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  • Peltonen, Kati; Vartiainen, Matti; Laitala-Leinonen, Tiina; Koskinen, Sanna; Luoto, Teemu; Pertab, Jon; Hokkanen, Laura (2019)
    Previous research has reported lower cognitive test scores on baseline testing in athletes reporting multiple previous concussions or a history of learning disability (LD). Age also has an important influence on cognitive performance. While these factors have been considered individually in previous studies, the present study is the first to explore the interaction of age, self-reported LD, and history of concussion on baseline Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT (R)) in a nationwide study of adolescent athletes. ImPACT (R) was administered to 1823 Finnish male ice hockey players (aged 12-21 years old) prior to the 2015-2016 or 2016-2017 playing seasons. Linear regressions and simple slopes analyses were used for clarifying the impact of LD and previous concussion history on maturational trajectories. In comparison to typically developing athletes, athletes with LD had lower neurocognitive scores in all composites and differing maturational trajectory in verbal memory and visual motor speed. The number of previous concussions did not impair neurocognitive performance at baseline assessment. Application of standard age-based norms to adolescent athletes with a history of LD has the potential to negatively skew clinical decision-making. Separate reference values for LD athletes are warranted due to their unique developmental cognitive trajectories. The reference values for the Finnish participants in this study are presented.
  • Poikonen, Hanna Liisa; Toiviainen, Petri; Tervaniemi, Mari Anni Irmeli (2016)
    The neural responses to simple tones and short sound sequences have been studied extensively. However, in reality the sounds surrounding us are spectrally and temporally complex, dynamic and overlapping. Thus, research using natural sounds is crucial in understanding the operation of the brain in its natural environment. Music is an excellent example of natural stimulation which, in addition to sensory responses, elicits vast cognitive and emotional processes in the brain. Here we show that the preattentive P50 response evoked by rapid increases in timbral brightness during continuous music is enhanced in dancers when compared to musicians and laymen. In dance, fast changes in brightness are often emphasized with a significant change in movement. In addition, the auditory N100 and P200 responses are suppressed and sped up in dancers, musicians and laymen when music is accompanied with a dance choreography. These results were obtained with a novel event-related potential (ERP) method for natural music. They suggest that we can begin studying the brain with long pieces of natural music using the ERP method of electroencephalography (EEG) as has already been done with functional magnetic resonance (fMRI), these two brain imaging methods complementing each other.
  • Poessel, Maria; Freiherr, Jessica; Wiencke, Kathleen; Villringer, Arno; Horstmann, Annette (2020)
    The worldwide obesity epidemic is a major health problem driven by the modern food environment. Recently, it has been shown that smell perception plays a key role in eating behavior and is altered in obesity. However, the underlying mechanisms of this phenomenon are not well understood yet. Since the olfactory system is closely linked to the endocrine system, we hypothesized that hormonal shifts in obesity might explain this relationship. In a within-subject, repeated-measures design, we investigated sensitivity to a food and a non-food odor in the hungry and sated state in 75 young healthy (26 normal weight, 25 overweight, and 24 obese) participants (37 women). To determine metabolic health status and hormonal reactivity in response to food intake, we assessed pre- and postprandial levels of insulin, leptin, glucose, and ghrelin. Odor sensitivity did not directly depend on body weight status/body mass index (BMI) or hunger state. However, we could establish a strong negative mediating effect of insulin resistance on the relationship between BMI/waist-hip ratio and olfactory sensitivity for the food odor. These findings indicate an impact of metabolic health status on sensitivity to food odors. Our results contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms behind altered smell perception in obesity.
  • Kaltiainen, Hanna; Liljeström, Mia; Helle, Liisa; Salo, Anne; Hietanen, Marja; Renvall, Hanna; Forss, Nina (2019)
    Despite the high prevalence of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), current diagnostic tools to objectively assess cognitive complaints after mTBI continue to be inadequate. Our aim was to identify neuronal correlates for cognitive difficulties in mTBI patients by evaluating the possible alterations in oscillatory brain activity during a behavioral task known to be sensitive to cognitive impairment after mTBI. We compared oscillatory brain activity during rest and cognitive tasks (Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test [PASAT] and a vigilance test [VT]) with magnetoencephalography between 25 mTBI patients and 20 healthy controls. Whereas VT induced no significant differences compared with resting state in either group, patients exhibited stronger attenuation of 8- to 14-Hz oscillatory activity during PASAT than healthy controls in the left parietotemporal cortex (p
  • Peltonen, Kati; Vartiainen, Matti; Koskinen, Sanna; Pertab, Jon; Laitala, Tiina; Hokkanen, Laura (2021)
    Objective In sports concussion research, the importance of an individualized approach incorporating neuropsychological assessment data has been emphasized. This study examined the impact of acute signs of concussion on post-injury cognitive functioning using reliable change methodology in a sample of Finnish, elite-level, youth ice hockey players. Methods From a sample of 1,823 players (all male, 14-20 years old) who completed preseason baseline testing with the Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT (R)) battery, two subgroups were identified. First, in total, 312 uninjured athletes, who completed baseline testing twice-1 year apart. The scores were contrasted to calculate reliable change indices (RCIs). Second, from a subsample of 570 athletes participating in an intensive follow-up arm of the project, the analysis included 32 concussed athletes. The RCIs were determined for the five ImPACT composite scores and used in identifying athletes with declined performance 3 days post-injury. Results Test-retest reliability ranged from .39 to .71. Athletes who had experienced an acute loss of consciousness, amnesia, or postural instability had increased odds for declines in two or more areas assessed by ImPACT (odds ratio = 7.67-8.00, p < .05). In contrast, acute disorientation or vacant look did not lead to cognitive change that met the reliable change threshold. Conclusions The reliability coefficients and RCIs differed from those published earlier emphasizing the importance of national reference values. The presence of acute loss of consciousness, amnesia, or postural instability may indicate a more severe injury and predict the need for more intensive cognitive follow-up.
