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Neurocognitive Mechanisms of Attention - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780323909358

Neurocognitive Mechanisms of Attention

1st Edition

Computational Models, Physiology, and Disease States

Authors: Golnaz Baghdadi Farzad Towhidkhah Mojdeh Rajabi
Paperback ISBN: 9780323909358
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 1st June 2021
Page Count: 300
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Neurocognitive Mechanisms of Attention: Computational Models, Physiology, and Disease States describes the brain mechanisms underlying the attention control system, how those mechanisms are examined, how they operate in different disease states, and methods for improving them. Conceptual models of attention further explore their functional operation. Coverage includes the different types of attention, processing paths, brain anatomy, and attention’s role in memory and movement. Factors affecting attention are explored including nutrition, exercise, and genetics. Neurocognitive disorders impacting attention are discussed including autism, ADHD, OCD, depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease. Assessment methods and treatments are uniquely set against the backdrop of current conceptual, computational, and oscillatory-based models to encourage researchers to pursue continued development of new diagnostic and therapeutic tools.

Key Features

  • Examines brain mechanisms underlying different types of attention
  • Explores how nutrition, exercise, genetics and more impact attention
  • Identifies impact on attention of neurocognitive diseases and disorders
  • Includes therapeutic advances to improve attention
  • Provides computational models via companion website


Cognitive neuroscientists, computational neuroscientists, and cognitive psychologists. Scientists in biomedical engineering and neural engineering

Table of Contents

Part I: Attention and its Functions
Chapter 1 Different Types of Attention 
1.1 Introduction
1.2 Processing path
1.2.1 Bottom-up attention
1.2.2 Top-down attention
1.3 Clinical models
1.3.1 Selective attention
1.3.2 Transient attention
1.3.3 Sustained attention
1.3.4 Focused attention
1.3.5 Alternating attention
1.3.6 Divided attention
1.4 Stimulus types
1.4.1 Visual attention
1.4.2 Auditory attention
1.4.3 Tactile attention
1.4.4 Olfactory attention
1.4.5 Gustatory attention
1.5 Appearance
1.5.1 Overt attention
1.5.2 Covert attention
1.6 Emotional attention
1.7 Joint attention
1.8 Inattentional blindness and deafness
1.9 Spatial attention and spatial bias
1.10 Attention span
1.11 Attention and distraction
1.12 Attention versus consciousness and awareness
1.13 Attentional blink
1.14 Summary

Chapter 2 Anatomy and Physiology of Attention
2.1 Introduction
2.2 Functional anatomy of attention
2.2.1 Default mode network
2.2.2 Frontoparietal control network
2.2.3 Salience network
2.2.4 Alerting, orienting, and executive control networks
2.2.5 Anterior and posterior attention systems
2.2.6 Dorsal and ventral attention networks
2.2.7 Frontostriatal circuits/ cortico-thalamus pathway
2.3 Role of neurotransmitters
2.3.1 Dopamine
2.3.2 Glutamate
2.3.3 Noradrenaline (Norepinephrine)
2.3.4 GABA
2.3.5 Acetylcholine
2.3.6 Serotonin
2.3.7 Interaction between neurotransmitters
2.4 Electrophysiology of attention: rhythmic behavior of the neural system
2.5 Electrophysiology of attention: event-related/ evoked potentials
2.6 Summary

Chapter 3 Attention in Memory
3.1 Introduction
3.2 Selective attention and memory
3.3 Divided attention and memory
3.4 Perceptual and reflective attention and memory
3.5 Spatial attention and memory
3.6 Summary

Chapter 4 Attention in Movement
4.1 Introduction
4.2 Motor control terminology
4.3 Attention and motor control
4.3.1 Premotor theory of attention
4.3.2 Attention to action
4.3.3 An internal and external focus of attention to the movement
4.3.4 Role of attention in motor planning
4.3.5 Attention and dual-tasks
4.3.6 Role of attention in balance
4.3.7 Level of attention and motor performance
4.4 Attention and eye movements
4.5 Attention and driving
4.6 Summary

Part II: Attention in Neurocognitive Dysfunction
Chapter 5 Factors that Affect Function of the Attention Control System
5.1 Introduction
5.2 Genetic factors
5.3 Nutrition
5.4 Contaminating materials
5.5 Exercise
5.6 Summary

