Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type



Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Dr. Mark T. Fillmore,


Moderate doses of alcohol impair response inhibition activation. Recent work has shown that, during a single dose, response inhibition recovers from the impairing effects of alcohol more slowly than response activation. Evidence for a lag in tolerance development to inhibitory versus activational mechanisms suggests that, as blood alcohol declines, drinkers’ response inhibition might continue to be impaired, despite the recovery of response activation. However, this has not been studied across repeated doses. This study examined how cross-session tolerance to alcohol develops differentially between response activation and inhibition. Thirty-two healthy adults performed a cued go/no-go task that measured response activation and inhibition. The study tested the degree to which response activation and inhibition developed acute and cross-session tolerance to a moderate dose of alcohol (0.65 g/kg) administered twice. Alcohol impaired response activation and inhibition during both administrations. Response activation displayed acute tolerance to alcohol during both administrations and cross-session tolerance from the first to second administration. Response inhibition was impaired by each alcohol administration but showed no acute or cross-session tolerance. Evidence of biased recovery of response activation over inhibition during a single dose and as doses are repeated could contribute to some of the impulsive behavior commonly observed under alcohol.

Included in

Psychology Commons