Cognitive interventions to improve prefrontal functions

Yoshiyuki Tachibana, Yuko Akitsuki, Ryuta Kawashima

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The human prefrontal cortex (PFC) plays major roles in higher cognitive functions necessary for maintaining a healthy social life. Psychological and psychiatric problems are often associated with cognitive impairments associated with PFC. Thus, previous cognitive intervention studies have been conducted to improve the functions associated with PFC. In this article, first we describe the functions associated with PFC and its importance in cognitive intervention studies. Then, we describe recent advancements in cognitive intervention methods, particularly interventions to prevent cognitive decline in healthy older adults and those to enhance their emotional control and resilience in preschool children. We also discuss on transfer effects of previous cognitive intervention, which are often observed.Finally, we discuss on the unresolved issues on the mechanism underlying the effect of cognitive intervention. We consider that a deeper understanding of the effect of cognitive intervention will greatly contribute to human welfare and education for all generations. Further multidisciplinary research will be required to achieve this ultimate goal.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Brain Research
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9781620817131
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Cognitiveintervention
  • Early childhood
  • Executive function
  • Older adults
  • Prefrontal cortex
  • Transfer effects


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