Cortical oscillations that underlie visual selective attention are abnormal in adolescents with cerebral palsy

Rashelle M. Hoffman, Christine M. Embury, Brandon J. Lew, Elizabeth Heinrichs-Graham, Tony W. Wilson, Max J. Kurz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Adolescence is a critical period for the development and refinement of several higher-level cognitive functions, including visual selective attention. Clinically, it has been noted that adolescents with cerebral palsy (CP) may have deficits in selectively attending to objects within their visual field. This study aimed to evaluate the neural oscillatory activity in the ventral attention network while adolescents with CP performed a visual selective attention task. Adolescents with CP (N = 14; Age = 15.7 ± 4 years; MACS I–III; GMFCS I–IV) and neurotypical (NT) adolescents (N = 21; Age = 14.3 ± 2 years) performed the Eriksen flanker task while undergoing magnetoencephalographic (MEG) brain imaging. The participants reported the direction of a target arrow that was surrounded by congruent or incongruent flanking arrows. Compared with NT adolescents, adolescents with CP had slower responses and made more errors regarding the direction of the target arrow. The MEG results revealed that adolescents with CP had stronger alpha oscillations in the left insula when the flanking arrows were incongruent. Furthermore, participants that had more errors also tended to have stronger alpha oscillatory activity in this brain region. Altogether these results indicate that the aberrant activity seen in the left insula is associated with diminished visual selective attention function in adolescents with CP.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4661
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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