Advertisement

Journal of Gambling Studies

, Volume 23, Issue 4, pp 435–455 | Cite as

Reward-Sensitivity, Inhibition of Reward-Seeking, and Dorsolateral Prefrontal Working Memory Function in Problem Gamblers not in Treatment

  • Victor Leiserson
  • Robert O. Pihl
Original Paper

Abstract

Given the central role of perseverative chasing in problem gambling, the present study sought to find evidence for three hypothesized components of perseveration in problem gamblers: reward-sensitivity dominance, deficient inhibition of reward-seeking behavior, and working memory deficits. This was the first attempt to examine working memory deficits in problem gamblers using a conditional association task, which is associated with posterior-dorsolateral prefrontal functioning. In a sample that was not in treatment, and representative in terms of comorbidity, problem gamblers performed significantly worse on the conditional association working memory tasks after controlling for general memory function, compared to demographically-matched controls. This is significant because deficits in the dorsolateral prefrontal region have been consistently associated with perseveration, which suggests that problem gamblers’ perseverative chasing may be associated with a working memory deficit. Problem gamblers were not significantly higher than at-risk gamblers in terms of reward-sensitivity dominance (measured as a personality trait in terms of extraversion) suggesting that it may not be specifically associated with problem gambling. Sensation-seeking was also not associated with problem gambling in a sample that corrected for the methodological problems of previous studies which examined it. The need for gambling research to focus specifically on the perseverative inability to stop gambling is emphasized, and the present findings of specific working memory deficits in problem gamblers suggest the need for further examination of working memory as a potential risk factor for problem gambling. We propose that subsequent studies examine working memory in terms of the self-regulatory capacity for goal maintenance where attention must specifically be allocated to resist interference.

Keywords

Problem Gambling Chasing Working Memory Dorsolateral Perseveration Impulsivity 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Support for this article came from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. We are particulary grateful to Peter Hoaken, Rhonda Amsel, Frank Vitaro, Jean-Marc Assaad, and Jean Séguin for their advice on statistical and other issues. We are also grateful to Rina Gupta and Jeffrey Derevensky for their comments on earlier versions of this paper.

