Detection of dynamic changes in cerebral oxygenation coupled to neuronal function during mental work in man

Neurosci Lett. 1993 Feb 5;150(1):5-8. doi: 10.1016/0304-3940(93)90094-2.


Changes in the oxygenation state of brain hemoglobin during mental work were monitored in real time (time resolution: 1 s) using near-infrared spectrophotometry in 14 healthy volunteers. In a younger group (age range 22-30 years, n = 12), the subjects finding difficulty in solving a problem were accompanied by significant increases in both oxygenated hemoglobin and total hemoglobin, while the subjects making a correct answer without difficulty showed no significant changes in hemoglobin oxygenation. When compared with those younger subjects, observations on the older subject demonstrated a decrease in oxygenated hemoglobin and a reciprocal increase in deoxygenated hemoglobin, unaccompanied by changes in total hemoglobin.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation*
  • Electroencephalography
  • Female
  • Heart Rate
  • Hemoglobins / analysis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Oxygen Consumption*
  • Oxyhemoglobins / analysis
  • Problem Solving*
  • Spectrophotometry, Infrared
  • Thinking / physiology*
  • Time Factors


  • Hemoglobins
  • Oxyhemoglobins