Individual differences in bodily attention: Variability in anticipatory mu rhythm power is associated with executive function abilities and processing speed

AbstractThe ability to anticipate, attend and respond appropriately to specific stimuli is involved in the execution of everyday tasks. The current investigation examined the association of cognitive skills measured by the NIH Toolbox with changes in the power of mu oscillations during anticipation of and in response to a tactile stimulus. Electroencephalographic (EEG) activity was measured after a visuospatial cue directed adults (n=40) to monitor their right or left hand for upcoming tactile stimulation. The extent of contralateral reduction in mu power was associated with speed processing ability, while ipsilateral mu power was associated with flanker performance and marginally correlated with card sort performance. Increases in mu power following onset of the tactile stimulus were not associated with behavioral measures. Changes in mu modulation during attention to a specific bodily location appear related to variability in the broader ability to regulate goal-directed behavior and respond rapidly to a stimulus.

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