Event Abstract

Behavioral and neural correlates of interference control in elderly monolinguals and bilinguals

  • 1 Universitat de les Illes Balears, Spain
  • 2 CRIUGM, Université de Montréal, Canada

Bilingualism has been shown to boost interference control and delay dementia onset. Still, the neural correlates of the ‘bilingual advantage’ remain to be well described. Ten healthy-elderly monolinguals (Mono: French) and ten elderly late bilinguals (Bil: French-English) participated in the study. The degree of bilingualism differed significantly across groups as evaluated by means of a list of 42 items (p < .0001); conversely, groups were equivalent in terms of the Montréal Cognitive Assessment Test: Mono = 27.7 (1.2), Bil = 27.5 (1.5); age (Mono = 74.5 (7.1), Bil = 74.2 (7.4)), and years of education (Mono = 16.1 (3.28), Bil = 17.2 (3.1)). Exclusion criteria were the presence of mood disorders, or psychiatric treatment. All participants performed a Simon task during fMRI scanning, and thus responded to neutral, congruent, and incongruent trials. Response times and accuracy scores for all trial types were equivalent across groups. Both groups showed a trial x run interaction, with faster response times only for incongruent trials as the task progressed (i.e. with runs 2 and 3). However, only bilinguals showed a significant modulation of brain activity accross runs in the incongruent condition across. Specifically, smaller response times in elderly bilinguals were indexed by decreased BOLD-fitted responses in the right-frontal cortex. In elderly bilinguals, the neural signature of spatial interference control might be represented by a dynamic modulation of right frontal activity. Funding: Supported by Réseau de Bio-Imagerie du Québec & Obra Social 'Sa Nostra'.

Keywords: Aging, fMRI

Conference: XI International Conference on Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON XI), Palma, Mallorca, Spain, 25 Sep - 29 Sep, 2011.

Presentation Type: Poster Presentation

Topic: Poster Sessions: Cognitive Aging

Citation: Adrover-Roig D, Massicotte P, Caza N and Ansaldo A (2011). Behavioral and neural correlates of interference control in elderly monolinguals and bilinguals. Conference Abstract: XI International Conference on Cognitive Neuroscience (ICON XI). doi: 10.3389/conf.fnhum.2011.207.00612

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Received: 15 Nov 2011; Published Online: 28 Nov 2011.

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