Chapter 6 Neurocognitive Diseases and Disorders
6.1 Introduction
6.2 Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
6.3 Autism
6.4 Alzheimer
6.5 Parkinson’s
6.6 Obsessive-compulsive disorder
6.7 Anxiety
6.8 Depression
6.9 Schizophrenia
6.10 Summary

Chapter 7 Assessment Methods
7.1 Introduction
7.2 Subjective methods
7.2.1 Mindfulness scales
7.2.2 Moss attention rating scale (MARS)
7.2.3 Brown executive function/attention scales (Brown EF/A Scales™)
7.2.4 Brown attention deficit disorder scales® (Brown ADD Scales)
7.3 Objective methods
7.3.1 Behavioral assessments
7.3.2 Neurophysiological assessments
7.4 Summary

Chapter 8 Therapeutic Methods
8.1 Introduction
8.2 Medicinal therapies
8.3 Electrical and magnetic stimulation
8.4 Neurocognitive rehabilitation method
8.4.1 Behavioral rehabilitation methods with no explicit feedback
8.4.2 Biofeedback rehabilitation methods 
8.5 Other alternative methods
8.5.1 Meditation
8.5.2 Physical exercises
8.5.3 Attention restoration theory
8.5.4 Light therapy
8.5.5 Smooth pursuit eye movement training
8.5.6 Acupuncture
8.6 A comparison between the behavioral and neurophysiological effects of different therapeutic methods
8.7 Summary

Part III: Models of the Attention System
Chapter 9 Conceptual Models
9.1 Introduction
9.2 Filter model: early and late selection models of attention
9.3 Capacity models of attention
9.4 Spotlight model
9.5 Zoom-lens version of spotlight model
9.6 Divided attention spotlight model
9.7 Feature integration theory
9.8 Biased competition model
9.9 The two-stage model of attention
9.10 Summary

Chapter 10 Computational Models
10.1 Introduction
10.2 Theory of visual attention
10.3 Saliency-based models
10.4 CODAM
10.5 Reinforcement-learning models
10.6 Bayesian models
10.7 Symbolic models
10.8 Leabra model
10.9 Neuronal models
10.10 Oscillatory-based models
10.11 Summary

Chapter 11 Oscillatory-Based Models
11.1 Introduction
11.2 Overall block diagram and functional basis
11.2.1 Van der Pol oscillator
11.2.2 The model input (sensory information)
11.2.3 Synchronization
11.2.4 Predefined constraints of model design
11.3 Bottom-up processing resources
11.3.1 Modeling procedure
11.3.2 Simulation and experiment results
11.4 Short-term memory
11.4.1 Modeling procedure
11.4.2 Simulation results
11.5 Predictor
11.5.1 Modeling procedure
11.5.2 Simulation and experiment results
11.6 Cortico-thalamus pathway
11.7 Top-down attention control
11.7.1 Modeling procedure
11.7.2 Simulation results
11.8 Summary


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2021
1st June 2021
Academic Press
Paperback ISBN:

About the Authors

Golnaz Baghdadi

Dr. Baghdadi is a researcher at Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran. Currently appointed within the biomedical engineering department, her main areas of research interest are computational modeling of neurocognitive systems, EEG signal processing, eye movement-based diagnosis and rehabilitation methods, and transcranial electrical current stimulation devices. Her PhD work focused on computational modelling of the human attention control system and its disorder in children with ADD.

Affiliations and Expertise

Researcher, Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

Farzad Towhidkhah

Professor Towhidkhah has been a faculty member of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Amirkabir University of Technology since 1996. He earned his PhD degree in biomedical engineering from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada, where he worked on model predictive impedance control of joint movement. His research areas of interest are in biological system control, motor control, intelligent control, biological system modeling, system identification, neurocognitive systems, transcranial electrical stimulation, and bio-instruments. He is the corresponding author of many papers in these fields and three books. He is currently leading different projects in the field of the computational modeling of the attentional control system, motor control system, transcranial direct-current stimulation effects, and sensory integration mechanism in his Cybernetics and Modelling of Biological Systems laboratory. Professor Towhidkhah served as the Dean of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering at the Amirkabir University of Technology for 11 years.

Affiliations and Expertise

Faculty member, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Amirkabir University of Technology

Mojdeh Rajabi

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