References

  1. American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.Google Scholar
  2. Baddeley, A. D., & Logie, R. (1999). Working memory: The multiple component model. In A. Miyake & P. Shah (Eds.), Models of working memory: Mechanisms of active maintenance and executive control (pp. 28–61). New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Bechara, A., Dolan, S., Denburg, N., Hindes, A., Anderson, S. W., & Nathan, P. E. (2001). Decision-making deficits, linked to a dysfunctional ventromedial prefrontal cortex, revealed in alcohol and stimulant abusers. Neuropsychologia, 39, 376–389.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bechara, A., Tranel, D., & Damasio, A. R. (2002). The somatic marker hypothesis and decision-making. In J. Grafman (Ed.), Handbook of neuropsychology: Frontal lobes, vol. 7 (2nd ed., pp. 117–143). Amsterdam: Elsevier.Google Scholar
  5. Berg, E. A. (1948). A simple objective technique for measuring flexibility in thinking. Journal of General Psychology, 39,15–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Black, D. W., Goldstein, R. B., Noyes, R., & Blum, N. (1994). Compulsive behaviors and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): Lack of a relationship between OCD, eating disorders, and gambling. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 35, 145–148.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Black, D. W., & Moyer, T. (1998). Clinical features and psychiatric comorbidity of subjects with pathological gambling behavior. Psychiatric Services, 49, 1434–1439.Google Scholar
  8. Bland, R. C., Newman, S. C., Orn, H., & Stebelsky, G. (1993). Epidemiology of pathological gambling in Edmonton. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 38, 108–112.Google Scholar
  9. Blaszczynski, A., McConaghy, N., & Frankova, A. (1990). Boredom Proneness in an impulse control disorder. Psychological Reports, 67, 35–42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Blaszczynski, A., Wilson, A., & McConaghy, N. (1986). Sensation seeking and pathological gambling. British Journal of Addiction, 81, 113–117.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Blaszczynski, A. P. (1999). Pathological gambling and obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders. Psychological Reports, 84, 107–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Breen, R. B., & Zuckerman, M. (1999). ‘Chasing’ in gambling behavior: Personality and cognitive determinants. Personality and Individual Differences, 27, 1097–1111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cavedini, P., Riboldi, G., D’Annucci, A., Belotti, P., Cisima, M., & Bellodi, L. (2002a). Decision-making heterogeneity in obsessive-compulsive disorder: Ventromedial prefrontal cortex function predicts different treatment outcomes. Neuropsychologia, 40, 205–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Cavedini, P., Riboldi, G., Keller, R., D’Annucci, A., & Bellodi, L. (2002b). Frontal lobe dysfunction in pathological gambling patients. Biological Psychiatry, 51, 334-341.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: ErlbaumGoogle Scholar
  16. Colder, C. R., & Chassin, L. (1997). Affectivity and impulsivity: Temperament risk for adolescent alcohol involvement. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 11, 83–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Cunningham-Williams, R. M., Cottler, L. B., Compton, W. M., & Spitznagel, E. L. (1998). Taking chance: Problem Gamblers and mental health disorders: Results from the St. Louis Epidemiologic Catchment Area study. American Journal of Public Health, 88, 1093–1096.Google Scholar
  18. Cunningham-Williams, R. M., Cottler, L. B., Compton, W. M., Spitznagel, E. L., & Ben-Abdallah, A. (2000). Problem gambling and comorbid psychiatric and substance use disorders among drug users recruited from drug treatment and community settings. Journal of Gambling Studies, 16, 347–376.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. D’Esposito, M., Detre, J. A., Alsop, D. C., Shin, R. K., Atlas, S., & Grossman, M. (1995). The neural basis of the central executive system of working memory. Nature, 378, 279–281.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Depue, R. A., & Collins, P. F. (1999). Neurobiology of the structure of personality: Dopamine, facilitation of incentive motivation, and extraversion. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 22, 491–569.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Duncan, J. (1990). Goal weighting and the choice of behavior in a complex world. Ergonomics, 33, 1265–1279.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Duncan, J. (1993). Selection of input and goal in the control of behavior. In A. Baddeley, & L. Weiskrantz (Eds.), Attention: Selection, awareness, and control. A tribute to Donald Broadbent (pp. 53–71). Oxford: Oxford University Press, Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  23. Duncan, J. (1995). Attention, intelligence, and the frontal lobes. In M. S. Gazzaniga (Ed.), The cognitive neurosciences (pp. 721–733). