COGNITIVE NEUROSCIENCE AND NEUROPSYCHOLOGYResponse inhibition, preattentive processing, and sex difference in young children: an event-related potential studyLiu, Tongrana; Xiao, Tongb; Shi, JiannongaAuthor Information aKey Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing bNatural Language Processing Laboratory, College of Information Science and Engineering, Northeastern University, Liaoning, China Correspondence to Jiannong Shi, Key Laboratory of Behavioral Science, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 10A Datun Road, Chaoyang District, 100101 Beijing, China Tel:+86 10 64854533; fax:+86 10 64872070; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Received November 26, 2012 Accepted December 3, 2012 NeuroReport: February 13th, 2013 - Volume 24 - Issue 3 - p 126-130 doi: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e32835d846b Buy Metrics Abstract Response inhibition and preattentive processing are two important cognitive abilities for child development, and the current study adopted both behavioral and electrophysiological protocols to examine whether young children’s response inhibition correlated with their preattentive processing. A Go/Nogo task was used to explore young children’s response inhibition performances and an Oddball task with event-related potential recordings was used to measure their preattentive processing. The behavioral results showed that girls committed significantly fewer commission error rates, which showed that girls had stronger inhibition control abilities than boys. Girls also achieved higher d′ scores in the Go/Nogo task, which indicated that they were more sensitive to the stimulus signals than boys. Although the electrophysiological results of preattentive processing did not show any sex differences, the correlation patterns between children’s response inhibition and preattentive processing were different between these two groups: the neural response speed of preattentive processing (mismatch negativity peak latency) negatively correlated with girls’ commission error rates and positively correlated with boys’ correct hit rates. The current findings supported that the preattentive processing correlated with human inhibition control performances, and further showed that girls’ better inhibition responses might be because of the influence of their preattentive processing. © 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.