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Open Access 16-01-2024 | Research Article

A touching advantage: cross-modal stop-signals improve reactive response inhibition

Authors: Maximilian A. Friehs, Philipp Schmalbrock, Simon Merz, Martin Dechant, Gesa Hartwigsen, Christian Frings

Published in: Experimental Brain Research | Issue 3/2024

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Abstract

The ability to inhibit an already initiated response is crucial for navigating the environment. However, it is unclear which characteristics make stop-signals more likely to be processed efficiently. In three consecutive studies, we demonstrate that stop-signal modality and location are key factors that influence reactive response inhibition. Study 1 shows that tactile stop-signals lead to better performance compared to visual stop-signals in an otherwise visual choice-reaction task. Results of Study 2 reveal that the location of the stop-signal matters. Specifically, if a visual stop-signal is presented at a different location compared to the visual go-signal, then stopping performance is enhanced. Extending these results, study 3 suggests that tactile stop-signals and location-distinct visual stop-signals retain their performance enhancing effect when visual distractors are presented at the location of the go-signal. In sum, these results confirm that stop-signal modality and location influence reactive response inhibition, even in the face of concurrent distractors. Future research may extend and generalize these findings to other cross-modal setups.
Footnotes
1
There are other tasks such as the go/no-go task that measure inhibitory control. While both tasks involve inhibitory control, the Go/No-Go task focuses on withholding a response when a specific stimulus is presented, whereas the Stop Signal Task examines the ability to inhibit an already initiated response when prompted by a stop-signal. However, while both also rely on similar neural generators, the key difference is the time between go and stop signal (0 for the go/no-go and ~200–400 ms for the SST) (Raud et al. 2020).
 
2
Order was incorporated into the model as a control factor. No significant effects were expected due to the counterbalancing procedure.
 
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Metadata
Title
A touching advantage: cross-modal stop-signals improve reactive response inhibition
Authors
Maximilian A. Friehs
Philipp Schmalbrock
Simon Merz
Martin Dechant
Gesa Hartwigsen
Christian Frings
Publication date
16-01-2024
Publisher
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Published in
Experimental Brain Research / Issue 3/2024
Print ISSN: 0014-4819
Electronic ISSN: 1432-1106
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00221-023-06767-7

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