Biases in the explore-exploit tradeoff in addictions: the role of avoidance of uncertainty

Morris, Laurel S, Kwangyeol, Baek, Kundu, Prantik, Harrison, Neil A, Frank, Michael J and Voon, Valerie (2015) Biases in the explore-exploit tradeoff in addictions: the role of avoidance of uncertainty. Neuropsychopharmacology, 41. pp. 940-948. ISSN 0893-133X

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Abstract

We focus on exploratory decisions across disorders of compulsivity, a potential dimensional construct for the classification of mental disorders. Behaviours associated with the pathological use of alcohol or food, in alcohol use disorders (AUD) or binge-eating disorder (BED), suggest a disturbance in explore-exploit decision-making, whereby strategic exploratory decisions in attempt to improve long-term outcomes may diminish in favour of more repetitive or exploitatory choices. We compare exploration versus exploitation across disorders of natural (obesity with and without BED) and drug rewards (AUD). We separately acquired resting state functional MRI data using a novel multi-echo planar imaging sequence and independent components analysis from healthy individuals to assess the neural correlates underlying exploration. Participants with AUD showed reduced exploratory behaviour across gain and loss environments, leading to lower-yielding exploitatory choices. Obese subjects with and without BED did not differ from healthy volunteers but when compared to each other or to AUD subjects, BED had enhanced exploratory behaviours particularly in the loss domain. All subject groups had decreased exploration or greater uncertainty avoidance to losses compared to rewards. More exploratory decisions in the context of reward were associated with frontal polar and ventral striatal connectivity. For losses, exploration was associated with frontal polar and precuneus connectivity. We further implicate the relevance and dimensionality of constructs of compulsivity across disorders of both natural and drug rewards.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Neuroscience
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neurosciences. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Depositing User: Jonathan Williams
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2015 11:37
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2017 05:39
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/56086

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