Neural correlates of delay discount alterations in addiction and psychiatric disorders: A systematic review of magnetic resonance imaging studies

Yoshihiro Noda, Mera S. Barr, Muhammad ElSalhy, Fumi Masuda, Ryosuke Tarumi, Kamiyu Ogyu, Masataka Wada, Sakiko Tsugawa, Takahiro Miyazaki, Shinichiro Nakajima, Masaru Mimura

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Delay discounting (DD) represents decreased subjective value for delayed reward relative to the same reward at present. The concept of DD has been applied for pathophysiology of addiction and psychiatric disorders. However, the detailed neuroimaging correlates of DD underlying pathophysiology still remain unclear. Thus, we conducted a systematic review to investigate neural correlates of DD on magnetic resonance imaging studies among addiction and psychiatric disorders. Specific search terms were set on PubMed to identify relevant articles. Initial search identified 551 records and 31 studies met the inclusion criteria. The present review revealed that greater DD was correlated with increased activity in areas related to reward evaluation and prediction as well as decreased activity in areas related to cognitive control. Healthy controls showed smaller changes in activities of these areas associated with DD when compared to patient groups. As the neural basis related to DD, three neural networks have been proposed that are associated with the actions of short-term interests and long-term benefits. Among the three potential neural networks on DD, the first one included the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and ventral striatum and implicated in evaluating reward values, the second network included the anterior cingulate cortex and linked to cognitive control, and the third network included the middle temporal gyrus and was involved in predictions and affection. This review generated consistent findings on the neural basis of DD among patients with addiction and psychiatric disorders, which may represent the pathophysiology related to DD and impulsivity of mental illness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109822
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr 20


  • Behavioral economics
  • Cognitive control
  • Delay discount
  • Prediction and affection
  • Reward value

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Biological Psychiatry


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