Neurodisruption of selective attention: insights and implications

Trends in Cognitive Sciences 9 (11):542-550 (2005)
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Mechanisms of selective attention are vital for coherent perception and action. Recent advances in cognitive neuroscience have yielded key insights into the relationship between neural mechanisms of attention and eye movements, and the role of frontal and parietal brain regions as sources of attentional control. Here we explore the growing contribution of reversible neurodisruption techniques, including transcranial magnetic stimulation and microelectrode stimulation, to the cognitive neuroscience of spatial attention. These approaches permit unique causal inferences concerning the relationship between neural processes and behaviour, and have revealed fundamental mechanisms of attention in the human and animal brain. We conclude by suggesting that further advances in the neuroscience of attention will be facilitated by the combination of neurodisruption techniques with established neuroimaging methods



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