Impact of chronic diseases on executive control functions, and functional brain imaging in action

Years ago, we observed that individual differences in glucose metabolism predict performance in tasks assessing attentional control, even in non-diabetic seniors (Gagnon et al., 2010) and that coronary patients that underwent heart surgery show specific, but reversible cognitive deficits by an intervention (de Tournay-Jetté et al., 2012). We also showed that physical functioning predicts executive functions in older adults (Desjardins-Crépeau et al., 2014; 2016) and that heart variability mediates attentional control performances in master athletes (Dupuy et al., 2018).

We also contributed in improving ways to assess performances and brain activation patterns during attention tasks involved in mobility outcomes (walking on a treadmill; Fraser et al., 2016), during aerobic exercise (Mekari et al., 2015, and walking while performing a cognitive task in individuals at risk of cardiovascular disease (Talamonti et al., 2021) using portable near infrared spectroscopy imaging (NIRS).


  1. Gagnon, C., Bherer, L., & Greenwood, C. (2010) The acute effects of glucose ingestion on attentional control in fasting healthy older adults, Psychopharmacology, 211(3), 337-346.
  2. De Tournay-Jetté, E., Dupuis, G. Denault, A., & Cartier, R., Bherer, L. (2012) The benefits of cognitive training after a coronary artery bypass graft surgery. J of Behavioral Medecine. Epub: 2011 Nov 9
  3. Desjardins-Crépeau, L., Berryman, N., Vu, T.T.M., Villalpando, J.M., Kergoat, M.J., Li, K.Z., Bosquet, L., & Bherer, L. (2014). Physical functioning is associated with processing speed and executive functions in community-dwelling older adults. Journal of Gerontology, Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences.13 May 2014 [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 24829304 doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbu036
  4. Dupuy O., Bosquet, L., Fraser S.A., Labelle, V., Bherer, L. (2018). Higher cardiovascular fitness level is associated to better cognitive dual-task performance in Master Athletes: Mediation by cardiac autonomic control. Brain Cogn. 2018 Aug; 125:127-134. Doi: 10.1016/j.bandc.2018.06.003. Epub 2018 Jun 30.
  5. Fraser, S., Dupuy, O., Pouliot, P., Lesage, F. & Bherer, L. (2016). Comparable cerebral oxygenation patterns in younger and older adults during dual-task walking with increasing load. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience. October, Vol.8
  6. Talamonti, D., Vincent, T., Fraser, S., Nigam, A., Lesage, F., & Bherer, L. (2021). The Benefits of Physical Activity in Individuals with Cardiovascular Risk Factors: A Longitudinal Investigation Using fNIRS and Dual-Task Walking. Journal of clinical medicine, 10(4), 579.