Sci Rep. 2014 May 22;4:5027. doi: 10.1038/srep05027.
- 11] School of Biomedical Engineering, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi’an, Shaanxi, 710032, China  Department of Automatic Control, College of Mechatronics and Automation, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha, Hunan 410073, P.R. China.
- 2The Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, University College London, Queen Square, London WC1N 3BG UK.
- 3School of Biomedical Engineering, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi’an, Shaanxi, 710032, China.
- 4Second Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, China.
- 5Department of Automatic Control, College of Mechatronics and Automation, National University of Defense Technology, Changsha, Hunan 410073, P.R. China.
Understanding the neural basis of poor impulse control in Internet addiction (IA) is important for understanding the neurobiological mechanisms of this syndrome. The current study investigated how neuronal pathways implicated in response inhibition were affected in IA using a Go-Stop paradigm and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Twenty-three control subjects aged 15.2 ± 0.5 years (mean ± S.D.) and eighteen IA subjects aged 15.1 ± 1.4 years were studied. Effective connectivity within the response inhibition network was quantified using (stochastic) dynamic causal modeling (DCM).
The results showed that the indirect frontal-basal ganglia pathway was engaged by response inhibition in healthy subjects. However, we did not detect any equivalent effective connectivity in the IA group. This suggests the IA subjects fail to recruit this pathway and inhibit unwanted actions. This study provides a clear link between Internet addiction as a behavioral disorder and aberrant connectivity in the response inhibition network.