5 years ago

Deficits in voluntary pursuit and inhibition of risk taking in sensation seeking

Qi Li, Weizhi Nan, Xun Liu, Jin Liang, Guochun Yang, Moqian Tian, Ya Zheng
Sensation seeking has been associated with substance use and other risk-taking behaviors. The present functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study investigated the neural correlates underlying risk taking in sensation seeking. Twenty-eight high sensation seekers (HSS; 14 female and 14 male young adults) and 28 low sensation seekers (LSS; 14 female and 14 male young adults) performed an interactive, sequential gambling task that allowed for voluntary pursuit or inhibition of risk taking. Behaviorally, HSS versus LSS exhibited a stronger tendency toward risk taking. Comparison of the groups revealed that when taking risks, HSS relative to LSS exhibited reduced fMRI responses in brain areas involved in risk processing, such as the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and the thalamus. Importantly, during the voluntary inhibition of risk taking, HSS relative to LSS showed greater fMRI responses in brain areas implicated in cognitive control (the bilateral anterior cingulate cortex) and negative emotion (the right anterior insula). These findings suggest that risk taking in sensation seeking may be driven by both a hypoactive neural system in the voluntary pursuit of risk taking and a hyperactive neural system in the voluntary inhibition of risk taking, thus providing implications for future prevention programs targeting sensation-seeking behaviors. Hum Brain Mapp, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/hbm.23807

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