Contributions of the right prefrontal and parietal cortices to the attentional blink: A tdcs study

Anna Pecchinenda, Francesca De Luca, Bianca Monachesi, Manuel Petrucci, Mariella Pazzaglia, Fabrizio Doricchi, Michal Lavido

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The AB refers to the performance impairment that occurs when visual selective attention is overloaded through the very rapid succession of two targets (T1 and T2) among distractors by using the rapid serial visual presentation task (RSVP). Under these conditions, performance is typically impaired when T2 is presented within 200–500 ms from T1 (AB). Based on neuroimaging studies suggesting a role of top-down attention and working memory brain hubs in the AB, here we potentiated via anodal or sham tDCS the activity of the right DLPFC (F4) and of the right PPC (P4) during an AB task. The findings showed that anodal tDCS over the F4 and over P4 had similar effects on the AB. Importantly, potentiating the activity of the right frontoparietal network via anodal tDCS only benefitted poor performers, reducing the AB, whereas in good performers it accentuated the AB. The contribution of the present findings is twofold: It shows both top-down and bottom-up contributions of the right frontoparietal network in the AB, and it indicates that there is an optimal level of excitability of this network, resulting from the individual level of activation and the intensity of current stimulation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1208
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors.


  • Attentional blink
  • Parietal cortex
  • Prefrontal cortex
  • TDCS


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