Delay discounting by depressed and non-depressed adolescent smokers and non-smokers

Sarah Imhoff, Millie Harris, Jason Weiser, Brady Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Background: Both delay discounting and depression are risk factors for cigarette smoking during adolescence. However, very little research has explored associations between these variables in adolescent smokers and non-smokers. Methods: Eighty adolescents were recruited based on depression status (depressed and non-depressed) and smoking status (smokers and non-smokers) to form four groups (n= 20 per group). All participants completed a computerized monetary delay discounting task and a measure of depression. Results: Delay discounting and depression were significantly correlated. Also, smokers (both depressed and non-depressed) and depressed non-smokers all discounted significantly more than non-smokers who were not depressed. Depressed non-smokers and both groups of smokers did not differ in rate of delay discounting. Conclusions: Adolescent non-smokers who are depressed discount similarly to adolescents who smoke and more than non-smokers who are not depressed. Future research should explore the unique versus shared roles of delay discounting and depression as risk factors for smoking during adolescence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-155
Number of pages4
JournalDrug and Alcohol Dependence
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Support for this research was provided by research awards from the Social and Behavioral Sciences Department and by an award from the Arts and Sciences Department, The Ohio State University.


  • Adolescents
  • Delay discounting
  • Depression
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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