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  24. Duncan, J., Emslie, H., Williams, P., Johnson, R., & Freer, C. (1996). Intelligence and the frontal lobe: The organization of goal-directed behavior. Cognitive Psychology, 30, 257–303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Elliott, R., Dolan, R. J., & Frith, C. D. (2000). Dissociable functions in the medial and lateral orbitofrontal cortex: Evidence from human neuroimaging studies. Cerebral Cortex, 10, 308–317.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Engle, R. W. (2002). Working memory capacity as executive attention. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 11, 19–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Eysenck, H. J., & Eysenck, S. B. G. (1975). Manual of the Eysenck personality questionnaire (adult and junior). London: Hodder & Stoughton.Google Scholar
  28. First, M. B., Gibbon, M., Williams, J. B. W., Spitzer, R. L., & MHS Staff. Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID) Screen Patient Questionnaire-Extended Computer Program for WindowsTM © 1999 Multi-Health Systems, Inc., American Psychiatric Press, Inc.Google Scholar
  29. First, M. B., Gibbon, M., Williams, J. B. W., Spitzer, R. L., & MHS Staff. Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID) Screen Patient Questionnaire Computer Program for WindowsTM © 1991, 1996, 1999, 2001 Multi-Health Systems, Inc., American Psychiatric Press, Inc.Google Scholar
  30. Fleming, M. F., & Barry, K. L. (1989). A study examining the psychometric properties of the SMAST-13: Short Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test. Journal of Substance Abuse, 1, 173–182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Frost, R. O., Meagher, B. M., & Riskind, J. H. (2001). Obsessive-Compulsive Features in pathological lottery and scratch-ticket gamblers. Journal of Gambling Studies, 17, 5–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Fuster, J. M. (1989). The prefrontal cortex: Anatomy, physiology, and neuropsychology of the frontal lobe. New York: Raven Press.Google Scholar
  33. Goel, V., & Dolan, R. (2000). Anatomical segregation of component processes in an inductive inference task. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 12, 110–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Goldberg, E., Podell, K., Harner, R., Riggio, S., & Lovell, M. (1994). Cognitive bias, functional cortical geometry, and the frontal lobes: Laterality, sex, and handedness. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 6, 276–296.Google Scholar
  35. Goldman-Rakic, P. S. (1987). Circuitry of primate prefrontal cortex and regulation of behavior by representational memory. In F. Plum (Ed.), Handbook of physiology: The nervous system, vol. 5 (pp. 373–417). Bethesda, MD: American Physiological Society.Google Scholar
  36. Goldman-Rakic, P. S. (1992). Working memory and the mind. Scientific American, 267, 111–117.Google Scholar
  37. Goudriaan, A. E., Oosterlaan, J., de Beurs, E., & van den Brink, W. (2006). Neurocognitive functions in pathological gambling: A comparison with alcohol dependence, Tourette syndrome and normal controls. Addiction, 101, 534–547.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Grant, S. (2000). Reduced ventromedial prefrontal cortex activity in cocaine users predicts deficits in performance of a short-term-gain/loss task. Presented at the College on Problems in Drug Dependence Convention, San Juan, Puerto Rico. June 17–23.Google Scholar
  39. Grant, D. A., & Berg, E. A. (1948). A behavioral analysis of degree of reinforcement and ease of shifting to new responses in a Weigl-type card sorting problem. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 38, 404–411.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Gray, J. A., Owen, S., Davis, N., & Tsaltas, E. (1983). Psychological and physiological relations between anxiety and impulsivity. In M. Zuckerman (Ed.), The biological bases of sensation seeking, impulsivity and anxiety (pp. 189–217). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  41. Kane, M. J., & Engle, R. W. (2002). The role of prefrontal cortex in working-memory capacity, executive attention, and general fluid intelligence: An individual-differences perspective. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 9, 637–671.Google Scholar
  42. Kranzler, H. R., Kadden, R. M., Babor, T. F., Tennen, H., & Rounsaville, B. J. (1996). Validity of the SCID in substance abuse patients. Addiction, 91, 859–868.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Krawczyk, D. C. (2002). Contributions of the prefrontal cortex to the neural basis of human decision making. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 26, 631–664.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Lanser, M. G., Berger, H. J. C., Ellenbroek, B. A., Cools, A. R., & Zitman, F. G. (2002). Perseveration in schizophrenia: Failure to generate a plan and relationship with the psychomotor poverty subsyndrome. Psychiatry Research, 112, 13–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Lesieur, H. R. (1979). The compulsive gambler’s spiral of options and involvement. Psychiatry, 42, 79–87.Google Scholar
