The cerebellum mediates conflict resolution

Tom A. Schweizer, Chris Oriet, Nachshon Meiran, Michael P. Alexander, Michael Cusimano, Donald T. Stuss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Regions within the frontal and parietal cortex have been implicated as important neural correlates for cognitive control during conflict resolution. Despite the extensive reciprocal connectivity between the cerebellum and these putatively critical cortical areas, a role for the cerebellum in conflict resolution has never been identified. We used a task-switching paradigm that separates processes related to task-set switching and the management of response conflict independent of motor processing. Eleven patients with chronic, focal lesions to the cerebellum and 11 healthy controls were compared. Patients were slower and less accurate in conditions involving conflict resolution. In the absence of response conflict, however, task-switching abilities were not impaired in our patients. The cerebellum may play an important role in coordinating with other areas of cortex to modulate active response states. These results are the first demonstration of impaired conflict resolution following cerebellar lesions in the presence of an intact prefrontal cortex.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1974-1982
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Volume19
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience

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