Effects of Family History of Alcohol Use Disorders on Spatial Working Memory BOLD Response in Adolescents
Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
Copyright © 2008 by the Research Society on Alcoholism
Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume 32, Issue 7, pages 1135–1145, July 2008
How to Cite
Spadoni, A. D., Norman, A. L., Schweinsburg, A. D. and Tapert, S. F. (2008), Effects of Family History of Alcohol Use Disorders on Spatial Working Memory BOLD Response in Adolescents. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 32: 1135–1145. doi: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2008.00694.x
- Issue published online: 28 JUN 2008
- Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
- Received for publication August 28, 2007; accepted March 18, 2008.
- Spatial Working Memory;
- Family History of Alcoholism;
- Default Network;
Background: A positive family history (FH) of alcohol use disorders (AUD) has been linked to increased risk for the development of AUD, and neurocognitive factors have been postulated as important underlying mechanisms of familial alcoholism transmission.
Methods: We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during a spatial working memory (SWM) and vigilance paradigm to investigate potential neurodevelopmental differences linked to familial density of AUD in 72 adolescents aged 12 to 14 years.
Results: Youth with denser family histories of AUD showed less activation during a simple vigilance condition relative to SWM in cingulate and medial frontal gyri (β = 0.28, p = 0.03), and a trend for more relative activity during rest (β = −0.25, p = 0.07) in this cluster.
Conclusions: Youth with greater familial densities of AUD may be less successful at modulating activity of the default network, potentially indicating a greater propensity for task-independent thought or reduced inhibition of task-irrelevant processing. Failure to moderate activation of the default network may have implications for cognitive efficiency and goal directed behavior in youth with dense FH. Further, aberrant activation in cingulate regions may be linked to genetic variation in GABA receptor units, suggesting a useful endophenotype for risk associated with alcohol dependence.