Document Detail

Myopic discounting of future rewards after medial orbitofrontal damage in humans.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21147982     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Choices are often intertemporal, requiring tradeoff of short-term and long-term outcomes. In such contexts, humans may prefer small rewards delivered immediately to larger rewards delivered after a delay, reflecting temporal discounting (TD) of delayed outcomes. The medial orbitofrontal cortex (mOFC) is consistently activated during intertemporal choice, yet its role remains unclear. Here, patients with lesions in the mOFC (mOFC patients), control patients with lesions outside the frontal lobe, and healthy individuals chose hypothetically between small-immediate and larger-delayed rewards. The type of reward varied across three TD tasks, including both primary (food) and secondary (money and discount vouchers) rewards. We found that damage to mOFC increased significantly the preference for small-immediate over larger-delayed rewards, resulting in steeper TD of future rewards in mOFC patients compared with the control groups. This held for both primary and secondary rewards. All participants, including mOFC patients, were more willing to wait for delayed money and discount vouchers than for delayed food, suggesting that mOFC patients' (impatient) choices were not due merely to poor motor impulse control or consideration of the goods at stake. These findings provide the first evidence in humans that mOFC is necessary for valuation and preference of delayed rewards for intertemporal choice.
Manuela Sellitto; Elisa Ciaramelli; Giuseppe di Pellegrino
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience     Volume:  30     ISSN:  1529-2401     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Neurosci.     Publication Date:  2010 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-12-14     Completed Date:  2011-01-07     Revised Date:  2014-03-25    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8102140     Medline TA:  J Neurosci     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  16429-36     Citation Subset:  IM    
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MeSH Terms
Analysis of Variance
Area Under Curve
Brain Injuries / complications,  pathology*
Choice Behavior / physiology*
Cognition Disorders / etiology,  pathology*
Frontal Lobe / blood supply,  pathology*
Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
Impulsive Behavior / etiology
Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods
Middle Aged
Neuropsychological Tests
Oxygen / blood
Reinforcement Schedule
Time Factors
Reg. No./Substance:
Comment In:
J Neurosci. 2011 Apr 20;31(16):5889-90   [PMID:  21508212 ]

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