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Publication Detail
Susceptibility to interference between Pavlovian and instrumental control predisposes risky alcohol use developmental trajectory from ages 18 to 24
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
  • Authors:
    Chen H, Belanger MJ, Garbusow M, Kuitunen-Paul S, Huys QJM, Heinz A, Rapp MA, Smolka MN
  • Publisher:
  • Publication date:
  • Journal:
    Addiction Biology
  • Volume:
  • Issue:
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  • Country:
    United States
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  • Keywords:
    interference control, Pavlovian-to-instrumental transfer, risky drinking
  • Notes:
    © 2023 The Authors. Addiction Biology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society for the Study of Addiction. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Pavlovian cues can influence ongoing instrumental behaviour via Pavlovian-to-instrumental transfer (PIT) processes. While appetitive Pavlovian cues tend to promote instrumental approach, they are detrimental when avoidance behaviour is required, and vice versa for aversive cues. We recently reported that susceptibility to interference between Pavlovian and instrumental control assessed via a PIT task was associated with risky alcohol use at age 18. We now investigated whether such susceptibility also predicts drinking trajectories until age 24, based on AUDIT (Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test) consumption and binge drinking (gramme alcohol/drinking occasion) scores. The interference PIT effect, assessed at ages 18 and 21 during fMRI, was characterized by increased error rates (ER) and enhanced neural responses in the ventral striatum (VS), the lateral and dorsomedial prefrontal cortices (dmPFC) during conflict, that is, when an instrumental approach was required in the presence of an aversive Pavlovian cue or vice versa. We found that a stronger VS response during conflict at age 18 was associated with a higher starting point of both drinking trajectories but predicted a decrease in binge drinking. At age 21, high ER and enhanced neural responses in the dmPFC were associated with increasing AUDIT-C scores over the next 3 years until age 24. Overall, susceptibility to interference between Pavlovian and instrumental control might be viewed as a predisposing mechanism towards hazardous alcohol use during young adulthood, and the identified high-risk group may profit from targeted interventions.
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