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Int J Psychophysiol. 2006 Oct;62(1):103-8. Epub 2006 May 6.

The effect of transient increase in oxygen level on brain activation and verbal performance.

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Department of Biomedical Engineering, Konkuk University, South Korea.


This study aimed to investigate the hypothesis that a transient increase in oxygen level administered to subjects increases the BOLD effect in brain regions associated with verbal cognitive functioning and enhances performance accuracy. A verbal task was presented while brain images were scanned by a 3T fMRI system. The accuracy rate on the verbal task was enhanced during 30% oxygen administration compared to 21% oxygen administration. The neural activations were observed at the occipital, parietal, temporal and frontal lobes, during both 21% and 30% oxygen administration. Increased brain activations were observed in the right middle frontal gyrus, right inferior frontal gyrus, right superior frontal gyrus, cingulate gyrus, left middle temporal gyrus, and left fusiform gyrus with 30% oxygen administration. These results suggest that a higher concentration of breathed oxygen increases saturation of blood oxygen in the brain, and facilitates verbal cognitive performance.

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