Publications [#221584] of Ahmad Hariri

Journal Articles

  1. Goetz, E. L. and Hariri, A. R. and Pizzagalli, D. A. and Strauman, T. J. (2013). Genetic moderation of the association between regulatory focus and reward responsiveness: a proof-of-concept study. Biology of mood & anxiety disorders, 3(1), 3.
    (last updated on 2013/12/23)

    BACKGROUND: Recent studies implicate individual differences in regulatory focus as contributing to self-regulatory dysfunction, particularly not responding to positive outcomes. How such individual differences emerge, however, is unclear. We conducted a proof-of-concept study to examine the moderating effects of genetically driven variation in dopamine signaling, a key modulator of neural reward circuits, on the association between regulatory focus and reward cue responsiveness. METHOD: Healthy Caucasians (N=59) completed a measure of chronic regulatory focus and a probabilistic reward task. A common functional genetic polymorphism impacting prefrontal dopamine signaling (COMT rs4680) was evaluated. RESULTS: Response bias, the participants' propensity to modulate behavior as a function of reward, was predicted by an interaction of regulatory focus and COMT genotype. Specifically, self-perceived success at achieving promotion goals predicted total response bias, but only for individuals with the COMT genotype (Val/Val) associated with relatively increased phasic dopamine signaling and cognitive flexibility. CONCLUSIONS: The combination of success in promotion goal pursuit and Val/Val genotype appears to facilitate responding to reward opportunities in the environment. This study is among the first to integrate an assessment of self-regulatory style with an examination of genetic variability that underlies responsiveness to positive outcomes in goal pursuit.