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Choosing Money over Drugs: The Neural Underpinnings of Difficult Choice in Chronic Cocaine Users.

Wesley MJ, Lohrenz T, Koffarnus MN, McClure SM, De La Garza R, Salas R, Thompson-Lake DG, Newton TF, Bickel WK, Montague PR - J Addict (2014)

Bottom Line: Thus, therapeutic strategies aimed at shifting preferences towards healthier alternatives remain somewhat uninformed.Behavioral analyses revealed preferences for each commodity type.We observed that CCUs devalued future commodities more than Controls.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, Virginia Tech, Roanoke, VA 24016, USA ; Human Neuroimaging Laboratory, Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, 2 Riverside Circle, Roanoke, VA 24016, USA.

ABSTRACT
Addiction is considered a disorder that drives individuals to choose drugs at the expense of healthier alternatives. However, chronic cocaine users (CCUs) who meet addiction criteria retain the ability to choose money in the presence of the opportunity to choose cocaine. The neural mechanisms that differentiate CCUs from non-cocaine using controls (Controls) while executing these preferred choices remain unknown. Thus, therapeutic strategies aimed at shifting preferences towards healthier alternatives remain somewhat uninformed. This study used BOLD neuroimaging to examine brain activity as fifty CCUs and Controls performed single- and cross-commodity intertemporal choice tasks for money and/or cocaine. Behavioral analyses revealed preferences for each commodity type. Imaging analyses revealed the brain activity that differentiated CCUs from Controls while choosing money over cocaine. We observed that CCUs devalued future commodities more than Controls. Choices for money as opposed to cocaine correlated with greater activity in dorsal striatum of CCUs, compared to Controls. In addition, choices for future money as opposed to immediate cocaine engaged the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) of CCUs more than Controls. These data suggest that the ability of CCUs to execute choices away from cocaine relies on activity in the dorsal striatum and left DLPFC.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Behavioral tasks. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity temporal decision-making tasks. (a) During single-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed money (MM) and immediate cocaine or delayed cocaine (CC). In cross-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed cocaine (MC) or between immediate cocaine or delayed money (CM). (b) An example trial from the MC task. A trial consisted of a viewing period lasting for a maximum of 5 s, a submission period lasting for 1 s, and a jittered fixation screen lasting for an average of 5 s. During the viewing period immediate and delayed options appeared randomly on the left or right side of the screen under the question, “Would you rather have?” Once individuals selected the immediate or delayed commodity a box appeared around their selection for 1 s. Immediate amounts were varied 6 times for each of four future time points (1, 4, 26, and 52 weeks).
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Related In: Results  -  Collection


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fig1: Behavioral tasks. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity temporal decision-making tasks. (a) During single-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed money (MM) and immediate cocaine or delayed cocaine (CC). In cross-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed cocaine (MC) or between immediate cocaine or delayed money (CM). (b) An example trial from the MC task. A trial consisted of a viewing period lasting for a maximum of 5 s, a submission period lasting for 1 s, and a jittered fixation screen lasting for an average of 5 s. During the viewing period immediate and delayed options appeared randomly on the left or right side of the screen under the question, “Would you rather have?” Once individuals selected the immediate or delayed commodity a box appeared around their selection for 1 s. Immediate amounts were varied 6 times for each of four future time points (1, 4, 26, and 52 weeks).

Mentions: The behavioral task parameters used for the current study have been described in detail elsewhere [12]. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity discounting tasks in which they chose between hypothetical amounts of money or cocaine available immediately or after some delay (Figure 1(a)). Single-commodity tasks were tasks where participants chose between money available now or money in the future (MM) and cocaine available now or cocaine in the future (CC). Cross-commodity tasks were tasks where participants chose between money available now or cocaine in the future (MC) and cocaine available now or money in the future (CM). Prior to the task participants gave an estimate of the number of grams of cocaine that they equated with $1000. This allowed cocaine amounts to be converted to dollar amounts after the experiment. Behavioral discounting analyses were conducted using dollar amounts. Controls were asked to treat cocaine as a commodity that they had experience with.


