Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory

An fMRI study

Adolf Pfefferbaum, John Desmond, Christopher Galloway, Vinod Menon, Gary H. Glover, Edith V. Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Chronic alcoholism is associated with impairment in sustained attention and visual working memory. Thus, alcoholics have reduced ability, but not necessarily inability, to perform these executive tasks, assumed to be subserved by regions of prefrontal cortex. To identify neural substrates associated with this impairment, we used functional MRI (fMRI) to determine whether alcoholics invoke the same or different brain systems as controls when engaged in working memory tasks that the two groups were able to perform at equivalent levels. The fMRI spatial working memory paradigm instructed subjects to respond with a button press when a target position was either in the center of the field (match to center) or matched the spatial position of one presented two items previously (match 2-back) or to rest. Using whole-brain fMRI, alcoholics showed diminished activation frontal cortical systems compared to controls (bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) when responding 2-back vs rest. In the center vs rest contrast, the control group compared with the alcoholic group activated a large expanse of prefrontal cortex (including Brodmann areas 9, 10, and 45), whereas there was significantly greater activation by the alcoholic group relative to the control group localized more posteriorly and inferiorly in the frontal cortex (area 47). Examination of within group activation patterns revealed two different patterns of activation: the control group exhibited activation of the dorsal ("Where?") stream for visual spatial working memory processing, whereas the alcoholic group exhibited activation of the ventral ("What?") stream and declarative memory systems to accomplish the spatial working memory task. The differences in the pattern of brain activations exhibited by the alcoholic and control groups, despite equivalence in behavioral performance, is consistent with a functional reorganization of the brain systems invoked by alcoholic individuals or invocation of an inappropriate brain system when engaged in a visual spatial task requiring working memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-20
Number of pages14
JournalNeuroImage
Volume14
Issue number1 I
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Alcoholics
Short-Term Memory
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Prefrontal Cortex
Brain
Control Groups
Aptitude
Frontal Lobe
Alcoholism
Spatial Memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Neurology

Cite this

Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory : An fMRI study. / Pfefferbaum, Adolf; Desmond, John; Galloway, Christopher; Menon, Vinod; Glover, Gary H.; Sullivan, Edith V.

In: NeuroImage, Vol. 14, No. 1 I, 2001, p. 7-20.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Pfefferbaum, A, Desmond, J, Galloway, C, Menon, V, Glover, GH & Sullivan, EV 2001, 'Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory: An fMRI study', NeuroImage, vol. 14, no. 1 I, pp. 7-20. https://doi.org/10.1006/nimg.2001.0785
Pfefferbaum, Adolf ; Desmond, John ; Galloway, Christopher ; Menon, Vinod ; Glover, Gary H. ; Sullivan, Edith V. / Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory : An fMRI study. In: NeuroImage. 2001 ; Vol. 14, No. 1 I. pp. 7-20.
@article{89c04ace6c0e4afebc34fe0bf8a922b2,
title = "Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory: An fMRI study",
abstract = "Chronic alcoholism is associated with impairment in sustained attention and visual working memory. Thus, alcoholics have reduced ability, but not necessarily inability, to perform these executive tasks, assumed to be subserved by regions of prefrontal cortex. To identify neural substrates associated with this impairment, we used functional MRI (fMRI) to determine whether alcoholics invoke the same or different brain systems as controls when engaged in working memory tasks that the two groups were able to perform at equivalent levels. The fMRI spatial working memory paradigm instructed subjects to respond with a button press when a target position was either in the center of the field (match to center) or matched the spatial position of one presented two items previously (match 2-back) or to rest. Using whole-brain fMRI, alcoholics showed diminished activation frontal cortical systems compared to controls (bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) when responding 2-back vs rest. In the center vs rest contrast, the control group compared with the alcoholic group activated a large expanse of prefrontal cortex (including Brodmann areas 9, 10, and 45), whereas there was significantly greater activation by the alcoholic group relative to the control group localized more posteriorly and inferiorly in the frontal cortex (area 47). Examination of within group activation patterns revealed two different patterns of activation: the control group exhibited activation of the dorsal ({"}Where?{"}) stream for visual spatial working memory processing, whereas the alcoholic group exhibited activation of the ventral ({"}What?{"}) stream and declarative memory systems to accomplish the spatial working memory task. The differences in the pattern of brain activations exhibited by the alcoholic and control groups, despite equivalence in behavioral performance, is consistent with a functional reorganization of the brain systems invoked by alcoholic individuals or invocation of an inappropriate brain system when engaged in a visual spatial task requiring working memory.",
author = "Adolf Pfefferbaum and John Desmond and Christopher Galloway and Vinod Menon and Glover, {Gary H.} and Sullivan, {Edith V.}",
year = "2001",
doi = "10.1006/nimg.2001.0785",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "14",
pages = "7--20",
journal = "NeuroImage",
issn = "1053-8119",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",
number = "1 I",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Reorganization of frontal systems used by alcoholics for spatial working memory

