The Alerting Network

Michael I. Posner

in Attention in a Social World

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199791217
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199932207 | DOI:

Series: Social Cognition and Social Neuroscience

The Alerting Network

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This chapter reviews the idea of brain states underlying conscious processing arising from studies of patient populations including coma, vegetative state, and locked-in syndrome. The default state in normal people is achieved by an instruction to lie quietly without any deliberate activity and with eyes opened or closed. It shows the importance of intrinsic brain activity in maintaining brain networks. However, there are many other brain states, and alertness itself creates a special state. Every stimulus has influence on brain arousal as well as on specific sensory and other systems. The use of a warning signal can separate the brain state related to alerting from activity produced by a target or by expecting a target. The ability to measure the key functions of attention is central to using neuroimaging to examine recovery of brain function and to the development of rehabilitation programs.

Keywords: brain state; alert state; alertness; attention; brain arousal

Chapter.  5885 words. 

Subjects: Neuropsychology

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