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Exp Clin Psychopharmacol. 2000 Nov;8(4):576-97.

Executive functioning: a conceptual framework for alcohol-related aggression.

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Department of Psychology, University of Kentucky, Lexington 40506-0044, USA.


The causal mechanisms underlying alcohol-related aggression are not well understood. This article presents a conceptual framework designed to guide thinking and generate new research in this area of study. According to the framework, executive functioning is both a mediator and a moderator of intoxicated aggression. Literatures describing associations between alcohol and aggression, executive functioning and aggression, and the acute effects of alcohol on executive functioning are reviewed. On the basis of these findings, it is proposed that (a) executive functioning mediates the alcohol-aggression relation in that acute alcohol intoxication disrupts executive functioning, which then heightens the probability of aggression, and (b) executive functioning moderates the alcohol-aggression relation in that acute alcohol consumption is more likely to facilitate aggressive behavior in persons with low, rather than high, executive functioning.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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