Choosing Money over Drugs: The Neural Underpinnings of Difficult Choice in Chronic Cocaine Users.

Wesley MJ, Lohrenz T, Koffarnus MN, McClure SM, De La Garza R, Salas R, Thompson-Lake DG, Newton TF, Bickel WK, Montague PR - J Addict (2014)

Behavioral tasks. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity temporal decision-making tasks. (a) During single-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed money (MM) and immediate cocaine or delayed cocaine (CC). In cross-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed cocaine (MC) or between immediate cocaine or delayed money (CM). (b) An example trial from the MC task. A trial consisted of a viewing period lasting for a maximum of 5 s, a submission period lasting for 1 s, and a jittered fixation screen lasting for an average of 5 s. During the viewing period immediate and delayed options appeared randomly on the left or right side of the screen under the question, “Would you rather have?” Once individuals selected the immediate or delayed commodity a box appeared around their selection for 1 s. Immediate amounts were varied 6 times for each of four future time points (1, 4, 26, and 52 weeks).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4150492&req=5

fig1: Behavioral tasks. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity temporal decision-making tasks. (a) During single-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed money (MM) and immediate cocaine or delayed cocaine (CC). In cross-commodity tasks individuals made choices between immediate money or delayed cocaine (MC) or between immediate cocaine or delayed money (CM). (b) An example trial from the MC task. A trial consisted of a viewing period lasting for a maximum of 5 s, a submission period lasting for 1 s, and a jittered fixation screen lasting for an average of 5 s. During the viewing period immediate and delayed options appeared randomly on the left or right side of the screen under the question, “Would you rather have?” Once individuals selected the immediate or delayed commodity a box appeared around their selection for 1 s. Immediate amounts were varied 6 times for each of four future time points (1, 4, 26, and 52 weeks).
Mentions: The behavioral task parameters used for the current study have been described in detail elsewhere [12]. Participants performed two single-commodity and two cross-commodity discounting tasks in which they chose between hypothetical amounts of money or cocaine available immediately or after some delay (Figure 1(a)). Single-commodity tasks were tasks where participants chose between money available now or money in the future (MM) and cocaine available now or cocaine in the future (CC). Cross-commodity tasks were tasks where participants chose between money available now or cocaine in the future (MC) and cocaine available now or money in the future (CM). Prior to the task participants gave an estimate of the number of grams of cocaine that they equated with $1000. This allowed cocaine amounts to be converted to dollar amounts after the experiment. Behavioral discounting analyses were conducted using dollar amounts. Controls were asked to treat cocaine as a commodity that they had experience with.

Bottom Line: Thus, therapeutic strategies aimed at shifting preferences towards healthier alternatives remain somewhat uninformed.Behavioral analyses revealed preferences for each commodity type.We observed that CCUs devalued future commodities more than Controls.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, Virginia Tech, Roanoke, VA 24016, USA ; Human Neuroimaging Laboratory, Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, 2 Riverside Circle, Roanoke, VA 24016, USA.

ABSTRACT
Addiction is considered a disorder that drives individuals to choose drugs at the expense of healthier alternatives. However, chronic cocaine users (CCUs) who meet addiction criteria retain the ability to choose money in the presence of the opportunity to choose cocaine. The neural mechanisms that differentiate CCUs from non-cocaine using controls (Controls) while executing these preferred choices remain unknown. Thus, therapeutic strategies aimed at shifting preferences towards healthier alternatives remain somewhat uninformed. This study used BOLD neuroimaging to examine brain activity as fifty CCUs and Controls performed single- and cross-commodity intertemporal choice tasks for money and/or cocaine. Behavioral analyses revealed preferences for each commodity type. Imaging analyses revealed the brain activity that differentiated CCUs from Controls while choosing money over cocaine. We observed that CCUs devalued future commodities more than Controls. Choices for money as opposed to cocaine correlated with greater activity in dorsal striatum of CCUs, compared to Controls. In addition, choices for future money as opposed to immediate cocaine engaged the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) of CCUs more than Controls. These data suggest that the ability of CCUs to execute choices away from cocaine relies on activity in the dorsal striatum and left DLPFC.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus