that are crucially involved in specific EFs also leads to behavioral benefits in response inhibition, task switching, and memory updating. Response inhibition performance has been shown to be improved by neurostimulation of the right inferior frontal cortex, whereas neurostimulation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex exerts effects on task switching and memory updating. Due to a lack of consistency in experimental methods and findings, a comparison of different training approaches concerning their effectiveness is not yet possible. So far, current data suggest that training gains may indeed generalize to untrained tasks aiming at the same cognitive process, as well as across cognitive domains within executive control. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Tao, L; Lin, H; Yan, Y; Xu, X; Wang, L; Zhang, J; Yu, Y
The aim of this study is to investigate chemotherapy-induced alterations in the functional framework of the brain, and probe the relationship between these changes and executive function impairments in breast cancer patients. Thirty-three breast cancer patients (BC) after receiving chemotherapy and 31 matched healthy controls (HC) were enrolled in this study. All participants received resting-state functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fcMRI) and neuropsychological background tests. The lower functional connectivity of the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) was found in the left postcentral gyrus, left precentral gyrus, right superior temporal gyrus, right cingulate gyrus and right middle frontal gyrus. A significant negative correlation was found between the response time on the Trail Making Tests and the functional connectivity strength between the PCC and right middle frontal and right cingulate gyri in breast cancer patients. In addition, the strength of the functional connectivity between the PCC and right middle frontal gyrus had a negative correlation with the response times on the Stroop Interference Test in breast cancer patients. This study demonstrated that BC patients after receiving chemotherapy have abnormal functional connectivity. These findings suggest that functional connectivity changes might play an important role in chemotherapy-induced executive function impairments in breast cancer patients. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Lambek, Rikke; Tannock, Rosemary; Dalsgaard, Søren
The study investigates behavioural, academic, cognitive, and motivational aspects of functioning in school-age children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with and without an executive function deficit (EFD)....
Lopez, Brian R; Lincoln, Alan J; Ozonoff, Sally; Lai, Zona
The executive function theory was utilized to examine the relationship between cognitive process and the restricted, repetitive symptoms of Autistic Disorder (AD). Seventeen adults with AD were compared to 17 nonautistic controls on a new executive function battery (Delis-Kaplin Executive Function Scales). Restricted, repetitive symptoms were measured by a variety of instruments (i.e., the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised, Gilliam Autism Rating Scale, and the Aberrant Behavior Checklist). The study replicated the executive function profile that has been reported in adults with AD. In addition to the replication findings, the study found several executive processes (i.e., cognitive flexibility, working memory, and response inhibition) were highly related to the restrictive, repetitive symptoms of AD; whereas, other executive process (i.e., planning and fluency) were not found to be significantly correlated with restricted, repetitive symptoms. Similarly, we found an executive function model consisting of relative strengths and deficits was the best predictor of restricted, repetitive symptoms of autism. The implications for the executive function theory and how the theory predicts core symptoms of autism are discussed.
Yao, Christie; Bernstein, Lori J; Rich, Jill B
Women with breast cancer have reported adverse cognitive effects following chemotherapy. Evidence is mixed on whether executive functioning is particularly impaired in women treated with chemotherapy, in part due to the wide range of tasks used to measure executive processes. We performed a systematic review of the published literature to evaluate whether some subcomponents of executive functioning are more vulnerable to impairment than others among breast cancer survivors who had been treated with chemotherapy. Studies published as of April 2017 were identified using three electronic databases (MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and Web of Science) and a manual search of relevant reference lists. The methodological quality of included studies was assessed using a checklist of predefined criteria. Of 1280 identified articles, a total of 41 were included for review. Study findings were categorized into three primary subdomains of executive functioning: inhibition, shifting, and updating. Although there was heterogeneity in the neuropsychological measures used to assess executive functioning, tests could be grouped into the subcomponents they assessed. Inhibition appears relatively spared from the effects of chemotherapy, whereas impairments in shifting and updating are more commonly found following chemotherapy. Examination of subcomponents of executive functioning is recommended to better characterize the nature of executive dysfunction in women treated with chemotherapy. Future studies should include executive functioning tasks of varying complexity, use of multiple tasks to increase reliability, and alternative indices to capture performance, such as within-person variability.
Wu, Yan Jing
Mastering two languages has been associated with enhancement in human executive control, but previous studies of this phenomenon have exclusively relied on comparisons between bilingual and monolingual individuals. In the present study, we tested a single group of Welsh–English bilinguals engaged in a nonverbal conflict resolution task and manipulated language context by intermittently presenting words in Welsh, English, or both languages. Surprisingly, participants showed enhanced executive capacity to resolve interference when exposed to a mixed compared with a single language context, even though they ignored the irrelevant contextual words. This result was supported by greater response accuracy and reduced amplitude of the P300, an electrophysiological correlate of cognitive interference. Our findings introduce a new level of plasticity in bilingual executive control dependent on fast changing language context rather than long-term language experience. PMID:23946411
Hudec, Kristen L; Alderson, R Matt; Patros, Connor H G; Lea, Sarah E; Tarle, Stephanie J; Kasper, Lisa J
Motor activity of boys (age 8-12 years) with (n=19) and without (n=18) ADHD was objectively measured with actigraphy across experimental conditions that varied with regard to demands on executive functions. Activity exhibited during two n-back (1-back, 2-back) working memory tasks was compared to activity during a choice-reaction time (CRT) task that placed relatively fewer demands on executive processes and during a simple reaction time (SRT) task that required mostly automatic processing with minimal executive demands. Results indicated that children in the ADHD group exhibited greater activity compared to children in the non-ADHD group. Further, both groups exhibited the greatest activity during conditions with high working memory demands, followed by the reaction time and control task conditions, respectively. The findings indicate that large-magnitude increases in motor activity are predominantly associated with increased demands on working memory, though demands on non-executive processes are sufficient to elicit small to moderate increases in motor activity as well. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
This article investigates emotion recognition ability, a central aspect of Theory of Mind (ToM), in a group of individuals with spina bifida myelomeningocele (SBM) experiencing executive function deficits, and examine associations between emotion recognition, and intellectual and executive functioning. A total of 38 adult subjects with SBM were included in this study, participating in a randomized controlled trial evaluating the effects of a cognitive rehabilitation intervention for executive dysfunction. Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET) was used as a measure of emotion recognition, and neuropsychological tests and questionnaires were utilized as executive function measures. One third of the participants performed poorer on the emotion recognition task compared to normative data. Emotion recognition may represent an area being affected in adults with SBM, and it is related to verbal IQ. Findings also suggest that executive functions and emotion recognition ability in adults with SBM are independent. © 2017 Scandinavian Psychological Associations and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Pauls, Franz; Petermann, Franz; Lepach, Anja Christina
At present, little is still known about the link between depression, memory and executive functioning. This study examined whether there are memory-related impairments in depressed patients and whether the size of such deficits depends on the age group and on specific types of cognitive measures. Memory performances of 215 clinically depressed patients were compared to the data of a matched control sample. Regression analyses were performed to determine the extent to which executive dysfunctions contributed to episodic memory impairments. When compared with healthy controls, significantly lower episodic memory and executive functioning performances were found for depressed patients of all age groups. Effect sizes appeared to vary across different memory and executive functioning measures. The extent to which executive dysfunctions could explain episodic memory impairments varied depending on the type of measure examined. These findings emphasise the need to consider memory-related functioning of depressed patients in the context of therapeutic treatments.
Boyd, Brian A.; McBee, Matthew; Holtzclaw, Tia; Baranek, Grace T.; Bodfish, James W.
This study examined the relationship between repetitive behaviors and sensory processing issues in school-aged children with high functioning autism (HFA). Children with HFA (N = 61) were compared to healthy, typical controls (N = 64) to determine the relationship between these behavioral classes and to examine whether executive dysfunction explained any relationship between the variables. Particular types of repetitive behavior (i.e., stereotypy and compulsions) were related to sensory featu...
Kouijzer, Mirjam E. J.; de Moor, Jan M. H.; Gerrits, Berrie J. L.; Congedo, Marco; van Schie, Hein T.
Seven autistic children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) received a neurofeedback treatment that aimed to improve their level of executive control. Neurofeedback successfully reduced children's heightened theta/beta ratio by inhibiting theta activation and enhancing beta activation over sessions. Following treatment, children's…
Dawson, Erica L; Caveney, Angela F; Meyers, Kortni K; Weisenbach, Sara L; Giordani, Bruno; Avery, Erich T; Schallmo, Michael-Paul; Bahadori, Armita; Bieliauskas, Linas A; Mordhorst, Matthew; Marcus, Sheila M; Kerber, Kevin; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Langenecker, Scott A
Existing cognitive and clinical predictors of treatment response to date are not of sufficient strength to meaningfully impact treatment decision making and are not readily employed in clinical settings. This study investigated whether clinical and cognitive markers used in a tertiary care clinic could predict response to usual treatment over a period of 4 to 6 months in a sample of 75 depressed adults. Patients (N = 384) were sequentially tested in 2 half-day clinics as part of a quality improvement project at an outpatient tertiary care center between August 2003 and September 2007; additional subjects evaluated in the clinic between 2007 and 2009 were also included. Diagnosis was according to DSM-IV-TR criteria and completed by residents and attending faculty. Test scores obtained at intake visits on a computerized neuropsychological screening battery were the Parametric Go/No-Go task and Facial Emotion Perception Task. Treatment outcome was assessed using 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) self-ratings at follow-up (n = 75). Usual treatment included psychotropic medication and psychotherapy. Decline in PHQ-9 scores was predicted on the basis of baseline PHQ-9 score and education, with neuropsychological variables entered in the second step. PHQ-9 scores declined by 46% at follow-up (56% responders). Using 2-step multiple regression, baseline PHQ-9 score (P ≤ .05) and education (P ≤ .01) were significant step 1 predictors of percent change in PHQ-9 follow-up scores. In step 2 of the model, faster processing speed with interference resolution (go reaction time) independently explained a significant amount of variance over and above variables in step 1 (12% of variance, P < .01), while other cognitive and affective skills did not. This 2-step model accounted for 28% of the variance in treatment change in PHQ-9 scores. Processing speed with interference resolution also accounted for 12% variance in treatment and follow-up attrition. Use of executive
Camila de Assis Faria
Full Text Available There are numerous neuropsychological tests for assessing executive functions in aging, which vary according to the different domains assessed. OBJECTIVE: To present a systematic review of the most frequently used instruments for assessing executive functions in older adults with different educational levels in clinical and experimental research. METHODS: We searched for articles published in the last five years, using the PubMed database with the following terms: "neuropsychological tests", "executive functions", and "mild cognitive impairment". There was no language restriction. RESULTS: 25 articles fulfilled all the inclusion criteria. The seven neuropsychological tests most frequently used to evaluate executive functions in aging were:  Trail Making Test (TMT Form B;  Verbal Fluency Test (VFT - F, A and S;  VFT Animals category;  Clock Drawing Test (CDT;  Digits Forward and Backward subtests (WAIS-R or WAIS-III;  Stroop Test; and  Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST and its variants. The domains of executive functions most frequently assessed were: mental flexibility, verbal fluency, planning, working memory, and inhibitory control. CONCLUSION: The study identified the tests and domains of executive functions most frequently used in the last five years by research groups worldwide to evaluate older adults. These results can direct future research and help build evaluation protocols for assessing executive functions, taking into account the different educational levels and socio-demographic profiles of older adults in Brazil.
Ulrike M Krämer
Full Text Available An extensive literature suggests a link between executive functions and aggressive behavior in humans, pointing mostly to an inverse relationship, i.e. increased tendencies towards aggression in individuals scoring low on executive function tests. This literature is limited, though, in terms of the groups studied and the measures of executive functions. In this paper, we present data from two studies addressing these issues. In a first behavioral study, we asked whether high trait aggressiveness is related to reduced executive functions. A sample of over 600 students performed in an extensive behavioral test-battery including paradigms addressing executive functions such as the Eriksen Flanker task, Stroop task, n-back task and Tower of London. High trait aggressive participants were found to have a significantly reduced latency score in the Tower of London, indicating more impulsive behavior compared to low trait aggressive participants. No other differences were detected. In an EEG-study, we assessed neural and behavioral correlates of error monitoring and response inhibition in participants who were characterized based on their laboratory-induced aggressive behavior in a competitive reaction time task. Participants who retaliated more in the aggression paradigm and had reduced frontal activity when being provoked did not, however, show any reduction in behavioral or neural correlates of executive control compared to the more aggressive participants. Our results question a strong relationship between aggression and executive functions at least for healthy, high-functioning people.
Robinson, Kristen E; Fountain-Zaragoza, Stephanie; Dennis, Maureen; Taylor, H Gerry; Bigler, Erin D; Rubin, Kenneth; Vannatta, Kathryn; Gerhardt, Cynthia A; Stancin, Terry; Yeates, Keith Owen
This study examined whether executive function and theory of mind mediate the effects of pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) on social adjustment, relative to children with orthopedic injury (OI). Participants included 19 children with severe TBI, 41 children with complicated mild/moderate TBI, and 57 children with OI. They completed measures of executive function, as well as cognitive, affective, and conative theory of mind. Parents provided ratings of children's social adjustment. Children with severe TBI performed more poorly than children with OI on executive function and theory of mind tasks and were rated by parents as having more behavioral symptoms and worse communication and social skills. Executive function and theory of mind were positively correlated with social skills and communication skills, and negatively correlated with behavioral symptoms. In multiple mediator models, theory of mind and executive function were not significant direct predictors of any measure of social adjustment, but mediated the association between injury and adjustment for children with severe TBI. Theory of mind was a significant independent mediator when predicting social skills, but executive function was not. TBI in children, particularly severe injury, is associated with poor social adjustment. The impact of TBI on children's social adjustment is likely mediated by its effects on executive function and theory of mind.
de Bruijn, A G M; Hartman, E; Kostons, D; Visscher, C; Bosker, R J
Physical fitness seems to be related to academic performance, at least when taking the role of executive functioning into account. This assumption is highly relevant for the vulnerable population of low academic achievers because their academic performance might benefit from enhanced physical fitness. The current study examined whether physical fitness and executive functioning are independent predictors of low mathematics and spelling achievement or whether the relation between physical fitness and low achievement is mediated by specific executive functions. In total, 477 students from second- and third-grade classes of 12 primary schools were classified as either low or average-to-high achievers in mathematics and spelling based on their scores on standardized achievement tests. Multilevel structural equation models were built with direct paths between physical fitness and academic achievement and added indirect paths via components of executive functioning: inhibition, verbal working memory, visuospatial working memory, and shifting. Physical fitness was only indirectly related to low achievement via specific executive functions, depending on the academic domain involved. Verbal working memory was a mediator between physical fitness and low achievement in both domains, whereas visuospatial working memory had a mediating role only in mathematics. Physical fitness interventions aiming to improve low academic achievement, thus, could potentially be successful. The mediating effect of executive functioning suggests that these improvements in academic achievement will be preceded by enhanced executive functions, either verbal working memory (in spelling) or both verbal and visuospatial working memory (in mathematics). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Physically active lifestyles and other health-enhancing behaviors play an important role in preserving executive function into old age. Conversely, emerging research suggests that executive functions facilitate participation in a broad range of healthy behaviors including physical activity and reduced fatty food, tobacco and alcohol consumption. They do this by supporting the volition, planning, performance monitoring, and inhibition necessary to enact intentions and override urges to engage in health damaging behavior. Here, we focus firstly on evidence suggesting that health-enhancing behaviors can induce improvements in executive function. We then switch our focus to findings linking executive function to the consistent performance of health-promoting behaviors and the avoidance of health risk behaviors. We suggest that executive function, health behavior, and disease processes are interdependent. In particular, we argue that a positive feedback loop may exist whereby health behavior-induced changes in executive function foster subsequent health-enhancing behaviors, which in turn help sustain efficient executive functions and good health. We conclude by outlining the implications of this reciprocal relationship for intervention strategies, the design of research studies, and the study of healthy ageing.
Grech, Lisa B; Kiropoulos, Litza A; Kirby, Katherine M; Butler, Ernest; Paine, Mark; Hester, Robert
Executive function deficits are prevalent in people with multiple sclerosis (PwMS), and PwMS use less adaptive coping than healthy controls. This cross-sectional study assessed whether there is a relationship between executive function and coping in PwMS. One hundred and seven participants with relapsing remitting or secondary progressive MS (n = 83 and 24, respectively; age M = 48.8 ± 11.1 years) completed measures of coping and executive function. A positive relationship was found between verbal fluency and use of active, emotional, and instrumental social support coping, and total executive function and substance abuse coping. There was a negative relationship between coping strategies and core (social support, acceptance, religion, restraint, and total coping), higher order (denial and humor), and total executive function indices (acceptance, religion, behavioral disengagement, denial, and total coping). These directional differences provide support for the importance of specific executive functions in coping strategy utilization. Understanding these relationships will assist psychologists and neuropsychologists with patient psychoeducation, adaptive coping strategy intervention and management for PwMS with reduced executive function ability.
Song, Hyunjoo; Jinyu, An
This study aimed to investigate the relationship between perceived/performance-based executive function and IQ. Additionally, the relationship between perceived executive function and intelligence was investigated cross-culturally between South Korea and China. Korean children (60; M = 34, F = 26, Mean age = 10.35) were included in study 1, and Korean children (43, M = 23, F = 20, Mean age = 10.05) and Chinese children (56; M = 29, F = 27, Mean age = 10.40) were included in study 2. The Korean-Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-IV, the Stroop test, the CTT-2, and the executive function questionnaire were used for Korean subjects, and the Raven's matrix test and the executive function questionnaire were used for Korean and Chinese subjects. Multiple regression showed that CTT-2(RT), emotional control difficulty, and Color Word within a 45' Stroop test trial were significant predictors of total IQ. The cross-cultural analysis showed a statistically significant difference between the two countries in the emotional control aspect of perceived executive function. There were no interactions between country and intelligence. In conclusion, intelligence was related to overall executive function. Korean children and Chinese children showed cultural differences in processing emotion. These results are expected to contribute to developing therapeutic strategies for executive function in children and to exchanging these strategies between Korea and China.
Grech, Lisa B; Kiropoulos, Litza A; Kirby, Katherine M; Butler, Ernest; Paine, Mark; Hester, Robert
To identify the moderating and mediating relationship of different coping strategies between executive function and stress, depression and anxiety in people with multiple sclerosis (PwMS). Participants were 107 people with relapsing remitting or secondary progressive multiple sclerosis who were administered tasks of executive function and completed self-report measures of stress, depression, anxiety, and coping. An indirect relationship was found between executive function and psychosocial adjustment through maladaptive coping strategies: behavioral and mental disengagement, and substance abuse; adaptive coping strategies: acceptance, active, positive reinterpretation, and growth, as well as for an index of adaptive coping. In general, a relationship was found between better performance on tasks of executive function and psychosocial adjustment when adaptive coping strategies were low, as opposed to high, or maladaptive coping strategies were high, as opposed to low. Some unexpected findings are also discussed. Executive function and psychosocial adjustment is mediated and moderated by coping strategies used by PwMS. Well-preserved executive function provides relative protection from poorer adjustment in the presence of high maladaptive or low adaptive coping. PwMS who perform poorly on tasks of executive function benefit from using less cognitively demanding adaptive coping strategies to enhance adjustment outcomes and further research in this area would be advantageous to underpin effective intervention strategies. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Joukje M Oosterman
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and attentional control performance in pain patients.
Kuusisto, Marika A.; Nieminen, Pirkko E.; Helminen, Mika T.; Kleemola, Leenamaija
Background: Earlier research and clinical practice show that specific language impairment (SLI) is often associated with nonverbal cognitive deficits and weakened skills in executive functions (EFs). Executive deficits may have a remarkable influence on a child's everyday activities in the home and school environments. However, research…
Peterson, Eric; Welsh, Marilyn C.
Research into executive functioning (EF) has indeed grown exponentially across the past few decades, but as the Willoughby et al. critique makes clear, there remain fundamental questions to be resolved. The crux of their argument is built upon an examination of the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) approach to understanding executive processes.…
Ursache, Alexandra; Blair, Clancy; Stifter, Cynthia; Voegtline, Kristin
The relation of observed emotional reactivity and regulation in infancy to executive function in early childhood was examined in a prospective longitudinal sample of 1,292 children from predominantly low-income and rural communities. Children participated in a fear eliciting task at ages 7, 15, and 24 months and completed an executive function…
van der Elst, W.; Ouwehand, C.; van der Werf, G.; Kuyper, H.; Lee, N.C.; Jolles, J.
The Amsterdam Executive Function Inventory (AEFI) is a newly developed brief self-report questionnaire to assess three important components of the executive aspects of daily-life behavior-that is, Attention, Self-Control and Self-Monitoring, and Planning and Initiative. In a population-based study,
Oosterman, J.; Derksen, L.C.; Wijck, A.J. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Veldhuijzen, D.S.
BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and
Oosterman, J.M.; Derksen, L.C.; Wijck, A.J.M. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Veldhuijzen, D.S.
BACKGROUND: Diminished executive function and attentional control has been reported in chronic pain patients. However, the precise pattern of impairment in these aspects of cognition in chronic pain remains unclear. Moreover, a decline in psychomotor speed could potentially influence executive and
Marzocchi, G.M.; Oosterlaan, J.; Zuddas, A.; Cavolina, P.; Geurts, H.; Redigilo, D.; Vio, C.; Sergeant, J.A.
