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Journal Article

Effects of single-session transcranial direct current stimulation on reactive response inhibition


Hartwigsen,  Gesa
Lise Meitner Research Group Cognition and Plasticity, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Friehs, M., Frings, C., & Hartwigsen, G. (2021). Effects of single-session transcranial direct current stimulation on reactive response inhibition. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 128, 749-765. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2021.07.013.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-E2F3-6
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is widely used to explore the role of various cortical regions for reactive response inhibition. In recent years, tDCS studies reported polarity-, time- and stimulation-site dependent effects on response inhibition. Given the large parameter space in which study designs, tDCS procedures and task procedures can differ, it is crucial to systematically explore the existing tDCS literature to increase the current understanding of potential modulatory effects and limitations of different approaches. We performed a systematic review on the modulatory effects of tDCS on response inhibition as measured by the Stop-Signal Task. The final dataset shows a large variation in methodology and heterogeneous effects of tDCS on performance. The most consistent result across studies is a performance enhancement due to anodal tDCS over the right prefrontal cortex. Partially sub-optimal choices in study design, methodology and lacking consistency in reporting procedures may impede valid conclusions and obscured the effects of tDCS on response inhibition in some previous studies. Finally, we outline future directions and areas to improve research.