There is growing interest in methods for conditioning automatic inhibition with specific stimuli and the potential clinical implications of these methods. For example, OCD patients were shown to benefit from a computerized training program which aimed to create an association between OCD-related cues and stopping behaviors. In the current study, we aimed to investigate the ability to condition inhibition to specific stimuli and whether such conditioning can be generalized between tasks to last over time. Participants completed 6 training sessions using a novel version of the stop-signal task, the ‘conditioning automatic inhibition task’ (CAIT), over a 48 -h period, in which one randomly chosen color patch was associated with inhibition. The classic Stroop task was administered before and after the CAIT training. Results yielded smaller congruency and interference effects in the Stroop task after training, but only for the color that was associated with stopping. These results demonstrate the effect of the CAIT onto one specific stimulus, and that the effect generalized between the training and testing tasks. This provides novel evidence that the CAIT can be used to facilitate faster recruitment of inhibitory resources for a specific trained stimulus, which might later help resolve cognitive conflicts that require inhibition and might also have important clinical implications.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The study was supported by the Israel Science Foundation (grant No. 31/3431 ), and the National Institute for Psychobiology, Israel ( 215–17–18b ). We thank Hadar Naftalovich for her helpful comments and useful input on this article.
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.
- Automatic inhibition
- Cognitive training
- Stop-signal task
- Stroop task