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Investigating neural efficiency in the visuo-spatial domain: An fmri Study

Lipp, Ilona, Benedek, Mathias, Fink, Andreas, Koschutnig, Karl, Reishofer, Gernot, Bergner, Sabine, Ischebeck, Anja, Ebner, Franz and Neubauer, Aljoscha 2012. Investigating neural efficiency in the visuo-spatial domain: An fmri Study. PLoS ONE 7 (12) , e51316. 10.1371/journal.pone.0051316

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The neural efficiency hypothesis postulates an inverse relationship between intelligence and brain activation. Previous research suggests that gender and task modality represent two important moderators of the neural efficiency phenomenon. Since most of the existing studies on neural efficiency have used ERD in the EEG as a measure of brain activation, the central aim of this study was a more detailed analysis of this phenomenon by means of functional MRI. A sample of 20 males and 20 females, who had been screened for their visuo-spatial intelligence, was confronted with a mental rotation task employing an event-related approach. Results suggest that less intelligent individuals show a stronger deactivation of parts of the default mode network, as compared to more intelligent people. Furthermore, we found evidence of an interaction between task difficulty, intelligence and gender, indicating that more intelligent females show an increase in brain activation with an increase in task difficulty. These findings may contribute to a better understanding of the neural efficiency hypothesis, and possibly also of gender differences in the visuo-spatial domain.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre (CUBRIC)
MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Publisher: PLoS
ISSN: 1932-6203
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:39

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