Background: The object of this study was to analyze the executive functioning of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or reading disability (RD) independent of their non-executive deficits. Methods: Three carefully diagnosed groups of children, aged between 7 and 12 years
Jane Elizabeth Barker
Full Text Available Executive functions in childhood predict important life outcomes. Thus, there is great interest in attempts to improve executive functions early in life. Many interventions are led by trained adults, including structured training activities in the lab, and less-structured activities implemented in schools. Such programs have yielded gains in children’s externally-driven executive functioning, where they are instructed on what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. However, it is less clear how children’s experiences relate to their development of self-directed executive functioning, where they must determine on their own what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. We hypothesized that time spent in less-structured activities would give children opportunities to practice self-directed executive functioning, and lead to benefits. To investigate this possibility, we collected information from parents about their 6-7 year-old children’s daily, annual, and typical schedules. We categorized children’s activities as structured or less-structured based on categorization schemes from prior studies on child leisure time use. We assessed children’s self-directed executive functioning using a well-established verbal fluency task, in which children generate members of a category and can decide on their own when to switch from one subcategory to another. The more time that children spent in less-structured activities, the better their self-directed executive functioning. The opposite was true of structured activities, which predicted poorer self-directed executive functioning. These relationships were robust (holding across increasingly strict classifications of structured and less-structured time and specific (time use did not predict externally-driven executive functioning. We discuss implications, caveats, and ways in which potential interpretations can be distinguished in future work, to advance an understanding of this fundamental
Holmes, Christopher J; Kim-Spoon, Jungmeen; Deater-Deckard, Kirby
Peer interactions and executive function play central roles in the development of healthy children, as peer problems have been indicative of lower cognitive competencies such as self-regulatory behavior and poor executive function has been indicative of problem behaviors and social dysfunction. However, few studies have focused on the relation between peer interactions and executive function and the underlying mechanisms that may create this link. Using a national sample (n = 1164, 48.6% female) from the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (SECCYD), we analyzed executive function and peer problems (including victimization and rejection) across three waves within each domain (executive function or peer problems), beginning in early childhood and ending in middle adolescence. Executive function was measured as a multi-method, multi-informant composite including reports from parents on the Children's Behavior Questionnaire and Child Behavior Checklist and child's performance on behavioral tasks including the Continuous Performance Task, Woodcock-Johnson, Tower of Hanoi, Operation Span Task, Stroop, and Tower of London. Peer problems were measured as a multi-informant composite including self, teacher, and afterschool caregiver reports on multiple peer-relationship scales. Using a cross-lagged design, our Structural Equation Modeling findings suggested that experiencing peer problems contributed to lower executive function later in childhood and better executive function reduced the likelihood of experiencing peer problems later in childhood and middle adolescence, although these relations weakened as a child moves into adolescence. The results highlight that peer relationships are involved in the development of strengths and deficits in executive function and vice versa.
Hughes, Deanna M; Turkstra, Lyn S; Wulfeck, Beverly B
There is accumulating evidence that adolescents with specific language impairment (SLI) have impairments in domains beyond formal language that may affect academic and social outcomes. The findings of previous studies as well as parent reports of behavioural concerns suggest that they lag behind peers in functions such as self-regulation of verbal behaviour and strategic language use suggesting that executive function may be a potential domain worthy of study in adolescents with SLI. The evaluation of executive functions in daily living could provide critical information for intervention for adolescents with SLI, and also inform studies of the relationship between language and executive functioning in a developing system. To compare ratings of executive function in adolescents with specific language impairment to those of their parents and typically developing peers. This study examined parent and self-ratings of executive function in adolescents with SLI and typically developing peers. Twenty-one adolescents with SLI and 21 age- and gender-matched peers (age range = 11-18 years) rated their executive functions in daily living using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function - Self-Report Form (BRIEF-SR), and their parents provided companion ratings. Adolescents in both groups rated themselves more positively than did their parents, and the presence of language impairment was associated with more negative ratings by both parents and adolescents. Fifty-seven per cent of the parents of adolescents with SLI rated their child's executive function abilities as being in the clinically impaired range, compared with 10% in the typically developing group. The results of this study suggest that many adolescents with SLI have perceived impairments in executive functions that affect their performance in daily living. What remains to be determined is whether language and executive function impairments are co-morbid conditions or causally linked. Few assessment tools
Bour, A; Rasquin, S; Limburg, M; Verhey, F
Cognitive and emotional sequellae are commonly observed in stroke patients and these symptoms often co-occur. Diagnosis can be difficult since symptoms of depression and executive dysfunction overlap. To study the longitudinal relationship between depressive symptoms and executive dysfunction in stroke patients. The study comprises of 116 first-ever stroke patients who were followed-up for 2 years and who were assessed for emotional and cognitive sequellae after 1, 6, 12, and 24 months. Emotional disturbances were evaluated using the SCL-90 depression subscale. Executive functions were assessed using compound scores of a combination of the interference scores of the Stroop Colour Word Test and the Concept Shifting Test. Twenty-five patients suffered from both depressive symptoms and executive dysfunction, 28 patients were depressed with no signs of executive dysfunction, and 13 patients showed executive dysfunction with no depressive symptoms. Patients with executive dysfunction had higher mean SCL-90-D scores compared to patients with no executive dysfunction (30.9 (SD 11.7) versus 26.2 (SD 11.1, p = 0.037). Depressive symptoms were predictive for executive dysfunction in a regression analysis corrected for age, sex, and diabetes mellitus but not after additional correction for pre-existent brain damage and other vascular risk factors. After 2 years 66.6 and 53.3% of patients with both depressive symptoms and executive dysfunction at baseline still had depressive symptoms and executive dysfunctions respectively and had worse prognostic outcome than patients with depressive symptoms or executive dysfunction alone. Symptoms of depression and executive dysfunction are highly prevalent in stroke patients and often co-occur. These patients are more at risk for poor stroke outcome, chronic depression, and cognitive deterioration. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Ping Wang; Ping Wang; Xing-Ting Zhu; Xing-Ting Zhu; Zhigang Qi; Zhigang Qi; Silin Huang; Hui-Jie Li; Hui-Jie Li
Video games have been found to have positive influences on executive function in older adults; however, the underlying neural basis of the benefits from video games has been unclear. Adopting a task-based functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study targeted at the flanker task, the present study aims to explore the neural basis of the improved executive function in older adults with video game experiences. Twenty video game players (VGPs) and twenty non-video game players (NVGPs) of 60...
Carriedo, Nuria; Corral, Antonio; Montoro, Pedro R; Herrero, Laura; Ballestrino, Patricia; Sebastián, Iraia
Our main objective was to analyse the different contributions of relational verbal reasoning (analogical and class inclusion) and executive functioning to metaphor comprehension across development. We postulated that both relational reasoning and executive functioning should predict individual and developmental differences. However, executive functioning would become increasingly involved when metaphor comprehension is highly demanding, either because of the metaphors' high difficulty (relatively novel metaphors in the absence of a context) or because of the individual's special processing difficulties, such as low levels of reading experience or low semantic knowledge. Three groups of participants, 11-year-olds, 15-year-olds and young adults, were assessed in different relational verbal reasoning tasks-analogical and class-inclusion-and in executive functioning tasks-updating information in working memory, inhibition, and shifting. The results revealed clear progress in metaphor comprehension between ages 11 and 15 and between ages 15 and 21. However, the importance of executive function in metaphor comprehension was evident by age 15 and was restricted to updating information in working memory and cognitive inhibition. Participants seemed to use two different strategies to interpret metaphors: relational verbal reasoning and executive functioning. This was clearly shown when comparing the performance of the "more efficient" participants in metaphor interpretation with that of the "less efficient" ones. Whereas in the first case none of the executive variables or those associated with relational verbal reasoning were significantly related to metaphor comprehension, in the latter case, both groups of variables had a clear predictor effect.
Elizabeth A. Walshe
Full Text Available Motor vehicle crashes remain a leading cause of injury and death in adolescents, with teen drivers three times more likely to be in a fatal crash when compared to adults. One potential contributing risk factor is the ongoing development of executive functioning with maturation of the frontal lobe through adolescence and into early adulthood. Atypical development resulting in poor or impaired executive functioning (as in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder has been associated with risky driving and crash outcomes. However, executive function broadly encompasses a number of capacities and domains (e.g., working memory, inhibition, set-shifting. In this review, we examine the role of various executive function sub-processes in adolescent driver behavior and crash rates. We summarize the state of methods for measuring executive control and driving outcomes and highlight the great heterogeneity in tools with seemingly contradictory findings. Lastly, we offer some suggestions for improved methods and practical ways to compensate for the effects of poor executive function (such as in-vehicle assisted driving devices. Given the key role that executive function plays in safe driving, this review points to an urgent need for systematic research to inform development of more effective training and interventions for safe driving among adolescents.
Wolfe, Kelly R.; Walsh, Karin S.; Reynolds, Nina C.; Mitchell, Frances; Reddy, Alyssa T.; Paltin, Iris; Madan-Swain, Avi
Medical advances have resulted in increased survival rates for children with brain tumors. Consequently, issues related to survivorship have become more critical. The use of multimodal treatment, in particular cranial radiation therapy, has been associated with subsequent cognitive decline. Specifically, deficits in executive functions have been reported in survivors of various types of pediatric brain tumor. Survivors are left with difficulties, particularly in self-monitoring, initiation, inhibition, and planning, to name a few. Another domain in which survivors of pediatric brain tumor have been reported to show difficulty is that of social skills. Parents, teachers, and survivors themselves have reported decreased social functioning following treatment. Deficits in executive functions and social skills are likely interrelated in this population, as executive skills are needed to navigate various aspects of social interaction; however, this has yet to be studied empirically. Twenty-four survivors of pediatric brain tumor were assessed using a computerized task of executive functions, as well as paper and pencil measures of social skills and real world executive skills. Social functioning was related to a specific aspect of executive functions, i.e., the survivors’ variability in response time, such that inconsistent responding was associated with better parent-report and survivor-report social skills, independent of intellectual abilities. Additionally, parent-reported real-world global executive abilities predicted parent-reported social skills. The implications of these findings for social skills interventions and future research are discussed. PMID:22420326
Vetter, Nora C; Altgassen, Mareike; Phillips, Louise; Mahy, Caitlin E V; Kliegel, Matthias
Theory of mind, the ability to understand mental states, involves inferences about others' cognitive (cognitive theory of mind) and emotional (affective theory of mind) mental states. The current study explored the role of executive functions in developing affective theory of mind across adolescence. Affective theory of mind and three subcomponents of executive functions (inhibition, updating, and shifting) were measured. Affective theory of mind was positively related to age, and all three executive functions. Specifically, inhibition explained the largest amount of variance in age-related differences in affective theory of mind.
Altemeier, Leah E; Abbott, Robert D; Berninger, Virginia W
Experiment 1: Hierarchical linear modeling of growth trajectories of three executive functions (inhibition; rapid automatic switching, RAS; and combined inhibition/switching) in typical readers and writers showed steady improvement of inhibition but leveling of RAS and inhibition/switching about fourth grade. In multiple regressions, RAS, entered after inhibition, contributed uniquely to literacy outcomes at every grade. Improvement of executive functions over the first four grades predicted literacy outcomes at fourth grade. Experiment 2: For children with dyslexia, executive functions explained less variance in literacy outcomes, and boys were worse in inhibition and inhibition/switching. Developmental, educational, and clinical significance of findings are discussed.
Bombín-González, Igor; Cifuentes-Rodríguez, Alicia; Climent-Martínez, Gema; Luna-Lario, Pilar; Cardas-Ibáñez, Jaione; Tirapu-Ustárroz, Javier; Díaz-Orueta, Unai
Evaluation of executive functions is a major issue of neuropsychological assessment, due to the role displayed by these on a cognitive, behavioural and emotional level, and the implication of these functions in daily life functioning. In order to perform a reliable assessment, the strategy traditionally followed for the evaluation of executive functions has been their atomization in different cognitive subprocesses, which is useful in a clinical or a research context. However, in clinical practice it is frequently artificial to disintegrate a global and complex cognitive process, such as executive functions, in a variety of related components; thus, tests designed according to these theoretical processes have low value in clinical procedures (diagnosis, rehabilitation design) due to their poor correspondence with the subject's or patient's clinical reality. The aims of the present work are to revise the concept of ecological validity applied to the evaluation of executive functions, and to perform a critical review of executive functions assessment by means of multitask paradigms as a way to increase the ecological validity and predictive value of the subject's functional performance. After a historical journey around the (low) ecological validity of single-task tests, and the bet in favour of a multitask paradigm for the evaluation of executive functions, up-to-date existing multitask tests are presented meticulously (with their respective advantages and disadvantages). Finally, concrete recommendations about how to develop multitask tests in the future are presented, attending to concrete parameters related to the context, tasks, objectives, rules and scoring.
Van Oudenhove, L; Vandenberghe, J; Vos, R; Holvoet, L; Tack, J
It is unclear which factors explain the high co-morbidity between functional dyspepsia (FD) and other functional somatic syndromes. The aim of this study is to investigate the association between gastric sensorimotor function, psychosocial factors and 'somatization' on the one hand, and co-morbid irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and chronic fatigue (CF)-like symptoms on the other, in FD. In 259 tertiary care FD patients, we studied gastric sensorimotor function with barostat (sensitivity, accommodation). We measured psychosocial factors (abuse history, alexithymia, trait anxiety, depression, panic disorder) and 'somatization' using self-report questionnaires, and presence of IBS and CF-like symptoms. Hierarchical multiple logistic regression was used to determine which of these factors were independently associated with co-morbid IBS and CF-like symptoms, including testing of potential mediator effects. Co-morbid IBS or CF-like symptoms respectively were found in 142 (56.8%) and 102 (39.4%) patients; both co-morbidities were not significantly associated (P=0.27). Gastric accommodation (β=0.003, P=0.04) and 'somatization' (β=0.17, P= 0.0003) were independent risk factors for IBS (c=0.74, Prisk factors for CF-like symptoms (c=0.83, Plifetime abuse were mediated by depression and 'somatization', respectively. 'Somatization' is a common risk factor for co-morbid IBS and CF-like symptoms in FD and mediates the effect of abuse. Gastric sensorimotor function and depression are specific risk factors for co-morbid IBS and CF-like symptoms, respectively. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Soledad Gil-Hernandez; Patricia Mateos; Claudia Porras; Raquel Garcia-Gomez; Enrique Navarro; Luis M. Garcia-Moreno
Alcohol consumption in adolescents causes negative effects on familiar, social, academic life, as well as neurocognitive alterations. The binge drinking (BD) pattern of alcohol is characterized by the alternation of episodes of heavy drinking in a short interval of time, and periods of abstinence, a practice that can result in important brain alterations; even more than regular alcohol consumption. The prefrontal cortex, which acts as neural support for the executive processes, is particularl...
Di Russo, Francesco; Bultrini, Alessandro; Brunelli, Stefano; Delussu, Anna Sofia; Polidori, Lorenzo; Taddei, Francesco; Traballesi, Marco; Spinelli, Donatella
We investigated the effect of sports activity on physically-disabled individuals using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques. Visual go/no-go discriminative and simple response tasks were used. Participants included 17 disabled athletes, 9 from open-skill (wheelchair basketball) and eight from closed-skill (swimming) sports, and 18 healthy non-athletes. Reaction times of the disabled athletes were slower than those of healthy non-athletes on both tasks (7% and 13% difference, respectively). Intra-individual variations in reaction times, switch cost, and number of false alarms, were higher in the swimmers, but comparable to healthy non-athletes, in the basketball group. Event-related potentials (ERPs) early components P1, N1, and P2 had longer latencies in the disabled athletes. The late P3 component had longer latency and smaller amplitude in the disabled athletes only in the discriminative response task. The N2 component, which reflected inhibition/execution processing in the discriminative response task, was delayed and reduced in the swimmer group, but was comparable to healthy subjects in the basketball group. Our results show that (1) the ERP components related to perceptual processing, and late components related to executive processing, were impaired in disabled subjects; and (2) open-skill sports such as basketball may partially compensate for executive control impairment by fostering the stability of motor responses and favoring response flexibility.
Pepe, J. T.
A functional design of software executive system for the space shuttle avionics computer is presented. Three primary functions of the executive are emphasized in the design: task management, I/O management, and configuration management. The executive system organization is based on the applications software and configuration requirements established during the Phase B definition of the Space Shuttle program. Although the primary features of the executive system architecture were derived from Phase B requirements, it was specified for implementation with the IBM 4 Pi EP aerospace computer and is expected to be incorporated into a breadboard data management computer system at NASA Manned Spacecraft Center's Information system division. The executive system was structured for internal operation on the IBM 4 Pi EP system with its external configuration and applications software assumed to the characteristic of the centralized quad-redundant avionics systems defined in Phase B.
Fagundo, Ana B.; Jiménez-Murcia, Susana; Giner-Bartolomé, Cristina; Islam, Mohammed Anisul; de la Torre, Rafael; Pastor, Antoni; Casanueva, Felipe F.; Crujeiras, Ana B.; Granero, Roser; Baños, Rosa; Botella, Cristina; Fernández-Real, Jose M.; Frühbeck, Gema; Gómez-Ambrosi, Javier; Menchón, José M.; Tinahones, Francisco J.; Fernández-Aranda, Fernando
The prefrontal (PFC) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) appear to be associated with both executive functions and olfaction. However, there is little data relating olfactory processing and executive functions in humans. The present study aimed at exploring the role of olfaction on executive functioning, making a distinction between primary and more cognitive aspects of olfaction. Three executive tasks of similar difficulty were used. One was used to assess hot executive functions (Iowa Gambling Task-IGT), and two as a measure of cold executive functioning (Stroop Colour and Word Test-SCWT and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-WCST). Sixty two healthy participants were included: 31 with normosmia and 31 with hyposmia. Olfactory abilities were assessed using the ‘‘Sniffin’ Sticks’’ test and the olfactory threshold, odour discrimination and odour identification measures were obtained. All participants were female, aged between 18 and 60. Results showed that participants with hyposmia displayed worse performance in decision making (IGT; Cohen’s-d = 0.91) and cognitive flexibility (WCST; Cohen’s-d between 0.54 and 0.68) compared to those with normosmia. Multiple regression adjusted by the covariates participants’ age and education level showed a positive association between odour identification and the cognitive inhibition response (SCWT-interference; Beta = 0.29; p = .034). The odour discrimination capacity was not a predictor of the cognitive executive performance. Our results suggest that both hot and cold executive functions seem to be associated with higher-order olfactory functioning in humans. These results robustly support the hypothesis that olfaction and executive measures have a common neural substrate in PFC and OFC, and suggest that olfaction might be a reliable cognitive marker in psychiatric and neurologic disorders. PMID:26083418
Ana B Fagundo
Full Text Available The prefrontal (PFC and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC appear to be associated with both executive functions and olfaction. However, there is little data relating olfactory processing and executive functions in humans. The present study aimed at exploring the role of olfaction on executive functioning, making a distinction between primary and more cognitive aspects of olfaction. Three executive tasks of similar difficulty were used. One was used to assess hot executive functions (Iowa Gambling Task-IGT, and two as a measure of cold executive functioning (Stroop Colour and Word Test-SCWT and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-WCST. Sixty two healthy participants were included: 31 with normosmia and 31 with hyposmia. Olfactory abilities were assessed using the ''Sniffin' Sticks'' test and the olfactory threshold, odour discrimination and odour identification measures were obtained. All participants were female, aged between 18 and 60. Results showed that participants with hyposmia displayed worse performance in decision making (IGT; Cohen's-d = 0.91 and cognitive flexibility (WCST; Cohen's-d between 0.54 and 0.68 compared to those with normosmia. Multiple regression adjusted by the covariates participants' age and education level showed a positive association between odour identification and the cognitive inhibition response (SCWT-interference; Beta = 0.29; p = .034. The odour discrimination capacity was not a predictor of the cognitive executive performance. Our results suggest that both hot and cold executive functions seem to be associated with higher-order olfactory functioning in humans. These results robustly support the hypothesis that olfaction and executive measures have a common neural substrate in PFC and OFC, and suggest that olfaction might be a reliable cognitive marker in psychiatric and neurologic disorders.
Conclusion: Acute aerobic exercise failed to influence executive function as assessed by the WCST, revealing that this classical neuropsychological test tapping executive function may not be sensitive to acute exercise. Our findings suggest that acute exercise does not broadly affect the entire family of executive functions, or its effect on a specific aspect of executive function may be task-dependent, as proposed by Etnier and Chang (2009.
Tabak, Rachel; Aquije, Gwendolyne; Fisher, Beth E
Parkinson disease (PD) affects cognition, specifically executive function. In people with PD, impaired executive function has been identified as an indicator of fall risk and decreased quality of life. Therefore, it is important to consider impaired executive function in the physical therapy management of PD. It has been established that exercise improves cognition in older adults and emerging evidence suggests a similar effect in people with neurological conditions. We assessed changes in executive function in an aerobic exercise intervention in 2 people with cognitive impairments due to PD. Two individuals with PD participated in this case series. Participant 1 was a 61-year-old woman with PD dementia, who had PD for 14 years. Participant 2 was a 72-year-old man with mild cognitive impairments, who had PD for 7 years. The participants completed an 8-week program of aerobic exercise training on a stationary bicycle. Primary outcome measures examined executive function, and secondary measures examined disease severity, quality of life, and walking function. Both participants demonstrated improvements in all measures of executive function and quality of life. Participant 1 also made improvements in walking function. Our outcomes provide preliminary evidence of improved executive function following aerobic exercise in people with PD with cognitive impairments. Larger studies are needed to confirm these findings and investigate whether a causal relationship exists between exercise and improved executive function in persons with PD, and how these impact motor performance and quality of life measures.Video Abstract available (see Video, Supplemental Digital Content 1, http://links.lww.com/JNPT/A43) for more insights from the authors.
