The Hidden Costs of Cognitive Enhancement | Wired Science

And the link to the full paper. The Mental Cost of Cognitive Enhancement (HatTip ComradeSergey)

Those who had the parietal area involved in numerical cognition stimulated learned the new number system more quickly than those who got sham stimulation, the researchers report today in the Journal of Neuroscience. But at the end of the weeklong study their reaction times were slower when they had to put their newfound knowledge to use to solve a new task that they hadn’t seen during the training sessions. ”They had trouble accessing what they’d learned,” Cohen Kadosh said.

The volunteers who had the prefrontal area involved in learning and memory stimulated showed the opposite pattern. They were slower than the control group to learn the new numerical system, but they performed faster on the new test at the end of the experiment. The bottom line, says Cohen Kadosh, is that stimulating either brain region had both benefits and drawbacks. ”Just like with drugs, there seem to be side effects,” he said.

via The Hidden Costs of Cognitive Enhancement | Wired Science |
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