Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) is thought to play a prominent role in the cognitive aspects of deception. However, lateralization of activity reported in neuroimaging studies has not been consistent; deception has been associated with increased activity in left, right and bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Research suggests that cognitive and emotional processing differ between left and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Therefore, we hypothesized that lateralization during deception would be a function of both cognitive and emotional components in deception. We applied anodal transcranial direct current stimulation to left or right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex during a deception task to determine how enhancement of processing in one hemisphere might affect deception. We measured reaction times, heart rate and skin conductance during a simulated interrogation. We found that stimulation of right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex resulted in a general decrease in heart rate and skin conductance responses (SCRs). We suggest that right DLPFC may play a general role in top-down regulation of limbic structures involved in generating transient physiological responses that are relevant to the detection of deception.
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