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Brooding rumination and attentional biases in currently non-depressed individuals: an eye-tracking study.

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Max Owens

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Both rumination and attentional biases have been proposed as key components of the RDoC Negative Valence Systems construct of Loss. Although theorists have proposed that rumination, particularly brooding rumination, should be associated with increased sustained attention to depression-relevant information, it is not clear whether this link would be observed in a non-depressed sample or whether it is specific to brooding versus reflective rumination. To address these questions, the current study examined the link between brooding rumination and attentional biases in a sample of non-depressed individuals (n = 105). Attentional biases were assessed using eye tracking during a passive viewing task in which participants were presented with 2 × 2 arrays of angry, happy, sad, and neutral faces. In line with predictions, higher levels of brooding rumination were associated with greater sustained attention to sad faces and less sustained attention to happy faces. These results remained significant after controlling for participants’ prior history of major depression and current nonclinical level of depressive symptoms, suggesting that the link between brooding rumination and attentional biases is at least partially independent of current or past depression.


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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.