The Neural Dynamics of Conflict Adaptation within a Look-to-Do Transition

Tang, Dandan; Hu, Li; Li, Hong; Zhang, Qinglin; Chen, Antao
February 2013
PLoS ONE;Feb2013, Vol. 8 Issue 2, p1
Academic Journal
Background: For optimal performance in conflict situations, conflict adaptation (conflict detection and adjustment) is necessary. However, the neural dynamics of conflict adaptation is still unclear. Methods: In the present study, behavioral and electroencephalography (EEG) data were recorded from seventeen healthy participants during performance of a color-word Stroop task with a novel look-to-do transition. Within this transition, participants looked at the Stroop stimuli but no responses were required in the ‘look’ trials; or made manual responses to the Stroop stimuli in the ‘do’ trials. Results: In the ‘look’ trials, the amplitude modulation of N450 occurred exclusively in the right-frontal region. Subsequently, the amplitude modulation of sustained potential (SP) emerged in the posterior parietal and right-frontal regions. A significantly positive correlation between the modulation of reconfiguration in the ‘look’ trials and the behavioral conflict adaptation in the ‘do’ trials was observed. Specially, a stronger information flow from right-frontal region to posterior parietal region in the beta band was observed for incongruent condition than for congruent condition. In the ‘do’ trials, the conflict of ‘look’ trials enhanced the amplitude modulations of N450 in the right-frontal and posterior parietal regions, but decreased the amplitude modulations of SP in these regions. Uniquely, a stronger information flow from centro-parietal region to right-frontal region in the theta band was observed for iI condition than for cI condition. Conclusion: All these findings showed that top-down conflict adaptation is implemented by: (1) enhancing the sensitivity to conflict detection and the adaptation to conflict resolution; (2) modulating the effective connectivity between parietal region and right-frontal region.


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