Wehrle, Flavia M; Kaufmann, Liane; Benz, Laura D; Huber, Reto; O'Gorman, Ruth L; Latal, Beatrice; Hagmann, Cornelia F
Very preterm birth is often associated with executive function deficits later in life. The transition to adolescence increases personal autonomy, independence and, in parallel, the demands placed on executive functions at home and in school. To assess the impact of increasing demands on executive function performance in very preterm children and adolescents with normal intellectual and motor functions. Forty-one very preterm children and adolescents with normal intellectual and motor functions and 43 healthy term-born peers were assessed at a mean age of 13.0 years (SD: 1.9; range: 10.0-16.9). A comprehensive battery of performance-based executive function measures with different demand levels as well as a parent-rating questionnaire evaluating executive functions relevant for everyday life was applied. Standardized mean differences between groups of d ≥ .41 were regarded as clinically relevant. No group differences were found at the lowest demand levels of working memory (d=.09), planning (d=-.01), cognitive flexibility (d=-.21) and verbal fluency (d=-.14) tasks, but very preterm participants scored significantly below their term-born peers in the most demanding levels (d=-.50, -.59, -.43 and -.55, respectively). These differences were clinically relevant. Executive functions relevant for everyday life were strongly impaired in very preterm participants, e.g., global executive composite (d=-.66). Very preterm children and adolescents with normal intellectual and motor functions are at high risk for executive function deficits that may only become apparent with increasing demands, potentially leading to academic and other deficits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Background. The prevalence of constipation in the (German population has been shown to be 14.9% in a telephone survey, but more detailed data are required to characterize the sociographics and clinical characteristics of persons with different types of functional constipation, either constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-C or functional constipation with or without meeting Rome criteria. Methods. Of 2239 constipated individuals identified during the telephone interview, 1037 (46.3% were willing to provide a postal address for a questionnaire, of which 589 (56.8% returned the questionnaire, inquiring about sociographic data, clinical symptoms, and health care behavior related to constipation, as well as health-related quality-of-life (SF12. Subgroups of functionally constipated individuals were compared. Results. More than 50% of the respondents reported a somatic comorbid condition and/or regular medication intake that may contribute to constipation. We split the remaining individuals (N=214 into three groups, matching Rome-criteria for IBS (IBS-C, n=64 and for functional constipation (FC-R, n=36 and FC not matching Rome criteria (n=114. Nearly all sociographic and clinical characteristics were equal among them, and all individuals with constipation had similar and lowered QOL on the SF-12 physical health domain, but in IBS-C the scores were also significantly lower in comparison to FC-R and FC, in both the physical health and the mental health domain. Conclusion. Only a fraction of individuals with chronic constipation match Rome criteria for IBS-C or FC, but subgroups do not differ with respect to most other measures except quality-of-life profiles.
Memisevic, H.; Sinanovic, O.
Background: Executive function is very important in the children's overall development. The goal of this study was to assess the executive function in children with intellectual disability (ID) through the use of the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) teacher version. An additional goal was to examine the differences in…
Aker, Martin; Harmer, Catherine; Landrø, Nils Inge
Major depressive disorder is associated with very high recurrence rates, and specific vulnerability factors that increase the risk for repeated episodes should be identified. Impaired executive functions have repeatedly been found in remitted populations. The current study included both neutral and emotional executive tasks, and we expected to find impaired performance in unmedicated previously depressed women compared to controls. Furthermore, we hypothesized that the executive functions inhibition and shifting would be related to the ability to apply cognitive reappraisal and to avoid unhealthy rumination. Inhibition and shifting data derived from neutral and emotional computerized tasks, and questionnaire data on emotion regulation and trait rumination, were obtained from previously depressed (n = 109) and never-depressed women (n = 64) and analyzed in independent samples t-tests. A logistic regression analysis investigated the ability of emotion regulation and rumination to predict depression vulnerability. The associations of executive functions to emotion regulation and rumination were investigated in a series of linear regression analyses. Participants on psychotropic medication were excluded from all analyses of executive performance. Previously depressed participants, the majority of which had experienced recurrent episodes, matched control participants on both neutral and emotional executive tasks. However, significantly more rumination and expressive suppression, and less cognitive reappraisal, were found in the previously depressed group. Executive function was unrelated to rumination and emotion regulation in this sample. Previously depressed women whose executive function was intact were characterized by ruminative tendencies and more frequent use of expressive suppression. Trait rumination and expressive suppression are known to increase depression risk, but were unrelated to executive functions in this population. This indicates that unhealthy
Full Text Available Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study investigates executive functions in children with severe speech and motor impairments who are communicating using communication aids with graphic symbols, letters and/or words. There are few neuropsychological studies of children in this group and little is known about their cognitive functioning, including executive functions. It was hypothesized that aided communication would tax executive functions more than speech. 29 children using communication aids and 27 naturally speaking children participated. Structured tasks resembling everyday activities, where the action goals had to be reached through communication with a partner, were used to get information about executive functions. The children a directed the partner to perform actions like building a Lego tower from a model the partner could not see and b gave information about an object without naming it to a person who had to guess what object it was. The executive functions of planning, monitoring and impulse control were coded from the children’s on-task behavior. Both groups solved most of the tasks correctly, indicating that aided communicators are able to use language to direct another person to do a complex set of actions. Planning and lack of impulsivity was positively related to task success in both groups. The aided group completed significantly fewer tasks, spent longer time and showed more variation in performance than the comparison group. The aided communicators scored lower on planning and showed more impulsivity than the comparison group, while both groups showed an equal degree of monitoring of the work progress. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that aided language
Hinnant, J Benjamin; Nelson, Jackie A; O'Brien, Marion; Keane, Susan P; Calkins, Susan D
We examined mother-child co-operative behaviour, children's emotion regulation and executive function, as well as combinations of these factors, as predictors of moral reasoning in 89 10-year-old children. Dyadic co-operation was coded from videotaped observations of laboratory puzzle and speech tasks. Emotion regulation was derived from maternal report, and executive functioning was assessed with the Tower of London task. Moral reasoning was coded during mother-child conversations about morally ambiguous, peer-conflict situations. Two significant interactions indicated that children from more co-operative dyads who also had higher executive function skills had higher moral reasoning scores than other children, and children lower in both emotion regulation and executive function had lower moral reasoning scores than other children. The results contribute to the literature on the multiple and interactive levels of influence on moral reasoning in childhood.
Memisevic, Haris; Sinanovic, Osman
The goal of this study was to assess the relationship between visual-motor integration and executive functions, and in particular, the extent to which executive functions can predict visual-motor integration skills in children with intellectual disability. The sample consisted of 90 children (54 boys, 36 girls; M age = 11.3 yr., SD = 2.7, range 7-15) with intellectual disabilities of various etiologies. The measure of executive functions were 8 subscales of the Behavioral Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) consisting of Inhibition, Shifting, Emotional Control, Initiating, Working memory, Planning, Organization of material, and Monitoring. Visual-motor integration was measured with the Acadia test of visual-motor integration (VMI). Regression analysis revealed that BRIEF subscales explained 38% of the variance in VMI scores. Of all the BRIEF subscales, only two were statistically significant predictors of visual-motor integration: Working memory and Monitoring. Possible implications of this finding are further elaborated.
Head, Lauren M; Baralt, Melissa; Darcy Mahoney, Ashley E
Preterm birth is associated with long-term deficits in executive functioning and cognitive performance. Using the model of brain plasticity as a theoretical framework, it is possible that preterm infants' neurodevelopmental sequelae can be altered. Evidence suggests that bilingualism confers cognitive advantages on executive functioning, so it is possible that bilingualism may improve preterm infants' neurodevelopment. However, bilingualism has only been studied in term children. This review examined literature that compared the performance of preterm-born children to term children and bilingual children to monolingual children on executive function tasks. To address cognitive disparities in preterm-born children, studies investigating the effect of bilingualism on preterm infants' executive functioning is warranted. Copyright © 2015 National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Rigoli, D; Piek, J.P.; Kane, R; Oosterlaan, J.
Aim Research suggests important links between motor coordination and executive functions. The current study examined whether motor coordination predicts working memory, inhibition, and switching performance, extending previous research by accounting for attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder
Smitherman, Todd A; Huerkamp, Justin K; Miller, Brian I; Houle, Timothy T; O'Jile, Judith R
The relationship between mood and executive functioning is of particular importance to neuropsychologists working with mixed psychiatric samples. The present study evaluated the relation of self-reported depression and anxiety to several common measures of executive functioning: the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Trail Making Test, the Controlled Oral Word Association, and the Letter-Number Sequencing subtest of the Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale-III. Records from 86 adult patients evaluated in an outpatient psychiatry unit were examined. Correlations between self-reported depression or anxiety and most measures of executive functioning were small and non-significant. The variance predicted by depression or anxiety after controlling for age, gender, and IQ was minimal (typically < or =3.0%), even after conducting diagnostic subgroup analyses. These results suggest that impaired performance on measures of executive functioning is minimally related to self-reported depression and anxiety within mixed psychiatric settings.
Larsen, Ida Unmack; Vinther-Jensen, Tua; Nielsen, Jørgen Erik
OBJECTIVE: Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by motor symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and cognitive impairment in, inter alia, executive functions and social cognition. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between subjective feeling of psychological distress using...... a self-report questionnaire and performances on tests of executive functions and social cognition in a large consecutive cohort of HD patients. METHOD: 50 manifest HD patients were tested in social cognition and executive functions and each answered a self-report questionnaire about current status...... psychological distress was significantly associated with worse performances on social cognitive tests (mean absolute correlation .34) and that there were no significant correlations between perceived psychological distress and performance on tests of executive functions. The correlations between perceived...
Maria D. Remine; Esther Care; P. Margaret Brown
... performing complex problem-solving tasks. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between language ability and verbal and nonverbal executive functioning in a group of deaf students who communicate using spoken English...
...) and executive function (EF). An overview of empirical findings leads to the conclusion that the complex picture of the relations between EF and ToM development may result from the intertwining of different types and levels of reciprocal influences...
Boelema, Sarai R.; Harakeh, Zeena; Ormel, Johan; Hartman, Catharina A.; Vollebergh, Wilma A. M.; van Zandvoort, Martine J. E.
Objective: Maturation of executive functioning (EF) is topical, especially in relation to adolescence, yet longitudinal research covering early and late adolescence is lacking. This, however, is a prerequisite for drawing conclusions on normal cognitive development, and understanding deviant
The present thesis has investigated how French-speaking monolingual and bilingual children with SLI (specific language impairment) performed on various tasks examining language and executive functioning (EF) abilities, in comparison to monolingual and bilingual peers without SLI. Language was
Katrien S. F. Colman
Full Text Available Coexistent impairments in executive functions and language comprehension in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD have been repeatedly observed. In this study, the aim was to provide insights into the interaction between linguistic representation and processing and executive functioning. Therefore, sentence comprehension and executive functions were assessed in 28 Dutch-speaking PD patients and 28 healthy control subjects. Three aspects of the sentence materials were varied: (1 phrase structure complexity, (2 sentence length, and (3 picture congruence. PD patients with mild-to-moderate disease severity showed decreased sentence comprehension compared to healthy control subjects. The difficulties encountered by PD patients were not limited to one aspect of the sentence materials. The same pattern of results was present in healthy control subjects. Deficits in set-switching were specifically associated with the comprehension of passive sentences. Generally, our study confirms that there does not appear to be a language faculty encapsulated from the influence of executive functions.
Rostamian, Somayeh; van Buchem, Mark A; Westendorp, Rudi G J
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association of performance in cognitive domains executive function and memory with incident coronary heart disease and stroke in older participants without dementia. METHODS: We included 3,926 participants (mean age 75 years, 44% male) at risk for cardiovascular diseases...... executive function score. Likewise, scores of the Picture Learning Test (immediate and delayed memory) were transformed into a composite memory score. Associations of executive function and memory were longitudinally assessed with risk of coronary heart disease and stroke using multivariable Cox regression...... models. RESULTS: During 3.2 years of follow-up, incidence rates of coronary heart disease and stroke were 30.5 and 12.4 per 1,000 person-years, respectively. In multivariable models, participants in the lowest third of executive function, as compared to participants in the highest third, had 1.85-fold...
Cantin, Rachelle H; Gnaedinger, Emily K; Gallaway, Kristin C; Hesson-McInnis, Matthew S; Hund, Alycia M
The goal of this study was to specify how executive functioning components predict reading, mathematics, and theory of mind performance during the elementary years. A sample of 93 7- to 10-year-old children completed measures of working memory, inhibition, flexibility, reading, mathematics, and theory of mind. Path analysis revealed that all three executive functioning components (working memory, inhibition, and flexibility) mediated age differences in reading comprehension, whereas age predicted mathematics and theory of mind directly. In addition, reading mediated the influence of executive functioning components on mathematics and theory of mind, except that flexibility also predicted mathematics directly. These findings provide important details about the development of executive functioning, reading, mathematics, and theory of mind during the elementary years. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Gilmore, Camilla; Cragg, Lucy
Cognitive psychology research has suggested an important role for executive functions, the set of skills that monitor and control thought and action, in learning mathematics. However, there is currently little evidence about whether teachers are aware of the importance of these skills and, if so, how they come by this information. We conducted an online survey of teachers' views on the importance of a range of skills for mathematics learning. Teachers rated executive function skills, and in particular inhibition and shifting, to be important for mathematics. The value placed on executive function skills increased with increasing teaching experience. Most teachers reported that they were aware of these skills, although few knew the term “executive functions.” This awareness had come about through their teaching experience rather than from formal instruction. Researchers and teacher educators could do more to highlight the importance of these skills to trainee or new teachers. PMID:25674156
Dietrich, A.; Althaus, M.; Hartman, C.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Minderaa, R.B.; van den Hoofdakker, B.J.; Hoekstra, P.J.
Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often show executive function (EF) problems and neurophysiological hypoarousal. Baroreceptor activation, as part of the baroreflex short-term blood pressure regulatory mechanism, has been linked to cortical inhibition and attenuated
Dietrich, A.; Althaus, M.; Hartman, C.A.; Buitelaar, J.K.; Mindera, R.B.; Hoofdakker, B.J. van den; Hoekstra, P.J.
Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often show executive function (EF) problems and neurophysiological hypoarousal. Baroreceptor activation, as part of the baroreflex short-term blood pressure regulatory mechanism, has been linked to cortical inhibition and attenuated
Sequeira, Shwetha S; Eggermont, Laura H P; Silliman, Rebecca A; Bickmore, Timothy W; Henault, Lori E; Winter, Michael R; Nelson, Kerrie; Paasche-Orlow, Michael K
Limited health literacy is associated with worse executive function, but the association between limited health literacy and decline in executive function has not been established because of a lack of longitudinal studies. The authors aimed to examine this association by studying a prospective cohort in the setting of a randomized controlled trial to promote walking in older adults. Participants were community-dwelling older adults (65 years of age or older) who scored 2 or more on the Mini-Cog, without depression (score of less than 15 on the 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire), and who completed baseline and 12-month evaluations (n = 226). Health literacy was measured using the Short Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults. Executive function measured at baseline and 12 months using the Trail Making Test (TMT), Controlled Oral Word Association Test, and Category Fluency. The associations between health literacy and 12-month decline in each test of executive function were modeled using multivariate linear regression. Health literacy was found to be limited in 37% of participants. Limited health literacy was associated with reduced performance on all 3 executive function tests. In fully adjusted models, limited health literacy was associated with greater 12-month decline in performance on the TMT than higher health literacy (p = .01). In conclusion, older adults with limited health literacy are at risk for more rapid decline in scores on the TMT, a measure of executive function.
Shields, Grant S; Moons, Wesley G; Tewell, Carl A; Yonelinas, Andrew P
It is often assumed that negative affect impairs the executive functions that underlie our ability to control and focus our thoughts. However, support for this claim has been mixed. Recent work has suggested that different negative affective states like anxiety and anger may reflect physiologically separable states with distinct effects on cognition. However, the effects of these 2 affective states on executive function have never been assessed. As such, we induced anxiety or anger in participants and examined the effects on executive function. We found that anger did not impair executive function relative to a neutral mood, whereas anxiety did. In addition, self-reports of induced anxiety, but not anger, predicted impairments in executive function. These results support functional models of affect and cognition, and highlight the need to consider differences between anxiety and anger when investigating the influence of negative affect on fundamental cognitive processes such as memory and executive function. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Jennifer Lynn Bizon
Full Text Available Executive functions supported by prefrontal cortical systems provide essential control and planning mechanisms to guide goal-directed behavior. As such, age-related alterations in executive functions can mediate profound and widespread deficits on a diverse array of neurocognitive processes. Many of the critical neuroanatomical and functional characteristics of prefrontal cortex are preserved in rodents, allowing for meaningful cross-species comparisons relevant to the study of cognitive aging. In particular, as rodents lend themselves to genetic, cellular and biochemical approaches, rodent models of executive function stand to significantly contribute to our understanding of the critical neurobiological mechanisms that mediate decline of executive processes across the lifespan. Moreover, rodent analogues of executive functions that decline in human aging represent an essential component of a targeted, rational approach for developing and testing effective treatment and prevention therapies for age-related cognitive decline. This paper reviews behavioral approaches used to study executive function in rodents, with a focus on those assays that share a foundation in the psychological and neuroanatomical constructs important for human aging. A particular emphasis is placed on behavioral approaches used to assess working memory and cognitive flexibility, which are sensitive to decline with age across species and for which strong rodent models currently exist. In addition, other approaches in rodent behavior that have potential for providing analogues to functions that reliably decline to human aging (e.g., information processing speed are discussed.
Hall, Peter A; Marteau, Theresa M
To provide an overview of the nature, organization and measurement of executive function, and describe its significance for preventive medicine theory, research and practice. A conceptual and narrative review linking the operation of executive control systems to health behavior performance and health outcomes, within the context of chronic illness prevention. Stronger executive function is linked with more consistent performance of a variety of health protective behaviors, less performance of health risk behaviors, and greater longevity in the existing observational research literature. These effects are not fully explained by demographic factors such as education, income and socioeconomic status, but may in some cases interact with them, or mediate their effects on other outcomes. Experimental manipulations of executive control suggest that the effect of executive function is causal, particularly in relation to the modulation of appetitive craving responses that may compete with healthy behaviors (or facilitate unhealthy behaviors). Executive function is a potentially important variable in explanatory frameworks for health behavior and health outcomes. The size of effect and its endurance remain uncertain, though the causal status of its influence on some behaviors is becoming increasingly clear. Additional understanding of the relation between executive control and demand imposed by ecological context is an important frontier for research on changing behavior to prevent disease, and may be an explanatory factor in social patterning of these same conditions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This study investigated concurrent and 2-year longitudinal relations between three executive functions (inhibition, working memory, and shifting) and forms of aggression in children. The Instrument of Proactive and Reactive Aggression (IRPA) was considered for applicability for measuring forms of aggression in middle childhood. The mean age of the sample (n = 844) was 6.7 years at first assessment and 8.8 years at the final assessment. Neuropsychological test scores of executive functions and...
Jarrett, Matthew A
The current study examined attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety symptoms in relation to self-reported executive functioning deficits in emerging adults. College students (N = 421; ages 17-25; 73.1% female) completed self-reports of ADHD, anxiety, and executive functioning in a laboratory setting. Structural equation modeling analyses revealed that self-reported executive functioning deficits were significantly related to all 3 symptom domains. Executive functioning deficits were most strongly related to inattention followed by hyperactivity/impulsivity and anxiety. Analyses based on clinical groups revealed that groups with ADHD and comorbid anxiety showed greater deficits on self-regulation of emotion and self-organization/problem solving than those with ADHD only or anxiety only. Groups with ADHD showed greater deficits with self-motivation and self-restraint than those with anxiety only. All clinical groups differed from a control group on executive functioning deficits. Overall, anxiety symptoms appear to be associated with college students' self-reported executive functioning deficits above and beyond relationships with ADHD symptomatology. Further, those with ADHD and anxiety appear to show increased difficulties with self-regulation of emotion and self-organization/problem solving, a domain which appears to overlap substantially with working memory. Future studies should seek to replicate our findings with a clinical population, utilize both report-based and laboratory task measures of executive functioning, and integrate both state and trait anxiety indices into study designs. Finally, future studies should seek to determine how executive functioning deficits can be best ameliorated in emerging adults with ADHD and anxiety. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Barker, Jane E; Semenov, Andrei D; Michaelson, Laura; Provan, Lindsay S; Snyder, Hannah R; Munakata, Yuko
Executive functions (EFs) in childhood predict important life outcomes. Thus, there is great interest in attempts to improve EFs early in life. Many interventions are led by trained adults, including structured training activities in the lab, and less-structured activities implemented in schools. Such programs have yielded gains in children's externally-driven executive functioning, where they are instructed on what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. However, it is less clear how children's experiences relate to their development of self-directed executive functioning, where they must determine on their own what goal-directed actions to carry out and when. We hypothesized that time spent in less-structured activities would give children opportunities to practice self-directed executive functioning, and lead to benefits. To investigate this possibility, we collected information from parents about their 6-7 year-old children's daily, annual, and typical schedules. We categorized children's activities as "structured" or "less-structured" based on categorization schemes from prior studies on child leisure time use. We assessed children's self-directed executive functioning using a well-established verbal fluency task, in which children generate members of a category and can decide on their own when to switch from one subcategory to another. The more time that children spent in less-structured activities, the better their self-directed executive functioning. The opposite was true of structured activities, which predicted poorer self-directed executive functioning. These relationships were robust (holding across increasingly strict classifications of structured and less-structured time) and specific (time use did not predict externally-driven executive functioning). We discuss implications, caveats, and ways in which potential interpretations can be distinguished in future work, to advance an understanding of this fundamental aspect of growing up.
The relationship between Executive Functions and Peer Rejection was explored. Thirty-Five students in an urban elementary school, (mean 10.7 years of age (sd=2.8), 34% male, and 88% African American) completed measures of executive functions: KABC-II Rover, The Wisconsin Card Sort and NEPSY-II Statue (below age 9) or The Iowa Gambling Task (age 9…
Full Text Available Background: Altered autonomic nerve function has been reported by various investigators in IBS and moderate to vigorous physical exercise causes autonomic nerve function improvement both in healthy and various clinical conditions. Objective: To observe the effect of brisk walking on the autonomic nerve function by analysis of heart rate in patients with Irritable bowel syndrome.Methods: This prospective interventional study was conducted in the Department of Physiology, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU between January to December 2013. For this purpose 77 male patients aged 20-50 years with IBS were included in this study, they were enrolled from OPD, Gastroenterology, BSMMU, Dhaka. For comparison, 28 apparently healthy male were also included as control. HRV measures were recorded once before exercise and also after 3 months of brisk walking. For assessing HRV, frequency domain measures such as total power, LF power, HF power, LF norm and HF norm were recorded by Polyrite D machine. ANOVA, Independent sample t-test and paired t-tests were performed for statistical analysis.Results: The pre-exercise values of HF power, HF norm and total power were significantly lower (p<0.05 whereas values of LF power and LF norm were higher (p<0.05 in all IBS patient compared to those of control. The post exercise data demonstrated significantly higher (p<0.05 HF power, HF nu and total power in all IBS patients compared to their pre-exercise values.Conclusion: This study concluded that the frequency domain measures of HRV were decreased in IBS patients but all these parameters can be improved by regular moderate physical exercise.
