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Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1980 Aug;49(3-4):257-65.

Age differences in P3-reaction time associations.


Eight healthy old and 12 healthy young women had event-related potentials (ERPs) recorded during the performance of a memory retrieval task. For each subject the single trial data recorded at Pz were analyzed using Woody's adaptive filter technique. The old subjects differed from the young in several respects: P3 amplitude at Pz was smaller, P3 latency and reaction time (RT) were greater, the relationship between P3 latency and RT was considerably altered. The adaptive filter increased the amplitude of P3 but the age-related amplitude difference persisted, suggesting that this difference is not due to increased latency variability with age. The old subjects had lower single trial P3-RT correlations and longer elapsed time from P3 peak to the response than did the young subjects. Both groups had greater RTs for outset items ('negative' responses) than for inset items ('positive' responses). For the young subjects P3 latency was also greater for the outset compared to the inset items but the difference was not found for the old subjects. Thus, the relationship between P3 latency and RT is altered in the aged--P3 and RT are less tightly coupled than in the young.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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