Duncan Astle
Programme leader, Executive processes group
01223 355294

The best way to find out about our research is to take a look at our research page

Our research explores the cognitive and brain mechanisms associated with attention and working memory in childhood. These mechanisms develop gradually through early and mid-childhood, and are excellent predictors of a child's educational progress. Furthermore these abilities of regularly implicated in various neurodevelopmental disorders. We want to understand how and why these abilities differ so markedly across children, and whether they can be enhanced with interventions. To do this we use a variety of neuroimaging methods to better understand how different brain areas interact, how these neural systems correspond to cognitive ability, and how these brain systems respond to targetted intervention.

In addition to intramural support from the Medical Research Council, the research programme is supported by the Stroke Association and the NewLife Foundation for Disabled Children. Previous projects have been supported by the Royal Society, the British Academy, and the Economic and Social Research Council.

Show CBSU publications

BATHELT, J., GATHERCOLE, S., JOHNSON, A., ASTLE, D. (In Press) Differences in brain morphology and working memory capacity across childhood, Developmental Science [Read More]

BATHELT, J., Barnes, J., Raymond, L.F., Baker, K., ASTLE, D. (In Press) Global and local connectivity differences converge with gene expression in a neurodevelopmental disorder of known genetic origin, Cerebral Cortex [Read More]

ASTLE, D. , Barnes, J.,m Nobre, K., Woolrich, M., Baker, K. (In Press) Training working memory in childhood enhances coupling between fronto-parietal control network and task-related regions, Journal of Neuroscience [Read More]

ASTLE, D. , Kuo, B-C., Scerif, G., Nobre, K. (In Press) Top-down activation of spatiotopic sensory codes in perceptual and working-memory search, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience [Read More]

BATHELT, J., ASTLE, D. , BARNES, J., Raymond, L.F., & Baker, K. (2016) Structural brain abnormalities in a single gene disorder associated with epilepsy, language impairment and intellectual disability, Neuroimage: Clinical, 12: 655-665 [Open Access]

GATHERCOLE, S., WOOLGAR, F., the CALM Team, KIEVIT, R.A., ASTLE, D. , Manly, T., HOLMES, J. (2016) How common are WM deficits in children with difficulties in reading and mathematics?, Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition, 5(4), 384-394 [Open Access]

HAWKINS, E., GATHERCOLE, S., ASTLE, D. , the CALM team, HOLMES, J. (2016) Language problems and ADHS symptoms: How specific are the links?, Brain Sciences, 6(4), 50 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. (2016) Developmental and individual differences in the precision of visuospatial memory, Cognitive Development, 39, July-September, 1-12 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. E., Barnes, J.J.M., Woolrich, M.W.., Baker, K., Colclough, G.L. (2016) Electrophysiological measures of resting state functional connectivity and their relationship with working memory capacity in childhood, Developmental Science, 19(1), 19-31 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. , Luckhoo, H., Woolrich, M., Kuo, B-C., Nobre, A.C., Scerif, G. (2015) The Neural Dynamics of Fronto-Parietal Networks in Childhood Revealed using Magnetoencephalography, Cerebral Cortex, 25(10), 3868-3876 [Open Access]

Baker, K., Scerif, G., Astle, D. E., Fletcher, P.C., Raymond, F.L. (2015) Psychopathology and cognitive performance in individuals with membrane-associated guanylate kinase mutations: a functional network phenotyping study., Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders, 7(1), 8 [Open Access]

Baker, K., ASTLE, D. E., Scerif, G., Barnes, J., Smith, J., Moffat, G., Gillard, J, Baldeweg, T., and Raymond, F.L (2015) Epilepsy, cognitive deficits and neuroanatomy in males with ZDHHC9 mutations., Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology, 2(5), 559-569 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. , Barnes, J.J., Baker, K., Colclough, G.L., Woolrich, M.W. (2015) Cognitive training enhances intrinsic brain connectivity in childhood, Journal of Neuroscience, 35(16), 6277-6283 [Open Access]

Hawkins, E., ASTLE, D. , Rastle, K. (2015) Semantic Advantage for Learning New Phonological Form Representations, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 27(4), 775-786] [Read More]

ASTLE, D. , Shimi, A., Woolrich, M., Mantini, D. (2014) Memory Load Modulates Graded Changes in Distracter Filtering, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8:1025 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. E., Luckhoo, H., Woolrich, M.W.W., Kuo, B.C., Nobre, A.C., Scerif, G. (2014) The Neural Dynamics of Fronto-Parietal Networks in Childhood Revealed using Magnetoencephalography, Cerebral Cortex [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. , Poliakov, E., Stokes, M., Woolrich,. M., Mantinl, D. (2014) Modulation of Alpha power at encoding + retrieval tracks the precision of VSTM, Journal of Neurophysiology, 112(11), 2939-2945 [Open Access]

Shimi, A., Nobre, A.C., ASTLE, D. , Scerif, G. (2014) Orienting attention within visual short-term memory: Development and mechanisms, Child Development, 85(2), 578-592 [Read More]

Shimi, A., Kue, B-C., ASTLE, D. E., Nobre, A.C., and Scerif, G (2014) Age Group and Individual Differences in Attentional Orienting Dissociate Neural Mechanisms of Encoding and Maintenance in Visual STM, Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 26(4), 864-877 [Read More]

Kuo, Bo-Cheng, ASTLE, D. E. (2014) Neural mechanisms by which attention modulates the comparison of remembered and perceptual representation, PLoS One, 9(1), e86666 [Open Access]

ASTLE, D. , Harvey, H., Stokes, M., Mohseni, H., Nobre, K., Scerif, G. (2014) Distinct neural mechanisms of individual and developmental differences in VSTM capacity, Developmental Psychobiology, 56(4), 601-610 [Read More]

ASTLE, D. & Shimi, A. (2013) The strength of attentional biases reduces as VSTM becomes more full, Journal of Neurophysiology, 110(1), 12-18 [Read More]

Gosling, S.G., ASTLE, D. E. (2013) Directing spatial attention to locations within remembered and imagined mental representations, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7:154 [Open Access]

Murray, A.M., Nobre, A.C., ASTLE, D. E., Stokes, M.G. (2012) Lacking control over the trade-off between quality and quantity in visual short-term memory, PLoS One, 7(8), e41223 [Open Access]