Alteration of Behavioral Inhibitory Control in High-Altitude Immigrants

Jiazheng Wang, Liqin Zheng, Zedong Wang, Xiao Wu, Ning Ma, Tao Zhang, Kai Chen, Bharat B. Biswal, Qun Yang, Hailin Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Behavioral inhibitory control (BIC) acts as a key cognitive ability, which is essential for humans to withhold inappropriate behaviors. Meanwhile, many studies reported that long-term exposure to high altitude (HA) may affect cognitive ability. However, it is not clear whether long-term exposure to HAs may affect the BIC of an individual. To clarify the role of altitude in the behavioral control of adults and the underlying neural mechanism, we explored the BIC neural activity profiles of healthy immigrants from low-altitude (LA) regions to HA regions. Combining a two-choice oddball paradigm and electrophysiological techniques, this study monitored the N2 and P3 event-related components and neural oscillations across LA and HA groups. Results showed longer reaction times (RTs) for the HA group than the LA group. Relative to the LA group, lower N2 and P3 amplitudes were observed for the HA group. Significant positive correlations were also found between P3 amplitude and theta/delta band power across both groups. Importantly, lower theta/delta band powers were only observed for the HA group under the deviant condition. Collectively, these findings suggest that long-term exposure to HAs may attenuate BIC during the response inhibition stage and provide valuable insights into the neurocognitive implications of environmental altitude on BIC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number712278
JournalFrontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
StatePublished - Dec 10 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


  • behavioral inhibitory control (BIC)
  • delta
  • high-altitude
  • theta
  • time-frequency analysis
  • two-choice oddball task


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