Christopher D. Wass

Learn More
Contemporary descriptions of human intelligence hold that this trait influences a broad range of cognitive abilities, including learning, attention, and reasoning. Like humans, individual genetically heterogeneous mice express a "general" cognitive trait that influences performance across a diverse array of learning and attentional tasks, and it has been(More)
In both humans and mice, the efficacy of working memory capacity and its related process, selective attention, are each strongly predictive of individuals' aggregate performance in cognitive test batteries [1-9]. Because working memory is taxed during most cognitive tasks, the efficacy of working memory may have a causal influence on individuals'(More)
Imposed social subordination, such as that which accompanies physical defeat or alienation, has been associated with impaired cognitive function in both human and non-human animals. Here we examined whether domain-specific and/or domain-general learning abilities (c.f. general intelligence) are differentially influenced by the imposition of social(More)
Learning impairments and the instability of memory are defining characteristics of cognitive aging. However, it is unclear if deficits in the expression of new memories reflect an accelerated decay of the target memory or a consequence of inefficient learning. Here, aged mice (19-21-mo old) exhibited acquisition deficits (relative to 3-5-mo old mice) on(More)
"General intelligence" is purported to influence diverse domain-specific learning abilities in humans, and previous research indicates that an analogous trait is expressed in CD-1 outbred mice. In humans and mice, exploratory tendencies are predictive of general cognitive abilities, such that higher cognitive abilities are associated with elevated levels of(More)
BACKGROUND Genetically heterogeneous mice express a trait that is qualitatively and psychometrically analogous to general intelligence in humans, and as in humans, this trait co-varies with the processing efficacy of working memory (including its dependence on selective attention). Dopamine signaling in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) has been established to(More)
A common source of variance (i.e., "general intelligence") underlies an individual's performance across diverse tests of cognitive ability, and evidence indicates that the processing efficacy of working memory may serve as one such source of common variance. One component of working memory, selective attention, has been reported to co-vary with general(More)
Learning, attentional, and perseverative deficits are characteristic of cognitive aging. In this study, genetically diverse CD-1 mice underwent longitudinal training in a task asserted to tax working memory capacity and its dependence on selective attention. Beginning at 3 mo of age, animals were trained for 12 d to perform in a dual radial-arm maze task(More)
Increases in performance on tests of attention and learning are often observed shortly after a period of aerobic exercise, and evidence suggests that humans who engage in regular exercise are partially protected from age-related cognitive decline. However, the cognitive benefits of exercise are typically short-lived, limiting the practical application of(More)
Intelligence varies across individuals. Although we struggle with the definition of intelligence (Jensen, 1989), its impact on academic, career, and social success is empirically established (Gottfredson, 1998) and immediately apparent to even the most casual observer. Differences in intelligence are not merely a social construct (as some would suggest) but(More)