Addiction changes orbitofrontal gyrus function: involvement in response inhibition

Neuroreport. 2001 Aug 8;12(11):2595-9. doi: 10.1097/00001756-200108080-00060.


We used the Stroop task as a measure of the ability to inhibit a prepotent response tendency and examined its association with relative glucose metabolism in selected prefrontal brain regions in cocaine addicts, alcoholics, and controls (17 per group). Results revealed that for the substance abusers, higher orbitofrontal gyrus (OFG) activation was associated with lower conflict (higher score; r = 0.32, p < 0.05). For the controls, higher OFG activation was associated with higher conflict (lower score; r = -0.42, p < 0.05). Thus, at baseline, increased relative activation of the OFG is associated with worse performance in controls and better performance in substance abusers on the Stroop task, suggesting reversal of the role of the OFG as a function of addiction.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcoholism / diagnostic imaging
  • Alcoholism / physiopathology*
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / diagnostic imaging
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Gyrus Cinguli / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed