The current study addresses the relation between impulsive personality and mismatch negativity (MMN) as measure of auditory processing. In a sample of 33 normals, MMN was measured and related to self-reported measures of impulsive behavior. Participants were tested using a passive auditory oddball paradigm while EEG recordings were obtained. It was found that the negative MMN amplitude at the left lateral cluster was negatively correlated with self-reported impulsivity, with high impulsive individuals showing larger MMN amplitudes than low impulsive individuals. This indicates that impulsivity is related to preattentive auditory processing, a process that is not dependent on response execution. In addition to the well-known involvement of top-down control in impulsivity, these findings implicate that the cognitive bottom-up processing of incoming stimuli is associated with individual differences in impulsivity. Since the source of the MMN is thought to be located in the auditory cortex, this suggests involvement of "lower order" temporal lobe processes in impulsive behaviors.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Auditory processing, Impulsivity, Mismatch negativity, Preattentive
Persistent URL,
Journal Biological Psychology
Franken, I.H.A, Nijs, I.M.T, & van Strien, J.W. (2005). Impulsivity affects mismatch negativity (MMN) measures of preattentive auditory processing. Biological Psychology, 70(3), 161–167. doi:10.1016/j.biopsycho.2005.01.007