Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease

H. Amieva, Louise Helen Phillips, S. Della Sala, Julie Diane Henry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

173 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present a comprehensive review of studies assessing inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. The objectives of this review are: (i) to establish whether Alzheimer's disease affects all inhibitory mechanisms equally, and (ii) where possible, to assess whether any effects of Alzheimer's disease on inhibition tasks might be caused by other cognitive deficits, such as slowed processing. We review inhibitory mechanisms considered to play a crucial role in various domains of cognition, such as inhibition involved in working memory, selective attention and shifting abilities, and the inhibition of motor and verbal responses. It was found that whilst most inhibitory mechanisms are affected by the disorder, some are relatively preserved, suggesting that inhibitory deficits in Alzheimer's disease may not be the result of a general inhibitory breakdown. In particular, the experimental results reviewed showed that Alzheimer's disease has a strong effect on tasks requiring controlled inhibition processes, such as the Stroop task. However, the presence of the disease appears to have relatively little effect on tasks requiring more automatic inhibition, such as the inhibition of return task. Thus, the distinction between automatic, reflexive inhibitory mechanisms and controlled inhibitory mechanisms may be critical when predicting the integrity of inhibitory mechanisms in Alzheimer's disease. Substantial effects of Alzheimer's disease on tasks such as negative priming, which are not cognitively complex but do require some degree of controlled inhibition, support this hypothesis. A meta-analytic review of seven studies on the Stroop paradigm revealed substantially larger effects of Alzheimer's disease on the inhibition condition relative to the baseline condition, suggesting that these deficits do not simply reflect general slowing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)949-964
Number of pages15
JournalBrain
Volume127
Issue numberPt 5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • inhibition
  • ageing
  • dementia
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • COLOR-WORD TEST
  • DUAL-TASK PERFORMANCE
  • ADULT AGE-DIFFERENCES
  • CARD SORTING TEST
  • OLDER-ADULTS
  • WORKING-MEMORY
  • STROOP INTERFERENCE
  • SELECTIVE ATTENTION
  • VISUAL-ATTENTION
  • EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS

Cite this

Amieva, H., Phillips, L. H., Della Sala, S., & Henry, J. D. (2004). Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. Brain, 127(Pt 5), 949-964. https://doi.org/10.1093/brain/awh045

Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. / Amieva, H.; Phillips, Louise Helen; Della Sala, S.; Henry, Julie Diane.

In: Brain, Vol. 127, No. Pt 5, 2004, p. 949-964.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Amieva, H, Phillips, LH, Della Sala, S & Henry, JD 2004, 'Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease', Brain, vol. 127, no. Pt 5, pp. 949-964. https://doi.org/10.1093/brain/awh045
Amieva, H. ; Phillips, Louise Helen ; Della Sala, S. ; Henry, Julie Diane. / Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. In: Brain. 2004 ; Vol. 127, No. Pt 5. pp. 949-964.
@article{f2f0005d537b4d18827aa307ffb5331f,
title = "Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease",
abstract = "We present a comprehensive review of studies assessing inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. The objectives of this review are: (i) to establish whether Alzheimer's disease affects all inhibitory mechanisms equally, and (ii) where possible, to assess whether any effects of Alzheimer's disease on inhibition tasks might be caused by other cognitive deficits, such as slowed processing. We review inhibitory mechanisms considered to play a crucial role in various domains of cognition, such as inhibition involved in working memory, selective attention and shifting abilities, and the inhibition of motor and verbal responses. It was found that whilst most inhibitory mechanisms are affected by the disorder, some are relatively preserved, suggesting that inhibitory deficits in Alzheimer's disease may not be the result of a general inhibitory breakdown. In particular, the experimental results reviewed showed that Alzheimer's disease has a strong effect on tasks requiring controlled inhibition processes, such as the Stroop task. However, the presence of the disease appears to have relatively little effect on tasks requiring more automatic inhibition, such as the inhibition of return task. Thus, the distinction between automatic, reflexive inhibitory mechanisms and controlled inhibitory mechanisms may be critical when predicting the integrity of inhibitory mechanisms in Alzheimer's disease. Substantial effects of Alzheimer's disease on tasks such as negative priming, which are not cognitively complex but do require some degree of controlled inhibition, support this hypothesis. A meta-analytic review of seven studies on the Stroop paradigm revealed substantially larger effects of Alzheimer's disease on the inhibition condition relative to the baseline condition, suggesting that these deficits do not simply reflect general slowing.",
keywords = "inhibition, ageing, dementia, Alzheimer's disease, COLOR-WORD TEST, DUAL-TASK PERFORMANCE, ADULT AGE-DIFFERENCES, CARD SORTING TEST, OLDER-ADULTS, WORKING-MEMORY, STROOP INTERFERENCE, SELECTIVE ATTENTION, VISUAL-ATTENTION, EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS",
author = "H. Amieva and Phillips, {Louise Helen} and {Della Sala}, S. and Henry, {Julie Diane}",
year = "2004",
doi = "10.1093/brain/awh045",
language = "English",
volume = "127",
pages = "949--964",
journal = "Brain",
issn = "0006-8950",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "Pt 5",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease

AU - Amieva, H.

