Simple reaction time as a function of the phase of the cardiac cycle in young adults at risk for hypertension

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Modulation of simple reaction time over the cardiac cycle, which is likely to be mediated by activation of arterial baroreceptors, may be moderated by individual difference factors that affect baroreceptor activation, such as risk for hypertension. This study examined arterial baroreceptor effects on simple reaction times by presenting vibrotactile stimuli at six intervals after the R-wave of the electrocardiogram (0, 150, 300, 450, 600, and 750 ms) in 113 young men and women whose resting blood pressure and parental history of hypertension were ascertained. Reaction times were slower early in the cardiac cycle compared to later. However, these cycle time effects were not moderated by sex, resting blood pressure, or parental history of hypertension. In conclusion, cardiac-related cortical interference was not moderated by risk for hypertension.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)333-6
Number of pages4
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2008


  • arterial baroreceptors, risk for hypertension, reaction time, cardiac cycle time Effects