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Concept: Reward dependence

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Whether psychological factors such as anxiety and pain catastrophizing levels influence the expression of endogenous analgesia in general and, more specifically, the conditioned pain modulation (CPM) response is still under debate. It may be assumed that other psychological characteristics also play a role in the CPM response. The neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine are involved both in CPM, as well as personality traits such as harm avoidance (HA), novelty seeking (NS), and reward dependence (RD), which can be obtained by the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire (TPQ). However, the associations between these traits (HA, NS, and RD) with endogenous analgesia revealed by CPM have not yet been explored.

Concepts: Psychology, Neurotransmitter, Dopamine, Norepinephrine, Neuroticism, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence

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Cigarette cravings following exposure to smoking cues in a smoker’s environment are thought to play an important role in cessation failure. The possibility that dispositional factors may impact cue-induced cravings, though intriguing, has received little attention. According to Cloninger’s Tridimensional Personality Theory, factors such as reward dependence (RD), harm avoidance (HA), and novelty seeking (NS) may figure prominently in risk for addiction, as well as relapse, in individuals attempting to abstain from drug and alcohol use. Particularly interesting in this regard is the possibility that smokers with higher levels of RD, who are especially sensitive to reward signals, will have heightened craving reactions to smoking cues.

Concepts: Psychology, Smoking, Nicotine, Drug addiction, Addiction, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence

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The Cloninger’s Psychobiological Model of Temperament and Character includes temperamental dimensions such as reward dependence (RD) and harm avoidance (HA). Studies of RD differentiate between sensitivity to reward (SR) versus to punishment (SP). We investigated the interrelationship between HA and RD in acutely ill patients with binge/purge (B/P) type eating disorders (EDs) and following symptomatic stabilization.

Concepts: Illness, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence, Behavioral neuroscience, Biopsychology

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The objective of the study was to analyze temperament and character in females with vocal nodules (VN) compared to a vocally healthy control population. 61 females were examined over a 17-month period for dysphonia with VN (mean age 46 years, duration of vocal complaints from 2 months to 6 years). 71 control females were recruited in their environment (mean age 34 years). The validated French Version of the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI) was used. Patients with VN had significantly (p < 0,05) greater scores for Persistence and Novelty Seeking, particularly for the subscales exploratory excitability and extravagance. They had lower scores for Harm Avoidance, in particular fear of uncertainty, shyness and fatigability. Scores on Reward Dependence were not significantly different except for the subscale dependence, which were significantly lower in patients. No significant difference was found with regard to scores on Self-directedness, except for scores on the subscale self-acceptance, which were significantly lower in patients. Scores on Cooperativeness were not significantly different, except for the subscale helpfulness, which were significantly higher in patients. Patients had significant greater scores for Self-transcendence overall and specifically on the subscales self-forgetfulness and spiritual acceptance. Our findings suggested that women with VN are likely to have a passionate temperament, which might constitute an indirect predisposition to elevated vocal loading and greater risk for phonotrauma. The risk for developing or maintaining VN could be decreased by attending to those personality-specific maladaptive behaviors. A possible personalized approach to voice therapy could be organized on the basis of the TCI findings.

Concepts: Psychology, Human voice, Personality traits, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Vocal fold nodule, Reward dependence, Vocal loading

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This study recruited 148 lung cancer patients and 157 healthy Chinese individuals to evaluate the personality traits of Chinese lung cancer patients using the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire and to investigate the associations between these traits and the rs6090453C/G and rs6011914C/G polymorphisms of the neurotensin receptor 1 gene. The results demonstrated significant differences in the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire total and subscale scores between the 2 groups. Significant differences were found in the reward dependence 2 (RD2) score between the rs6090453C/G genotypes and in the total harm avoidance (HA), HA1, HA2, HA4, and RD2 scores between the rs6011914C/G genotypes. Thus, patients with lung cancer have specific personality traits, and variations in the neurotensin receptor 1 gene may be involved in the biological mechanisms of the HA and RD personality traits.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Lung cancer, Personality tests, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, HA postcode area, Harm avoidance, Reward dependence

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The personality traits of harm avoidance (HA), novelty seeking (NS), and reward dependence (RD), as measured by the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire (TPQ), have been linked to smoking behavior. The extent to which these traits are associated with smoking withdrawal and cessation outcome is unclear. We sought to address this question among 131 treatment-seeking smokers who were randomly assigned to either a smoking cessation treatment (four 30-min behavioral counseling sessions) or a control condition. We found that HA was positively associated with baseline depressive symptoms, baseline negative affect, and post-quit withdrawal, and negatively associated with positive affect at both baseline and post-quit. Additionally, we found that smokers with higher HA scores were more likely to be abstinent. NS was negatively associated with post-quit positive affect and positively associated with post-quit negative affect and withdrawal. RD was not found to be related to any outcome measures. Our findings suggest that, despite experiencing greater baseline and post-quit negative affect, smokers higher in trait harm avoidance are more likely to quit smoking. The treatment and theoretical ramifications of these findings are discussed.

