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See detailSelective effects of nicotine on attentional processes
Mancuso, G.; Warburton, D. M.; Melen, Marie-Rose ULg et al

in Psychopharmacology (1999), 146(2), 199-204

RATIONALE: It is now well established from electrophysiological and behavioural evidence that nicotine has effects on information processing. The results are usually explained either by a primary effect ... [more ▼]

RATIONALE: It is now well established from electrophysiological and behavioural evidence that nicotine has effects on information processing. The results are usually explained either by a primary effect of nicotine or by a reversal effect of a nicotine-induced, abstinence deficit. In addition, there is dispute about the cognitive processes underlying the changes in performance. METHODS: This study has approached the first question by using the nicotine patch, in order to administer nicotine chronically. In addition, we examined the effects of nicotine on attention with a selection of tests which assessed the intensity and selectivity features of attention, using the Random Letter Generation test, the Flexibility of Attention test and the Stroop test. RESULTS: Nicotine enhanced the speed of number generation and the speed of processing in both the control and interference conditions of the Stroop test. There were no effects on attentional switching of the Flexibility of Attention test. CONCLUSION: The results are consistent with the hypothesis that nicotine mainly improves the intensity feature of attention, rather than the selectivity feature. [less ▲]

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