The Neuropsychological Laboratory

Paris, France

The Neuropsychological Laboratory

Paris, France
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Coubard O.A.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Coubard O.A.,CNRS Laboratory of Physiology of Perception | Urbanski M.,Service de Medecine etde Readaptation Geriatrique et Neurologique | Urbanski M.,University Pierre and Marie Curie | And 2 more authors.
Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience | Year: 2014

Vision is a complex function, which is achieved by movements of the eyes to properly foveate targets at any location in 3D space and to continuously refresh neural information in the different visual pathways. The visual system involves five main routes originating in the retinas but varying in their destination within the brain: the occipital cortex, but also the superior colliculus (SC), the pretectum, the supra-chiasmatic nucleus, the nucleus of the optic tract and terminal dorsal, medial and lateral nuclei. Visual pathway architecture obeys systematization in sagittal and transversal planes so that visual information from left/right and upper/lower hemi-retinas, corresponding respectively to right/left and lower/upper visual fields, is processed ipsilaterally and ipsialtitudinally to hemi-retinas in left/right hemispheres and upper/lower fibers. Organic neurovisual deficits may occur at any level of this circuitry from the optic nerve to subcortical and cortical destinations, resulting in low or high-level visual deficits. In this didactic review article, we provide a panorama of the neural bases of eye movements and visual systems, and of related neurovisual deficits. Additionally, we briefly review the different schools of rehabilitation of organic neurovisual deficits, and show that whatever the emphasis is put on action or perception, benefits may be observed at both motor and perceptual levels. Given the extent of its neural bases in the brain, vision in its motor and perceptual aspects is also a useful tool to assess and modulate central nervous system (CNS) in general. © 2014 Coubard, Urbanski, Bourlon and Gaumet.


Coubard O.A.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory
European Journal of Neuroscience | Year: 2013

Neuropsychology examines the relationship between cognitive activity and corresponding cerebral conditions. At one end, psychophysics meticulously describes the details of behavior. At the other, physiology records brain cell activity during cognitive tasks. Bridging the two, neuropsychology establishes the neural correlate of behaviour when correlation methods are used, and extends to the critical neural substrate when a causal relationship can be established. Here we revisit the Hering-versus-Helmholtz controversy on binocular coordination from the psychophysician's description of combined saccade-vergence eye movements to the neurophysiological recording of motor and premotor neurons of the oculomotor neural circuitry. Whilst neo-Heringian psychophysicians and physiologists have accumulated arguments for separate saccade and vergence systems, at both the behavioral and the neural premotor levels, neo-Helmholtzians have also provided evidence for monocular programmed eye movements and commands at the premotor level. Bridging the two, we conclude that Hering and Helmholtz were both right. Importantly, the latter's viewpoint brings to the fore the importance of adaptive processes throughout life, in view of the neurobiological constraints emphasized by the former. © 2013 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Coubard O.A.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience | Year: 2016

Since the seminal report by Shapiro that bilateral stimulation induces cognitive and emotional changes, 26 years of basic and clinical research have examined the effects of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in anxiety disorders, particularly in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The present article aims at better understanding EMDR neural mechanism. I first review procedural aspects of EMDR protocol and theoretical hypothesis about EMDR effects, and develop the reasons why the scientific community is still divided about EMDR. I then slide from psychology to physiology describing eye movements/emotion interaction from the physiological viewpoint, and introduce theoretical and technical tools used in movement research to re-examine EMDR neural mechanism. Using a recent physiological model for the neuropsychological architecture of motor and cognitive control, the Threshold Interval Modulation with Early Release-Rate of rIse Deviation with Early Release (TIMER-RIDER)—model, I explore how attentional control and bilateral stimulation may participate to EMDR effects. These effects may be obtained by two processes acting in parallel: (i) activity level enhancement of attentional control component; and (ii) bilateral stimulation in any sensorimotor modality, both resulting in lower inhibition enabling dysfunctional information to be processed and anxiety to be reduced. The TIMER-RIDER model offers quantitative predictions about EMDR effects for future research about its underlying physiological mechanisms. © 2016 Coubard.