Concepts: Psychology, Smoking, Nicotine, Smoking cessation, Drug rehabilitation, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence

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Thirty-five healthy adult women offspring of alcohol-dependent probands (AWOA) were compared with 63 healthy controls to test whether personality dimensions on the Temperament and Character Inventory questionnaire were associated with the brain-derived neurotrophic factor Val66Met polymorphism in offspring. We found a significantly lower reward dependence score in AWOA compared with the controls. The brain-derived neurotrophic factor Val66Met polymorphism may be involved in this difference as the lower reward dependence score was found only in AWOA carrying the Val allele.

Concepts: Genetics, Allele, Neurotrophin, Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, Nerve growth factor, Neurotrophins, Reward dependence

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Objectives. The psychometric properties regarding sex and age for the revised version of the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI-R) and its derived short version, the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI-140), were evaluated with a randomized sample from the community. Methods. A randomized sample of 367 normal adult subjects from a Spanish municipality, who were representative of the general population based on sex and age, participated in the current study. Descriptive statistics and internal consistency according to α coefficient were obtained for all of the dimensions and facets. T-tests and univariate analyses of variance, followed by Bonferroni tests, were conducted to compare the distributions of the TCI-R dimension scores by age and sex. Results. On both the TCI-R and TCI-140, women had higher scores for Harm Avoidance, Reward Dependence and Cooperativeness than men, whereas men had higher scores for Persistence. Age correlated negatively with Novelty Seeking, Reward Dependence and Cooperativeness and positively with Harm Avoidance and Self-transcendence. Young subjects between 18 and 35 years had higher scores than older subjects in NS and RD. Subjects between 51 and 77 years scored higher in both HA and ST. The alphas for the dimensions were between 0.74 and 0.87 for the TCI-R and between 0.63 and 0.83 for the TCI-140. Conclusion. Results, which were obtained with a randomized sample, suggest that there are specific distributions of personality traits by sex and age. Overall, both the TCI-R and the abbreviated TCI-140 were reliable in the ‘good-to-excellent’ range. A strength of the current study is the representativeness of the sample.

Concepts: Dimension, Psychometrics, Reliability, Normal distribution, Personality traits, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence

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It was our assumption that male heroin users have the personality traits of high impulsivity and low social interaction. Compliance regarding methadone maintenance therapy (MMT) is hypothesized to be related to personality features. We recruited 43 patients that had been receiving MMT and 43 healthy volunteers. All participants completed a Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire (TPQ). Information related to the Opiate Treatment Index (OTI) was gathered from the heroin group. The personality dimensions in the heroin user group and the control group were compared. We further investigated the association between TPQ and OTI. The heroin group presented with lower reward dependence than the control group. Regarding sub-dimensions, heroin users showed higher impulsivity and fatigability, and lower exploratory excitability and social dependence. The explosive (borderline) pattern was more common among the heroin users. The odds ratio of explosive pattern developing to heroin dependence was 4.19. Q scores of heroin use and the maximal methadone dose were associated with persistence.

Concepts: Opioid, Morphine, Heroin, Borderline personality disorder, Methadone, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence

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Aims: Neurotensin receptor 1 (NTR1) is a neurotensin (NT) receptor subtype with a high affinity for NT. NT and NTR1 signaling are involved in modulating the dopamine system. Individual variations in the dopamine system have been demonstrated to determine certain dimensions of personality, but no studies have thus far investigated the involvement of the NTR1 in the biological determination of personality. We therefore examined this link in a Chinese Han population. Methods: We genotyped 3 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (rs6090453C/G, rs6011914C/G, and rs2427422A/G) of the NTR1 gene and collected the data about the personality traits of novelty seeking (NS), harm avoidance (HA), and reward dependence (RD), as well as their subscales (measured by the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire), in 575 healthy Chinese Han subjects. Then we examined the association between the 3 NTR1 gene polymorphisms and each personality trait. Results: There were significant differences in the HA2, HA3 and RD1 scores between rs6090453C/G genotypes (F = 3.425, 5.651, 4.054, p = 0.033, 0.004, 0.018, respectively), in the HA2 and total RD scores between rs6011914C/G genotypes (F = 4.080, 3.712, p = 0.017, 0.025, respectively), and in the total RD (χ(2) = 7.301, p = 0.026) and RD3 (F = 4.119, p = 0.017) scores between the rs2427422A/G genotypes. There were significant male-specific differences in the RD1 scores between the rs6090453C/G genotypes (F = 3.334, p = 0.037), in the total HA (F = 3.043, p = 0.049), HA2 (F = 4.472, p = 0.012) and RD3 (χ(2) = 6.997, p = 0.030) scores between the rs6011914C/G genotypes, and in the HA2 (F = 3.177, p = 0.043), total RD (χ(2) = 7.032, p = 0.030), and RD3 (F = 4.563, p = 0.011) scores between the rs2427422A/G genotypes. We also demonstrated a significant female-specific difference in the total RD scores between the rs6011914C/G genotypes (F = 3.677, p = 0.026). There was no significant difference in the total NS and subscale scores between the genotypes of all 3 SNPs (all p > 0.05). Conclusions: The variations in the NTR1 gene were involved in the biological mechanisms of HA and RD personality traits; however, the effect is influenced by gender. © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.

Concepts: DNA, Han Chinese, Neuroticism, Big Five personality traits, Trait theory, Temperament and Character Inventory, Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire, Reward dependence