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Abstract #1120

Developmental fMRI Changes Associated with Relational Reasoning

Eslinger P, Wang J, Blair C, Lipovsky B, Baker D, Thorne S, Gamson D, Yang Q, Rohrer L
Penn State College of Medicine, Penn State College of Medicine

fMRI study of relational reasoning in typical children and adolescents 8-19 years of age revealed significant activations in occipital-parietal cortices (functionally associated with visuospatial perception/knowledge), occipital-temporal cortices bilaterally (functionally associated with visual pattern perception), and prefrontal and anterior cingulate regions (functionally associated with working memory, relational reasoning, conflict resolution, and decision-making). Age regression analyses indicated that bilateral parietal cortex activations increased with developmental age while prefrontal, anterior cingulate, and subcortical brain regions decreased in activity with age. Results suggest that younger children engage more widespread neural networks in relational reasoning tasks, but develop more focal parietal lobe activation with age.