The Relationship Between Poverty and Dorsolateral Prefrontal Activation
The effects of poverty on children have been shown to influence brain development and function. Working memory is one of the primary cognitive functions that develop in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and is also shown to be heavily affected by poverty. We chose to study this brain region in preschool-aged children with low socioeconomic status (SES) since it develops rapidly early in life. In order to study the extent of correlation of poverty exposure on brain activation (specifically the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex), We used functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to measure prefrontal brain activity during a working memory task in a sample of preschool-aged children with low SES.