Extinction of cue-evoked drug-seeking relies on degrading hierarchical instrumental expectancies.
Bottom Line: The results showed that the ability of a drug stimulus to transfer control over a separately trained drug-seeking response was not affected by the stimulus undergoing Pavlovian extinction training in experiment 1, but was abolished by the stimulus undergoing discriminative extinction training in experiment 2, and was abolished by explicit verbal instructions stating that the stimulus did not signal a more effective response-drug contingency in experiment 3.These data suggest that cue-evoked drug-seeking is mediated by a propositional hierarchical instrumental expectancy that the drug-seeking response is more likely to be rewarded in that stimulus.Methods which degraded this hierarchical expectancy were effective in the laboratory, and so may have therapeutic potential.
Affiliation: School of Psychology, University of Exeter, Washington Singer Building, Perry Road, Exeter EX4 4QG, UK; School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.Show MeSH
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Mentions: Finally, in the transfer test, participants were told that they could earn cigarettes and chocolate by pressing the D and H keys as earlier in the study, but they would only be told how many of each reward they had earned at the end of the task. This nominal extinction condition was employed to ensure that the specific PIT effect was due to the CS retrieving the relevant R-O contingency, and not by S-R/reinforcement learning within the test phase (as is standard for the PIT procedure in humans and animals; (Hogarth et al., 2013)). In each trial of the PIT test, a CS (A, B, C, D) was presented for 1-s before the prompt ‘Choose a key’ appeared. There were 16 trials of each stimulus (64 trials in total) randomly selected. The dependent measure was the percentage of tobacco vs. chocolate responses in the presence of each stimulus. The question at stake was whether Pavlovian extinction would attenuate the ability of stimuli to promote selective responding for the corresponding outcome (Fig. 2).
Affiliation: School of Psychology, University of Exeter, Washington Singer Building, Perry Road, Exeter EX4 4QG, UK; School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia. Electronic address: email@example.com.