Comparative analysis of multifaceted neural effects associated with varying endogenous cognitive load

Leisi Pei, Georg Northoff, Guang Ouyang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Contemporary neuroscience has firmly established that mental state variation concurs with changes in neural dynamic activity in a complex way that a one-to-one mapping cannot describe. To explore the scenario of the multifaceted changes in neural dynamics associated with simple mental state variation, we took cognitive load – a common cognitive manipulation in psychology – as a venue to characterize how multiple neural dynamic features are simultaneously altered by the manipulation and how their sensitivity differs. Electroencephalogram was collected from 152 participants performing stimulus-free tasks with different demands. The results show that task demand alters wide-ranging neural dynamic features, including band-specific oscillations across broad frequency bands, scale-free dynamics, and cross-frequency phase-amplitude coupling. The scale-free dynamics outperformed others in indexing cognitive load variation. This study demonstrates a complex relationship between cognitive dynamics and neural dynamics, which points to a necessity to integrate multifaceted neural dynamic features when studying mind-brain relationship in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number795
JournalCommunications Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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