Task-specific neural processes underlying conflict resolution during cognitive control

TitleTask-specific neural processes underlying conflict resolution during cognitive control
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsXiao, Y, Chou, C-C, Cosgrove, GRees, Crone, NE, Stone, S, Madsen, JR, Reucroft, I, Shih, Y-C, Weisholtz, D, Yu, H-Y, Anderson, WS, Kreiman, G
Date Published01/2022

Cognitive control involves flexibly combining multiple sensory inputs with task-dependent goals during decision making. Several tasks have been proposed to examine cognitive control, including Stroop, Eriksen-Flanker, and the Multi-source interference task. Because these tasks have been studied independently, it remains unclear whether the neural signatures of cognitive control reflect abstract control mechanisms or specific combinations of sensory and behavioral aspects of each task. To address this question, here we recorded invasive neurophysiological signals from 16 subjects and directly compared the three tasks against each other. Neural activity patterns in the theta and high-gamma frequency bands differed between incongruent and congruent conditions, revealing strong modulation by conflicting task demands. These neural signals were specific to each task, generalizing within a task but not across tasks. These results highlight the complex interplay between sensory inputs, motor outputs, and task demands and argue against a universal and abstract representation of conflict.


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