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Event-related potentials in college-aged binge drinkers and non drinkers




Banz, Barbara C., author
Davalos, Deanna, advisor
Davies, Timothy, committee member
Chavez, Ernest, committee member

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Recent research has begun investigating whether there are neurophysiological differences in individuals who drink heavily compared to those who do not drink. Research has shown significantly reduced P3 amplitudes in response to neutral but not alcohol-related stimuli in alcoholics and their children. The purpose of this study was to further investigate this phenomenon comparing event-related potentials (ERP) of high drinkers to non drinkers when presented positive, negative and alcohol related images. Participants were categorized as a drinker or non drinker based on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT), a self report measure of alcohol use. Group comparisons were made based on differences in amplitude and latency of the P2 and the late positive potential (LPP), a component believed to be more evaluative in nature. This data indicated significant difference in the amplitude of the P2, meaning initial attention is greater in the binge drinkers compared to the non-drinking group. No differences were found in LPP amplitudes between drinkers and non-drinkers. These results suggest that there may be neurophysiological indices for binge drinking which may be useful for identifying individuals who are either at risk or currently abusing alcohol.


Covers not scanned.
Print version deaccessioned 2022.

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Binge drinking
College students -- Alcohol use


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