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Model-based and model-free control predicts alcohol consumption developmental trajectory in young adults: a 3-year prospective study


Chen, Hao; Mojtahedzadeh, Negin; Belanger, Matthew J; Nebe, Stephan; Kuitunen-Paul, Sören; Sebold, Miriam; Garbusow, Maria; Huys, Quentin J M; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A; Smolka, Michael N (2021). Model-based and model-free control predicts alcohol consumption developmental trajectory in young adults: a 3-year prospective study. Biological Psychiatry, 89(10):980-989.

Abstract

Background: A shift from goal-directed toward habitual control has been associated with alcohol dependence.Whether such a shift predisposes to risky drinking is not yet clear. We investigated how goal-directed and habitual control at age 18 predict alcohol use trajectories over the course of 3 years.
Methods: Goal-directed and habitual control, as informed by model-based (MB) and model-free (MF) learning, were assessed with a two-step sequential decision-making task during functional magnetic resonance imaging in 146healthy 18-year-old men. Three-year alcohol use developmental trajectories were based on either a consumption score from the self-reported Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (assessed every 6 months) or an interview-based binge drinking score (grams of alcohol/occasion; assessed every year). We applied a latent growth curve model to examine how MB and MF control predicted the drinking trajectory.
Results: Drinking behavior was best characterized by a linear trajectory. MB behavioral control was negatively associated with the development of the binge drinking score; MF reward prediction error blood oxygen level–dependent signals in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and the ventral striatum predicted a higher starting pointand steeper increase of the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test consumption score over time, respectively.
Conclusions: We found that MB behavioral control was associated with the binge drinking trajectory, while the MF reward prediction error signal was closely linked to the consumption score development. Thesefindings support theidea that unbalanced MB and MF control might be an important individual vulnerability in predisposing to risky drinking behavior.

Abstract

Background: A shift from goal-directed toward habitual control has been associated with alcohol dependence.Whether such a shift predisposes to risky drinking is not yet clear. We investigated how goal-directed and habitual control at age 18 predict alcohol use trajectories over the course of 3 years.
Methods: Goal-directed and habitual control, as informed by model-based (MB) and model-free (MF) learning, were assessed with a two-step sequential decision-making task during functional magnetic resonance imaging in 146healthy 18-year-old men. Three-year alcohol use developmental trajectories were based on either a consumption score from the self-reported Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (assessed every 6 months) or an interview-based binge drinking score (grams of alcohol/occasion; assessed every year). We applied a latent growth curve model to examine how MB and MF control predicted the drinking trajectory.
Results: Drinking behavior was best characterized by a linear trajectory. MB behavioral control was negatively associated with the development of the binge drinking score; MF reward prediction error blood oxygen level–dependent signals in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and the ventral striatum predicted a higher starting pointand steeper increase of the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test consumption score over time, respectively.
Conclusions: We found that MB behavioral control was associated with the binge drinking trajectory, while the MF reward prediction error signal was closely linked to the consumption score development. Thesefindings support theidea that unbalanced MB and MF control might be an important individual vulnerability in predisposing to risky drinking behavior.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Biological Psychiatry
Uncontrolled Keywords:Addiction, goal-directed, habitual, reinforcement learning, reward prediction error, risky drinking
Scope:Discipline-based scholarship (basic research)
Language:English
Date:May 2021
Deposited On:22 Dec 2021 15:41
Last Modified:26 Jun 2024 01:44
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0006-3223
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsych.2021.01.009
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:21755
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  • : FunderDeutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
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  • : FunderUniversität Zürich
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