Coubard O.A.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Ferrufino L.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Nonaka T.,Kibi International University | Zelada O.,Higher University of San Simón | And 4 more authors.
Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience | Year: 2014

Understanding the human aging of postural control and how physical or motor activity improves balance and gait is challenging for both clinicians and researchers. Previous studies have evidenced that physical and sporting activity focusing on cardiovascular and strength conditioning help older adults develop their balance and gait and/or decrease their frequency of falls. Motor activity based on motor-skill learning has also been put forward as an alternative to develop balance and/or prevent falls in aging. Specifically dance has been advocated as a promising program to boost motor control. In this study, we examined the effects of contemporary dance (CD) on postural control of older adults. Upright stance posturography was performed in 38 participants aged 54-89 years before and after the intervention period, during which one half of the randomly assigned participants was trained to CD and the other half was not trained at all (no dance, ND). CD training lasted 4 weeks, 3 times a week. We performed classical statistic scores of postural signal and dynamic analyses, namely signal diffusion analysis (SDA), recurrence quantification analysis (RQA), and detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA). CD modulated postural control in older trainees, as revealed in the eyes closed condition by a decrease in fractal dimension and an increase in DFA alpha component in the mediolateral plane. The ND group showed an increase in length and mean velocity of postural signal, and the eyes open a decrease in RQA maximal diagonal line in the anteroposterior plane and an increase in DFA alpha component in the mediolateral plane. No change was found in SDA in either group. We suggest that such a massed practice of CD reduced the quantity of exchange between the subject and the environment by increasing their postural confidence. Since CD has low-physical but high-motor impact, we conclude that it may be recommended as a useful program to rehabilitate posture in aging. © 2014 Coubard, Ferrufino, Nonaka, Zelada, Bril and Dietrich.


Coubard O.A.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Duretz S.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Lefebvre V.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory | Lapalus P.,Groupe Hospitalier Lariboisiere Fernand Widal | Ferrufino L.,The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience | Year: 2011

As society ages and frequency of dementia increases exponentially, counteracting cognitive aging decline is a challenging issue for countries of the developed world. Previous studies have suggested that physical fitness based on cardiovascular and strength training helps to improve attentional control in normal aging. However, how motor activity based on motor-skill learning can also benefit attentional control with age has been hitherto a neglected issue. This study examined the impact of contemporary dance (CD) improvisation on attentional control of older adults, as compared to two other motor training programs, fall prevention and Tai Chi Chuan. Participants performed setting, suppressing, and switching attention tasks before and after 5. 7-month training in either CD or fall prevention or Tai Chi Chuan. Results indicated that CD improved switching but not setting or suppressing attention. In contrast, neither fall prevention nor Tai Chi Chuan showed any effect. We suggest that CD improvisation works as a training for change, inducing plasticity in flexible attention. © 2011 Coubard, Duretz, Lefebvre, Lapalus and Ferrufino.


PubMed | The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in aging neuroscience | Year: 2011

As society ages and frequency of dementia increases exponentially, counteracting cognitive aging decline is a challenging issue for countries of the developed world. Previous studies have suggested that physical fitness based on cardiovascular and strength training helps to improve attentional control in normal aging. However, how motor activity based on motor-skill learning can also benefit attentional control with age has been hitherto a neglected issue. This study examined the impact of contemporary dance (CD) improvisation on attentional control of older adults, as compared to two other motor training programs, fall prevention and Tai Chi Chuan. Participants performed setting, suppressing, and switching attention tasks before and after 5.7-month training in either CD or fall prevention or Tai Chi Chuan. Results indicated that CD improved switching but not setting or suppressing attention. In contrast, neither fall prevention nor Tai Chi Chuan showed any effect. We suggest that CD improvisation works as a training for change, inducing plasticity in flexible attention.


PubMed | The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Type: Comparative Study | Journal: Neuropsychology | Year: 2011

