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A Computational Analysis of Aberrant Delay Discounting in Psychiatric Disorders

Story, GW; Moutoussis, M; Dolan, RJ; (2015) A Computational Analysis of Aberrant Delay Discounting in Psychiatric Disorders. Frontiers in Psychology , 6 , Article 1948. 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01948. Green open access

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Abstract

Impatience for reward is a facet of many psychiatric disorders. We draw attention to a growing literature finding greater discounting of delayed reward, an important aspect of impatience, across a range of psychiatric disorders. We propose these findings are best understood by considering the goals and motivation for discounting future reward. We characterize these as arising from either the opportunity costs of waiting or the uncertainty associated with delayed reward. We link specific instances of higher discounting in psychiatric disorder to heightened subjective estimates of either of these factors. We propose these costs are learned and represented based either on a flexible cognitive model of the world, an accumulation of previous experience, or through evolutionary specification. Any of these can be considered suboptimal for the individual if the resulting behavior results in impairments in personal and social functioning and/or in distress. By considering the neurochemical and neuroanatomical implementation of these processes, we illustrate how this approach can in principle unite social, psychological and biological conceptions of impulsive choice.

Type: Article
Title: A Computational Analysis of Aberrant Delay Discounting in Psychiatric Disorders
Location: Switzerland
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01948
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01948
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 Story, Moutoussis and Dolan. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Keywords: biopsychosocial, computational psychiatry, discounting, mental illness, psychiatric, time preference
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
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1476328
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