Left Hippocampus to Anterior Cingulate Cortex Connectivity Correlates with Worse Recent Verbal Memory in Pornography Addicted Juveniles (2702)
Objective: To gain insight into brain connectivity using functional MRI, especially in corticolimbic network area; and its possible disruption of affiliated cognitive function—memory, intelligence, and attention—in pornography addicted juveniles. As the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to specifically learn about memory function in juvenile’s pornography addiction.
Background: In the age of globalization, pornography exposure in juveniles has worsen. Incomplete cognitive development in younger generation may affect their perception and action, thus may develop into problematic behaviours. Despite the lack of neuroscientific studies of pornography addiction, growing evidences suggest indifferent mechanism behind pornography and substance addiction, which are thought to be connected through the broader form of corticolimbic network, in which are anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), hippocampus, and prefrontal cortex (PFC).
Design/Methods: We screened 30 juveniles with 4 dropouts (13 non-addiction vs 13 addiction group). Subjects underwent neuropsychiatric tests (RAVLT and ROCFT for memory; TMT A and B for attention, and WISC IQ for intelligence) and fMRI image acquisition. Then, correlation analyses in between were conducted. To avoid lacking in substantive significance, we also calculated the Cohen d’s effect size.
Results: Significant disconnection between left hippocampus to ACC (Z-transformed r-value, non-addiction vs addiction = 0.07 ± 0.19 vs −0.08 ± 0.17, p=0.04, cohen d=0.83) followed by worse verbal recent memory in pornography addicted juveniles (RAVLT A6 sub-score, p <0.01, d=0.67; A7 sub-score, p=0.01). Attention and intelligence test resulted to insignificant correlation.
Conclusions: Disconnection between left hippocampus to ACC suggested similar neurobiological abnormalities as seen on other addictive disorders, emphasizing the role of reward system pathology in addiction. Decline in working memory, which is maintained by corticolimbic network, including hippocampus and ACC, affects goal-oriented behaviour greatly. This corresponds to our significant result of addiction group’s decline in memory, regardless its association with attention and intelligence.