Biol Psychiatry 2014 Apr 16;75(8):631-8. Epub 2013 Mar 16.
Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge; Department of Psychology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge.
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Am J Psychiatry 2015 Mar 19;172(3):284-93. Epub 2014 Dec 19.
From the Departments of Psychology and Psychiatry, and the Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom; the Department of Psychology at New York University, New York; South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, Springhouse, Biggleswade Hospital, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom; the Department of Psychiatry, Queen Elizabeth II Hospital, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom; and the Postgraduate Medical School, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, United Kingdom.
Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the neural correlates of excessive habit formation in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). The authors aimed to test for neurobiological convergence with the known pathophysiology of OCD and to infer, based on abnormalities in brain activation, whether these habits arise from dysfunction in the goal-directed or habit system.
Method: Thirty-seven OCD patients and 33 healthy comparison subjects learned to avoid shocks while undergoing a functional MRI scan. Read More
Am J Psychiatry 2011 Jul 15;168(7):718-26. Epub 2011 May 15.
Department of Experimental Psychology and Psychiatry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.
Objective: Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by repetitive, ritualistic behaviors and thought patterns. Although patients with OCD report that these compulsive behaviors are unproductive and often senseless, they are unable to desist. This study investigated whether the urge to perform compulsive acts is mediated by a disruption in the balance between flexible, goal-directed action control and habitual behavior. Read More
Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 2014 Nov;369(1655)
Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3EB, UK Department of Psychology, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3EB, UK.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) has become a paradigmatic case of goal-directed dysfunction in psychiatry. In this article, we review the neurobiological evidence, historical and recent, that originally led to this supposition and continues to support a habit hypothesis of OCD. We will then discuss a number of recent studies that have directly tested this hypothesis, using behavioural experiments in patient populations. Read More
Br J Clin Psychol 2015 Mar 10;54(1):16-33. Epub 2014 Jun 10.
School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Randwick, New South Wales, Australia.
Objectives: Evidence suggests that obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is characterized by heightened self-reported disgust, however, it is unclear if this extends to physiology. The relationship between obsessive beliefs and disgust also remains poorly understood. Therefore, we examined whether the heightened trait and self-reported disgust observed in individuals with OCD is reflected in heightened physiological disgust responses. Read More