For the study, Creswell, recent CMU grad­uate James K. Bursley and North­eastern University’s Ajay B. Sat­pute pre­sented 27 healthy adults with infor­ma­tion about cars and other items while under­going neu­roimaging. Then, before being asked to make deci­sions about the items, the par­tic­i­pants had to com­plete a dif­fi­cult dis­tractor task — mem­o­rizing sequences of num­bers — to pre­vent them from con­sciously thinking about the deci­sion information.

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