Effects of Stochastic Facilitation in Healthy Subjects with Different Auditory Working Memory Capacity
This study investigated the effects of stochastic facilitation in healthy subjects with normal and low auditory working memory capacity (AWMC). Forty healthy volunteers were recruited in this study. They performed a backward recall task (BRT) in quiet and under four white noise levels: 45, 50, 55, and 60 dB. Brain activations during the task were measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The behavioral performance in both groups increased significantly in 50 and 55 dB white noise. The normal AWMC group (mean score = 48.70) demonstrated higher activation in the superior temporal gyrus and prefrontal cortex than the low AWMC group (mean score = 30.85). However, comparisons in the brain activation between groups for all noise levels were not statistically different. The results support previous findings that stochastic facilitation enhances cognitive performance in healthy individuals. The results also proposed that brain activity among healthy subjects is more or less similar, at least in the context of auditory working memory. These findings indicated that there were no differential effects of stochastic facilitation in healthy subjects with different AWMC.
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