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Pavlovian occasion setting in human fear and appetitive conditioning: Effects of trait anxiety and trait depression

Zbozinek, Tomislav D. and Wise, Toby and Pérez, Omar D. and Qi, Song and Fanselow, Michael S. and Mobbs, Dean (2021) Pavlovian occasion setting in human fear and appetitive conditioning: Effects of trait anxiety and trait depression. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 147 . Art. No. 103986. ISSN 0005-7967. doi:10.1016/j.brat.2021.103986.

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Contexts and discrete stimuli often hierarchically influence the association between a stimulus and outcome. This phenomenon, called occasion setting, is central to modulation-based Pavlovian learning. We conducted two experiments with humans in fear and appetitive conditioning paradigms, training stimuli in differential conditioning, feature-positive discriminations, and feature-negative discriminations. We also investigated the effects of trait anxiety and trait depression on these forms of learning. Results from both experiments showed that participants were able to successfully learn which stimuli predicted the electric shock and monetary reward outcomes. Additionally, as hypothesized, the stimuli trained as occasion setters had little-to-no effect on simple reinforced or non-reinforced stimuli, suggesting the former were indeed occasion setters. Lastly, in fear conditioning, trait anxiety was associated with increases in fear of occasion setter/conditional stimulus compounds; in appetitive conditioning, trait depression was associated with lower expectations of monetary reward for the trained negative occasion setting compound and transfer of the negative occasion setter to the simple reinforced stimulus. These results suggest that clinically anxious individuals may have enhanced fear of occasion setting compounds, and clinically depressed individuals may expect less reward with compounds involving the negative occasion setter.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Zbozinek, Tomislav D.0000-0003-0187-671X
Wise, Toby0000-0002-9021-3282
Pérez, Omar D.0000-0002-4168-5435
Qi, Song0000-0002-5886-849X
Fanselow, Michael S.0000-0002-3850-5966
Mobbs, Dean0000-0003-1175-3772
Additional Information:© 2021 Elsevier Ltd. Received 18 February 2021, Revised 19 August 2021, Accepted 5 October 2021, Available online 9 October 2021. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1911441 granted to Tomislav Zbozinek, PhD under the supervision of Dean Mobbs, PhD and Michael Fanselow, PhD. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation. CRediT authorship contribution statement: Tomislav D. Zbozinek: Conceptualization, Data curation, Formal analysis, Funding acquisition, Investigation, Methodology, Project administration, Software, Validation, Visualization, Writing – original draft. Toby Wise: Writing – review & editing. Omar D. Perez: Writing – review & editing. Song Qi: Writing – review & editing, Software. Michael S. Fanselow: Conceptualization, Methodology, Supervision, Writing – review & editing. Dean Mobbs: Conceptualization, Methodology, Supervision, Resources, Writing – review & editing.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Subject Keywords:Fear conditioning; Reward conditioning; Occasion setting; Anxiety; Depression; Pavlovian conditioning
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211102-210822989
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Official Citation:Tomislav D. Zbozinek, Toby Wise, Omar D. Perez, Song Qi, Michael S. Fanselow, Dean Mobbs, Pavlovian occasion setting in human fear and appetitive conditioning: Effects of trait anxiety and trait depression, Behaviour Research and Therapy, Volume 147, 2021, 103986, ISSN 0005-7967,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:111719
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:02 Nov 2021 21:15
Last Modified:02 Nov 2021 21:15

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