Article

Cognitive exercise and its role in cognitive function in older adults.

Neuropsychiatric Institute, Prince of Wales Hospital, Randwick, Sydney, NSW 2031, Australia.
Current Psychiatry Reports (Impact Factor: 3.23). 02/2010; 12(1):20-7. DOI: 10.1007/s11920-009-0085-y
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Converging lines of research indicate that complex mental activity is associated with reduced dementia risk. Thus, intense interest exists in whether different forms of cognitive exercise can help protect against cognitive decline and dementia. However, there is considerable confusion in terminology that is hindering progress in the field. We therefore introduce a concrete definition of cognitive training (CT) and make this the focus of our article. Clinical research that has evaluated CT in normal aging, mild cognitive impairment, and dementia is then critically reviewed. Despite many methodological shortcomings, the overall findings indicate that multidomain CT has the potential to improve cognitive function in healthy older adults and slow decline in affected individuals. Finally, practical issues, including the strengths and weaknesses of commercial products, are explored, and recommendations for further research and clinical implementation are made.

5 Bookmarks
 · 
266 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Computer-based cognitive stimulation applications can help the elderly maintain and improve their cognitive skills. In this research paper, our objectives are to verify the usability of PESCO (an open-software application for cognitive evaluation and stimulation) and to determine the concurrent validity of cognitive assessment tests and the effectiveness of PESCO's cognitive stimulation exercises.
    Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation 05/2014; 11(1):88. · 2.57 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Alzheimer disease is a neurodegenerative disorder associated with age which represents the most common cause of dementia. It is characterized by an accelerated memory loss compared to normal aging, and deterioration of other cognitive abilities that interfere with mood, reason, judgment and language. The main neuropathological hallmarks of the disorder are β-amyloid (βA) plaques and neurofibrillary Tau tangles. Triple transgenic 3×TgAD mouse model develops βA and Tau pathologies in a progressive manner, with a specific temporal and anatomic profile mimicking the pattern that takes place in the human brain with AD, and showing cognitive alterations characteristic of the disease. Environmental enrichment treatment in mice induces behavioral and emotional reactivity changes, including cognitive improvements in some AD-related transgenic mice. The present work intended to characterize the behavioral profile of 3×TgAD mice at advanced stages of neuropathological development (12 and 15 months of age) and to investigate whether environmental enrichment administered during adulthood was able to modify some of their behavioral and cognitive alterations. Results show that, at advanced stages of the disease 3×TgAD mice show deficits of spatial learning acquisition, as well as short-term and working memory, while displaying increased levels of anxiety/fearfulness and normal sensorimotor functions. 3×TgAD mice also show sexual dimorphism, as reflected by increased cognitive deficits in females and increased levels of novelty-induced behavioral inhibition in males. Environmental enrichment exerts some slight positive effects, by mainly improving the initial acquisition of the spatial learning and working memory in 12-month-old 3×TgAD mice. Such effects vary depending on the gender.
    Behavioural brain research 04/2014; · 3.22 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Recent evidence demonstrates that with training, one can enhance visual working memory (VWM) capacity and attention over time in the near transfer tasks. Not only do these studies reveal the characteristics of VWM load and the influences of training, they may also provide insights into developing effective rehabilitation for patients with VWM deficiencies. Howev-er, few studies have investigated VWM over extended periods of time and evaluated transfer benefits on non-trained tasks. Here, we combined behavioral and electroencephalographical approaches to investigate VWM load, training gains, and transfer benefits. Our results reveal that VWM capacity is directly correlated to the difference of event-related potential wave-forms. In particular, the "magic number 4" can be observed through the contralateral delay amplitude and the average capacity is 3.25-item over 15 participants. Furthermore, our findings indicate that VWM capacity can be improved through training; and after training exercises, participants from the training group are able to dramatically improve their per-formance. Likewise, the training effects on non-trained tasks can also be observed at the 12th week after training. Therefore, we conclude that participants can benefit from training gains, and augmented VWM capacity sustained over long periods of time on specific variety of tasks.
    Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science 05/2014; 4(5):234-246.

Full-text

View
140 Downloads
Available from
Jun 10, 2014