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No evidence that prefrontal HD-tDCS influences cue-induced food craving

Sedgmond, Jemma; Chambers, Christopher D.; Lawrence, Natalia S.; Adams, Rachel C.

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Jemma Sedgmond

Christopher D. Chambers

Natalia S. Lawrence

Rachel C. Adams


This study investigated whether the application of high definition transcranial DC stimulation (HDtDCS) to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex reduces cue-induced food craving when combined with food-specific inhibitory control training. Using a within-subjects design, participants (N = 55) received both active and sham HD-tDCS across 2 sessions while completing a Go/No-Go task in which foods were either associated with response inhibition or response execution. Food craving was measured pre and post stimulation using a standardized questionnaire as well as desire to eat ratings for foods associated with both response inhibition and response execution in the training task. Results revealed no effect of HD-tDCS on reducing state food craving or desire to eat. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we were unable to achieve our maximum preplanned sample size or our minimum desired Bayesian evidence strength across all a priori hypotheses; however 6 of the 7 hypotheses converged with moderate or stronger evidence in favor of the null hypothesis over the alternative hypothesis. We discuss the importance of individual differences and provide recommendations for future studies with an emphasis on the importance of cognitive interventions.


Sedgmond, J., Chambers, C. D., Lawrence, N. S., & Adams, R. C. (2020). No evidence that prefrontal HD-tDCS influences cue-induced food craving. Behavioral Neuroscience, 134(5), 369-383.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jul 16, 2020
Publication Date Oct 1, 2020
Deposit Date Sep 9, 2022
Publicly Available Date Sep 15, 2022
Journal Behavioral Neuroscience
Print ISSN 0735-7044
Electronic ISSN 1939-0084
Publisher American Psychological Association
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 134
Issue 5
Pages 369-383
Keywords Behavioral Neuroscience
Public URL
Publisher URL


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