Activity inhibition: A predictor of lateralized brain function during stress?

Journal article
(Original article)

Publication Details

Author(s): Schultheiss O, Riebel K, Jones NM
Journal: Neuropsychology
Publisher: American Psychological Association
Publication year: 2009
Volume: 23
Journal issue: 3
Pages range: 392-404
ISSN: 0894-4105
Language: English


The authors tested the hypothesis that activity inhibition (AI), a measure of the frequency of the word “not” in written material, marks a propensity to engage functions of the right hemisphere (RH) and disengage functions of the left hemisphere (LH), particularly during stress. Study 1 and Study 2 showed that high AI predicts faster detection of stimuli presented to the RH, relative to the LH. Study 2 provided evidence that the AI-laterality effect is specific to perceptual, but not motor, laterality and that it is particularly strong in individuals with low mood, but absent in individuals in a positive mood state. Study 3 showed that negative affective stimuli prime the AI-laterality effect more strongly than positive affective stimuli. Findings from Study 4 suggest that situationally induced frustration (losing a contest), in conjunction with high AI, leads to increased attentional laterality. The present findings substantially bolster the construct validity of AI and contribute to a better understanding of earlier findings linking AI to physiological stress responses, immune system functioning, alcohol abuse, and nonverbal behavior.

FAU Authors / FAU Editors

Schultheiss, Oliver Prof. Dr.
Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine Psychologie (Motivation, Emotion und Lernen)

External institutions
Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
New York University (NYU)

How to cite

Schultheiss, O., Riebel, K., & Jones, N.M. (2009). Activity inhibition: A predictor of lateralized brain function during stress? Neuropsychology, 23(3), 392-404.

Schultheiss, Oliver, Kathrin Riebel, and Nicolette M. Jones. "Activity inhibition: A predictor of lateralized brain function during stress?" Neuropsychology 23.3 (2009): 392-404.


Last updated on 2018-17-10 at 02:00