Effects of outcome on the covariance between risk level and brain activity in adolescents with internet gaming disorder (2016)

Neuroimage Clin. 2016 Nov 2;12:845-851.

Qi X1, Yang Y2, Dai S3, Gao P3, Du X1, Zhang Y1, Du G3, Li X3, Zhang Q1.


  • Evaluating effects of outcome on subsequent risk decision making in IGDs
  • Negative feedback affects risk decision making related brain activity in IGDs.
  • Altered response to negative feedback contributes to adverse decision making in IGDs.


Individuals with internet gaming disorder (IGD) often have impaired risky decision-making abilities, and IGD-related functional changes have been observed during neuroimaging studies of decision-making tasks. However, it is still unclear how feedback (outcomes of decision-making) affects the subsequent risky decision-making in individuals with IGD. In this study, twenty-four adolescents with IGD and 24 healthy controls (HCs) were recruited and underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging while performing the balloon analog risk task (BART) to evaluate the effects of prior outcomes on brain activity during subsequent risky decision-making in adolescents with IGD. The covariance between risk level and activation of the bilateral ventral medial prefrontal cortex, left inferior frontal cortex, right ventral striatum (VS), left hippocampus/parahippocampus, right inferior occipital gyrus/fusiform gyrus and right inferior temporal gyrus demonstrated interaction effects of group by outcome (P < 0.05, AlphaSim correction). The regions with interactive effects were defined as ROI, and ROI-based intergroup comparisons showed that the covariance between risk level and brain activation was significantly greater in adolescents with IGD compared with HCs after a negative outcome occurred (P < 0.05). Our results indicated that negative outcomes affected the covariance between risk level and activation of the brain regions related to value estimation (prefrontal cortex), anticipation of rewards (VS), and emotional-related learning (hippocampus/parahippocampus), which may be one of the underlying neural mechanisms of disadvantageous risky decision-making in adolescents with IGD.

KEYWORDS:  Bart; Internet gaming disorder; Risky decision-making; fMRI

PMID: 27857886

PMCID: PMC5103101

DOI: 10.1016/j.nicl.2016.10.024