  46. Lesieur, H. R., & Blume, S. (1987). The South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS): A new instrument for the identification of pathological gamblers. American Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 1184–1188.Google Scholar
  47. Liddle, P. F., Friston, K. J., Frith, C. D., Hirsch, S. R., Jones, T., Frackowiak, T. (1992). Patterns of cerebral blood flow in schizophrenia. British Journal of Psychiatry, 160, 179–186.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Lombardi, W., Andreason, P., Sirocco, K., Rio, D., Gross, R., Umhau, J., & Hommer, D. (1999). Wisconsin Card Sorting Test Performance Following Head Injury: Dorsolateral Fronto-Striatal Circuit Activity Predicts Perseveration. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 21, 2–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Mazas, C. A., Finn, P. R., & Steinmetz, J. E. (2000). Decision-making biases, antisocial personality, and early-onset alcoholism. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 24, 1036–1040.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Miller, G. A., & Chapman, J. P. (2001). Misunderstanding analysis of covariance. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 110, 40–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Milner, B. (1963). Effects of different brain lesions on card sorting. Archives of Neurology, 9, 90–100.Google Scholar
  52. Milner, B., & Petrides, M. (1984). Behavioural effects of frontal-lobe lesions in man. Trends in Neuroscience, 7, 403–407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Milner, B., Petrides, M., & Smith, M. L. (1985) Frontal lobes and the temporal organization of memory. Human Neurobiology, 4, 137–142.Google Scholar
  54. Moeller, F. G, Barratt, E. S., Dougherty, D. M., Schmitz, J. M., & Swann, A. C. (2001). Psychiatric aspects of impulsivity. American Journal of Psychiatry, 158, 1783–1793.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Newman, J. P., Widom, C. S., & Nathan, S. (1985). Passive avoidance in syndromes of disinhibition: Psychopathy and extraversion. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 48, 1316–1327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Petrides, M. (1982). Motor conditional associative-learning after selective prefrontal lesions in the monkey. Behavioural Brain Research, 5, 407–413.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Petrides, M. (1985). Deficits on conditional associative-learning tasks after frontal and temporal-lobe lesions in man. Neuropsychologia, 23, 601–614.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Petrides, M. (1989). Frontal lobes and memory. In F. Boller & J. Grafman (Eds.), Handbook of Neuropsychology, vol. 3 (pp. 75–90). Elsevier Science Publishers B.V. (Biomedical Division).Google Scholar
  59. Petrides, M. (1990). Nonspatial conditional learning impaired in patients with unilateral frontal but not unilateral temporal lobe excisions. Neuropsychologia, 28, 137–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Petrides, M. (1991). Monitoring of selections of visual stimuli and the primate frontal cortex. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 246, 293–298.Google Scholar
  61. Petrides, M. (1998). Specialized systems for the processing of mnemonic information within the primate frontal cortex. In A. C. Roberts & T. W. Robbins (Eds.), The prefrontal cortex: Executive and cognitive functions (pp. 103–116). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  62. Petrides, M., & Milner, B. (1982). Deficits on subject-ordered tasks after frontal- and temporal-lobe lesions in man. Neuropsychologia, 20, 249–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Petrides, M., Alivisatos, B., Meyer, E., & Evans, A. C. (1993). Functional activation of the human frontal cortex during the performance of verbal working memory tasks. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 90, 878–882.Google Scholar
  64. Petry, N. M., Stinson, F. S., & Grant, B. F. (2005). Comorbidity of DSM-IV Pathological Gambling and Other Psychiatric Disorders: Results From the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 66, 564–574.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Pokorny, A. D., Miller, B. A., & Kaplan, H. B. (1972). The brief MAST: A shortened version of the Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test. American Journal of Psychiatry, 129, 118–121.Google Scholar
  66. Poulos, C. X., Le, A. D., & Parker, J. L. (1995). Impulsivity predicts individual susceptibility to high levels of alcohol self-administration. Behavioural Pharmacology, 6, 810–814.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Raylu N., & Oei T. P. S. (2002). Pathological gambling: A comprehensive review. Clinical Psychology Review, 22, 1009–1061.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Rogers, R. (2000). Altered decision-making and other neuropsychological impairments in chronic drug abusers: Evidence for altered prefrontal cortical function. Presented at the College for Problems in Drug Dependence Convention, San Juan, Puerto Rico.Google Scholar
