Propranolol reduces reference-dependence in intertemporal choice

Karolina M. Lempert, Sandra F. Lackovic, Russell H. Tobe, Paul Glimcher, Elizabeth Phelps

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In intertemporal choices between immediate and delayed rewards, people tend to prefer immediate rewards, often even when the delayed reward is larger. This is known as temporal discounting. It has been proposed that this tendency emerges because immediate rewards are more emotionally arousing than delayed rewards. However, in our previous research, we found no evidence for this but instead found that arousal responses (indexed with pupil dilation) in intertemporal choice are context-dependent. Specifically, arousal tracks the subjective value of the more variable reward option in the paradigm, whether it is immediate or delayed. Nevertheless, people tend to choose the less variable option in the choice task. In other words, their choices are reference-dependent and depend on variance in their recent history of offers. This suggests that there may be a causal relationship between reference-dependent choice and arousal, which we investigate here by reducing arousal pharmacologically using propranolol. Here, we show that propranolol reduces reference-dependence, leading to choices that are less influenced by recent history and more internally consistent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbernsx081
Pages (from-to)1394-1401
Number of pages8
JournalSocial Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience
Volume12
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017

Fingerprint

Reward
Propranolol
Arousal
Pupil
Dilatation
History
Research

Keywords

  • Emotional arousal
  • Intertemporal choice
  • Propranolol
  • Pupil dilation
  • Temporal discounting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

Cite this

Propranolol reduces reference-dependence in intertemporal choice. / Lempert, Karolina M.; Lackovic, Sandra F.; Tobe, Russell H.; Glimcher, Paul; Phelps, Elizabeth.

In: Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, Vol. 12, No. 9, nsx081, 01.09.2017, p. 1394-1401.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lempert, Karolina M. ; Lackovic, Sandra F. ; Tobe, Russell H. ; Glimcher, Paul ; Phelps, Elizabeth. / Propranolol reduces reference-dependence in intertemporal choice. In: Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. 2017 ; Vol. 12, No. 9. pp. 1394-1401.
@article{d68db7f4572e4be88d7c64609932ee9a,
title = "Propranolol reduces reference-dependence in intertemporal choice",
abstract = "In intertemporal choices between immediate and delayed rewards, people tend to prefer immediate rewards, often even when the delayed reward is larger. This is known as temporal discounting. It has been proposed that this tendency emerges because immediate rewards are more emotionally arousing than delayed rewards. However, in our previous research, we found no evidence for this but instead found that arousal responses (indexed with pupil dilation) in intertemporal choice are context-dependent. Specifically, arousal tracks the subjective value of the more variable reward option in the paradigm, whether it is immediate or delayed. Nevertheless, people tend to choose the less variable option in the choice task. In other words, their choices are reference-dependent and depend on variance in their recent history of offers. This suggests that there may be a causal relationship between reference-dependent choice and arousal, which we investigate here by reducing arousal pharmacologically using propranolol. Here, we show that propranolol reduces reference-dependence, leading to choices that are less influenced by recent history and more internally consistent.",
keywords = "Emotional arousal, Intertemporal choice, Propranolol, Pupil dilation, Temporal discounting",
author = "Lempert, {Karolina M.} and Lackovic, {Sandra F.} and Tobe, {Russell H.} and Paul Glimcher and Elizabeth Phelps",
year = "2017",
month = "9",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1093/scan/nsx081",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "12",
pages = "1394--1401",
journal = "Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience",
issn = "1749-5024",
publisher = "Oxford University Press",
number = "9",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Propranolol reduces reference-dependence in intertemporal choice

AU - Lempert, Karolina M.

AU - Lackovic, Sandra F.

AU - Tobe, Russell H.

AU - Glimcher, Paul

AU - Phelps, Elizabeth

PY - 2017/9/1

Y1 - 2017/9/1

N2 - In intertemporal choices between immediate and delayed rewards, people tend to prefer immediate rewards, often even when the delayed reward is larger. This is known as temporal discounting. It has been proposed that this tendency emerges because immediate rewards are more emotionally arousing than delayed rewards. However, in our previous research, we found no evidence for this but instead found that arousal responses (indexed with pupil dilation) in intertemporal choice are context-dependent. Specifically, arousal tracks the subjective value of the more variable reward option in the paradigm, whether it is immediate or delayed. Nevertheless, people tend to choose the less variable option in the choice task. In other words, their choices are reference-dependent and depend on variance in their recent history of offers. This suggests that there may be a causal relationship between reference-dependent choice and arousal, which we investigate here by reducing arousal pharmacologically using propranolol. Here, we show that propranolol reduces reference-dependence, leading to choices that are less influenced by recent history and more internally consistent.

AB - In intertemporal choices between immediate and delayed rewards, people tend to prefer immediate rewards, often even when the delayed reward is larger. This is known as temporal discounting. It has been proposed that this tendency emerges because immediate rewards are more emotionally arousing than delayed rewards. However, in our previous research, we found no evidence for this but instead found that arousal responses (indexed with pupil dilation) in intertemporal choice are context-dependent. Specifically, arousal tracks the subjective value of the more variable reward option in the paradigm, whether it is immediate or delayed. Nevertheless, people tend to choose the less variable option in the choice task. In other words, their choices are reference-dependent and depend on variance in their recent history of offers. This suggests that there may be a causal relationship between reference-dependent choice and arousal, which we investigate here by reducing arousal pharmacologically using propranolol. Here, we show that propranolol reduces reference-dependence, leading to choices that are less influenced by recent history and more internally consistent.

KW - Emotional arousal

KW - Intertemporal choice

KW - Propranolol

KW - Pupil dilation

KW - Temporal discounting

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85031786009&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85031786009&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/scan/nsx081

DO - 10.1093/scan/nsx081

M3 - Article

VL - 12

SP - 1394

EP - 1401

JO - Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience

JF - Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience

SN - 1749-5024

IS - 9

M1 - nsx081

ER -