Intraindividual variability in neural activity

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Intraindividual variability in neural activity in the prefrontal cortex during active walking in older adults.

Intraindividual variability in gait and cognitive performance is distinct from central-tendency measures and associated with clinical outcomes in aging. Knowledge concerning intraindividual variability in neural activity, however, has been relatively scarce, and no research to date has reported on such variability during active walking. The current study addressed this major gap in knowledge. Participants were community-residing older adults (n = 394; mean age = 76.29 ± 6.65 years; %female = 55). Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) was used to measure oxygenated hemoglobin (HbO2) in the prefrontal cortex under three experimental conditions: single-task-walk, single-task-alpha (cognitive task), and dual-task-walk, which required the participants to perform the two single tasks simultaneously. Intraindividual variability in neural activity was operationalized using the standard deviation of fNIRS-derived HbO2 observations assessed during a 30-s interval in each experimental condition. The increase in intraindividual variability in neural activity in the dual-task-walk condition compared to both single-task conditions was associated with the presence of cognitive impairments and being a male. Furthermore, measures of intraindividual variability in neural activity and gait performance were positively correlated only under the dual-task-walk condition. Intraindividual variability in the neural activity of gait may be a novel marker for age-related impairments in mobility and cognitive function. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

PMID: 33180518 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

Psychol Aging. 2020 Nov 12;:

Authors: Holtzer R, Ross D, Izzetoglu M