  69. Rosenthal, R. J. (1989). Pathological gambling and problem gambling: Problems of definitions and diagnosis. In H. J. Shaffer, S. A. Stein, B. Gambino, & T. N. Cummings (Eds.), Compulsive gambling: Theory, research, and practice (pp. 101–125). Lexington, MA: Lexington Books.Google Scholar
  70. Scarpa, A., & Raine, A. (2000). Violence associated with anger and impulsivity. In J. C. Borod (Ed.), The neuropsychology of emotion: Series in affective science (pp. 320–339). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  71. Séguin, J. R., Boulerice, B., Harden, P., Tremblay, R. E., & Pihl R. O. (1999). Executive functions and physical aggression after controlling for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, general memory, and IQ. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 40, 1197–1208.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Séguin, J. R., Nagin, D., Assaad, J. M., & Tremblay, R. E. (2004). Cognitive-neuropsychological function in chronic physical aggression and hyperactivity. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 113, 603–613.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Selzer, M. L. (1971). The Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test: The quest for a new diagnostic instrument. American Journal of Psychiatry, 127, 89–94.Google Scholar
  74. Shallice T. (1988). From neuropsychology to mental structure. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  75. Sher, K. J., & Slutske, W. S. (2003). Disorders of impulse control. In G. Stricker, T. A. Widiger, & I. B. Weiner (Eds.), Handbook of psychology: Clinical psycholog, vol. 8 (pp. 195–228). Hoboken, NJ, US: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.Google Scholar
  76. Simeon, D., Hollander, E., & Cohen, L. (1994). Obsessive compulsive related disorders. In E. Hollander, J. Zohar, D. Marazziti, & B. Olivier (Eds.), Current insights in obsessive compulsive disorder (pp. 53–66). Chichester, NY: Wiley.Google Scholar
  77. Slutske, W. S., Eisen, S., True, W. R, Lyons, M., Goldberg, J., & Tsuang, M. (2000). Common genetic vulnerability for pathological gambling and alcohol dependence in men. Archives of General Psychiatry, 57, 666–673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Slutske, W. S., Eisen, S. A., Xian, H., True, W. R., Lyons, M. J., Goldberg, J., & Tsuang, M. T. (2001). A twin study of the association between pathological gambling and antisocial personality disorder. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 110, 297–308.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Smart, R. G., & Ferris, J. (1996). Alcohol, drugs and gambling in the Ontario adult population, 1994. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 41, 36–45.Google Scholar
  80. Specker, S. M., Carlson, G. A., Edmonson, K. M., Johnson, P. E., & Marcotte, M. (1996). Psychopathology in pathological gamblers seeking treatment. Journal of Gambling Studies, 12, 67–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Stinchfield, R. (2002). Reliability, validity, and classification accuracy of the South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS). Addictive Behaviors, 27, 1–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Vitaro, F., Ladouceur, R., & Bujold, A. (1996). Predictive and concurrent correlates of gambling in early adolescent boys. Journal of Early Adolescence, 16, 211–228.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Vitaro, F., Arsenault, L., & Tremblay, R. E. (1999). Impulsivity predicts problem gambling in low SES adolescent males. Addiction, 94, 565–575.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Wallisch, L. (1996). Gambling in Texas: 1995 surveys of adult and adolescent gambling behavior. Austin: Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse.Google Scholar
  85. Wechsler, D. (1987).WMS-R: Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised. New York: Psychological Corporation.Google Scholar
  86. Weinberger, D. R., & Berman, K. F. (1988). Speculation on the meaning of cerebral metabolic hypofrontality in schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 14, 157–168.Google Scholar
  87. Weinberger, D. R., Berman, K. F., & Zec, R. F. (1986). Physiologic dysfunction of dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in schizophrenia: I. Regional cerebral blood flow evidence. Archives of General Psychiatry, 43, 114–124.Google Scholar
  88. Williams, J. B. W., Gibbon, M., First, M. B., Spitzer, R. L., Davies, M., Borus, J., Howes, M. J., Kane, J., Pope, H. G., Rounsaville, B., & Wittchen, H. (1992). The structured clinical interview for DSM-III-R (SCID). Part II: Multisite test-retest reliability. Archives of General Psychiatry, 49, 630–636.Google Scholar
  89. Zuckerman, M. (1994). Behavioral expressions and biosocial bases of sensation seeking (p. 105). Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  90. Zuckerman, M. (1999). Vulnerability to psychopathology: A biosocial model. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  91. Zuckerman, M., Eysenck, S., Eysenck, H. J. (1978). Sensation-seeking in England and America: Cross-cultural, age, and sex comparisons. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 46, 139–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

Personalised recommendations