Zimmerman, David L; Ownsworth, Tamara; O'Donovan, Analise; Roberts, Jacqueline; Gullo, Matthew J
Individuals with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) display diverse deficits in social, cognitive and behavioral functioning. To date, there has been mixed findings on the profile of executive function deficits for high-functioning adults (IQ > 70) with ASD. A conceptual distinction is commonly made between "cold" and "hot" executive functions. Cold executive functions refer to mechanistic higher-order cognitive operations (e.g., working memory), whereas hot executive functions entail cognitive abilities supported by emotional awareness and social perception (e.g., social cognition). This study aimed to determine the independence of deficits in hot and cold executive functions for high-functioning adults with ASD. Forty-two adults with ASD (64% male, aged 18-66 years) and 40 age and gender matched controls were administered The Awareness of Social Inference Test (TASIT; emotion recognition and social inference), Letter Number Sequencing (working memory) and Hayling Sentence Completion Test (response initiation and suppression). Between-group analyses identified that the ASD group performed significantly worse than matched controls on all measures of cold and hot executive functions (d = 0.54 - 1.5). Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that the ASD sample performed more poorly on emotion recognition and social inference tasks than matched controls after controlling for cold executive functions and employment status. The findings also indicated that the ability to recognize emotions and make social inferences was supported by working memory and response initiation and suppression processes. Overall, this study supports the distinction between hot and cold executive function impairments for adults with ASD. Moreover, it advances understanding of higher-order impairments underlying social interaction difficulties for this population which, in turn, may assist with diagnosis and inform intervention programs.
David Laird Zimmerman
Full Text Available Individuals with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD display diverse deficits in social, cognitive and behavioral functioning. To date, there has been mixed findings on the profile of executive function deficits for high-functioning adults (IQ >70 with ASD. A conceptual distinction is commonly made between cold and hot executive functions. Cold executive functions refer to mechanistic higher-order cognitive operations (e.g., working memory, whereas hot executive functions entail cognitive abilities supported by emotional awareness and social perception (e.g., social cognition. This study aimed to determine the independence of deficits in hot and cold executive functions for high-functioning adults with ASD. Forty-two adults with ASD (64% male, aged 18-66 years and 40 age and gender matched controls were administered The Awareness of Social Inference Test (TASIT; emotion recognition and social inference, Letter Number Sequencing (working memory and Hayling Sentence Completion Test (response initiation and suppression. Between-group analyses identified that the ASD group performed significantly worse than matched controls on all measures of cold and hot executive functions (d = .54-1.5. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that the ASD sample performed more poorly on emotion recognition and social inference tasks than matched controls after controlling for cold executive functions and employment status. The findings also indicated that the ability to recognise emotions and make social inferences was supported by working memory and response initiation and suppression processes. Overall, this study supports the distinction between hot and cold executive function impairments for adults with ASD. Moreover, it advances understanding of higher-order impairments underlying social interaction difficulties for this population which, in turn, may assist with diagnosis and inform intervention programs.
Aken, L. van; Kessels, R.P.C.; Wingbermühle, P.A.M.; Wiltink, M.; Heijden, P.T. van der; Egger, J.I.M.
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – third edition (WAIS-III) and executive functions. The Behavioural Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, and Stroop Color-Word Test were administered to a
Buczylowska, Dorota; Petermann, Franz
Data from five subtests of the Executive Functions Module of the German Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB) and all ten core subtests of the German Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale - Fourth Edition (WAIS-IV) were used to examine the relationship between executive functions and intelligence in a comparison of two age groups: individuals aged 18-59 years and individuals aged 60-88 years. The NAB subtests Categories and Word Generation demonstrated a consistent correlation pattern for both age groups. However, the NAB Judgment subtest correlated more strongly with three WAIS-IV indices, the Full Scale IQ (FSIQ), and the General Ability Index (GAI) in the older adult group than in the younger group. Additionally, in the 60-88 age group, the Executive Functions Index (EFI) was more strongly correlated with the Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI) than with the Perceptual Reasoning Index (PRI). Both age groups demonstrated a strong association of the EFI with the FSIQ and the Working Memory Index (WMI). The results imply the potential diagnostic utility of the Judgment subtest and a significant relationship between executive functioning and crystallized intelligence at older ages. Furthermore, it may be concluded that there is a considerable age-independent overlap between the EFI and general intelligence, as well as between the EFI and working memory.
Pierucci, Jillian M.; O'Brien, Christopher T.; McInnis, Melissa A.; Gilpin, Ansley Tullos; Barber, Angela B.
This study explored unique constructs of fantasy orientation and whether there are developmental benefits for fantasy-oriented children. By age 3, children begin developing executive functions, with some children exhibiting high fantasy orientation in their cognitions and behaviors. Preschoolers ("n" = 106) completed fantasy orientation…
Alvarenga, Patrícia P; Pereira, Daniele S; Anjos, Daniela M C
Elderly diabetics tend to show cognitive deficits related to more complex processes such as the executive function, which can lead to a greater risk of falls. The aims of this study were to compare the functional mobility, the risk of falls and the executive function among elderly with and without type 2 diabetes, and to check the correlation between these variables. Forty community elderly participated in the study and were divided into two groups: G1 elderly with type 2 diabetes and G2 elderly without diabetes, being the variables age, body mass index and gender similar between the groups. The functional mobility and the risk of falls were assessed by the "Timed Up and Go" test (TUG and cognitive TUG) and the executive function was assessed by the Verbal Fluency Test (VFT) (animal category). Elderly with diabetes showed worse performance in the verbal fluency test (G1:14.9 ± 4.5; G2:17.7 ± 5.6; p = 0.031). A statistically between-group difference was observed regarding the functional mobility; being the G1 presenting worse performance in TUG (G1:10.5 ± 1.8 sec; G2:8.9 ± 1.9 sec; p = 0.01) and cognitive TUG (G1:13.9 ± 3.2 sec; G2:10.9 ± 2.3 sec; p = 0.004) tests. A significant correlation was observed between the cognitive TUG and VFT only in G1 (G1: Spearman's rho = -0.535; p = 0.015; G2: Spearman's rho =-0.250; p = 0.288). Diabetics presented worse performance in the functional mobility and in the verbal fluency test than non-diabetics elderly that suggests a greater risk of falls for the elderly with diabetes. The inclusion of these evaluation parameters for diabetics on the physical therapy clinical practice is crucial in order to maintain the functionality and to prevent falls.
Karen J Bos
Full Text Available This study investigated the effects of early institutional care on memory and executive functioning. Subjects were participants in the Bucharest Early Intervention Project (BEIP and included institutionalized children, children with a history of institutionalization who were assigned to a foster care intervention, and community children in Bucharest, Romania. Memory and executive functioning were assessed at the age of eight years using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test and Automated Battery (CANTAB. As expected, children with a history of early institutional care performed worse on measures of both visual memory and executive functioning compared to their peers without a history of institutional care. In comparing children randomly assigned to the foster care intervention with their peers who had continued care in the institution, initial comparisons did not show significant differences on any of the memory or executive functioning outcomes. However, for one of the measures of executive functioning, after controlling for birth weight, head circumference, and duration of time spent in early institutional care, the foster care intervention was a significant predictor of scores. These results support and extend previous findings of deficits in memory and executive functioning among school-age children with a history of early deprivation due to institutional care. This study has implications for the millions of children who continue to experience the psychosocial deprivation associated with early institutional care.
Schmidt, Mirko; Egger, Fabienne; Benzing, Valentin; Jäger, Katja; Conzelmann, Achim; Roebers, Claudia M; Pesce, Caterina
Even though positive relations between children's motor ability and their academic achievement are frequently reported, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear. Executive function has indeed been proposed, but hardly tested as a potential mediator. The aim of the present study was therefore to examine the mediating role of executive function in the relationship between motor ability and academic achievement, also investigating the individual contribution of specific motor abilities to the hypothesized mediated linkage to academic achievement. At intervals of ten weeks, 236 children aged between 10 and 12 years were tested in terms of their motor ability (t1: cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, motor coordination), core executive functions (t2: updating, inhibition, shifting), and academic achievement (t3: mathematics, reading, spelling). Structural equation modelling revealed executive function to be a mediator in the relation between motor ability and academic achievement, represented by a significant indirect effect. In separate analyses, each of the three motor abilities were positively related to children's academic achievement. However, only in the case of children's motor coordination, the mediation by executive function accounted for a significance percentage of variance of academic achievement data. The results provide evidence in support of models that conceive executive function as a mechanism explaining the relationship that links children's physical activity-related outcomes to academic achievement and strengthen the advocacy for quality physical activity not merely focused on health-related physical fitness outcomes, but also on motor skill development and learning.
Egger, Fabienne; Benzing, Valentin; Jäger, Katja; Conzelmann, Achim; Roebers, Claudia M.; Pesce, Caterina
Even though positive relations between children’s motor ability and their academic achievement are frequently reported, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear. Executive function has indeed been proposed, but hardly tested as a potential mediator. The aim of the present study was therefore to examine the mediating role of executive function in the relationship between motor ability and academic achievement, also investigating the individual contribution of specific motor abilities to the hypothesized mediated linkage to academic achievement. At intervals of ten weeks, 236 children aged between 10 and 12 years were tested in terms of their motor ability (t1: cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, motor coordination), core executive functions (t2: updating, inhibition, shifting), and academic achievement (t3: mathematics, reading, spelling). Structural equation modelling revealed executive function to be a mediator in the relation between motor ability and academic achievement, represented by a significant indirect effect. In separate analyses, each of the three motor abilities were positively related to children’s academic achievement. However, only in the case of children’s motor coordination, the mediation by executive function accounted for a significance percentage of variance of academic achievement data. The results provide evidence in support of models that conceive executive function as a mechanism explaining the relationship that links children’s physical activity-related outcomes to academic achievement and strengthen the advocacy for quality physical activity not merely focused on health-related physical fitness outcomes, but also on motor skill development and learning. PMID:28817625
Kvalø, S E; Bru, E; Brønnick, K; Dyrstad, S M
This study seeks to explore whether increased PA in school affects children's executive function and aerobic fitness. The "Active school" study was a 10-month randomized controlled trial. The sample included 449 children (10-11 years old) in five intervention and four control schools. The weekly interventions were 2×45 minutes physically active academic lessons, 5×10 minutes physically active breaks, and 5×10 minutes physically active homework. Aerobic fitness was measured using a 10-minute interval running test. Executive function was tested using four cognitive tests (Stroop, verbal fluency, digit span, and Trail Making). A composite score for executive function was computed and used in analyses. Mixed ANCOVA repeated measures were performed to analyze changes in scores for aerobic fitness and executive function. Analysis showed a tendency for a time×group interaction on executive function, but the results were non-significant F(1, 344)=3.64, P=.057. There was no significant time×group interaction for aerobic fitness. Results indicate that increased physical activity in school might improve children's executive function, even without improvement in aerobic fitness, but a longer intervention period may be required to find significant effects. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Wang, Zhenlin; Devine, Rory T; Wong, Keri K; Hughes, Claire
Previous studies with preschoolers have reported "East-West" contrasts in children's executive function (East>West) and theory of mind (Eastcultural study with two samples of older children from the United Kingdom and Hong Kong aimed to test competing accounts of these contrasts that focus on either global effects of culture or more specific effects of pedagogical experience. Both groups of children in Hong Kong outperformed the British children on executive function tasks. That is, with respect to executive function, general cultural influences appear to be salient. In contrast, compared with their U.K. counterparts, children attending local schools in Hong Kong (but not those attending British-based international schools in Hong Kong) performed poorly on age-appropriate tests of theory of mind. With respect to theory of mind, therefore, pedagogical experiences appear to be more salient than factors related to the broad contrast between individualist and collectivist cultures. Our findings also contribute to the debate surrounding the relationship between theory of mind and executive function; although scores on these two sets of tasks were robustly correlated within each country, the double dissociation between delayed theory of mind but superior executive function for children in local schools in Hong Kong compared with their U.K. peers suggests that variation in executive function may be necessary but is not sufficient to explain variation in theory of mind. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Guiney, Hayley; Machado, Liana
Research suggests that regular aerobic exercise has the potential to improve executive functioning, even in healthy populations. The purpose of this review is to elucidate which components of executive functioning benefit from such exercise in healthy populations. In light of the developmental time course of executive functions, we consider separately children, young adults, and older adults. Data to date from studies of aging provide strong evidence of exercise-linked benefits related to task switching, selective attention, inhibition of prepotent responses, and working memory capacity; furthermore, cross-sectional fitness data suggest that working memory updating could potentially benefit as well. In young adults, working memory updating is the main executive function shown to benefit from regular exercise, but cross-sectional data further suggest that task-switching and post error performance may also benefit. In children, working memory capacity has been shown to benefit, and cross-sectional data suggest potential benefits for selective attention and inhibitory control. Although more research investigating exercise-related benefits for specific components of executive functioning is clearly needed in young adults and children, when considered across the age groups, ample evidence indicates that regular engagement in aerobic exercise can provide a simple means for healthy people to optimize a range of executive functions.
Yoshiyama, Mitsuharu; Araki, Isao; Kobayashi, Hideki; Zakoji, Hidenori; Takeda, Masayuki
Sex-specific differences in activity of the lower urinary tract (LUT) responding to acid irritation in mice have been revealed. This study, using continuous infusion cystometry with acetic acid (AA; pH 3.0), was conducted to examine whether the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) channels expressed in the mouse LUT are involved in the sex difference in functional responses of the bladder and urethra to irritation. No differences were found between effects of capsazepine (a TRPV1 blocker; 100 microM) and those of its vehicle on any of the cystometric changes by intravesical AA in either female or male mice. However, capsazepine eliminated the acid-induced sex differences in parameters associated with bladder contraction phase (i.e., maximal voiding pressure, closing peak pressure, 2nd-phase contraction, bladder contraction duration), whereas capsazepine did not affect those in parameters associated with bladder-filling period (i.e., intercontraction interval, actual collecting time). In males, capsazepine reduced the number of bladder contractions accompanying fluid dribbling at 2nd-phase contraction, which is indicative of the urethral response to irritation, whereas in females it increased the number. Together, these results suggest the possibilities that TRPV1 channels in the bladder and urethra are involved in the sex difference in the LUT response to acid irritation and that these participate, e.g., via "cross talk" between the bladder and urethra, in the fine-tuning of intravesical pressure (or bladder emptying) at the bladder contraction phase under irritated LUT conditions but not in sensing for bladder filling during the storage period, although the contribution of the mechanism may be small.
Objective: Exposure to elevated levels of manganese (Mn) may be associated with tremor, motor and executive dysfunction (EF), clinically resembling Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD research has identified tremor-dominant (TD) and non-tremor dominant (NTD) profiles. NTD PD presents with bradykinesia, rigidity, and postural sway, and is associated with EF impairment with lower quality of life (QoL). Presence and impact of tremor, motor, and executive dysfunction profiles on health-related QoL and life satisfaction were examined in air-Mn exposed residents of two Ohio, USA towns. Participants and Methods: From two Ohio towns exposed to air-Mn, 186 residents (76 males) aged 30-75 years were administered measures of EF (Animal Naming, ACT, Rey-O Copy, Stroop Color-Word, and Trails B), motor and tremor symptoms (UPDRS), QoL (BRFSS), life satisfaction (SWLS), and positive symptom distress (SCL-90-R). Air-Mn exposure in the two towns was modeled with 10 years of air-monitoring data. Cluster analyses detected the presence of symptom profiles by grouping together residents with similar scores on these measures. Results: Overall, mean air-Mn concentration for the two towns was 0.53 µg/m3 (SD=.92). Two-step cluster analyses identified TD and NTD symptom profiles. Residents in the NTD group lacked EF impairment; EF impairment represented a separate profile. An unimpaired group also emerged. The NTD and EF impairment groups were qualitatively similar, with relatively lo
Kavanaugh, Brian C; Scarborough, Vanessa Ramos; Salorio, Cynthia F
The present study examined clinical and demographic risk factors associated with parent-rated emotional-behavioral and executive functioning in children and adolescents with epilepsy. The medical records of 152 children and adolescents with epilepsy referred for neuropsychological evaluation were reviewed. Results indicated that the sample displayed significantly elevated symptoms across the emotional-behavioral and executive domains assessed. Executive functioning and behavioral symptoms had the highest rates of clinically elevated scores, with lowest rates of elevated scores in internalizing and externalizing emotional problems. Only 34% of those participants with clinically significant emotional-behavioral or executive functioning difficulties had a history of psychological or counseling services, highlighting the underserved mental health needs of this population. In regard to clinical factors, the majority of seizure-related variables were not associated with emotional-behavioral or executive functioning. However, the frequency of seizures (i.e., seizure status) was associated with behavioral regulation aspects of executive functioning, and the age at evaluation was associated with externalizing problems and behavioral symptoms. Family psychiatric history (with the exception of ADHD) was associated with all domains of executive and emotional-behavioral functioning. In summary, emotional-behavioral and executive functioning difficulties frequently co-occur with seizures in childhood epilepsy, with both seizure-related and demographic factors contributing to the presentation of such neurobehavioral comorbidities. The present findings provide treatment providers of childhood epilepsy with important information to assist in better identifying children and adolescents who may be at risk for neurobehavioral comorbidities and may benefit from intervention. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Schraegle, William A; Titus, Jeffrey B
Children and adolescents with epilepsy often show higher rates of executive functioning deficits and are at an increased risk of diminished health-related quality of life (HRQOL). The purpose of the current study was to determine the extent to which executive dysfunction predicts HRQOL in youth with epilepsy. Data included parental ratings on the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) and the Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy (QOLCE) questionnaire for 130 children and adolescents with epilepsy (mean age=11years, 6months; SD=3years, 6months). Our results identified executive dysfunction in nearly half of the sample (49%). Moderate-to-large correlations were identified between the BRIEF and the QOLCE subscales of well-being, cognition, and behavior. The working memory subscale on the BRIEF emerged as the sole significant predictor of HRQOL. These results underscore the significant role of executive function in pediatric epilepsy. Proactive screening for executive dysfunction to identify those at risk of poor HRQOL is merited, and these results bring to question the potential role of behavioral interventions to improve HRQOL in pediatric epilepsy by specifically treating and/or accommodating for executive deficits. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Blankenship, Tashauna L.; Bell, Martha Ann
Contributions of differential behavioral (executive functions) and electrophysiological (frontal-temporal electroencephalogram or EEG coherence) measures to episodic memory performance were examined during middle childhood. Cognitive flexibility and right frontotemporal functional connectivity during encoding (F4/T8), as well as left frontotemporal functional connectivity during retrieval (Fp1/T7), contributed to episodic memory performance in a sample of 9–12 year olds. These results suggest that executive functions differentially influence episodic memory, as does left and right frontotemporal functional connectivity during different portions of the memory task. PMID:27043829
Weiler, Marina; Fukuda, Aya; Massabki, Lilian H P; Lopes, Tatila M; Franco, Alexandre R; Damasceno, Benito P; Cendes, Fernando; Balthazar, Marcio L F
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by mental and cognitive problems, particularly with memory, language, visuospatial skills (VS), and executive functions (EF). Advances in the neuroimaging of AD have highlighted dysfunctions in functional connectivity networks (FCNs), especially in the memory related default mode network (DMN). However, little is known about the integrity and clinical significance of FNCs that process other cognitive functions than memory. We evaluated 22 patients with mild AD and 26 healthy controls through a resting state functional MRI scan. We aimed to identify different FCNs: the DMN, language, EF, and VS. Seed-based functional connectivity was calculated by placing a seed in the DMN (posterior cingulate cortex), language (Broca's and Wernicke's areas), EF (right and left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex), and VS networks (right and left associative visual cortex). We also performed regression analyses between individual connectivity maps for the different FCNs and the scores on cognitive tests. We found areas with significant decreases in functional connectivity in patients with mild AD in the DMN and Wernicke's area compared with controls. Increased connectivity in patients was observed in the EF network. Regarding multiple linear regression analyses, a significant correlation was only observed between the connectivity of the DMN and episodic memory (delayed recall) scores. In conclusion, functional connectivity alterations in mild AD are not restricted to the DMN. Other FCNs related to language and EF may be altered. However, we only found significant correlations between cognition and functional connectivity in the DMN and episodic memory performance.
Stavro, Gillian M; Ettenhofer, Mark L; Nigg, Joel T
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with impairments in occupational, social, and educational functioning in adults. This study examined relations of adaptive impairment to ADHD symptom domains (inattentive-disorganized and hyperactive-impulsive) and to deficits in executive functioning (EF) in 195 well-characterized adults (105 ADHD, 90 non-ADHD, between ages 18 and 37). Participants completed a battery of EF measures as well as assessments of adaptive functioning. Confirmatory factor analyses were used to validate latent factors for adaptive functioning and EF. In a measurement model, weaker EF was associated with poorer adaptive functioning (r = -.30). When multi-informant composite variables for current inattentive-disorganized and hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptoms were included in the structural model, EF no longer predicted adaptive functioning. While both symptom composites were similarly related to EF (inattentive-disorganized r = .36; hyperactive-impulsive r = .29), inattentive-disorganized symptoms accounted for more variance in adaptive functioning (67.2% vs. 3.6%). Furthermore, for retrospectively reported childhood symptoms of ADHD, only the inattentive-disorganized symptom domain was related to EF or adaptive impairment. These results suggest that, in adults with ADHD, inattentive-disorganized symptoms may be the primary contributor to key aspects of poorer adaptive function and may be the behavioral path through which EF deficits lead to adaptive impairment.
