Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 169, Issue 2, pp 279–282 | Cite as

The influence of rTMS over the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex on Stroop task performance

  • Marie-Anne Vanderhasselt
  • Rudi De Raedt
  • Chris Baeken
  • Lemke Leyman
  • Hugo D’haenen
Research Note


Several studies have demonstrated that repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) can improve cognitive processing. Neuroimaging studies have shown the engagement of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in executive functioning, and more specifically during selective attention. In the present study, the influence of high-frequency rTMS over the left DLPFC on Stroop task performance in healthy female volunteers was investigated. As expected, reaction time on both the incongruent and congruent trials decreased significantly after stimulation, and there was no difference with regard to the Stroop interference effect. Mood remained unchanged after rTMS. Such a pattern is consistent with the role of the left DLPFC in implementing top–down attentional control.


RTMS Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex Stroop Executive functioning Top down attentional control 



This study was supported by a grant from the Scientific Fund W. Gepts AZ VUB. The authors thank Prof. Dr. R. Luypaert, P. Clerinckx, P. Van Schuurbeeck from the department of radiology of the AZ VUB technical assistance in data collection and MRI data analysis.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marie-Anne Vanderhasselt
    • 1
  • Rudi De Raedt
    • 1
  • Chris Baeken
    • 2
  • Lemke Leyman
    • 1
  • Hugo D’haenen
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyGhent UniversityGhentBelgium
  2. 2.Academic Hospital, Department of PsychiatryFree University of Brussels (V.U.B.)BrusselsBelgium

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