GRANT NUMBER:  R01 DA034755-01A1S1

ABSTRACT:  More than 15 years of our translational research has shown that discounting (i.e., devaluing) future rewards in favor of immediate rewards (which we will refer to as self-control failure) is endemic among individuals addicted to cigarettes and other drugs. Indeed, we propose that individuals who excessively discount future rewards may be “stimulus bound” and more susceptible to drug-related cues and negative consequences. Unfortunately, no research has examined excessive discounting and its relationship to stimulus-bound behavior among poly-drug dependent individuals. This proposed supplement is a part of a longer-term goal to translate basic research on self-control failure into effective interventions to normalize or improve self-control among the drug dependent. The parent grant’s first aim is to measure temporal discounting and the extent of stimulus-bound behavior among 150 tobacco-dependent smokers under both cigarette deprived and nondeprived conditions, hereafter referred to as mono-dependent smokers. In this supplement, we will examine temporal discounting and stimulus-bound behavior in 150 poly-drug dependent individuals, hereafter referred to as poly-dependent smokers, and 150 controls, hereafter referred to as non-dependent controls. The group of poly-dependent smokers will be further segmented into three subgroups, composed of an equal number of individuals, who are; (1) tobacco- and alcohol-dependent, (2) tobacco- and cocaine-dependent, and (3) tobacco-, alcohol-, and cocaine-dependent. These poly-dependent smokers will be tested for stimulus-bound behaviors under cigarette deprived and non-deprived conditions. If poly-drug dependence is associated with excessive temporal discounting and correlated with stimulus-bound behavior, then in a subsequent application, we will propose methods to reverse excessive discounting and render these individuals less stimulus bound. Such interventions, employed as a supplement to existing treatment, could improve treatment outcomes. Project Description


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