Spangler, Derek P; Bell, Martha Ann; Deater-Deckard, Kirby
There is uncertainty about whether respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA), a cardiac marker of adaptive emotion regulation, is involved in relatively low or high executive function performance. In the present study, we investigated (a) whether RSA during rest and tasks predict both relatively low and high executive function within a larger quadratic association among the two variables, and (b) the extent to which this quadratic trend was moderated by individual differences in emotion regulation. To achieve these aims, a sample of ethnically and socioeconomically diverse women self-reported reappraisal and emotion suppression. They next experienced a 2-min resting period during which electrocardiogram (ECG) was continually assessed. In the next phase, the women completed an array of executive function and nonexecutive cognitive tasks while ECG was measured throughout. As anticipated, resting RSA showed a quadratic association with executive function that was strongest for high suppression. These results suggest that relatively high resting RSA may predict poor executive function ability when emotion regulation consumes executive control resources needed for ongoing cognitive performance. © 2015 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Fernández-Serrano, María José; Pérez-García, Miguel; Schmidt Río-Valle, Jacqueline; Verdejo-García, Antonio
Several studies have shown alterations in different components of executive functioning in users of different drugs, including cannabis, cocaine and heroin. However, it is difficult to establish a specific association between the use of each of these drugs and executive alterations, since most drug abusers are polysubstance abusers, and alcohol is a ubiquitous confounding factor. Moreover, in order to study the association between consumption of different drugs and executive functioning, the patterns of quantity and duration of drugs used must be considered, given the association between these parameters and the executive functioning alteration degree. Based on the multicomponent approach to executive functions, the aims of the present study were: (i) to analyse the differential contribution of alcohol versus cocaine, heroin and cannabis use on executive functions performance; and (ii) to analyse the contribution made by the severity of the different drugs used (quantity and duration patterns) on these functions in a sample of polysubstance abusers that requested treatment for cannabis-, cocaine- or heroin-related problems. We administered measures of fluency, working memory, analogical reasoning, interference, cognitive flexibility, decision-making and self-regulation to two groups: 60 substance-dependent individuals (SDIs) and 30 healthy control individuals (HCIs). SDIs had significantly poorer performance than HCIs across all of the executive domains assessed. Results from hierarchical regression models showed the existence of common correlates of the use of alcohol, cannabis and cocaine on verbal fluency and decision-making; common correlates of quantity of cannabis and cocaine use on verbal working memory and analogical reasoning; common correlates of duration of cocaine and heroin use on shifting; and specific effects of duration of cocaine use on inhibition measures. These findings indicate that alcohol abuse is negatively associated with fluency and
van der Niet, Anneke G; Smith, Joanne; Scherder, Erik J A; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Hartman, Esther; Visscher, Chris
While there is some evidence that aerobic fitness is positively associated with executive functioning in children, evidence for a relation between children's daily physical activity and their executive functioning is limited. The objective was to examine associations between objectively measured daily physical activity (total volume, sedentary behavior, moderate to vigorous physical activity) and executive functioning in children. Cross-sectional. Eighty primary school children (36 boys, 44 girls) aged 8-12 years old participated in the study. Physical activity was measured using accelerometers. Executive functions measured included inhibition (Stroop test), working memory (Visual Memory Span test), cognitive flexibility (Trailmaking test), and planning (Tower of London). Total volume of physical activity, time spent in sedentary behavior and moderate to vigorous physical activity were calculated and related to performance on executive functioning. More time spent in sedentary behavior was related to worse inhibition (r = -0.24). A higher total volume of physical activity was associated with better planning ability, as reflected by both a higher score on the Tower of London (r = 0.24) and a shorter total execution time (r = -0.29). Also, a significant moderate correlation was found between time spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity and the total execution time of the Tower of London (r = -0.29). Children should limit time spent in sedentary behavior, and increasing their total physical activity. Total volume of physical activity, which consisted mostly of light intensity physical activity, is related to executive functioning. This opens up new possibilities to explore both the quantity and quality of physical activity in relation to cognition in children. Copyright © 2014 Sports Medicine Australia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
O. V. Krapivnaya; S. A. Alekseenko
Background: The frequent coexistence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) with functional dyspepsia (FD) and an irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) has been described in the literature. Aim: To study the specific features of GERD clinical course and diagnosis in patients with GERD in combination with FD and constipation predominant IBS (IBS-C) in comparison to patients with isolated GERD; to assess the efficacy of lactulose and itopride hydrochloride. Materials and methods: A total of 60 pati...
Kalpakidou, Anastasia K; Allin, Matthew P G; Walshe, Muriel; Giampietro, Vincent; McGuire, Philip K; Rifkin, Larry; Murray, Robin M; Nosarti, Chiara
Individuals who were born very preterm (VPT; history of periventricular haemorrhage and ventricular dilatation (PVH+VD), 17 VPT individuals with a history of uncomplicated periventricular haemorrhage (UPVH), 13 VPT individuals with no history of neonatal brain injury and 17 controls received an MRI scan whilst completing a verbal fluency task with two cognitive loads ('easy' and 'hard' letters). Two groups of VPT individuals (PVH+VD; n = 10, UPVH; n = 8) performed an n-back task with three cognitive loads (1-, 2-, 3-back). Results demonstrated that VPT individuals displayed hyperactivation in frontal, temporal, and parietal cortices and in caudate nucleus, insula and thalamus compared to controls, as demands of the verbal fluency task increased, regardless of type of neonatal brain injury. On the other hand, during the n-back task and as working memory load increased, the PVH+VD group showed less engagement of the frontal cortex than the UPVH group. In conclusion, this study suggests that the functional neuroanatomy of different executive-type processes is altered following VPT birth and that neural activation associated with specific aspects of executive function (i.e., working memory) may be particularly sensitive to the extent of neonatal brain injury.
Lu, Shaojia; Pan, Fen; Gao, Weijia; Wei, Zhaoguo; Wang, Dandan; Hu, Shaohua; Huang, Manli; Xu, Yi; Li, Lingjiang
The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship among childhood trauma, executive impairments, and altered resting-state brain function in young healthy adults. Twenty four subjects with childhood trauma and 24 age- and gender-matched subjects without childhood trauma were recruited. Executive function was assessed by a series of validated test procedures. Localized brain activity was evaluated by fractional amplitude of low frequency fluctuation (fALFF) method and compared between two groups. Areas with altered fALFF were further selected as seeds in subsequent functional connectivity analysis. Correlations of fALFF and connectivity values with severity of childhood trauma and executive dysfunction were analyzed as well. Subjects with childhood trauma exhibited impaired executive function as assessed by Wisconsin Card Sorting Test and Stroop Color Word Test. Traumatic individuals also showed increased fALFF in the right precuneus and decreased fALFF in the right superior temporal gyrus. Significant correlations of specific childhood trauma severity with executive dysfunction and fALFF value in the right precuneus were found in the whole sample. In addition, individuals with childhood trauma also exhibited diminished precuneus-based connectivity in default mode network with left ventromedial prefrontal cortex, left orbitofrontal cortex, and right cerebellum. Decreased default mode network connectivity was also associated with childhood trauma severity and executive dysfunction. The present findings suggest that childhood trauma is associated with executive deficits and aberrant default mode network functions even in healthy adults. Moreover, this study demonstrates that executive dysfunction is related to disrupted default mode network connectivity.
Miguélez-Pan, Mónica; Pousa, Esther; Cobo, Jesús; Duño, Rosó
There is a debate about the influence of executive functioning impairment in the functionality of Bipolar Disorder Type I, even when euthymic (EutBDI). The aim of this study was to explore this relationship, taking functional outcome from a multidimensional point of view. An extended neuropsychological battery of executive tests and measures of social functioning were administered to 31 EutBDI and 25 non-psychiatric patients. Percentage of patients scoring lower than -1.64 SD was calculated for each executive measure. This was compared in terms of clinical features to those with normal performance. Partial correlations and ANCOVA were applied between psychosocial and executive variables within the EutBDI-group. Patients reached poorer scores in mental flexibility, plan implementing, set-shifting, and fluency (pperformed poorly on some of the executive tests, although only around 1/3 reached a clinical deficit (type of profession were significantly associated with a better performance on planning, set-shifting, and fluency tasks. Persistent executive deficits in EutBDI may be related to their frequently reported difficulties in personaland occupational adjustment.
Lugtenburg, Astrid; Voshaar, Richard C. Oude; Van Zelst, Willeke; Schoevers, Robert A.; Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Zuidersma, Marij
Background: depression is associated with worse executive function, but underlying mechanisms might differ by age. Aims: to investigate whether vascular disease burden affects the association between depression and executive dysfunction differentially by age. Method: among 83,613 participants of
Full Text Available Executive functioning deficits due to brain disease affecting frontal lobe functions cause significant real-life disability, yet solid evidence in support of executive functioning interventions is lacking. Goal Management Training (GMT, an executive functioning intervention that draws upon theories concerning goal processing and sustained attention, has received empirical support in studies of patients with traumatic brain injury, normal aging, and case studies. GMT promotes a mindful approach to complex real-life tasks that pose problems for patients with executive functioning deficits, with a main goal of periodically stopping ongoing behavior to monitor and adjust goals. In this controlled trial, an expanded version of GMT was compared to an alternative intervention, Brain Health Workshop (BHW that was matched to GMT on non-specific characteristics that can affect intervention outcome. Participants included 19 individuals in the chronic phase of recovery from brain disease (predominantly stroke affecting frontal lobe function. Outcome data indicated specific effects of GMT on the Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART as well as the Tower Test, a visuospatial problem solving measure that reflected far transfer of training effects. There were no significant effects on self-report questionnaires, likely owing to the complexity of these measures in this heterogeneous patient sample. Overall, these data support the efficacy of GMT in the rehabilitation of executive functioning deficits.
Kim-Spoon, Jungmeen; Kahn, Rachel E; Lauharatanahirun, Nina; Deater-Deckard, Kirby; Bickel, Warren K; Chiu, Pearl H; King-Casas, Brooks
The current review is guided by the theoretical perspective that emphasizes the regulating role of executive functioning (Carver et al., 2009) and presents studies that elucidate the ways that executive functioning (inhibition and working memory) explain individual differences in adolescent substance use independently or by regulating the reactive system (reward and punishment sensitivity). Behavioral studies indicate that main effects of executive functioning on adolescent substance use are often nonsignificant or weak in effect sizes. In contrast, emerging evidence suggests consistent and stronger regulating effects of executive functioning over reward and punishment sensitivity. Functional neuroimaging studies reveal significant associations between executive functioning task-related hemodynamic responses and substance use with strong effect sizes. There is also direct evidence from studies testing statistical interactions of the regulating effects of EF-related brain activation, and indirect evidence in studies examining functional connectivity, temporal discounting, and reinforced control. We note key future directions and ways to address limitations in existing work. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Tonnaer, Franca; Cima, Maaike; Arntz, Arnoud
This study investigated whether executive dysfunction and impulsivity are both predictors of reactive aggression and is the first to use behavioral assessment of aggression in response to provocation by means of a personalized boxing body opponent bag giving harassing feedback. Aggressive behavior, self-reported aggression, executive functioning (ie, working memory, flexibility, and divided attention), and impulsivity dimensions (i.e., Sensation Seeking, Impulsive Decision Making, and [inadequate] Response Inhibition) were measured in 44 incarcerated psychiatric patients. Results show that both executive functioning (working memory) and impulsivity (Impulsive Decision Making) predicted self-reported reactive aggression, whereas Response Inhibition was the only predictor for reactive aggressive behavioral responses. The study suggests that Response Inhibition is a stronger predictor of reactive aggressive behavior than executive capacities of working memory, flexibility, and divided attention. Therefore, future research should investigate whether (inadequate) Response Inhibition could also be a valuable predictor for violent recidivism.
Faure, Christophe; Patey, Natalie; Gauthier, Cindy; Brooks, Elice M; Mawe, Gary M
In adults, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional dyspepsia (FD) are chronic conditions that often start during childhood. We investigated mucosal serotonin (5-HT) signaling in children with the idea that data from subjects with a shorter history may improve our understanding of underlying pathophysiological mechanisms. Ninety-eight children undergoing gastroscopy or colonoscopy were studied prospectively. Biopsy specimens were evaluated for inflammation, enterochromaffin cell numbers, 5-HT content, and messenger RNA (mRNA) levels for the synthetic enzyme, tryptophan hydroxylase 1, and the serotonin transporter (SERT) were assessed by quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. Data from 12 children with IBS and 17 with FD were compared with age-matched controls (12 with rectal biopsies and 12 with gastric biopsies) and with subjects with organic disorders. In patients with FD, a small number of immune cells were observed in the gastric mucosa in half of the patients, but no abnormalities with respect to the 5-HT pathway were identified. In patients with IBS, no differences were detected between patients and controls regarding intraepithelial lymphocytes and CD3+ cells in the lamina propria although all patients showed at least a slight inflammatory infiltrate. In the IBS samples, higher 5-HT content (P < .01) and lower SERT mRNA (P < .05) were detected as compared with controls. Severe inflammation in the colonic mucosa had a high impact on 5-HT signaling with a significant decrease in enterochromaffin cells (P < .01) and 5-HT content (P < .01) and a high SERT mRNA expression (P < .01). These results confirm the role of 5-HT signaling in IBS in children and argue against such a role in FD. Copyright 2010 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Verhoeven, Katrien; Dick, Bruce; Eccleston, Christopher; Goubert, Liesbet; Crombez, Geert
Directing attention away from pain is often used in children's pain treatment programs to control pain. However, empirical evidence concerning its effectiveness is inconclusive. We therefore sought to understand other influencing factors, including executive function and its role in the pain experience. This study investigates the role of executive functioning in the effectiveness of distraction. School children (n=164) completed executive functioning tasks (inhibition, switching, and working memory) and performed a cold-pressor task. One half of the children simultaneously performed a distracting tone-detection task; the other half did not. Results showed that participants in the distraction group were engaged in the distraction task and were reported to pay significantly less attention to pain than controls. Executive functioning influenced distraction task engagement. More specifically, participants with good inhibition and working memory abilities performed the distraction task better; participants with good switching abilities reported having paid more attention to the distraction task. Furthermore, distraction was found to be ineffective in reducing pain intensity and affect. Executive functioning did not influence the effectiveness of distraction. However, a relationship was found between executive functioning and pain affect, indicating that participants with good inhibition and working memory abilities experienced the cold-pressor task as less stressful and unpleasant. Our findings suggest that distraction as a process for managing pain is complex. While it appears that executive function may play a role in adult distraction, in this study it did not direct attention away from pain. It may instead be involved in the overall pain experience. Copyright © 2013 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Micai, Martina; Kavussanu, Maria; Ring, Christopher
Poor executive function has been linked to increased antisocial and aggressive behavior in clinical and nonclinical populations. The present study investigated the relationship between executive and nonexecutive cognitive function and antisocial behavior in sport as well as reactive and proactive aggression. Cognitive function was assessed in young adult male and female athletes using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB). Antisocial behavior in sport and aggression were assessed via self-report instruments and were found to be positively correlated. Executive function (but not nonexecutive function) scores were negatively correlated with both self-reported antisocial behavior and aggression in males but not females. Our findings suggest that prefrontal deficits among male athletes could contribute to poor impulse control and difficulty in anticipating the consequences of their antisocial and aggressive behavior.
Maxfield, Molly; Pyszczynski, Tom; Greenberg, Jeff; Pepin, Renee; Davis, Hasker P.
In previous research, older adults responded to mortality salience (MS) with increased tolerance, whereas younger persons responded with increased punitiveness. One possible explanation for this is that many older adults adapt to challenges of later life, such as the prospect of mortality, by becoming more flexible. Recent studies suggest that positively-oriented adaptation is more likely for older adults with high levels of executive functioning. We thus hypothesized that the better an older adult's executive functioning, the more likely MS would result in increased tolerance. Older and younger adults were randomly assigned to MS or control conditions, and then evaluated moral transgressors. As in previous research, younger adults were more punitive following reminders of mortality; executive functioning did not affect their responses. Among older adults, high functioning individuals responded to MS with increased tolerance rather than intolerance, whereas those low in functioning became more punitive. PMID:21728445
Ishizaki, Yuko; Fukuoka, Hideoki; Tanaka, Hidetaka; Ishizaki, Tatsuro; Fujii, Yuri; Hattori-Uchida, Yuko; Nakamura, Minako; Ohkawa, Kaoru; Kobayashi, Hodaka; Taniuchi, Shoichiro; Kaneko, Kazunari
Microgravity due to prolonged bed rest may cause changes in cerebral circulation, which is related to brain function. We evaluate the effect of simulated microgravity due to a 6° head-down tilt bed rest experiment on executive function among 12 healthy young men. Four kinds of psychoneurological tests—the table tapping test, the trail making test, the pointing test and losing at rock-paper-scissors—were performed on the baseline and on day 16 of the experiment. There was no significant difference in the results between the baseline and day 16 on all tests, which indicated that executive function was not impaired by the 16-day 6° head-down tilting bed rest. However, we cannot conclude that microgravity did not affect executive function because of the possible contribution of the following factors: (1) the timing of tests, (2) the learning effect, or (3) changes in psychophysiology that were too small to affect higher brain function.
Stadskleiv, Kristine; von Tetzchner, Stephen; Batorowicz, Beata; van Balkom, Hans; Dahlgren-Sandberg, Annika; Renner, Gregor
Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study investigates executive functions in children with severe speech and motor impairments who are communicating using communication aids with graphic symbols, letters, and/or words. There are few neuropsychological studies of children in this group and little is known about their cognitive functioning, including executive functions. It was hypothesized that aided communication would tax executive functions more than speech. Twenty-nine children using communication aids and 27 naturally speaking children participated. Structured tasks resembling everyday activities, where the action goals had to be reached through communication with a partner, were used to get information about executive functions. The children (a) directed the partner to perform actions like building a Lego tower from a model the partner could not see and (b) gave information about an object without naming it to a person who had to guess what object it was. The executive functions of planning, monitoring, and impulse control were coded from the children's on-task behavior. Both groups solved most of the tasks correctly, indicating that aided communicators are able to use language to direct another person to do a complex set of actions. Planning and lack of impulsivity was positively related to task success in both groups. The aided group completed significantly fewer tasks, spent longer time and showed more variation in performance than the comparison group. The aided communicators scored lower on planning and showed more impulsivity than the comparison group, while both groups showed an equal degree of monitoring of the work progress. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that aided language tax
Danielsson, Henrik; Henry, Lucy; Messer, David; Rönnberg, Jerker
Children with intellectual disability (ID) were given a comprehensive range of executive functioning measures, which systematically varied in terms of verbal and non-verbal demands. Their performance was compared to the performance of groups matched on mental age (MA) and chronological age (CA), respectively. Twenty-two children were included in each group. Children with ID performed on par with the MA group on switching, verbal executive-loaded working memory and most fluency tasks, but belo...
Pauline E.J. Spaan
Full Text Available Structural equation modeling was used to investigate whether age-related episodic and semantic memory impairments are better explained by decline in processing speed or executive functioning (or both, rather than directly in terms of memory components. The models tested were based on an extensive review of the literature on cognitive decline in normal aging, up to very old age. A computerized test battery, measuring episodic memory (free and cued recall; recognition, semantic memory (fluency; naming accuracy and latencies, processing speed and executive functioning, was administered to 234 elderly persons ranging from young-old to very old age (55–96 years. To avoid large variance in response times due to physical instead of cognitive limitations, no motor responses were required from participants. Age-related decline in episodic and semantic memory performance was found to be the consequence of declines in processing speed and executive functioning. Processing speed mainly mediated decline of semantic memory, whereas executive functioning mainly mediated episodic memory decline. The most parsimonious model showed that both processing speed and executive functioning attributed to memory decline but independent from one another. The results suggest that at very old age, the impact of executive dysfunctions on episodic memory performance exceeds the influence of cognitive slowing.
Gold, James M; Robinson, Benjamin; Leonard, Carly J; Hahn, Britta; Chen, Shuo; McMahon, Robert P; Luck, Steven J
People with schizophrenia demonstrate impairments in selective attention, working memory, and executive function. Given the overlap in these constructs, it is unclear if these represent distinct impairments or different manifestations of one higher-order impairment. To examine this question, we administered tasks from the basic cognitive neuroscience literature to measure visual selective attention, working memory capacity, and executive function in 126 people with schizophrenia and 122 healthy volunteers. Patients demonstrated deficits on all tasks with the exception of selective attention guided by strong bottom-up inputs. Although the measures of top-down control of selective attention, working memory, and executive function were all intercorrelated, several sources of evidence indicate that working memory and executive function are separate sources of variance. Specifically, both working memory and executive function independently contributed to the discrimination of group status and independently accounted for variance in overall general cognitive ability as assessed by the MATRICS battery. These two cognitive functions appear to be separable features of the cognitive impairments observed in schizophrenia. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Full Text Available The specific aspects of cognition contributing to balance and gait have not been clarified in people with Parkinson’s disease (PD. Twenty PD participants and twenty age- and gender-matched healthy controls were assessed on cognition and clinical mobility tests. General cognition was assessed with the Mini Mental State Exam and Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Exam. Executive function was evaluated using the Trail Making Tests (TMT-A and TMT-B and a computerized cognitive battery which included a series of choice reaction time (CRT tests. Clinical gait and balance measures included the Tinetti, Timed Up & Go, Berg Balance, and Functional Reach tests. PD participants performed significantly worse than the controls on the tests of cognitive and executive function, balance, and gait. PD participants took longer on Trail Making Tests, CRT-Location, and CRT-Colour (inhibition response. Furthermore, executive function, particularly longer times on CRT-Distracter and greater errors on the TMT-B, was associated with worse balance and gait performance in the PD group. Measures of general cognition were not associated with balance and gait measures in either group. For PD participants, attention and executive function were impaired. Components of executive function, particularly those involving inhibition response and distracters, were associated with poorer balance and gait performance in PD.
Gaines, Katy D; Soper, Henry V; Berenji, Gholam R
This study investigates neuropsychological deficits in recently deployed veterans with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Veterans discharged from 2007 to 2012 were recruited from Veterans Affairs clinics. Independent groups of participants with mTBI (n = 57) and those without TBI (n = 57) were administered the Beck Depression Inventory-II, Combat Exposure Scale, Word Memory Test, and the Self-Awareness of Deficits Interview. Neuropsychological instruments included the Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test, Letter and Category Fluency, Trail-Making Test-Parts A and B, Christiansen H-abbreviated, Soper Neuropsychology Screen, Wechsler Memory Scale subtests Logical Memory I and II, and the Street Completion Test. The mTBI group performed significantly worse on all of the executive and nonexecutive measurements with the exception of Category Fluency, after controlling for age, depression effort, and combat exposure. Depression and combat exposure were greater for the mTBI group. The mTBI group scored poorer on effort, but only the Multiple Choice subtest was significant. The mTBI group had good awareness of their deficits.
