A comparison of the Cambridge Automated Neuropsychological Test Battery (CANTAB) with “traditional” neuropsychological testing instruments
The Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) is frequently used in research protocols and increasingly in clinical practice. Despite the frequency of its use, important aspects of its measurement validity have yet to be established in healthy adults. Two hundred and fifty-five individuals completed the CANTAB and traditional neuropsychological tests commonly used in clinical practice, including selected subtests from the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale, Controlled Oral Word Association Test, Animal Naming, Trail Making Tests A and B, the Stroop test, and the Green Story Recall test. Results showed that CANTAB subtests were modestly correlated with traditional subtests. Correlations between CANTAB subtests and traditional subtests were less consistent when age and education were controlled for. In conclusion, the CANTAB shows modest associations with traditional neuropsychological test measures.
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- "A simple working memory task is the backwards digit span, requiring the immediate recall of lists of digits in reverse order (e.g. Smith et al., 2013). A complex working memory task is the reading span test by Daneman and Carpenter (1980). "
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ABSTRACT: People with tinnitus report anecdotal difficulties in mental concentration and psychological treatments for tinnitus advise on concentration difficulties and how to manage them. Yet the literature lacks any coherent discussion about what precise theoretical cognitive constructs might be mediating reported concentration problems. This review addresses this gap by describing and critically appraising the behavioural evidence for the effects of tinnitus on cognitive performance (namely working memory and attention). Empirical evidence is somewhat limited, but there is some support that tinnitus interferes with executive attention, and mixed support that it impairs working memory and selective attention. We highlight a number of methodological considerations to help drive the field forward and we propose a putative model of the complex inter-relationships between tinnitus, cognition and confounding factors. This model provides a basis for hypothesis testing.
- "The results also showed that although CANTAB tests purported to measure memory were moderately associated with the memory factor, the same tests were also highly correlated with executive function (Smith et al., 2013). The authors proposed that while CANTAB tests might be a reasonable measure of " general " cognition, they may lack the ability to measure distinct cognitive functions (Smith et al., 2013). However, weak to moderate correlations are to be expected when the initial validity estimates of neuropsychological tests are only moderate. "
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ABSTRACT: The Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) is a semiautomated computer interface for assessing cognitive function. We examined whether CANTAB tests measured specific cognitive functions, using established neuropsychological tests as a reference point. A sample of 500 healthy older (M = 60.28 years, SD = 6.75) participants in the Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project completed battery of CANTAB subtests and standard paper-based neuropsychological tests. Confirmatory factor analysis identified four factors: processing speed, verbal ability, episodic memory, and working memory. However, CANTAB tests did not consistently load onto the cognitive domain factors derived from traditional measures of the same function. These results indicate that five of the six CANTAB subtests examined did not load onto single cognitive functions. These CANTAB tests may lack the sensitivity to measure discrete cognitive functions in healthy populations or may measure other cognitive domains not included in the traditional neuropsychological battery.
© The Author(s) 2015.
Available from: Mohammad Ali Salehinejad
- "What our study claims to find is considerable from several points. First of all, visual memory impairment is one of the most impaired cognitive function in MD (Smith et al., 2013); although numerous studies showed effectiveness of tDCS on memory, specifically working memory (Boggio, Ferrucci, et al., 2006; Ferrucci, Mameli, et al., 2008; Fregni et al., 2006; Jo et al., 2009), few studies have evaluated visual aspects of memory using tDCS; and no study has investigated these aspects of memory in MD specifically. However, an animal study conducted by Dockery et al. (2011) found anodal and cathodal tDCS of the frontal cortex improved visuospatial working memory in rats. "
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ABSTRACT: Recent studies on major depression have used non-invasive brain stimulation techniques such as transcranial direct current stimulation to improve impaired emotion and cognition in MD. However, such experiments have yielded mixed results specifically with respect to cognition in MD. This study aimed to investigate whether anodal and cathodal tDCS applied over dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), would significantly improve visual working memory and reduce depressive symptoms in patients with MD. Thirty (N=30) patients with major depression were randomly assigned to receive either experimental (active) or control (sham) tDCS. Participants underwent a series of visual memory neuropsychological tasks and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Hamilton Depression Scale (HDRS). After 10 sessions of anodal and cathodal tDCS, patients showed improved performance in visual working memory tasks. Specifically, active stimulation improved visual memory performance for the experimental group relative to baseline, whereas sham stimulation did not differentiate performance from baseline in the control group.
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