- Age-related changes in antisaccade task performance: Inhibitory control or working-memory engagement?
- Brain and Cognition
- Volume | Issue number
- 56 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
In antisaccade tasks, subjects are required to generate a saccade in the direction opposite to the location of a sudden-onset target stimulus. Compared to young adults, older adults tend to make more reflex-like eye movements towards the target, and/or show longer saccadic onset latencies on correct direct antisaccades. To better understand the nature of these effects of aging on antisaccade performance, we examined the role of age-related deficiencies in inhibitory control vis-a-vis age changes in the engagement of working memory. Inhibitory demands were manipulated using fixation-offset conditions, while working-memory demands were manipulated by varying memory-updating requirements. The results indicate that inhibitory oculomotor functions remain largely intact with advancing age; older adults' performance breaks down only when their limited working-memory capacity is taxed by increasing updating demands.
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