Ghawami, Heshmatollah; Sadeghi, Sadegh; Raghibi, Mahvash; Rahimi-Movaghar, Vafa
Executive dysfunctions are among the most prevalent neurobehavioral sequelae of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Using culturally validated tests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS: Trail Making, Verbal Fluency, Design Fluency, Sorting, Twenty Questions, and Tower) and the Behavioural Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome (BADS: Rule Shift Cards, Key Search, and Modified Six Elements), the current study was the first to examine executive functioning in a group of Iranian TBI patients with focal frontal contusions. Compared with a demographically matched normative sample, the frontal contusion patients showed substantial impairments, with very large effect sizes (p ≤ .003, 1.56 executive measures. Controlling for respective lower-level/fundamental conditions, the differences on the highest-level executive (cognitive switching) conditions were still significant. The frontal patients also committed more errors. Patients with lateral prefrontal (LPFC) contusions were qualitatively worst. For example, only the LPFC patients committed perseverative repetition errors. Altogether, our results support the notion that the frontal lobes, specifically the lateral prefrontal regions, play a critical role in cognitive executive functioning, over and above the contributions of respective lower-level cognitive abilities. The results provide clinical evidence for validity of the cross-culturally adapted versions of the tests.
Full Text Available Impairments in executive functioning are frequently observed in Parkinson's disease (PD. However, executive functioning needed in daily life is difficult to measure. Considering this difficulty the Cognitive Effort Test (CET was recently developed. In this multi-task test the goals are specified but participants are free in their approach. This study applies the CET in PD patients and investigates whether initiative, planning and multi-tasking are associated with aspects of executive functions and psychomotor speed. Thirty-six PD patients with a mild to moderate disease severity and thirty-four healthy participants were included in this study. PD patients planned and demonstrated more sequential task execution, which was associated with a decreased psychomotor speed. Furthermore, patients with a moderate PD planned to execute fewer tasks at the same time than patients with a mild PD. No differences were found between these groups for multi-tasking. In conclusion, PD patients planned and executed the tasks of the CET sequentially rather than in parallel presumably reflecting a compensation strategy for a decreased psychomotor speed. Furthermore, patients with moderate PD appeared to take their impairments into consideration when planning how to engage the tasks of the test. This compensation could not be detected in patients with mild PD.
Gut-directed hypnotherapy in children with irritable bowel syndrome or functional abdominal pain (syndrome): A randomized controlled trial on self exercises at home using CD versus individual therapy by qualified therapists
J.M.T.M. Rutten (Juliette); A.M. Vlieger (Arine M.); C. Frankenhuis (Carla); E.K. George (Elvira K.); M. Groeneweg (Michael); O.F. Norbruis (Obbe); W.E. Tjon A ten; H. Van Wering (Herbert); M.G.W. Dijkgraaf (Marcel); M.P. Merkus; M.A. Benninga (Marc)
textabstractBackground: Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional abdominal pain (syndrome) (FAP(S)) are common pediatric disorders, characterized by chronic or recurrent abdominal pain. Treatment is challenging, especially in children with persisting symptoms. Gut-directed hypnotherapy (HT)
Full Text Available It has been conjectured that basic individual differences in attentional control influence higher-level executive functioning and subsequent academic performance in children. The current study sets out to complement the limited body of research on early precursors of executive functions. It provides both a cross-sectional, as well as a longitudinal exploration of the relationship between executive functions and more basic attentional control mechanisms, assessed via children’s performance on memory storage tasks, and influenced by individual differences in anxiety. Multiple measures of verbal and visuospatial short-term memory (STM were administered to children between 3 and 6 years old, alongside a nonverbal measure of intelligence, and a parental report of anxiety symptoms. After 9 months, children were re-tested on the same STM measures, at which time we also administered multiple measures of executive functioning: verbal and visuospatial working memory (WM, inhibition, and shifting. A cross-sectional view of STM development indicated that between 3 and 6 years the trajectory of visuospatial STM and executive functions underwent a gradual linear improvement. However, between 5 and 6 years progress in verbal STM performance stagnated. Hierarchical regression models revealed that trait anxiety was negatively associated with WM and shifting, while nonverbal intelligence was positively related to WM span. When age, gender, nonverbal intelligence, and anxiety were controlled for, STM (measured at the first assessment was a very good predictor of overall executive performance. The models were most successful in predicting WM, followed by shifting, yet poorly predicted inhibition measures. Further longitudinal research is needed to directly address the contribution of attentional control mechanisms to emerging executive functioning and to the development of problematic behavior during early development.
Cotrena, Charles; Branco, Laura Damiani; Shansis, Flávio Milman; Fonseca, Rochele Paz
The neuropsychological correlates of major depressive (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD), and their association with quality of life (QOL) and functioning, have not been sufficiently studied in the literature. The present study aimed to compare executive functions, attention, processing speed, QOL and disability between patients with BD type I, BD type II, MDD and healthy controls. 205 participants (n=37 BDI, 81% female; n=35 BDII, 80% female; n=45 MDD, 69% female; n=89C, 46% female) aged between 18 and 67 years were administered an extensive neurocognitive battery consisting of widely used standardized measures such as the Trail Making Test, the Stroop Color-Word Test and a modified version of the Wisconsin Card Sorting Task. Z-scores were compared between groups by ANCOVA. The prevalence of impairments on each measure (Z-scorequality of life and functioning were evaluated through correlational analysis. Patients with MDD showed poor selective and sustained attention, and exhibited impairments in timed tasks, suggesting low efficiency of executive processing. Patients with BDI displayed more widespread cognitive impairment than the remaining groups, and performed worse than subjects with MDD on measures of sustained attention and inhibitory control. Decision-making ability and attentional control were able to distinguish between patients with BDI and BDII. QOL and disability were most impaired in patients with BDI, and more closely associated with cognitive impairment than in the remaining groups. No control of pharmacological variables, clinical or demographic characteristics. Our results provide important information regarding the nature and severity of the cognitive alterations associated with different mood disorders, and may contribute to the diagnosis, rehabilitation and treatment of these conditions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Mulder, Hanna; Pitchford, Nicola J; Marlow, Neil
Executive function and attention difficulties are reported in very preterm (VPT) children at school entry, but it is unclear if these remain at later ages and/or if these difficulties are mediated by more basic functions, such as processing speed. Processing speed has been shown to underlie academic and behavioral problems in VPT children in middle childhood (Mulder, Pitchford, & Marlow, 2010, 2011), so may also underpin executive function and attention difficulties. We investigated this by comparing VPT (gestational age Korkman, Kirk, & Kemp, 1998). Selective and sustained attention, inhibition, working memory, shifting, verbal fluency, planning, and processing speed were examined. Group differences favoring term children were shown on most executive function tasks (i.e., inhibition, working memory, verbal fluency, and shifting), all of which were mediated by slow processing speed in the VPT group, except response inhibition. Seemingly, processing speed is an important determinant underpinning many neuropsychological deficits seen in VPT children in middle childhood.
Duff, Kevin; Schoenberg, Mike R; Scott, James G; Adams, Russell L
Executive functions, which include an individual's ability to develop a response set, inhibit behaviors, plan, and reason, likely impact other areas of cognitive functioning, such as learning and memory. The present study examined the relationship between executive functioning and a wide array of standardized, clinical verbal and visual learning and memory measures in 212 patients referred for a neuropsychological evaluation. IQ was also included in the analyses. Results of the canonical correlation analyses indicated that the two cognitive domains shared 55-60% of variance, and two canonical variates were present. Although causality cannot be inferred, a clear and robust relationship between executive functioning and memory is evident, and clinicians should consider this overlap when interpreting poor performance among these two domains.
Full Text Available Recently, it has been suggested that impairments in executive functioning might be risk factors for the onset of alcohol use rather than a result of heavy alcohol use. In the present study, we examined whether two aspects of executive functioning, working memory and response inhibition, predicted the first alcoholic drink and first binge drinking episode in young adolescents using discrete survival analyses. Adolescents were selected from several Dutch secondary schools including both mainstream and special education (externalizing behavioral problems. Participants were 534 adolescents between 12 and 14 years at baseline. Executive functioning and alcohol use were assessed four times over a period of two years. Working memory uniquely predicted the onset of first drink (p = .01 and first binge drinking episode (p = .04 while response inhibition only uniquely predicted the initiating of the first drink (p = .01. These results suggest that the association of executive functioning and alcohol consumption found in former studies cannot simply be interpreted as an effect of alcohol consumption, as weaknesses in executive functioning, found in alcohol naïve adolescents, predict the initiating of (binge drinking. Though, prolonged and heavy alcohol use might further weaken already existing deficiencies.
Hovland, Anders; Pallesen, Ståle; Hammar, Åsa; Hansen, Anita Lill; Thayer, Julian F; Tarvainen, Mika P; Nordhus, Inger Hilde
Heart rate variability (HRV) is reduced in patients who suffer from panic disorder (PD). Reduced HRV is related to hypoactivity in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), which negatively affects executive functioning. The present study assessed the relationships between vagally mediated HRV at baseline and measures of executive functioning in 36 patients with PD. Associations between these physiological and cognitive measures and panic-related variables were also investigated. HRV was measured using HF-power (ms(2)), and executive functions were assessed with the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST) and the Color-Word Interference Test (CWIT) from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS). Panic-related variables comprised panic frequency, panic-related distress, and duration of PD. Performance on the neuropsychological measures correlated significantly with HRV. Both panic-related distress and duration of PD were inversely related with measures of HRV and cognitive inhibition. The current findings support the purported relationship between HRV and executive functions involving the PFC. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Kronenberger, William G; Mathews, Vincent P; Dunn, David W; Wang, Yang; Wood, Elisabeth A; Giauque, Ann L; Larsen, Joelle J; Rembusch, Mary E; Lowe, Mark J; Li, Tie-Qiang
The relationship between media violence exposure and executive functioning was investigated in samples of adolescents with no psychiatric diagnosis or with a history of aggressive-disruptive behavior. Age-, gender-, and IQ-matched samples of adolescents who had no Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-fourth edition (DSM-IV; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) diagnosis (N = 27) and of adolescents who had DSM-IV Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnoses (N = 27) completed measures of media violence exposure and tests of executive functioning. Moderate to strong relationships were found between higher amounts of media violence exposure and deficits in self-report, parent-report, and laboratory-based measures of executive functioning. A significant diagnosis by media violence exposure interaction effect was found for Conners' Continuous Performance Test scores, such that the media violence exposure-executive functioning relationship was stronger for adolescents who had Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnoses. Results indicate that media violence exposure is related to poorer executive functioning, and this relationship may be stronger for adolescents who have a history of aggressive-disruptive behavior. Copyright 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Peeters, Margot; Janssen, Tim; Monshouwer, Karin; Boendermaker, Wouter; Pronk, Thomas; Wiers, Reinout; Vollebergh, Wilma
Recently, it has been suggested that impairments in executive functioning might be risk factors for the onset of alcohol use rather than a result of heavy alcohol use. In the present study, we examined whether two aspects of executive functioning, working memory and response inhibition, predicted the first alcoholic drink and first binge drinking episode in young adolescents using discrete survival analyses. Adolescents were selected from several Dutch secondary schools including both mainstream and special education (externalizing behavioral problems). Participants were 534 adolescents between 12 and 14 years at baseline. Executive functioning and alcohol use were assessed four times over a period of two years. Working memory uniquely predicted the onset of first drink (p=.01) and first binge drinking episode (p=.04) while response inhibition only uniquely predicted the initiating of the first drink (p=.01). These results suggest that the association of executive functioning and alcohol consumption found in former studies cannot simply be interpreted as an effect of alcohol consumption, as weaknesses in executive functioning, found in alcohol naïve adolescents, predict the initiating of (binge) drinking. Though, prolonged and heavy alcohol use might further weaken already existing deficiencies. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Pisoni, David B.; Henning, Shirley C.; Colson, Bethany G.
Objective To investigate differences in executive functioning between deaf children with cochlear implants (CIs) and normal-hearing (NH) peers. The cognitive effects of auditory deprivation in childhood may extend beyond speech–language skills to more domain-general areas including executive functioning. Methods Executive functioning skills in a sample of 53 prelingually deaf children, adolescents, and young adults who received CIs prior to age 7 years and who had used their CIs for ≥7 years were compared with age- and nonverbal IQ-matched NH peers and with scale norms. Results Despite having above average nonverbal IQ, the CI sample scored lower than the NH sample and test norms on several measures of short-term/working memory, fluency–speed, and inhibition–concentration. Executive functioning was unrelated to most demographic and hearing history characteristics. Conclusions Prelingual deafness and long-term use of CIs was associated with increased risk of weaknesses in executive functioning. PMID:23699747
Friedman-Krauss, Allison H.; Raver, C. Cybele; Neuspiel, Juliana M.; Kinsel, John
Research Findings The current article explores the relationship between teachers’ perceptions of child behavior problems and preschool teacher job stress, as well as the possibility that teachers’ executive functions moderate this relationship. Data came from 69 preschool teachers in 31 early childhood classrooms in 4 Head Start centers and were collected using Web-based surveys and Web-based direct assessment tasks. Multilevel models revealed that higher levels of teachers’ perceptions of child behavior problems were associated with higher levels of teacher job stress and that higher teacher executive function skills were related to lower job stress. However, findings did not yield evidence for teacher executive functions as a statistical moderator. Practice or Policy Many early childhood teachers do not receive sufficient training for handling children’s challenging behaviors. Child behavior problems increase a teacher’s workload and consequently may contribute to feelings of stress. However, teachers’ executive function abilities may enable them to use effective, cognitive-based behavior management and instructional strategies during interactions with students, which may reduce stress. Providing teachers with training on managing challenging behaviors and enhancing executive functions may reduce their stress and facilitate their use of effective classroom practices, which is important for children’s school readiness skills and teachers’ health. PMID:28596698
Panesi, Sabrina; Morra, Sergio
Previous research suggests that young children draw animals by adapting their scheme for the human figure. This can be considered an early form of drawing flexibility. This study investigated preschoolers' ability to draw a dog that is different from the human figure. The role of working memory capacity and executive function was examined. The participants were 123 children (36-73 months old) who were required to draw both a person and a dog. The dog figure was scored on a list of features that could render it different from the human figure. Regression analyses showed that both working memory capacity and executive function predicted development in the dog drawing; the dog drawing score correlated with working memory capacity and executive function, even partialling out age, motor coordination, and drawing ability (measured with Goodenough's Draw-a-Man test). These results suggest that both working memory capacity and executive function play an important role in the early development of drawing flexibility. The implications regarding executive functions and working memory are also discussed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Naiberg, M R; Newton, D F; Collins, J E; Dickstein, D P; Bowie, C R; Goldstein, B I
Cardiovascular risk factors that comprise metabolic syndrome (MetS) have been linked with cognition in adults with bipolar disorder (BD). This study examines the association between MetS components and executive function in adolescents with BD. A total of 34 adolescents with BD and 35 healthy control (HC) adolescents were enrolled. MetS components included triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein, glucose, waist circumference, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Executive functioning was measured using the intra-extra-dimensional (IED) set-shifting task from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Tests Automated Battery. Adolescents with BD were more likely to have ≥1 MetS components (64.7%) as compared to HC participants (22.9%, χ(2) = 12.29, P = triglyceride levels (ρ = -0.358, P = 0.041 and ρ = -0.396, P = 0.020 respectively). The association of triglycerides with executive function remained significant after controlling for age, IQ, and current use of second-generation antipsychotics. Elevated triglycerides are associated with poorer executive function among adolescents with BD. Studies of behavioural and pharmacological interventions targeting MetS components for the purpose of improving executive function among adolescents with BD are warranted. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Kurt, Emel; Yildirim, Erol; Topçuoğlu, Volkan
Patients with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) have impaired cognitive functions, including attention, verbal and visual memory, and visual-spatial abilities as well as executive function But some studies did not show any disturbance in executive function of patients with OCD. To date, only few studies have been conducted on neuropsychological functioning of patients with panic disorder (PD). There are limited studies to reach a definite conclusion on executive functions of patients with OCD and those with PD. In this study, we aimed to measure executive functions of patients with OCD and those with PD compared with those of healthy controls. Although there are many studies on cognitive functions of patients with OCD, there appears to be no consistency in results and no findings have been obtained to enable us to reach definite conclusions. Although there are very few studies on neuropsychological functions of patients with PD, impairments on a set of cognitive functions have been demonstrated. To date, no finding with respect to impairment in executive functions of patients with PD has been published. PD and OCD are disorders manifesting similar characteristics, with the presence of anxiety and avoidance behavior. Besides this, patients with OCD also have symptoms such as obsessions and compulsions that are characteristics of this disorder. We aim to compare executive functions in the three groups (patients with OCD, those with PD, and healthy controls) in this study. Seventeen patients with OCD and 15 patients with PD who were diagnosed according to Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder -IV-TR (DSM-IV-TR) and 26 healthy control subjects were included in this study. Patients who used medication as well as those with medical illnesses and Axis-I comorbidities were excluded. The healthy control group subjects were matched with the patients in terms of age, gender, and education. Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis-I Disorders
Sørensen, Kristian; Liverød, Janne Risholm; Lerdal, Bjørn; Vestrheim, Ida E; Skranes, Jon
To assess the level of executive functioning among preschool children with cerebral palsy (CP) and evaluate effects of the Program Intensified habilitation (PIH). In this non-randomized, prospective study, 15 preschool children with CP, and their parents attended the PIH for a 1-year period. Executive functions were evaluated using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive functions-Preschool version (BRIEF-P), filled out by parents and preschool teachers. Before PIH, scores of executive function difficulties were close to the general population mean. After PIH, fathers and preschool teachers reported reduced levels of executive difficulties on, respectively, the Emergent Metacognition Index and the Flexibility Index on the BRIEF-P. Mothers reported no changes. The children in our sample showed age-appropriate levels of executive functions before attending PIH. Some aspects of executive skills difficulties were reduced after PIH. Using BRIEF-P contributed to the differentiation of cognitive strengths and weaknesses among the children.
Aneta Rita Borkowska
Full Text Available The study was aimed at finding out whether at the early school age the effectiveness of executive functions distinguishes children with ADHD from those of the control group. Besides, the aim was to check to what extent the use of diagnostic methods evaluating executive functions in children at the early school age is justified. The analysis comprised cognitive flexibility, sustained attention, interference control and planning ability. Those methods of neuropsychological evaluation were used which are mostly applied to characterize executive functions: Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, interference task based on the Stroop Interference Test, and tests of verbal fluency and Tower of London. The examined group consisted of 50 children aged 7-10: 25 children with hyperactivity of combined type and 25 children of the control group. Each group consisted of 23 boys and 2 girls. The average age in the criterial group was 8 years and 10 months (SD=10 months, whereas in the control group – 8 years and 6 months (SD=11 months. According to the obtained results, children with ADHD at early school age do not exhibit a wide spectrum of executive functions deficits, which is probably associated with immaturity of executive processes in all children of that age. The findings comprised only difficulties in inhibition of response, monitoring of activity, and ability of executive attention to intentional guidance of the mental effort depending on the task’s requirements. In investigations of children with ADHD at early school age the use of neuropsychological tests and trials designed for evaluation of executive functions is justified only in limited degree. They do not significantly distinguish between children with ADHD and children without this disorder, therefore the results may be mainly of descriptive, and not explanatory, value.
Kessels, Roy P C; Mimpen, Gerdy; Melis, René; Rikkert, Marcel G M Olde
The Revised Cambridge Cognitive Examination (CAMCOG-R) is a cognitive screen that has been used to discriminate individuals with dementia from cognitively intact older people. It consists of items assessing various cognitive domains, but the construct validity of the cognitive subscores has not been established yet. The authors examine the subscores Memory and Executive Function in relation to extensive neuropsychological testing in a group of older adults with or without cognitive decline. Observational study. Memory clinic at the department of geriatrics of a university medical center. A convenience sample of 36 outpatients diagnosed with cognitive decline and 24 older healthy participants. Sensitivity and specificity of the CAMCOG-R Memory subscore and Executive Function subscore were established using extensive neuropsychological assessment of memory (using the Rey-Auditory Verbal Learning Test, Location Learning Test, Visual Association Test, and Story Recall) and executive function (using the Brixton Spatial Anticipation Test, Trail Making Test, and Key Search test) as the gold standard. For the CAMCOG-R Executive Function subscore, a cutoff point of 16.5 had a good sensitivity (0.82) and adequate specificity (0.73) for discriminating people with and without executive dysfunction. However, the Total Score and Language subscore also differentiated between people with and without executive dysfunction. The CAMCOG-R Memory subscore could not validly distinguish between people with and without memory impairment. The CAMCOG-R subscores Memory and Executive Function have limited validity, and clinicians should be cautious in interpreting these in the absence of other neuropsychological measures or clinical information.
