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Abstract #1724

Plastic-adaptive changes after articulatory training in the elderly: An fMRI study

Sachiko Kiyama1, Atsunobu Suzuki2, Shen-Hsing Annabel Chen3, and Toshiharu Nakai1

1National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, Obu, Japan, 2Nagoya University, Nagoya, Japan, 3Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore

The present fMRI study explored neural changes in the Japanese elderly after four weeks of articulatory training. We compared real and pseudo words (i.e., the difference in speech plan), and hard and easy consonants to articulate (i.e., the difference in motor plan). Results revealed that their training of pseudo words with easy consonants significantly reduced activity in various regions including language, motor, visual, and cerebellar areas. This finding indicates the neuroplasticity of the adaptive articulation learning ability in the elderly for newly-introduced speech sounds, especially with easy consonants which do not require complex articulatory movements.

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