T2 - An fMRI study

AU - Pfefferbaum, Adolf

AU - Desmond, John

AU - Galloway, Christopher

AU - Menon, Vinod

AU - Glover, Gary H.

AU - Sullivan, Edith V.

PY - 2001

Y1 - 2001

N2 - Chronic alcoholism is associated with impairment in sustained attention and visual working memory. Thus, alcoholics have reduced ability, but not necessarily inability, to perform these executive tasks, assumed to be subserved by regions of prefrontal cortex. To identify neural substrates associated with this impairment, we used functional MRI (fMRI) to determine whether alcoholics invoke the same or different brain systems as controls when engaged in working memory tasks that the two groups were able to perform at equivalent levels. The fMRI spatial working memory paradigm instructed subjects to respond with a button press when a target position was either in the center of the field (match to center) or matched the spatial position of one presented two items previously (match 2-back) or to rest. Using whole-brain fMRI, alcoholics showed diminished activation frontal cortical systems compared to controls (bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) when responding 2-back vs rest. In the center vs rest contrast, the control group compared with the alcoholic group activated a large expanse of prefrontal cortex (including Brodmann areas 9, 10, and 45), whereas there was significantly greater activation by the alcoholic group relative to the control group localized more posteriorly and inferiorly in the frontal cortex (area 47). Examination of within group activation patterns revealed two different patterns of activation: the control group exhibited activation of the dorsal ("Where?") stream for visual spatial working memory processing, whereas the alcoholic group exhibited activation of the ventral ("What?") stream and declarative memory systems to accomplish the spatial working memory task. The differences in the pattern of brain activations exhibited by the alcoholic and control groups, despite equivalence in behavioral performance, is consistent with a functional reorganization of the brain systems invoked by alcoholic individuals or invocation of an inappropriate brain system when engaged in a visual spatial task requiring working memory.

AB - Chronic alcoholism is associated with impairment in sustained attention and visual working memory. Thus, alcoholics have reduced ability, but not necessarily inability, to perform these executive tasks, assumed to be subserved by regions of prefrontal cortex. To identify neural substrates associated with this impairment, we used functional MRI (fMRI) to determine whether alcoholics invoke the same or different brain systems as controls when engaged in working memory tasks that the two groups were able to perform at equivalent levels. The fMRI spatial working memory paradigm instructed subjects to respond with a button press when a target position was either in the center of the field (match to center) or matched the spatial position of one presented two items previously (match 2-back) or to rest. Using whole-brain fMRI, alcoholics showed diminished activation frontal cortical systems compared to controls (bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) when responding 2-back vs rest. In the center vs rest contrast, the control group compared with the alcoholic group activated a large expanse of prefrontal cortex (including Brodmann areas 9, 10, and 45), whereas there was significantly greater activation by the alcoholic group relative to the control group localized more posteriorly and inferiorly in the frontal cortex (area 47). Examination of within group activation patterns revealed two different patterns of activation: the control group exhibited activation of the dorsal ("Where?") stream for visual spatial working memory processing, whereas the alcoholic group exhibited activation of the ventral ("What?") stream and declarative memory systems to accomplish the spatial working memory task. The differences in the pattern of brain activations exhibited by the alcoholic and control groups, despite equivalence in behavioral performance, is consistent with a functional reorganization of the brain systems invoked by alcoholic individuals or invocation of an inappropriate brain system when engaged in a visual spatial task requiring working memory.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0034973508&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0034973508&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1006/nimg.2001.0785

DO - 10.1006/nimg.2001.0785

M3 - Article

VL - 14

SP - 7

EP - 20

JO - NeuroImage

JF - NeuroImage

SN - 1053-8119

IS - 1 I

ER -