Tamara Zofia Walczak
Full Text Available Background In most countries, premature deliveries constitute 5% to 18% of births. Some preterm children, especially those born before 32 weeks of pregnancy, experience serious medical complications, which can affect their subsequent development and functioning. Even those who have an IQ within the normal range can be at risk of worse functioning. This study aimed to investigate the differences in development of hot and cool aspects of executive functions in children born prematurely in comparison to those born on time. It is also focused on evaluating relationships between executive functions in premature children and their socio-emotional competences. Participants and procedure All children participating in the study were preschoolers. The sample consisted of 20 children born before 32 weeks of gestation and 28 term controls (children born on time. Hot and cool aspects of executive functions were examined in both groups using tasks extracted from the Preschool Self-Regulation Assessment (PSRA. Parents of children born prematurely also completed the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ, which is a brief behavioral screening questionnaire that consists of five scales: emotional symptoms, conduct problems, hyperactivity/inattention, peer relationship problems and prosocial behavior. Results Premature children scored lower for both hot and cool executive functions in comparison to the children born at term in two of the five tasks. In addition, an association between worse executive functioning and more severe problems was found in the preterm group. This link applies to both general and specific problems, such as hyperactivity/inattention and behavioral problems. Conclusions Prematurely born children may have larger deficits both in hot and cool aspects of executive functions compared to their peers born at term. Deficits in hot aspect may be reflected in hyperactivity/inattention symptoms and conduct problems, whereas difficulties in
Zhang, Youwen; Feng, Shujun; Nie, Kun; Zhao, Xin; Gan, Rong; Wang, Limin; Zhao, Jiehao; Tang, Hongmei; Gao, Liang; Zhu, Ruiming; Wang, Lijuan; Zhang, Yuhu
The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism has been proposed to be associated with increased risk of Parkinson's disease (PD) and have a specific impact on dopamine-mediated prefrontal executive function in an inverted-U curve manner. We explored the influence of this genetic polymorphism on prefrontal executive function in a well-established Chinese cohort of early PD patients with no current or past history of motor fluctuations or dyskinesias. Cognitive functions were assessed in 250 patients with early PD using Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Chinese Revision (WAIS-RC) and Wechsler Memory Scale-Chinese Revision (WMS-RC). These patients and 300 healthy controls were subsequently genotyped for the COMT gene Val158Met polymorphism. We employed analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and a stratified analysis to determine the associations between the COMT Val158Met genotype and cognitive functions. The COMT Val158Met allele frequency and genotype distributions showed no statistically significant differences between PD patients and controls. However, patients with met/met genotype performed significantly worse on WAIS-RC similarities, a measure of executive function, compared to individuals with val/val genotype. Subsequent ANCOVA analysis revealed that COMT genotype interacted with sex and daily levodopa equivalent dose (LED) to influence executive function. Further stratified analysis showed that the lower-activity COMT met/met genotype has a detrimental effect on executive function among women. Our results demonstrate that COMT Val158Met polymorphism is probably not associated with increased risk of PD, but has an effect on prefrontal executive function interacting with gender and dopaminergic medication. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Plasschaert, Ellen; Van Eylen, Lien; Descheemaeker, Mie-Jef; Noens, Ilse; Legius, Eric; Steyaert, Jean
The aim of this study was to provide a broad picture of Executive Functioning (EF) in NF1 children, while taking into account their lower average IQ and increased Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) symptoms. This was done by administering an extended battery of tasks and questionnaires, designed to reduce task impurity, that measures five EF domains (inhibition, cognitive flexibility, working memory, generativity and planning) in a laboratory setting and in daily life. Data are presented for 42 age- and gender-matched NF1, 52 typically developing, and 52 ASD children (8-18 years). Our results indicated that although EF is highly influenced by IQ and severity of ASD symptoms, EF deficits seem to be a core feature of NF1 and not merely a secondary effect of a lower IQ and/or increased ASD symptoms. However, additional research is needed to confirm these findings. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Pham, Uyen Ha Gia; Andersson, Stein; Toft, Mathias; Pripp, Are Hugo; Konglund, Ane Eidahl; Dietrichs, Espen; Malt, Ulrik Fredrik; Skogseid, Inger Marie; Haraldsen, Ira Ronit Hebolt; Solbakk, Anne-Kristin
Objective. Studies on the effect of subthalamic deep brain stimulation (STN-DBS) on executive functioning in Parkinson's disease (PD) are still controversial. In this study we compared self-reported daily executive functioning in PD patients before and after three months of STN-DBS. We also examined whether executive functioning in everyday life was associated with motor symptoms, apathy, and psychiatric symptoms. Method. 40 PD patients were examined with the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Adult Version (BRIEF-A), the Symptom Checklist 90-Revised (SCL-90-R), and the Apathy Evaluation Scale (AES-S). Results. PD patients reported significant improvement in daily life executive functioning after 3 months of STN-DBS. Anxiety scores significantly declined, while other psychiatric symptoms remained unchanged. The improvement of self-reported executive functioning did not correlate with motor improvement after STN-DBS. Apathy scores remained unchanged after surgery. Only preoperative depressed mood had predictive value to the improvement of executive function and appears to prevent potentially favorable outcomes from STN-DBS on some aspects of executive function. Conclusion. PD patients being screened for STN-DBS surgery should be evaluated with regard to self-reported executive functioning. Depressive symptoms in presurgical PD patients should be treated. Complementary information about daily life executive functioning in PD patients might enhance further treatment planning of STN-DBS.
Love, Christina Eguizabal; Webbe, Frank; Kim, Gunha; Lee, Ki Hyeong; Westerveld, Michael; Salinas, Christine M
Children with epilepsy are vulnerable to executive dysfunction, but the relationship between executive functioning (EF) and quality of life (QOL) in children with epilepsy is not fully delineated. This exploratory study elucidated the relationship between ecological EF and QOL in pediatric intractable epilepsy. Fifty-four consecutively referred pediatric epilepsy surgery candidates and their parents were administered IQ measures, the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), and the Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy (QOLCE) as part of a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation. A significant difference was found in QOL between those with and without clinical impairments on the BRIEF [t(52)=3.93; p<.001]. That is, children with executive dysfunction had lower overall QOL. All seizure variables and BRIEF scales were associated with overall QOL [F(12, 40)=6.508; p=.001; R 2 =.661]. Working memory from the BRIEF was the most frequently elevated scale in our sample (57%). Those with executive dysfunction had 9.7 times the risk of having poor QOL. Poor EF control according to behavior ratings is significantly related to QOL in intractable pediatric epilepsy. Identification of executive dysfunction in home environments is an essential component of presurgical evaluations and target for intervention, which may improve QOL. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
García-Villamisar, Domingo; Dattilo, John
Investigations of executive dysfunctions among people with obsessive-compulsive personality disorders (OCPD) have yielded inconsistent results. The authors speculate that obsessive-compulsive personality traits (OCPT) from a nonclinical population may be associated with specific executive dysfunctions relative to working memory, attentional set-shifting, and planning. A sample consisting of 79 adults (39 females, 40 males) was divided into high and low scorers on the Personality Diagnostic Questionnaire-4 (PDQ-4; Hyler, 1994). In addition, these participants were interviewed using the SCID-II (First, Spitzer, Gibbon & Williams, 1997) to confirm the presence of symptoms of obsessive-compulsive personality. Participants completed a battery of executive tasks associated with the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB), including Spatial Working Memory, Intradimensional/Extradimensional (ID/ED), Attentional Set-Shifting, and Stockings of Cambridge. Also, self-report measures of executive functions as well as of anxiety and depressive symptoms were administered. The analysis of covariance revealed significant differences between participants with OCPT and controls on the Spatial Working Memory tasks, ID/ED tasks, Stockings of Cambridge, and the Dysexecutive Questionnaire (DEX). Nevertheless, there were no significant differences in the number of problems solved in minimum movements. These results suggest that executive dysfunctions are present in people with prominent OCPT and that there is a high convergence between clinical and ecological measures of executive functions in people with obsessive personality traits.
Walsh, Jordana; Thomas, Rhys H; Church, Carla; Rees, Mark I; Marson, Anthony G; Baker, Gus A
The pattern of executive dysfunction reported in juvenile myoclonic epilepsy (JME) resembles that of patients with cluster B personality disorders. This study examined whether executive dysfunction and maladaptive behavior reported in patients with JME are related. Sixty patients with drug-refractory JME were administered tests of intellect, memory, and executive dysfunction. Anxiety, depression, personality traits, impact of epilepsy, and perceived cognitive effects of antiepileptic drugs were measured. Half of the cohort exhibited moderate to severe anxiety symptoms. The patients performed most poorly on naming ability and inhibition switching. Duration of epilepsy exacerbated poor performance on inhibition switching. Females presented with pathological scores for neurotic and introvert traits and males for introvert traits. Abnormal personality traits and psychiatric disorders were associated with worse intellectual and executive functioning. People with extreme Eysenck Personality Scale - Brief Version (EPQ-BV) scores demonstrated the greatest level of executive impairment. Furthermore, the same degree of dysfunction was not seen in any individual with unremarkable EPQ-BV scores. This study indicates that specific patterns of executive dysfunction are related to maladaptive behavior in JME. Distinct behavioral patterns may be used to identify functional and anatomical differences between people with JME and for stratification to enable gene discovery. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Inc.
) and Psychiatric (PT) patients on tests of cognitive functioning and processing using a neuropsychological test called the Trail Making Test (TMT) . Method: Sixteen participants were used in the study. They included 9 TBI and 7 PT patients that ...
Floresco, Stan B.; Jentsch, James D
Investigating how different pharmacological compounds may enhance learning, memory, and higher-order cognitive functions in laboratory animals is the first critical step toward the development of cognitive enhancers that may be used to ameliorate impairments in these functions in patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders. Rather than focus on one aspect of cognition, or class of drug, in this review we provide a broad overview of how distinct classes of pharmacological compounds may ...
C.A. Ibrahim-Verbaas (Carla); J. Bressler; S. Debette (Stéphanie); M. Schuur (Maaike); A.V. Smith; J.C. Bis (Joshua); G. Davies (Gail); S. Trompet (Stella); J.A. Smith; A. Björnsson (Asgeir); L.B. Chibnik (Lori); Y. Liu; V. Vitart (Veronique); M. Kirin (Mirna); K. Petrovic (Katja); O. Polasek (Ozren); L. Zgaga (Lina); C. Fawns-Ritchie; P. Hoffmann (Per); J. Karjalainen (Juha); J. Lahti; D.J. Llewellyn; C.O. Schmidt (Carsten O.); R. Mather; V. Chouraki (Vincent); Q. Sun; S. Resnick (Susan); L.M. Rose (Lynda M.); C. Oldmeadow (Christopher); M. Stewart; B.H. Smith; V. Gudnason (Vilmundur); Q. Yang (Qiong); S.S. Mirza (Saira); J.W. Jukema; P.L. DeJager (Philip L.); T.B. Harris (Tamara); D.C. Liewald (David C.); N. Amin (Najaf); L.H. Coker (Laura); O. Stegle (Oliver); O.L. Lopez; R. Schmidt; A. Teumer (Alexander); I. Ford; N. Karbalai (Nazanin); J.T. Becker (James); M.K. Jonsdottir (Maria K.); R. Au; R.S.N. Fehrmann (Rudolf); S. Herms (Stefan); M.A. Nalls (Michael); W. Zhao; S.T. Turner; K. Yaffe; K. Lohman (Kurt); J.C. van Swieten (John); S.L.R. Kardia; D.S. Knopman (David); W.M. Meeks (William); G. Heiss (Gerardo); E.G. Holliday (Elizabeth); P.W. Schofield; T. Tanaka (Toshiko); D.J. Stott (David J.); J. Wang (Jing); P.M. Ridker (Paul); A.J. Gow; A. Pattie (Alison); J.M. Starr (John); L.J. Hocking; N.J. Armstrong (Nicola J.); S. McLachlan (Stela); L. Shulman (Lee); L.C. Pilling (Luke); G. Eiriksdottir (Gudny); R.J. Scott; N.A. Kochan (Nicole A.); A. Palotie; Y.-C. Hsieh; J.G. Eriksson (Johan G.); A.D. Penman (Alan); R.F. Gottesman (Rebecca); B.A. Oostra (Ben); L. Yu; A.L. DeStefano (Anita L.); A. Beiser; M. Garcia; J.I. Rotter; M.M. Nöthen; A. Hofman (Albert); P.E. Slagboom (Eline); R.G.J. Westendorp; B.M. Buckley (Brendan M.); P.A. Wolf; A.G. Uitterlinden (André); B.M. Psaty (Bruce); H.J. Grabe (Hans Jörgen); S. Bandinelli (Stefania); D.I. Chasman (Daniel); F. Grodstein (Francine); K. Räikkönen (Katri); J.-C. Lambert; D.J. Porteous (David J.); J.F. Price (Jackie F.); P.S. Sachdev (Perminder); L. Ferrucci (Luigi); J. Attia (John); I. Rudan (Igor); C. Hayward; A.F. Wright; J.F. Wilson (James F); S. Cichon (Sven); L. Franke (Lude); H. Schmidt; J. Ding; A.J. de Craen (Anton); M. Fornage (Myriam); D.A. Bennett (David); I.J. Deary (Ian); M.A. Ikram (Arfan); L.J. Launer (Lenore); A.L. Fitzpatrick; S. Seshadri (Sudha); C.M. van Duijn (Cornelia); T.H. Mosley (Thomas H.)
textabstractTo identify common variants contributing to normal variation in two specific domains of cognitive functioning, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of executive functioning and information processing speed in non-demented older adults from the CHARGE (Cohorts for Heart and
Tanaka, Katia; de Quadros, Antonio Carlos, Jr.; Santos, Ruth Ferreira; Stella, Florindo; Gobbi, Lilian Teresa Bucken; Gobbi, Sebastiao
The benefits of physical exercise on cognitive functioning have been reported in the literature, but the potential benefits to slow the eventual decline in executive functioning (EF) caused by neurodegeneration from Parkinson's Disease (PD) have rarely been studied. Thus the objective of this study was to analyze the effects of a multimodal…
Ibrahim-Verbaas, C. A.; Bressler, J.; Debette, S.; Schuur, M.; Smith, A. V.; Bis, J. C.; Davies, G.; Trompet, S.; Smith, J. A.; Wolf, C.; Chibnik, L. B.; Liu, Y.; Vitart, V.; Kirin, M.; Petrovic, K.; Polasek, O.; Zgaga, L.; Fawns-Ritchie, C.; Hoffmann, P.; Karjalainen, J.; Lahti, J.; Llewellyn, D. J.; Schmidt, C.O.; Mather, K. A.; Chouraki, V.; Sun, Q.; Resnick, S. M.; Rose, L. M.; Oldmeadow, C.; Stewart, M.; Smith, B.H.; Gudnason, V.; Yang, Q.; Mirza, S. S.; Jukema, J. W.; Dejager, P. L.; Harris, T. B.; Liewald, D. C.; Amin, N.; Coker, L. H.; Stegle, O.; Lopez, O. L.; Schmidt, R.; Teumer, A.; Ford, I.; Karbalai, N.; Becker, J. T.; Jonsdottir, M. K.; Au, R.; Fehrmann, R. S. N.; Herms, S.; Nalls, M.; Zhao, Wei; Turner, S. T.; Yaffe, K.; Lohman, K.; van Swieten, J. C.; Kardia, S. L. R.; Knopman, D. S.; Meeks, W. M.; Heiss, G.; Holliday, E. G.; Schofield, P. W.; Tanaka, T.; Stott, D. J.; Wang, J.; Ridker, P.; Gow, A. J.; Pattie, A.; Starr, J. M.; Hocking, L. J.; Armstrong, N. J.; McLachlan, S.; Shulman, J. M.; Pilling, L. C.; Eiriksdottir, G.; Scott, R. J.; Kochan, N. A.; Palotie, A.; Hsieh, Y-C; Eriksson, J. G.; Penman, A.; Gottesman, R. F.; Oostra, B. A.; Yu, L.; DeStefano, A. L.; Beiser, A.; Garcia, M.; Rotter, J. i; Noethen, M. M.; Hofman, A.; Slagboom, P. E.; Westendorp, R. G. J.; Buckley, B. M.; Wolf, P. A.; Uitterlinden, A. G.; Psaty, B. M.; Grabe, H. J.; Bandinelli, S.; Chasman, D. I.; Grodstein, F.; Roikkonen, K.; Lambert, J-C; Porteous, D. J.; Price, J. F.; Sachdev, P. S.; Ferrucci, L.; Attia, J. R.; Rudan, I.; Hayward, C.; Wright, A. F.; Wilson, James F.; Cichon, S.; Franke, L.; Schmidt, H.; Ding, J.; de Craen, A. J. M.; Fornage, M.; Bennett, D. A.; Deary, I. J.; Ikram, M. A.; Launer, L. J.; Fitzpatrick, A. L.; Seshadri, S.; van Duijn, C. M.; Mosley, T. H.
To identify common variants contributing to normal variation in two specific domains of cognitive functioning, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of executive functioning and information processing speed in non-demented older adults from the CHARGE (Cohorts for Heart and Aging
Roelofs, R. L.; Visser, E. M.; Berger, H. J. C.; Prins, J. B.; Van Schrojenstein Lantman-De Valk, H. M. J.; Teunisse, J. P.
Background: Executive functioning (EF) is important for adequate behavioural functioning and crucial for explaining symptoms of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in individuals with normal intelligence, but is scarcely studied in individuals with ASD and intellectual disabilities (ID). We therefore study EF in an ID population by comparing…
Rochette, Émilie; Bernier, Annie
Family socioeconomic status (SES) and the quality of maternal behavior are among the few identified predictors of child executive functioning (EF), and they have often been found to have interactive rather than additive effects on other domains of child functioning. The purpose of this study was to explore their interactive effects in the…
Taylor, Sophie Jane; Barker, Lynne Ann; Heavey, Lisa; McHale, Sue
Executive functions and social cognition develop through childhood into adolescence and early adulthood and are important for adaptive goal-oriented behavior (Apperly, Samson, & Humphreys, 2009; Blakemore & Choudhury, 2006). These functions are attributed to frontal networks known to undergo protracted maturation into early adulthood…
Lambek, Rikke; Tannock, Rosemary; Dalsgaard, Soeren; Trillingsgaard, Anegen; Damm, Dorte; Thomsen, Per Hove
Objective: The study investigates behavioural, academic, cognitive, and motivational aspects of functioning in school-age children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with and without an executive function deficit (EFD). Method: Children with ADHD - EFD (n = 22) and children with ADHD + EFD (n = 26) were compared on aspects of…
Scherder, E.J.A.; Paasschen, J. van; Deijen, J.-B.; Knokke, S. van der; Orlebeke, J.F.K.; Burgers, I.; DeVriesse, P.-P.; Swaab, D.F.; Sergeant, J.A.
The primary goal of the present study was to examine whether in the elderly with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the effect of physical activity measured directly following treatment, was reflected in an improvement in cognitive functioning in general or in executive functions (EF) in particular.
Scherder, EJA; Van Paasschen, J; Deijen, JB; Van der Knokke, S; Orlebeke, JFK; Burgers, [No Value; Devriese, PP; Swaab, DF; Sergeant, JA
The primary goal of the present study was to examine whether in the elderly with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the effect of physical activity measured directly following treatment, was reflected in an improvement in cognitive functioning in general or in executive functions (EF) in particular.
Weierink, Lonneke; Vermeulen, R. Jeroen; Boyd, Roslyn N.
This systematic review aimed to establish the current knowledge about brain structure and executive function (EF) in children with cerebral palsy (CP). Five databases were searched (up till July 2012). Six articles met the inclusion criteria, all included structural brain imaging though no functional brain imaging. Study quality was assessed using…
Sekplin A.S. Sekeon
Full Text Available Traumatic brain injury (TBI is known as a major cause of death and chronic disability worldwide. It is one of the leading causes of economic and social problems for patient, family and community. Patients will have serious complication on physics, mental and personality aspect. Executive function disorder is one of the cognitive functions that could be affected by TBI. There is scarcity of data about executive function in acute TBI, especially from developing countries. Our study aimed to investigate the association between acute TBI and executive function disorder. This study was a hospital-based cross-sectional study. Samples consisted of 20 patients and 40 demographically matched controls that meet the inclusion criteria. For executive function measurement we applied TMT-A, TMT-B and Stroop Test. The result showed that mean score of TMT-A for case group was 1.06 minute (95% CI 0.70-1.06 which was longer than control group (0.32 minute. For TMT- B test, the mean score was 2.68 minute (95% CI 2.05-2.8 for case group and 0.77 minute for control group. On Stroop Test 3 we found that the mean score was 17 correct items (95% CI 13.52-20.48 which was lower than control group (52.5. For all of the tests, we detected that acute TBI significantly associate with executive function disorder (p > 0.05. Conclusion: There was a significant association between acute TBI and executive function disorder.
Sepeta, Leigh N.; Casaletto, Kaitlin Blackstone; Terwilliger, Virginia; Facella-Ervolini, Joy; Sady, Maegan; Mayo, Jessica; Gaillard, William D.; Berl, Madison M.
