Development of Error-Monitoring Event-Related Potentials in Adolescents

Authors

  • PATRICIA L. DAVIES,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Occupational Therapy, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523, USA
      Address for correspondence: Patricia L. Davies, 219 Occupational Therapy, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523. Voice: 970-491-7294; fax: 970-4 91-6290. pdavies@lamar.colostate.edu
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  • SIDNEY J. SEGALOWITZ,

    1. Department of Psychology, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, L2S 3A1, Canada
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  • WILLIAM J. GAVIN

    1. Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado 80309, USA
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Address for correspondence: Patricia L. Davies, 219 Occupational Therapy, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523. Voice: 970-491-7294; fax: 970-4 91-6290. pdavies@lamar.colostate.edu

Abstract

Abstract: In order to study the maturation of neurobehavioral systems involved in affect regulation and behavioral choices during adolescence, we examined brain activity associated with response monitoring and error detection using event-related potentials (ERPs). In a visual flanker test, trials with incorrect responses elicit ERP components including an error-related negativity (ERN) and a later error-positivity (Pe). We examined the amplitude and latency of the ERN and Pe of incorrect responses in 124 children from 7 to 18 years of age. The ERN amplitude in error trials increased with age although this was qualified by a nonlinear change. The quadratic distribution of the ERN indicated an initial drop in amplitude (lowest at age 10 for girls; age 13 for boys) with a subsequent rise through adolescence. The Pe amplitude did not change with age. Results are discussed with respect to continued maturation of the anterior cingulate cortex and possible influences on adolescent behaviors.

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