Individual differences in impulsive action and dopamine transporter function in rat orbitofrontal cortex

J. R. Yates, M. Darna, J. S. Beckmann, L. P. Dwoskin, M. T. Bardo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Impulsivity, which can be subdivided into impulsive action and impulsive choice, is implicated as a factor underlying drug abuse vulnerability. Although previous research has shown that dopamine (DA) systems in prefrontal cortex are involved in impulsivity and substance abuse, it is not known if inherent variation in DA transporter (DAT) function contributes to impulsivity. The current study determined if individual differences in either impulsive action or impulsive choice are related to DAT function in orbitofrontal (OFC) and/or medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Rats were first tested both for impulsive action in a cued go/no-go task and for impulsive choice in a delay-discounting task. Following behavioral evaluation, in vitro [3H]DA uptake assays were performed in OFC and mPFC isolated from individual rats. Vmax in OFC, but not mPFC, was correlated with performance in the cued go/no-go task, with decreased OFC DAT function being associated with high impulsive action. In contrast, Vmax in OFC and mPFC was not correlated with performance in the delay-discounting task. The current results demonstrate that impulsive behavior in cued go/no-go performance is associated with decreased DAT function in OFC, suggesting that hyperdopaminergic tone in this prefrontal subregion mediates, at least in part, increased impulsive action.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-129
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Jan 28 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 IBRO.


  • Cued go/no-go
  • Delay discounting
  • Dopamine transporter
  • Impulsive action
  • Impulsive choice
  • Rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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