Objective Learning and memory are essential for academic success and everyday functioning, but the pattern of memory skills and its relationship to executive functioning in children with focal epilepsy is not fully delineated. We address a gap in the literature by examining the relationship between memory and executive functioning in a pediatric focal epilepsy population. Methods Seventy children with focal epilepsy and 70 typically developing children matched on age, intellectual functioning, and gender underwent neuropsychological assessment, including measures of intelligence (WASI/DAS), as well as visual (CMS Dot Locations) and verbal episodic memory (WRAML Story Memory and CVLT-C). Executive functioning was measured directly (WISC-IV Digit Span Backward; CELF-IV Recalling Sentences) and by parent report (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF)). Results Children with focal epilepsy had lower delayed free recall scores than controls across visual and verbal memory tasks (p = 0.02; partial η2 = .12). In contrast, recognition memory performance was similar for patients and controls (p = 0.36; partial η2 = .03). Children with focal epilepsy demonstrated difficulties in working memory (p = 0.02; partial η2 = .08) and planning/organization (p = 0.02) compared to controls. Working memory predicted 9–19% of the variance in delayed free recall for verbal and visual memory; organization predicted 9–10% of the variance in verbal memory. Patients with both left and right focal epilepsy demonstrated more difficulty on verbal versus visual tasks (p = 0.002). Memory performance did not differ by location of seizure foci (temporal vs. extra-temporal, frontal vs. extra-frontal). Significance Children with focal epilepsy demonstrated memory ability within age-level expectations, but delayed free recall was inefficient compared to typically developing controls. Memory difficulties were not related to general cognitive impairment or seizure localization
Nguyen, Tuong-Vi; Lew, Jimin; Albaugh, Matthew D; Botteron, Kelly N; Hudziak, James J; Fonov, Vladimir S; Collins, D Louis; Ducharme, Simon; McCracken, James T
Testosterone is thought to play a crucial role in mediating sexual differentiation of brain structures. Examinations of the cognitive effects of testosterone have also shown beneficial and potentially sex-specific effects on executive function and mnemonic processes. Yet these findings remain limited by an incomplete understanding of the critical timing and brain regions most affected by testosterone, the lack of documented links between testosterone-related structural brain changes and cognition, and the difficulty in distinguishing the effects of testosterone from those of related sex steroids such as of estradiol and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Here we examined associations between testosterone, cortico-hippocampal structural covariance, executive function (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function) and verbal memory (California Verbal Learning Test-Children's Version), in a longitudinal sample of typically developing children and adolescents 6-22 yo, controlling for the effects of estradiol, DHEA, pubertal stage, collection time, age, handedness, and total brain volume. We found prefrontal-hippocampal covariance to vary as a function of testosterone levels, but only in boys. Boys also showed a specific association between positive prefrontal-hippocampal covariance (as seen at higher testosterone levels) and lower performance on specific components of executive function (monitoring the action process and flexibly shifting between actions). We also found the association between testosterone and a specific aspect of executive function (monitoring) to be significantly mediated by prefrontal-hippocampal structural covariance. There were no significant associations between testosterone-related cortico-hippocampal covariance and verbal memory. Taken together, these findings highlight the developmental importance of testosterone in supporting sexual differentiation of the brain and sex-specific executive function. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights
Al-Dughmi, Mayis; Al-Sharman, Alham; Stevens, Suzanne; Siengsukon, Catherine F
Sleep has been shown to promote off-line motor learning in individuals following stroke. Executive function ability has been shown to be a predictor of participation in rehabilitation and motor recovery following stroke. The purpose of this study was to explore the association between executive function and off-line motor learning in individuals with chronic stroke compared with healthy control participants. Seventeen individuals with chronic stroke (>6 months poststroke) and 9 healthy adults were included in the study. Participants underwent 3 consecutive nights of polysomnography, practiced a continuous tracking task the morning of the third day, and underwent a retention test the morning after the third night. Participants underwent testing on 4 executive function tests after the continuous tracking task retention test. Participants with stroke showed a significant positive correlation between the off-line motor learning score and performance on the Trail-Making Test from Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (r = 0.652; P = 0.005), while the healthy control participants did not. Regression analysis showed that the Trail-Making Test-Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System is a significant predictor of off-line motor learning (P = 0.008). This is the first study to demonstrate that better performance on an executive function test of attention and set-shifting predicts a higher magnitude of off-line motor learning in individuals with chronic stroke. This emphasizes the need to consider attention and set-shifting abilities of individuals following stroke as these abilities are associated with motor learning. This in turn could affect learning of activities of daily living and impact functional recovery following stroke.Video Abstract available for more insights from the authors (see Video, Supplemental Digital Content 1, http://links.lww.com/JNPT/A166).
Seichepine, Daniel R.; Stamm, Julie M.; Daneshvar, Daniel H.; Riley, David O.; Baugh, Christine M.; Gavett, Brandon E.; Tripodis, Yorghos; Martin, Brett; Chaisson, Christine; McKee, Ann C.; Cantu, Robert C.; Nowinski, Christopher J.
Abstract Repetitive mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), such as that experienced by contact-sport athletes, has been associated with the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Executive dysfunction is believed to be among the earliest symptoms of CTE, with these symptoms presenting in the fourth or fifth decade of life. The present study used a well-validated self-report measure to study executive functioning in football players, compared to healthy adults. Sixty-four college and professional football players were administered the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function, adult version (BRIEF-A) to evaluate nine areas of executive functioning. Scores on the BRIEF-A were compared to published age-corrected normative scores for healthy adults Relative to healthy adults, the football players indicated significantly more problems overall and on seven of the nine clinical scales, including Inhibit, Shift, Emotional Control, Initiate, Working Memory, Plan/Organize, and Task Monitor. These symptoms were greater in athletes 40 and older, relative to younger players. In sum, football players reported more-frequent problems with executive functioning and these symptoms may develop or worsen in the fifth decade of life. The findings are in accord with a growing body of evidence that participation in football is associated with the development of cognitive changes and dementia as observed in CTE. PMID:23421745
Becerra-García, Juan Antonio
In neuropsychological studies of executive functioning in domestic violence offenders, the different investigations conducted have only studied differences within this group or in relation to control groups of non-offenders. To minimize the limitations in relation to comparison groups, the purpose of this study was to compare executive functioning in domestic violence offenders in relation to different groups of offenders (i.e. sexual, violent and non-violent) and a control group of non-offenders, with all groups matched on socio-demographic and clinical characteristics. Executive functioning was tested of all participants with the Trail Making Test (direct and derived scores). Compared with the control group, the domestic violence offenders and sex offenders exhibited the poorest performance on the Trail Making Test part B (time) and on the B-A derived index; whereas, the violent offenders group (i.e. convicted of assault, wounding, homicide etc.) showed a high number of errors in part B. These findings suggest that domestic violence offenders exhibit similar performance on the TMT as sex offenders, where both have poorer cognitive flexibility and executive control. Other violent offenders exhibited different patterns of difficulty on this test (e.g. more impulsivity responses). Executive functioning may be a central psychological process that could help explain the interrelations between domestic and sexual aggression, and could be a relevant construct for common treatment of domestic batterers and sex offenders. © The Author(s) 2014 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav.
Tirapu-Ustárroz, J; Muñoz-Céspedes, J M; Pelegrín-Valero, C; Albéniz-Ferreras, A
Executive functions include a variety of components such as the capacity implicated in goal formulation, the faculties employed in processes planning, and the strategies used to achieve the pretended objectives. In a previous work, taking as starting basis those models which have attempted to clarify those processes implicated in executive functions, we posed an integrative model. Starting from this model, we now propose an assessment protocol. Thus, executive functions considered as problem solving, require in generic terms, objective selection, planning, and monitoring processes (tower of Hanoi and zoo map). Each of these sub-processes operate through the working memory both with the visospatial sketch and the phonological loop. The central executive system, or attentional supervisor system (ASS), acts when there is no known solution and we must create an alternative one. In this sense, the ASS could contain the following functions: amplification of the phonological loop and visospatial sketch capacity (Sternberg type tasks), information manipulation and actualization (n-back paradigm), information manipulation and maintenance (Wechsler Memory Scale letters and numbers), simultaneously work in two cognitive tasks (dual execution tasks), inhibition (Stroop and go-no go paradigms), and cognitive sets alternation (Wisconsin Card Sorting Test). Once this planning process has been done, we must take a decision (gambling task paradigm), being the somatic marker in charge of this process.
Seichepine, Daniel R; Stamm, Julie M; Daneshvar, Daniel H; Riley, David O; Baugh, Christine M; Gavett, Brandon E; Tripodis, Yorghos; Martin, Brett; Chaisson, Christine; McKee, Ann C; Cantu, Robert C; Nowinski, Christopher J; Stern, Robert A
Repetitive mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), such as that experienced by contact-sport athletes, has been associated with the development of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Executive dysfunction is believed to be among the earliest symptoms of CTE, with these symptoms presenting in the fourth or fifth decade of life. The present study used a well-validated self-report measure to study executive functioning in football players, compared to healthy adults. Sixty-four college and professional football players were administered the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function, adult version (BRIEF-A) to evaluate nine areas of executive functioning. Scores on the BRIEF-A were compared to published age-corrected normative scores for healthy adults Relative to healthy adults, the football players indicated significantly more problems overall and on seven of the nine clinical scales, including Inhibit, Shift, Emotional Control, Initiate, Working Memory, Plan/Organize, and Task Monitor. These symptoms were greater in athletes 40 and older, relative to younger players. In sum, football players reported more-frequent problems with executive functioning and these symptoms may develop or worsen in the fifth decade of life. The findings are in accord with a growing body of evidence that participation in football is associated with the development of cognitive changes and dementia as observed in CTE.
Cecilia Ulrika Dagsdotter Stenfors
Full Text Available Objective: Executive cognitive functioning is essential in private and working life and is sensitive to stress and aging. Cardiovascular (CV health factors are related to cognitive decline and dementia, but there is relatively few studies of the role of CV autonomic regulation, a key component in stress responses and risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD, and executive processes. An emerging pattern of results from previous studies suggest that different executive processes may be differentially associated with CV autonomic regulationThe aim was thus to study the associations between multiple measures of CV autonomic regulation and measures of different executive cognitive processes. Method: Participants were 119 healthy working adults (79% women, from the Swedish Longitudinal Occupational Survey of Health. Electrocardiogram was sampled for analysis of heart rate variability measures, including the Standard Deviation of NN, here heart beats (SDNN, root of the mean squares of successive differences (RMSSD, high frequency (HF power band from spectral analyses, and QT variability index (QTVI, a measure of myocardial repolarization patterns. Executive cognitive functioning was measured by 7 neuropsychological tests. The relationships between CV autonomic regulation measures and executive cognitive measures were tested with bivariate and partial correlational analyses, controlling for demographic variables and mental health symptoms.Results: Higher SDNN and RMSSD and lower QTVI were significantly associated with better performance on cognitive tests tapping inhibition, updating, shifting and psychomotor speed. After adjustments for demographic factors however (age being the greatest confounder, only QTVI was clearly associated with these executive tests. No such associations were seen for working memory capacity. Conclusion: Poorer cardiovascular autonomic regulation in terms of lower SDNN & RMSSD and higher QTVI was associated with poorer
Stenfors, Cecilia U D; Hanson, Linda M; Theorell, Töres; Osika, Walter S
Objective: Executive cognitive functioning is essential in private and working life and is sensitive to stress and aging. Cardiovascular (CV) health factors are related to cognitive decline and dementia, but there is relatively few studies of the role of CV autonomic regulation, a key component in stress responses and risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), and executive processes. An emerging pattern of results from previous studies suggest that different executive processes may be differentially associated with CV autonomic regulation. The aim was thus to study the associations between multiple measures of CV autonomic regulation and measures of different executive cognitive processes. Method: Participants were 119 healthy working adults (79% women), from the Swedish Longitudinal Occupational Survey of Health. Electrocardiogram was sampled for analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) measures, including the Standard Deviation of NN, here heart beats (SDNN), root of the mean squares of successive differences (RMSSD), high frequency (HF) power band from spectral analyses, and QT variability index (QTVI), a measure of myocardial repolarization patterns. Executive cognitive functioning was measured by seven neuropsychological tests. The relationships between CV autonomic regulation measures and executive cognitive measures were tested with bivariate and partial correlational analyses, controlling for demographic variables, and mental health symptoms. Results: Higher SDNN and RMSSD and lower QTVI were significantly associated with better performance on cognitive tests tapping inhibition, updating, shifting, and psychomotor speed. After adjustments for demographic factors however (age being the greatest confounder), only QTVI was clearly associated with these executive tests. No such associations were seen for working memory capacity. Conclusion: Poorer CV autonomic regulation in terms of lower SDNN and RMSSD and higher QTVI was associated with poorer executive
Saboya, Eloisa; Coutinho, Gabriel; Segenreich, Daniel; Ayrão, Vanessa; Mattos, Paulo
Executive function deficits have been previously documented in individuals with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Objective The current study aimed to compare measures of executive functions among a clinical sample of adults with ADHD and normal control subjects, matched for age, gender and education. Methods Twenty-three self-referred adults diagnosed with ADHD according to DSM-IV criteria, and twenty-five control subjects were assessed using a neuropsychological battery which included the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Tower of Hanoi, Digit Span, Trail Making Test (A and B), Stroop Test and Raven’s Progressive Matrices. Results The ADHD group did not differ significantly from the control subjects on any of the measures assessed. Conclusion Measures of executive functions using this test battery were unable to discriminate between adults with ADHD and control subjects in this clinical sample. PMID:29213607
Calvo, Alejandra; Bialystok, Ellen
One hundred and seventy-five children who were 6-years old were assigned to one of four groups that differed in socioeconomic status (SES; working class or middle class) and language background (monolingual or bilingual). The children completed tests of nonverbal intelligence, language tests assessing receptive vocabulary and attention based on picture naming, and two tests of executive functioning. All children performed equivalently on the basic intelligence tests, but performance on the language and executive functioning tasks was influenced by both SES and bilingualism. Middle-class children outperformed working-class children on all measures, and bilingual children obtained lower scores than monolingual children on language tests but higher scores than monolingual children on the executive functioning tasks. There were no interactions with either group factors or task factors. Thus, each of SES and bilingualism contribute significantly and independently to children's development irrespective of the child's level on the other factor. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Geurten, Marie; Lejeune, Caroline; Meulemans, Thierry
This study examined time-based prospective memory (PM) in children and explored the possible involvement of metamemory knowledge and executive functions in the use of an appropriate time-monitoring strategy depending on the ongoing task's difficulty. Specifically, a sample of 72 typically developing children aged 4, 6, and 9 years old were given an original PM paradigm composed of both an ongoing procedural activity and a PM task. Half of the participants (expert group) were trained in the ongoing activity before the prospective test. As expected, results show that time monitoring had a positive effect on children's PM performance. Furthermore, mediation analyses reveal that strategic time monitoring was predicted by metamemory knowledge in the expert group but only by executive functions in the novice group. Overall, these findings provide interesting avenues to explain how metamemory knowledge, strategy use, and executive functions interact to improve PM performance during childhood.
Miranda-Casas, A; Fernández, M I; Robledo, P; García-Castellar, R
Deficits in reading comprehension of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have received scarce attention. However, to establish the underlying cognitive processes of ADHD and deficits in reading comprehension association could be essential for deeply understanding neurobiological bases of reading comprehension. To examine the contribution of verbal fluency, reading fluency, and executive functions (working memory, attention and suppression mechanism) in predicting mental processes of texts comprehension. The participants in the study were 42 students, 12 to 16 year old, with a clinical diagnosis of ADHD. A battery of tests was administered to measure cognitive processes and reading processes. Stepwise regression analysis carried out showed that the score in verbal fluency was the best single predictor of reading comprehension. Furthermore executive functions, but not reading fluency, made a significant contribution to reading comprehension. These findings underline the need for consideration of the role of executive functions in assessment and treatment of reading comprehension deficits of students with ADHD.
Full Text Available Abstract Executive function deficits have been previously documented in individuals with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD. Objective: The current study aimed to compare measures of executive functions among a clinical sample of adults with ADHD and normal control subjects, matched for age, gender and education. Methods: Twenty-three self-referred adults diagnosed with ADHD according to DSM-IV criteria, and twenty-five control subjects were assessed using a neuropsychological battery which included the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Tower of Hanoi, Digit Span, Trail Making Test (A and B, Stroop Test and Raven's Progressive Matrices. Results: The ADHD group did not differ significantly from the control subjects on any of the measures assessed. Conclusion: Measures of executive functions using this test battery were unable to discriminate between adults with ADHD and control subjects in this clinical sample.
Raine, Adrian; Laufer, William S.; Yang, Yaling; Narr, Katherine L.; Thompson, Paul; Toga, Arthur W.
Very little is known on white collar crime and how it differs to other forms of offending. This study tests the hypothesis that white collar criminals have better executive functioning, enhanced information processing, and structural brain superiorities compared to offender controls. Using a case-control design, executive functioning, orienting, and cortical thickness was assessed in 21 white collar criminals matched with 21 controls on age, gender, ethnicity, and general level of criminal offending. White collar criminals had significantly better executive functioning, increased electrodermal orienting, increased arousal, and increased cortical gray matter thickness in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, inferior frontal gyrus, somatosensory cortex, and the temporal-parietal junction compared to controls. Results, while initial, constitute the first findings on neurobiological characteristics of white-collar criminals It is hypothesized that white collar criminals have information-processing and brain superiorities that give them an advantage in perpetrating criminal offenses in occupational settings. PMID:22002326
Anastas, Jason R.; Stephen, Damian G.; Dixon, James A.
Recent approaches to cognition explain cognitive phenomena in terms of interaction-dominant dynamics. In the current experiment, we extend this approach to executive function, a construct used to describe flexible, goal-oriented behavior. Participants were asked to perform a widely used executive function task, card sorting, under two conditions. In one condition, participants were given a rule with which to sort the cards. In the other condition, participants had to induce the rule from experimenter feedback. The motion of each participant’s hand was tracked during the sorting task. Detrended fluctuation analysis was performed on the inter-point time series using a windowing strategy to capture changes over each trial. For participants in the induction condition, the Hurst exponent sharply increased and then decreased. The Hurst exponents for the explicit condition did not show this pattern. Our results suggest that executive function may be understood in terms of changes in stability that arise from interaction-dominant dynamics.
Schretlen, David J; van der Hulst, Egberdina-Józefa; Pearlson, Godfrey D; Gordon, Barry
Openness is a personality trait that has been linked to intelligence and divergent thinking. DeYoung, Peterson, and Higgins (2005) theorized that trait Openness depends on dopamine function, especially in the prefrontal cortex. We tested their theory in 335 healthy adults by hypothesizing that individual differences in Openness would correlate more strongly with performance on tests of executive function than on tests of intelligence and fluency. However, Openness correlated more strongly with verbal/crystallized intelligence (Gc; r = .44) than with executive functioning (r = .16) and fluency (r = .24). Further, the partial correlation between Openness and Gc increased from r = .26 among young adults to r = .53 among elderly adults. These findings suggest that Openness is more closely associated with the acquisition of broad verbal intellectual skills and knowledge than with executive abilities localized to a specific brain region or neurotransmitter system.
Amadó, Anna; Serrat, Elisabet; Vallès-Majoral, Eduard
Many studies show a link between social cognition, a set of cognitive and emotional abilities applied to social situations, and executive functions in typical developing children. Children with Down syndrome (DS) show deficits both in social cognition and in some subcomponents of executive functions. However this link has barely been studied in this population. The aim of this study is to investigate the links between social cognition and executive functions among children with DS. We administered a battery of social cognition and executive function tasks (six theory of mind tasks, a test of emotion comprehension, and three executive function tasks) to a group of 30 participants with DS between 4 and 12 years of age. The same tasks were administered to a chronological-age control group and to a control group with the same linguistic development level. Results showed that apart from deficits in social cognition and executive function abilities, children with DS displayed a slight improvement with increasing chronological age and language development in those abilities. Correlational analysis suggested that working memory was the only component that remained constant in the relation patterns of the three groups of participants, being the relation patterns similar among participants with DS and the language development control group. A multiple linear regression showed that working memory explained above 50% of the variability of social cognition in DS participants and in language development control group, whereas in the chronological-age control group this component only explained 31% of the variability. These findings, and specifically the link between working memory and social cognition, are discussed on the basis of their theoretical and practical implications for children with DS. We discuss the possibility to use a working memory training to improve social cognition in this population. PMID:27679588
Full Text Available Many studies show a link between social cognition, a set of cognitive and emotional abilities applied to social situations, and executive functions in typical developing children. Children with Down syndrome (DS show deficits both in social cognition and in some subcomponents of executive functions. However this link has barely been studied in this population. The aim of this study is to investigate the links between social cognition and executive functions among children with DS. We administered a battery of social cognition and executive function tasks (6 theory of mind tasks, a test of emotion comprehension, and 3 executive function tasks to a group of 30 participants with DS between 4 and 12 years of age. The same tasks were administered to a chronological-age control group and to a control group with the same linguistic development level. Results showed that apart from deficits in social cognition and executive function abilities, children with DS displayed a slight improvement with increasing chronological age and language development in those abilities. Correlational analysis suggested that working memory was the only component that remained constant in the relation patterns of the three groups of participants, being the relation patterns similar among participants with DS and the language development control group. A multiple linear regression showed that working memory explained above 50 % of the variability of social cognition in DS participants and in language development control group, whereas in the chronological-age control group this component only explained 31 % of the variability. These findings, and specifically the link between working memory and social cognition, are discussed on the basis of their theoretical and practical implications for children with DS. We discuss the possibility to use a working memory training to improve social cognition in this population.
Full Text Available Six commonly used shampoos were tested for their relative irritancies using Kligman and Wooding′s technique. Shampoos in increasing order of irritancies were Halo egg, Aqua dermis, Clinic plus, Sunsilk, Velvette black and Mediker.
Susanta Kumar Padhy
Full Text Available Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS has been recognized as one of the most common and best studied disorders among the group of functional gastrointestinal disorders. It is a functional bowel disorder in which abdominal pain or discomfort is associated with defecation or a change in bowel habit. In the Western world, IBS appears to affect up to 20% of the population at any given time but in Asian countries, the median value of IBS prevalence defined by various criteria ranges between 6.5% and 10.1%, and community prevalence of 4% is found in North India. Those attending gastroenterology clinics represent only the tip of the iceberg. The disorder substantially impairs the quality of life, and the overall health-care costs are high. IBS has therefore gained increased attention from clinicians, researchers, and pharmaceutical industries. It is often frustrating to both patients and physicians as the disease is usually chronic in nature and difficult to treat. However, the understanding of IBS has been changing from time to time and still most of its concepts are unknown. In this review we have discussed, debated, and synthesized the evidence base, focusing on underlying mechanisms in the brain and bowel. We conclude that it is both brain and bowel mechanisms that are responsible. The clinical implication of such mechanisms is discussed.
Sandgren, Olof; Holmström, Ketty
The clinical assessment of language impairment (LI) in bilingual children imposes challenges for speech-language pathology services. Assessment tools standardized for monolingual populations increase the risk of misinterpreting bilingualism as LI. This Perspective article summarizes recent studies on the assessment of bilingual LI and presents new results on including non-linguistic measures of executive functions in the diagnostic assessment. Executive functions shows clinical utility as less subjected to language use and exposure than linguistic measures. A possible bilingual advantage, and consequences for speech-language pathology practices and future research are discussed.
Beltracchi, L. (Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC (United States)); Lindsay, R.W. (Argonne National Lab., IL (United States))
Human error in execution of critical functions and tasks can be costly. The Three Mile Island and the Chernobyl Accidents are examples of results from human error in the nuclear industry. There are similar errors that could no doubt be cited from other industries. This paper discusses a strategy to minimize common mode human error in the execution of critical functions and tasks. The strategy consists of the use of human redundancy, and also diversity in human cognitive behavior: skill-, rule-, and knowledge-based behavior. The authors contend that the use of diversity in human cognitive behavior is possible, and it minimizes common mode error.