The EEG correlates of stimulus-induced spatial attention shifts in healthy aging

Learmonth, G., Thut, G. , Benwell, C. and Harvey, M. (2015) The EEG correlates of stimulus-induced spatial attention shifts in healthy aging. Perception, 44(S1), p. 290. (doi: 10.1177/0301006615598674)

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Young adults typically display a processing advantage for the left side of space (‘‘pseudoneglect’’) but older adults display either no strongly lateralised bias or a preference towards the right (Benwell et al., 2014; Schmitz & Peigneux, 2011). We have previously reported an additive rightward shift in the spatial attention vector with decreasing landmark task line length and increasing age (Benwell et al., 2014). However there is very little neuroimaging evidence to show how this change is represented at a neural level. We tested 20 young (18–25) and 20 older (60–80) adults on long vs short landmark lines whilst recording activity using EEG. The peak ‘‘line length effect’’ (long vs short lines) was localised to the right parieto-occipital cortex (PO4) 137 ms post-stimulus. Importantly, older adults showed additional involvement of left frontal regions (AF3: 386 ms & F7: 387 ms) for short lines only, which may represent the neural correlate of this rightward shift. These behavioural results align with the HAROLD model of aging (Cabeza, 2002) where brain activity becomes distributed across both hemispheres in older adults to support successful performance.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:38th European Conference on Visual Perception (ECVP), Liverpool, 2015
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Benwell, Mr Christopher and Learmonth, Dr Gemma and Thut, Professor Gregor and Harvey, Professor Monika
Authors: Learmonth, G., Thut, G., Benwell, C., and Harvey, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
College of Science and Engineering > School of Psychology
Journal Name:Perception

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