Recent Translational Findings on Impulsivity in Relation to Drug Abuse

Jessica Weafer, Suzanne H. Mitchell, Harriet de Wit

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations

Abstract

Impulsive behavior is strongly implicated in drug abuse, as both a cause and a consequence of drug use. To understand how impulsive behaviors lead to and result from drug use, translational evidence from both human and non-human animal studies is needed. Here, we review recent (2009 or later) studies that have investigated two major components of impulsive behavior, inhibitory control and impulsive choice, across preclinical and clinical studies. We concentrate on the stop-signal task as the measure of inhibitory control and delay discounting as the measure of impulsive choice. Consistent with previous reports, recent studies show greater impulsive behavior in drug users compared with non-users. Additionally, new evidence supports the prospective role of impulsive behavior in drug abuse, and has begun to identify the neurobiological mechanisms underlying impulsive behavior. We focus on the commonalities and differences in findings between preclinical and clinical studies, and suggest future directions for translational research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-300
Number of pages12
JournalCurrent Addiction Reports
Volume1
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by National Institute on Drug Abuse Grants DA002812 and DA032015 (HdW) and F32 DA033756 (JW), and the Portland Alcohol Research Center P60 AA10760 (SHM). NIDA and NIAAA had no role in the study design, interpretation, writing the manuscript, or the decision to submit the paper for publication. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Funding Information:
This research was supported by National Institute on Drug Abuse Grants DA002812 and DA032015 (HdW) and F32 DA033756 (JW), and the Portland Alcohol Research Center P60 AA10760 (SHM). NIDA and NIAAA had no role in the study design, interpretation, writing the manuscript, or the decision to submit the paper for publication. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest. ? Jessica Weafer, Suzanne H. Mitchell and Harriet de Wit declare no conflict of interest. This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by the author.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, Springer International Publishing AG.

Keywords

  • Delay discounting
  • Drug abuse
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Impulsive choice
  • Inhibitory control
  • Stop-signal task

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology

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