|Nationality German||Name Thomas Bak|
|Fields Cognitive neuroscience, Bilingualism and Neurodegenerative disorders|
Institutions University of Edinburgh School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences at University of Edinburgh
Alma mater Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg
Thomas H. Bak (originally Tomasz Hieronymus Bąk) (born 27 March 1961 in Cracow) is a British cognitive neuroscientist. He is a researcher at the University of Edinburgh whose work centres on the impact of bilingualism on cognitive functions, bilingualism and cognitive function across the lifespan, cross-linguistic studies of aphasia, and the relationship between language, cognition and culture in neurodegenerative brain diseases. He also works on the design and adaptation of cognitive and motor assessments to different languages and cultures.
He is president of the World Federation of Neurology Research Group on Aphasia, Dementia and Cognitive Disorders (2010–2016).
He is best known for his work on the impact of bilingualism on cognitive ageing, in particular the finding that in people who speak two languages (whether from childhood or acquired later in life), dementia is delayed.
Bak TH, O'Donovan DG, Xuereb JH, Boniface S, Hodges JR (2001) Selective impairment of verb processing associated with pathological changes in the Brodman areas 44 and 45 in the motor neurone disease / dementia / aphasia syndrome. Brain, 124, 103-120.
Bak TH. & Hodges JR. (2001) Motor Neuron Disease, Dementia and Aphasia Coincidence, co-occurrence or continuum? Journal of Neurology, 248, (4) 260-270.
Bak, TH, Yancopoulou D, Nestor PJ, Xuereb JH, Spillantini MG, Pulvermüller F, Hodges JR (2006) Clinical, imaging and pathological correlates of a hereditary deficit in verb and action processing. Brain, 129, 321-332.
TH Bak, S Chandran (2012) What wires together dies together: verbs, actions and neurodegeneration in motor neuron disease. Cortex 48 (7), 936-944
Bak, Thomas H., Jack J. Nissan, Michael M. Allerhand, Ian J. Deary (2014) Does bilingualism influence cognitive aging? Annals of Neurology 75 (6), 959-963
Bak TH, Long MR, Vega-Mendoza M, Sorace A. (2016) Novelty, Challenge, and Practice: The Impact of Intensive Language Learning on Attentional Functions. PLoS One. Published on-line 27 April 2016.