Automaticity and re-establishment of executive control, an fMRI study
GARAVAN, HUGH PATRICK
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Citation:Kubler, A., Dixon, V, & Garavan, H. `Automaticity and re-establishment of executive control, an fMRI study? in Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 18, 2006, pp 1331 - 1342
The ability to exert control over automatic behavior is of particular importance as it allows us to interrupt our behavior when the automatic response is no longer adequate or even dangerous. However, despite the literature that exists on the effects of practice on brain activation, little is known about the neuroanatomy involved in reestablishing executive con- trol over previously automatized behavior. We present a visual search task that enabled participants to automatize accord- ing to defined criteria within about 3 hr of practice and then required them to reassert control without changing the stim- ulus set. We found widespread cortical activation early in practice. Activation in all frontal areas and in the inferior pari- etal lobule decreased significantly with practice. Only se- lected prefrontal (Brodmann?s areas [BAs] 9/46/8) and parietal areas (BAs 39/40) were specifically reactivated when execu- tive control was required, underlining the crucial role of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in executive control to guide our behavior.
Series/Report no:Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience