Craving is a core symptom of addictive disorders, such as pathological gambling for example. Over the last decade, several studies have assessed the efficacy of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the addiction field, which triggers the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) to decrease craving. The STIMJEU study investigated whether a single session of low-frequency (LF, i.e., 1 Hz) rTMS applied to the right DLPFC reduced cue-induced gambling craving in a sample of treatment-seeking pathological gamblers.
Thirty patients received both active and sham rTMS in random order and were blinded to the condition in a within-subject crossover design. Outcome measures included self-reported gambling craving (Visual Analog Scale and Gambling Craving Scale) and physiological measures (heart rate and blood pressure).
The rTMS sessions were associated with a significant decrease in the gambling urge, regardless of whether the session was active or sham. When controlling cue-induced craving levels, no effects were observed on craving for active rTMS. Overall, rTMS was well-tolerated, and the credibility of the sham procedure was assessed and appeared to be appropriate.
We failed to demonstrate the specific efficacy of one session of LF rTMS to decrease cue-induced craving in pathological gamblers. A strong placebo-effect and rTMS parameters may partly explain these results. Yet, we are convinced that rTMS remains a promising therapeutic method. Further studies are required to examine its potential effect.
This research aimed to characterize social information processing abilities in a population of regular nondisordered poker players compared to controls.
Participants completed the Posner cueing paradigm task including social cues (faces) to assess attention allocation towards social stimuli, including the effect of the presentation time (subliminal vs supraliminal) and of the emotion displayed. The study included two groups of participants: 30 regular nondisordered poker players (those who played at least three times a week in Texas Hold'em poker games for at least three months) and 30 control participants (those who did not gamble or gambled less than once a month, whatever the game).
The group of regular nondisordered poker players displayed an enhancement of the inhibition of return during the Posner cueing task. This means that in valid trials, they took longer to respond to the already processed localization in supraliminal conditions compared to controls. However, our results did not evidence any particular engagement or disengagement attention abilities toward specific types of emotion.
Discussion and Conclusions
These results suggest that regular nondisordered poker players displayed social information processing abilities, which may be due to the importance to efficiently process social information that can serve as tells in live poker. The observed enhancement of the inhibition of return may permit poker players to not process a localization that has already processed to save attentional resources. Further research regarding the establishment of the IOR in other forms of gambling and with non-social cues needs to be performed.
Since June 2018, gaming disorder (GD) has been recognized as a disease. It is frequently associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), as there are common vulnerability factors and bidirectional interactions between the two disorders. This study aims to evaluate the presence of ADHD symptoms and predictive factors of ADHD among patients with GD.
Ninety-seven patients ≥16 years old referred to the University Hospital of Nantes between 2012 and 2020 for GD were included. The diagnosis of GD was given a posteriori in accordance with the new ICD-11 GD definition. ADHD was screened using the Adult-ADHD Self-Report Scale and the Wender-Utah Rating Scale. A multivariate logistic regression model was used to identify explanatory factors for ADHD-GD comorbidity.
The rate of GD patients who screened positive for ADHD was 39%. Predictive factors of ADHD-GD comorbidity were impulsivity (higher score on the negative urgency dimension) and low self-esteem.
The rate of ADHD found among patients with GD is consistent with that from the literature on internet GD but higher than that found for other behavioural addictions. The identification of a higher negative urgency score and low self-esteem as predictive factors of AHDH-GD comorbidity indicates that gaming could be considered a dysfunctional way to cope with emotional dysregulation in ADHD or to virtually escape.
Comorbid ADHD must be taken into consideration to minimize its functional impact on GD patients and gaming-related damage. In contrast, the evaluation of gaming habits in patients with ADHD could be useful for both prevention and care.
Parkinson's disease (PD) is one of the most prevalent neurodegenerative diseases. First-line medications consist of drugs that act by counteracting dopamine deficiency in the basal ganglia. Unfortunately, iatrogenic impulsive-compulsive behaviors (ICBs) can occur in up to 20% of PD patients over the course of their illness. ICBs must be considered multifactorial disorders that reflect the interactions of the medication with an individual's vulnerability and the underlying neurobiology of PD. We aimed to explore the predictive genetic, psychopathological and neurological factors involved in the development of ICBs in PD patients by building a complete model of individual vulnerability.
The PARKADD study was a case/non-case study. A total of 225 patients were enrolled (“ICB” group, N =75; “no ICB” group, N =150), and 163 agreed to provide saliva samples for genetic analysis. Sociodemographic, neurological and psychiatric characteristics were assessed, and genotyping for the characterization of polymorphisms related to dopaminergic and opioid systems was performed.
Factors associated with “ICBs” were younger age of PD onset, personal history of ICB prior to PD onset and higher scores on the urgency and sensation seeking facets of impulsivity. No gene variant was significantly associated, but the association with the opioid receptor mu 1 (OPRM1) rs1799971 polymorphism was close to significance.
Discussion and conclusions
The influence of gene-environment interactions probably exists, and additional studies are needed to decipher the possible role of the opioid system in the development of ICBs in PD patients.