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Model-Based and Model-Free Control Predicts Alcohol Consumption Developmental Trajectory in Young Adults: A 3-Year Prospective Study.

Chen, H; Mojtahedzadeh, N; Belanger, MJ; Nebe, S; Kuitunen-Paul, S; Sebold, M; Garbusow, M; ... Smolka, MN; + view all (2021) Model-Based and Model-Free Control Predicts Alcohol Consumption Developmental Trajectory in Young Adults: A 3-Year Prospective Study. Biological Psychiatry , 89 (10) pp. 980-989. 10.1016/j.biopsych.2021.01.009. Green open access

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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 146 healthy 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 point and 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. These findings support the idea that unbalanced MB and MF control might be an important individual vulnerability in predisposing to risky drinking behavior.

Type: Article
Title: Model-Based and Model-Free Control Predicts Alcohol Consumption Developmental Trajectory in Young Adults: A 3-Year Prospective Study.
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2021.01.009
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biopsych.2021.01.009
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
Keywords: Addiction, Goal-directed, Habitual, Reinforcement learning, Reward prediction error, Risky drinking
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10129245
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