AU - Phillips, Louise Helen

AU - Della Sala, S.

AU - Henry, Julie Diane

PY - 2004

Y1 - 2004

N2 - We present a comprehensive review of studies assessing inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. The objectives of this review are: (i) to establish whether Alzheimer's disease affects all inhibitory mechanisms equally, and (ii) where possible, to assess whether any effects of Alzheimer's disease on inhibition tasks might be caused by other cognitive deficits, such as slowed processing. We review inhibitory mechanisms considered to play a crucial role in various domains of cognition, such as inhibition involved in working memory, selective attention and shifting abilities, and the inhibition of motor and verbal responses. It was found that whilst most inhibitory mechanisms are affected by the disorder, some are relatively preserved, suggesting that inhibitory deficits in Alzheimer's disease may not be the result of a general inhibitory breakdown. In particular, the experimental results reviewed showed that Alzheimer's disease has a strong effect on tasks requiring controlled inhibition processes, such as the Stroop task. However, the presence of the disease appears to have relatively little effect on tasks requiring more automatic inhibition, such as the inhibition of return task. Thus, the distinction between automatic, reflexive inhibitory mechanisms and controlled inhibitory mechanisms may be critical when predicting the integrity of inhibitory mechanisms in Alzheimer's disease. Substantial effects of Alzheimer's disease on tasks such as negative priming, which are not cognitively complex but do require some degree of controlled inhibition, support this hypothesis. A meta-analytic review of seven studies on the Stroop paradigm revealed substantially larger effects of Alzheimer's disease on the inhibition condition relative to the baseline condition, suggesting that these deficits do not simply reflect general slowing.

AB - We present a comprehensive review of studies assessing inhibitory functioning in Alzheimer's disease. The objectives of this review are: (i) to establish whether Alzheimer's disease affects all inhibitory mechanisms equally, and (ii) where possible, to assess whether any effects of Alzheimer's disease on inhibition tasks might be caused by other cognitive deficits, such as slowed processing. We review inhibitory mechanisms considered to play a crucial role in various domains of cognition, such as inhibition involved in working memory, selective attention and shifting abilities, and the inhibition of motor and verbal responses. It was found that whilst most inhibitory mechanisms are affected by the disorder, some are relatively preserved, suggesting that inhibitory deficits in Alzheimer's disease may not be the result of a general inhibitory breakdown. In particular, the experimental results reviewed showed that Alzheimer's disease has a strong effect on tasks requiring controlled inhibition processes, such as the Stroop task. However, the presence of the disease appears to have relatively little effect on tasks requiring more automatic inhibition, such as the inhibition of return task. Thus, the distinction between automatic, reflexive inhibitory mechanisms and controlled inhibitory mechanisms may be critical when predicting the integrity of inhibitory mechanisms in Alzheimer's disease. Substantial effects of Alzheimer's disease on tasks such as negative priming, which are not cognitively complex but do require some degree of controlled inhibition, support this hypothesis. A meta-analytic review of seven studies on the Stroop paradigm revealed substantially larger effects of Alzheimer's disease on the inhibition condition relative to the baseline condition, suggesting that these deficits do not simply reflect general slowing.

KW - inhibition

KW - ageing

KW - dementia

KW - Alzheimer's disease

KW - COLOR-WORD TEST

KW - DUAL-TASK PERFORMANCE

KW - ADULT AGE-DIFFERENCES

KW - CARD SORTING TEST

KW - OLDER-ADULTS

KW - WORKING-MEMORY

KW - STROOP INTERFERENCE

KW - SELECTIVE ATTENTION

KW - VISUAL-ATTENTION

KW - EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS

U2 - 10.1093/brain/awh045

DO - 10.1093/brain/awh045

M3 - Article

VL - 127

SP - 949

EP - 964

JO - Brain

JF - Brain

SN - 0006-8950

IS - Pt 5

ER -