Neurobiology of disordered gambling


Gambling disorder affects 0.4 to 1.9 % of adults worldwide and is commonly associated with significant psychosocial dysfunction.

This article provides a concise primer on recent research examining the neurobiological underpinnings of gambling disorder.

Although impulsivity has been seen as one cognitive component underlying gambling disorder, compulsivity may be equally important to examine. Although causality remains elusive, structural and functional neuroimaging data suggest dysfunction in top-down executive control in gambling disorder. Recent twin research suggests that gambling disorder may have genetic links to both gambling and to obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Understanding the neurobiology of gambling disorder may lead to improved treatment approaches.

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