How does mindfulness modulate self-regulation in pre-adolescent children? An integrative neurocognitive review

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review



Publication details

JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
DateAccepted/In press - 6 Jan 2017
DateE-pub ahead of print - 17 Jan 2017
DatePublished (current) - Mar 2017
Issue numberPt A
Number of pages22
Pages (from-to)163-184
Early online date17/01/17
Original languageEnglish


Pre-adolescence is a key developmental period in which complex intrinsic volitional methods of self-regulation are acquired as a result of rapid maturation within the brain networks underlying the self-regulatory processes of attention control and emotion regulation. Fostering adaptive self-regulation skills during this stage of development has strong implications for physical health, emotional and socio-economic outcomes during adulthood. There is a growing interest in mindfulness-based programmes for pre-adolescents with initial findings suggesting self-regulation improvements, however, neurodevelopmental studies on mindfulness with pre-adolescents are scarce. This analytical review outlines an integrative neuro-developmental approach, which combines self-report and behavioural assessments with event related brain potentials (ERPs) to provide a systemic multilevel understanding of the neurocognitive mechanisms of mindfulness in pre-adolescence. We specifically focus on the N2, error related negativity (ERN), error positivity (Pe), P3a, P3b and late positive potential (LPP) ERP components as indexes of mindfulness related modulations in non-volitional bottom-up self-regulatory processes (salience detection, stimulus driven orienting and mind wandering) and volitional top-down self-regulatory processes (endogenous orienting and executive attention).

Bibliographical note

© 2017, Published by Elsevier Ltd.

    Research areas

  • Adolescent, Attention, Brain, Child, Emotions, Evoked Potentials, Humans, Mindfulness, Journal Article, Review, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Mechanisms, Theory, Attention control, Pre-adolescents, Neurocognitive, Emotion regulation, Self-regulation, Event-related potential, Neuroscience, Development, Children

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