Watten R G, Magnussen S, Greenlee M W, 1998, "Spatial-frequency discrimination, brain lateralisation, and acute intake of alcohol" Perception 27(6) 729 – 736
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Spatial-frequency discrimination, brain lateralisation, and acute intake of alcohol
Reidulf G Watten, Svein Magnussen, Mark W Greenlee
Received 12 December 1997, in revised form 6 April 1998
Abstract. The effect of alcohol (breath-alcohol level of 0.1%) on perceptual discrimination of low (1.5 cycles deg-1) and high (8 cycles deg-1) spatial frequencies in the left and right visual field was measured in eighteen right-handed males, in a double-blind, balanced placebo design. Discrimination thresholds for briefly (180 ms) presented sinusoidal gratings were determined by two-alternative forced-choice judgments with four interleaving psychophysical staircases providing random trial-to- trial variation of reference spatial frequency and visual field, in addition to a random (± 10%) jitter of reference spatial frequency. Alcohol produced overall higher discrimination thresholds but did not alter the visual-field balance: no main effect of visual field was observed, but in both placebo and alcohol conditions spatial frequency interacted with visual field in the direction predicted by the spatial-frequency hypothesis of hemispheric asymmetry in visual-information processing, with left-visual-field/right-hemisphere superiority in discrimination of low spatial frequencies and right-visual-field/left-hemisphere superiority in discrimination of high spatial frequencies.
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