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Context-specific response to odors in relation to extraversion


, : Context-specific response to odors in relation to extraversion. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts 26(1-2): Abstract No -754 3

A core process underlying extraversion (EXV) is the dopamine (DA) facilitation of contextual encoding of salient incentive stimuli. We assessed the effects of intermittent DA activation on response to odors as a function of EXV. Low and high EXV measured by survey were assigned to one of two groups: 1) main world (MW): (n=35; 3 sessions over 2 weeks; day 1,4, 10-14; same context) or 2) third world (TW): (n=10; 4 sessions over 2 weeks: day 1,4,11,14; same context sessions 1,2,4, different context session 3). MW subjects were divided into 2 subgroups: drug (sessions 1-3 oral methylphenidate (MP), .3,.5,.3 mg/kg) or placebo (sessions 1,2 lactose, session 3 .3 mg/kg MP); all TW subjects took MP (sessions 1-4 .5,.5,.3,.3 mg/kg). During peak MP effects, subjects viewed incentive-motivating films as chocolate odor was diffused into the room to create the salient context. They later responded to odor stimuli using the UPSIT cinnamon and chocolate odor cards. High EXV MWD subjects rated chocolate but not cinnamon significantly higher in the test session than in the first session, and at test rated chocolate as more pleasant than the other groups. High EXV MWP and low EXV MWD and MWP showed no significant change in within-group odor ratings across sessions, and between-group ratings did not differ in either session. TW high EXV, but not low EXV, rated the chocolate odor as significantly more pleasant than the first session when tested in the same context (session 4) than when tested in a different context (session 3). The results suggest that experience-dependent variation in DA facilitation of encoding the salient context of incentive stimuli contributes to the development and stability of EXV.

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