The role of the locus coeruleus in mediating the attentional blink

A neurocomputational theory

Sander Nieuwenhuis, Benjamin D. Holmes, Mark S. Gilzenrat, Jonathan D. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

124 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The attentional blink refers to the transient impairment in perceiving the 2nd of 2 targets presented in close temporal proximity. In this article, the authors propose a neurobiological mechanism for this effect. The authors extend a recently developed computational model of the potentiating influence of the locus coeruleus-norepinephrine system on information processing and hypothesize that a refractoriness in the function of this system may account for the attentional blink. The model accurately simulates the time course of the attentional blink, including Lag 1 sparing. The theory also offers an account of the close relationship of the attentional blink to the electrophysiological P3 component. The authors report results from two behavioral experiments that support a critical prediction of their theory regarding the time course of Lag 1 sparing. Finally, the relationship between the authors' neurocomputational theory and existing cognitive theories of the attentional blink is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-307
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: General
Volume134
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2005

Fingerprint

Attentional Blink
Locus Coeruleus
Automatic Data Processing
Norepinephrine

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Psychology(all)
  • Developmental Neuroscience

Cite this

Nieuwenhuis, Sander ; Holmes, Benjamin D. ; Gilzenrat, Mark S. ; Cohen, Jonathan D. / The role of the locus coeruleus in mediating the attentional blink : A neurocomputational theory. In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. 2005 ; Vol. 134, No. 3. pp. 291-307.
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The role of the locus coeruleus in mediating the attentional blink : A neurocomputational theory. / Nieuwenhuis, Sander; Holmes, Benjamin D.; Gilzenrat, Mark S.; Cohen, Jonathan D.

In: Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, Vol. 134, No. 3, 01.08.2005, p. 291-307.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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