  • Manderoos, Sirpa; Wasenius, Niko S.; Laine, Merja K.; Kujala, Urho M.; Mälkiä, Esko A.; Kaprio, Jaakko; Sarna, Seppo; Bäckmand, Heli M.; Kettunen, Jyrki A.; Aunola, Sirkka; Eriksson, Johan G. (2021)
    Study Design: Cross-sectional study. Objective: To evaluate the relationship between agility and personal factors, muscle strength and power, mobility, self-reported balance and physical activity among older men. Methods: Agility was measured by using the Agility Test for Adults (ATA). We studied 100 Finnish male former elite athletes (endurance n = 50; power n = 50) and 50 matched controls aged 66 to 91 years (mean age 75.5 years). The associations between agility and other variables were similar between three groups; thus, multiple linear regression analyses were done by using the pooled data of the participants. Results: On the basis of multiple linear regression analyses, combination of age (p = .02), self-reported Activities-specific Balance Confidence scale (ABC scale), jumping height (p = .001) and self-rated health explained 26% of the variance in execution time of ATA (R-2 = 0.26; p = .000002) among elderly men. Conclusion: Power of lower extremities and age were the main determinants of the results of ATA in a cohort of men aged 66-91 years. From a clinical point of view, power of lower extremities measured by test demanding explosive power plays an important role to maintain or enhance capacity of agility.
  • Ehrström, Jolanda; Pöyhiä, Reino; Kettunen, Jyrki; Santavirta, Nina; Pyörälä, Eeva (2022)
    Background: Health care providers' beliefs influence the outcomes of low back pain patients care. Objectives: The aim of this study was to translate and cross-culturally adapt the Health Care Providers' Pain and Impairment Relationship Scale into Finnish (HC-PAIRS-FI) and to evaluate its psychometric properties and factor structure in a sample of Finnish physiotherapists and physiotherapy students. Methods: The translation was performed using established guidelines. Participants answered an online survey consisting of HC-PAIRS-FI and the Finnish Tampa Scale of Kinesiophobia adapted for health care providers (TSK-HC-FI). Internal consistency was assessed using Cronbach's alpha. Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) was used to determine test-retest reliability. A second round of analysis, exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was performed as the fit indices of the initial CFA were not satisfactory. Results: A sample of 202 physiotherapists and 97 physiotherapy students completed the survey. The second round of analysis EFA and CFA, conducted on a randomly split subsample, revealed and confirmed a three-factor, 11item HC-PAIRS-FI scale with satisfactory model fit indices. Cronbach's alpha 0.79 and ICC = 0.82 (p < 0.001) indicate good internal consistency and test-retest reliability. The standard error of measurement was 2.12. HCPAIRS-FI scores correlated moderately with TSK-HC-FI (r = 0.69, p < 0.001). Conclusions: The 11 items HC-PAIRS-FI appears to be a valid and reliable questionnaire to evaluate Finnish physiotherapists' and physiotherapy students' attitudes and beliefs about the relationship between chronic low back pain and impairment. Future studies are required to validate this scale for other health care providers.
  • Ahonen, L.; Huotilainen, M.; Brattico, E. (2016)
    In the vast majority of electrophysiological studies on cognition, participants are only measured once during a single experimental session. The dearth of studies on test-retest reliability in magnetoencephalography (MEG) within and across experimental sessions is a preventing factor for longitudinal designs, imaging genetics studies, and clinical applications. From the recorded signals, it is not straightforward to draw robust and steady indices of brain activity that could directly be used in exploring behavioral effects or genetic associations. To study the variations in markers associated with cognitive functions, we extracted three event-related field (ERF) features from time-locked global field power (GFP) epochs using MEG while participants were performing a numerical N-back task in four consecutive measurements conducted during two different days separated by two weeks. We demonstrate that the latency of the MI70, a neural correlate associated with cognitive functions such as working memory, was a stable parameter and did not show significant variations over time. In addition, the M170 peak amplitude and the mean amplitude of late positive component (LPP) also expressed moderate-to-strong reliability across multiple measures over time over many sensor spaces and between participants. The M170 amplitude varied more significantly between the measurements in some conditions but showed consistency over the participants over time. In addition we demonstrated significant correlation with the M170 and LPP parameters and cognitive load. The results are in line with the literature showing less within-subject fluctuation for the latency parameters and more consistency in between-subject comparisons for amplitude based features. The within-subject consistency was apparent also with longer delays between the measurements. We suggest that with a few limitations the ERF features show sufficient reliability and stability for longitudinal research designs and clinical applications for cognitive functions in single as well as cross-subject designs. (C) 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.