Attentional control, the ability to maintain goal-directedness in the face of distraction, has been shown to decline in normal aging (NA) and Alzheimers disease (AD), yet the nature and extent of deficits is under debate. This study investigated attentional control in NA and AD compared to healthy young adults in several tasks such as setting, suppressing, switching, and preparing attention.Fifty-two participants (17 AD, 17 NA, and 18 young participants) underwent the Tower of London, the Zoo map test, the Stroop test, letter verbal fluency, a computerized version of the Rule shift cards tests, the Trail making test, the Plus-minus test, and a reaction time task with variable preparatory intervals.Analyses of variance showed that NA as compared to young participants were impaired in the Tower of London, the Stroop test, and the Rule shift cards tests. AD as compared to NA participants were impaired in all tests except the Stroop test. Principal component analysis in young adults confirmed the modularity of attentional tasks, which was reduced in NA and AD participants. Principal component analysis in all populations showed a decline of attentional control with NA and AD regardless of the tasks, with an increase in between-participants variability only between young and NA participants.Attentional control dysfunction is different in NA and AD: NA affects suppressing attention, switching attention for unpredictable but not predictable events, and preparing attention for unpredictable events, whereas AD affects setting, suppressing, switching, and preparing attention with less specificity.


PubMed | The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Type: Journal Article | Journal: The European journal of neuroscience | Year: 2013

Neuropsychology examines the relationship between cognitive activity and corresponding cerebral conditions. At one end, psychophysics meticulously describes the details of behavior. At the other, physiology records brain cell activity during cognitive tasks. Bridging the two, neuropsychology establishes the neural correlate of behaviour when correlation methods are used, and extends to the critical neural substrate when a causal relationship can be established. Here we revisit the Hering-versus-Helmholtz controversy on binocular coordination from the psychophysicians description of combined saccade-vergence eye movements to the neurophysiological recording of motor and premotor neurons of the oculomotor neural circuitry. Whilst neo-Heringian psychophysicians and physiologists have accumulated arguments for separate saccade and vergence systems, at both the behavioral and the neural premotor levels, neo-Helmholtzians have also provided evidence for monocular programmed eye movements and commands at the premotor level. Bridging the two, we conclude that Hering and Helmholtz were both right. Importantly, the latters viewpoint brings to the fore the importance of adaptive processes throughout life, in view of the neurobiological constraints emphasized by the former.


PubMed | The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in aging neuroscience | Year: 2012

As society ages and frequency of falls increases in older adults, counteracting motor decline is a challenging issue for developed countries. Physical activity based on aerobic and strength training as well as motor activity based on skill learning both help benefit balance and reduce the risk of falls, as assessed by clinical or laboratory measures. However, how such programs influence motor control is a neglected issue. This study examined the effects of fall prevention (FP) training on saccadic control in older adults. Saccades were recorded in 12 participants aged 64-91 years before and after 2.5 months training in FP. Traditional analysis of saccade timing and dynamics was performed together with a quantitative analysis using the LATER model, enabling us to examine the underlying motor control processes. Results indicated that FP reduced the rate of anticipatory and express saccades in inappropriate directions and enhanced that of express saccades in the appropriate direction, resulting in decreased latency and higher left-right symmetry of motor responses. FP reduced within-participant variability of saccade duration, amplitude, and peak velocity. LATER analysis suggested that FP modulates decisional thresholds, extending our knowledge of motor training influence on central motor control. We introduce the Threshold Interval Modulation with Early Release-Rate of rIse Deviation with Early Release (TIMER-RIDER) model to account for the results.


PubMed | The Neuropsychological Laboratory
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in behavioral neuroscience | Year: 2016

Since the seminal report by Shapiro that bilateral stimulation induces cognitive and emotional changes, 26 years of basic and clinical research have examined the effects of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in anxiety disorders, particularly in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The present article aims at better understanding EMDR neural mechanism. I first review procedural aspects of EMDR protocol and theoretical hypothesis about EMDR effects, and develop the reasons why the scientific community is still divided about EMDR. I then slide from psychology to physiology describing eye movements/emotion interaction from the physiological viewpoint, and introduce theoretical and technical tools used in movement research to re-examine EMDR neural mechanism. Using a recent physiological model for the neuropsychological architecture of motor and cognitive control, the Threshold Interval Modulation with Early Release-Rate of rIse Deviation with Early Release (TIMER-RIDER)-model, I explore how attentional control and bilateral stimulation may participate to EMDR effects. These effects may be obtained by two processes acting in parallel: (i) activity level enhancement of attentional control component; and (ii) bilateral stimulation in any sensorimotor modality, both resulting in lower inhibition enabling dysfunctional information to be processed and anxiety to be reduced. The TIMER-RIDER model offers quantitative predictions about EMDR effects for future research about its underlying physiological mechanisms.

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