Neural correlates of decision making with explicit information about probabilities and incentives in elderly healthy subjects.
Investigated the involvement of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in information-based thought processes of explicit decision making based on information about probabilities and incentives among 12 healthy older female subjects. A blocked functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) design measured blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) responses while subjects (mean age 62.3 years) chose between 2 arrangements of dice after being given information about probabilities and potential gains or losses and compared responses to a control situation where no information about incentives was provided. The outcome phase was not included in the study to prevent chains of decisions effected by the emotional feedback of previous experience. Results supported the hypothesis of increased activation within the DLPFC, the posterior parietal lobe, the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), and the right lingual gyrus when information about probabilities and incentives was provided. In conclusion, the study provided evidence for the involvement of the DLPFC in processes that preceded explicit decision making in contrast to the medial PFC, which appears critically important for decisions based on feedback processing.
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