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Tschernegg, M; Neuper, C; Schmidt, R; Wood, G; Kronbichler, M; Fazekas, F; Enzinger, C; Koini, M.
FMRI to probe sex-related differences in brain function with multitasking.
PLoS One. 2017; 12(7):e0181554-e0181554 Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0181554 [OPEN ACCESS]
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Führende Autor*innen der Med Uni Graz
Koini Marisa
Lenger Melanie
Co-Autor*innen der Med Uni Graz
Enzinger Christian
Fazekas Franz
Schmidt Reinhold

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Although established as a general notion in society, there is no solid scientific foundation for the existence of sex-differences in multitasking. Reaction time and accuracy in dual task conditions have an inverse relationship relative to single task, independently from sex. While a more disseminated network, parallel to decreasing accuracy and reaction time has been demonstrated in dual task fMRI studies, little is known so far whether there exist respective sex-related differences in activation. We subjected 20 women (mean age = 25.45; SD = 5.23) and 20 men (mean age = 27.55; SD = 4.00) to a combined verbal and spatial fMRI paradigm at 3.0T to assess sex-related skills, based on the assumption that generally women better perform in verbal tasks while men do better in spatial tasks. We also obtained behavioral tests for verbal and spatial intelligence, attention, executive functions, and working memory. No differences between women and men were observed in behavioral measures of dual-tasking or cognitive performance. Generally, brain activation increased with higher task load, mainly in the bilateral inferior and prefrontal gyri, the anterior cingulum, thalamus, putamen and occipital areas. Comparing sexes, women showed increased activation in the inferior frontal gyrus in the verbal dual-task while men demonstrated increased activation in the precuneus and adjacent visual areas in the spatial task. Against the background of equal cognitive and behavioral dual-task performance in both sexes, we provide first evidence for sex-related activation differences in functional networks for verbal and spatial dual-tasking.
Find related publications in this database (using NLM MeSH Indexing)
Adolescent -
Adult -
Attention - physiology
Brain - physiology
Brain Mapping -
Cognition -
Female -
Humans -
Magnetic Resonance Imaging - methods
Male -
Memory, Short-Term - physiology
Reproducibility of Results -
Sex Factors -
Verbal Behavior -
Young Adult -

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