Keeping memory for intentions: A cTBS investigation of the frontopolar cortex

Alberto Costa, Massimiliano Oliveri, Francesco Barban, Sara Torriero, Silvia Salerno, Emanuele Lo Gerfo, Giacomo Koch, Carlo Caltagirone, Giovanni Augusto Carlesimo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study aimed to investigate the role of frontopolar cortex in prospective memory (PM) by means of inhibitory theta-burst stimulation (cTBS). Experiment 1-8 volunteers were evaluated after inhibitory cTBS over left Brodmann area (BA) 10, right BA10, and Cz. In the PM procedure, sequences of 4 words each were presented. During the intersequence delay, subjects had to repeat the sequence in the observed order (ongoing task forward) or in the reverse order (backward). At the occurrence of a target word, subjects had to press a key on the keyboard (PM task). Recall and recognition of the target words were also tested. PM accuracy was lower after cTBS over left BA10 compared with Cz (P = 0.012), whereas it was comparable in right BA10 and Cz conditions. No other significant differences between the 3 conditions were found. Experiment 2-8 subjects were administered the same experimental PM procedure as above after inhibitory cTBS over left BA46 and Cz. In this case, none of the tested effects were significant. Our findings corroborate the hypothesis that within the prefrontal cortex, the left BA10 is specifically involved in the mediation of processes related to the execution of delayed intentions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2696-2703
Number of pages8
JournalCerebral Cortex
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


  • Brodmann area 10
  • delayed intentions
  • prefrontal regions
  • prospective remembering
  • transcranial magnetic stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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