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More than a decade of failure to find disease-modifying treatments for Alzheimer’s dementia has driven the field back to finding better symptomatic treatments for behavioral symptoms of dementia, especially psychosis and agitation.
Previous studies have demonstrated that individuals with Internet gaming disorder (IGD) showed attentional bias toward gaming-related cues and exhibited impaired executive functions. The purpose of this study was to explore the alternations in related functional brain networks underlying attentional bias in IGD subjects.
Eighteen IGD subjects and 19 healthy controls (HC) were scanned with functional magnetic resonance imaging while they were performing an addiction Stroop task. Networks of functional connectivity were identified using group independent component analysis (ICA).
ICA identified 4 functional networks that showed differences between the 2 groups, which were related to the right executive control network and visual related networks in our study. Within the right executive control network, in contrast to controls, IGD subjects showed increased functional connectivity in the temporal gyrus and frontal gyrus, and reduced functional connectivity in the posterior cingulate cortex, temporal gyrus, and frontal gyrus.
These findings suggest that IGD is related to abnormal functional connectivity of the right executive control network, and may be described as addiction-related abnormally increased cognitive control processing and diminished response inhibition during an addiction Stroop task. The results suggest that IGD subjects show increased susceptibility towards gaming-related cues but weakened strength of inhibitory control.
Evidence suggests that skin picking disorder (SPD) could be a prevalent condition associated with comorbidity and psychosocial dysfunction. However, just a few studies have assessed the prevalence and correlates of SPD in samples from low- and middle-income countries. In addition, the impact of SPD on quality of life (QoL) dimension after multivariable adjustment to potential confounders remains unclear.
Data were obtained from a Brazilian anonymous Web-based research platform. Participants provided sociodemographic data and completed the modified Skin Picking–Stanford questionnaire, the Hypomania Checklist (HCL-32), the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence, Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT), Symptom Checklist-90-Revised inventory (SCL-90R), early trauma inventory self report–short form, and the World Health Organization quality of life abbreviated scale (WHOQOL-Bref). Associations were adjusted to potential confounders through multivariable models.
For our survey, 7639 participants took part (71.3% females; age: 27.2±7.9 years). The prevalence of SPD was 3.4% (95% CI: 3.0–3.8%), with a female preponderance (P<0.001). In addition, SPD was associated with a positive screen for a major depressive episode, nicotine dependence, and alcohol dependence, as well as suicidal ideation. Physical and psychological QoL was significantly more impaired in participants with SPD compared to those without SPD, even after adjustment for comorbidity.
In this large sample, SPD was a prevalent condition associated with co-occurring depression, nicotine, and alcohol dependence. In addition, SPD was independently associated with impaired physical and psychological QoL. Public health efforts toward the early recognition and treatment of SPD are warranted.
To elucidate the mechanisms of how snack foods may induce non-homeostatic food intake, we used resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), as resting state networks can individually adapt to experience after short time exposures. In addition, we used graph theoretical analysis together with machine learning techniques (support vector machine) to identifying biomarkers that can categorize between high-caloric (potato chips) vs. low-caloric (zucchini) food stimulation.
Seventeen healthy human subjects with body mass index (BMI) 19 to 27 underwent 2 different fMRI sessions where an initial resting state scan was acquired, followed by visual presentation of different images of potato chips and zucchini. There was then a 5-minute pause to ingest food (day 1=potato chips, day 3=zucchini), followed by a second resting state scan. fMRI data were further analyzed using graph theory analysis and support vector machine techniques.
Potato chips vs. zucchini stimulation led to significant connectivity changes. The support vector machine was able to accurately categorize the 2 types of food stimuli with 100% accuracy. Visual, auditory, and somatosensory structures, as well as thalamus, insula, and basal ganglia were found to be important for food classification. After potato chips consumption, the BMI was associated with the path length and degree in nucleus accumbens, middle temporal gyrus, and thalamus.
The results suggest that high vs. low caloric food stimulation in healthy individuals can induce significant changes in resting state networks. These changes can be detected using graph theory measures in conjunction with support vector machine. Additionally, we found that the BMI affects the response of the nucleus accumbens when high caloric food is consumed.
Impulsivity and impaired decision-making have been proposed as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) endophenotypes, running in OCD and their healthy relatives independently of symptom severity and medication status. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) targeting the ventral limb of the internal capsule (vALIC) and the nucleus accumbens (Nacc) is an effective treatment strategy for treatment-refractory OCD. The effectiveness of vALIC-DBS for OCD has been linked to its effects on a frontostriatal network that is also implicated in reward, impulse control, and decision-making. While vALIC-DBS has been shown to restore reward dysfunction in OCD patients, little is known about the effects of vALIC-DBS on impulsivity and decision-making. The aim of the study was to compare cognitive impulsivity and decision-making between OCD patients undergoing effective vALIC-DBS or treatment as usual (TAU), and healthy controls.
We used decision-making performances under ambiguity on the Iowa Gambling Task and reflection impulsivity on the Beads Task to compare 20 OCD patients effectively treated with vALIC-DBS, 40 matched OCD patients undergoing effective TAU (medication and/or cognitive behavioural therapy), and 40 healthy subjects. Effective treatment was defined as at least 35% improvement of OCD symptoms.
OCD patients, irrespective of treatment modality (DBS or TAU), showed increased reflection impulsivity and impaired decision-making compared to healthy controls. No differences were observed between OCD patients treated with DBS or TAU.
OCD patients effectively treated with vALIC-DBS or TAU display increased reflection impulsivity and impaired decision-making independent of the type of treatment.
Compulsivity refers to a tendency toward repetitive habitual behaviors. Multiple disorders have compulsive symptoms at their core, including substance use disorders, gambling disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. The aim of this study was to validate a scale for the objective, transdiagnostic measurement of compulsivity.
The 15-item Cambridge–Chicago Compulsivity Trait Scale (CHI-T) was developed for the rapid but comprehensive measurement of compulsivity. Adults aged 18–29y were recruited using media advertisements, and completed the CHI-T in addition to demographic, clinical, and cognitive assessment. The validity and psychometric properties of the scale were quantified.
A total of 112 participants completed the study. The scale yielded a normal distribution with very few outliers. It had excellent psychometric properties, with high internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha=0.8), and excellent convergent validity against gold-standard assessments of compulsive symptoms (each p<0.001 for gambling disorder, obsessive-compulsive, and substance use disorder symptoms). Total scores on the scale correlated significantly with less risk-adjustment on the decision-making task (rigid response style), and divergent validity was confirmed against other cognitive domains (response inhibition and executive planning). The above significant findings withstood Bonferroni correction. Factor analysis suggested the existence of two latent factors: one related mainly to reward-seeking and the need for perfection, and the other relating to anxiolytic/soothing features of compulsivity.
The CHI-T, a scale designed to measure transdiagnostic compulsivity, appears to show excellent psychometric properties in a normative population and merits further investigation in the context of clinical patient populations, including in treatment trials.