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Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2016 Dec;71:58-82. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.08.020. Epub 2016 Aug 21.

Spontaneous eye blink rate as predictor of dopamine-related cognitive function-A review.

Author information

1
Institute of Psychological Research and Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition, Leiden University, Leiden, The Netherlands. Electronic address: b.j.jongkees@fsw.leidenuniv.nl.
2
Institute of Psychological Research and Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition, Leiden University, Leiden, The Netherlands.

Abstract

An extensive body of research suggests the spontaneous eye blink rate (EBR) is a non-invasive indirect marker of central dopamine (DA) function, with higher EBR predicting higher DA function. In the present review we provide a comprehensive overview of this literature. We broadly divide the available research in studies that aim to disentangle the dopaminergic underpinnings of EBR, investigate its utility in diagnosis of DA-related disorders and responsivity to drug treatment, and, lastly, investigate EBR as predictor of individual differences in DA-related cognitive performance. We conclude (i) EBR can reflect both DA receptor subtype D1 and D2 activity, although baseline EBR might be most strongly related to the latter, (ii) EBR can predict hypo- and hyperdopaminergic activity as well as normalization of this activity following treatment, and (iii) EBR can reliably predict individual differences in performance on many cognitive tasks, in particular those related to reward-driven behavior and cognitive flexibility. In sum, this review establishes EBR as a useful predictor of DA in a wide variety of contexts.

KEYWORDS:

Cognition; Dopamine; Eye blink rate; Individual differences

PMID:
27555290
DOI:
10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.08.020
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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