How experience and information influence choice behavior: A pilot fMRI study of the Iowa Gambling Task

Ching Hung Lin, Yao Chu Chiu*, Chou Ming Cheng, Tzu Chen Yeh, Jen Chuen Hsieh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The present exploratory research extended the Iowa Gambling Task-fMRI study conducted by Lin et al. (2008a) and demonstrated how experience and information affect decision behavior and interrelated brain responses. The original Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) was designed to demonstrate choice behavior in uncertain situations, notrisk situations by providing gambling information (such as information regarding probabilities and values) to decision makers. Previously, Lin et al. (2008a) demonstrated that the activation of the basal forebrain was correlated to driving the decision and that the parietal and frontal cortex in response to the consequences evaluation under uncertainty. However, few investigations have examined changes in IGT brain maps under risk by providing gambling information (e.g., probability and value). Therefore, this study followed the paradigms established in Lin et al. (2008a), namely, using eventrelated fMRI and the same subjects group to identify IGT brain maps under risk (after first-run practice and after information was provided to subjects playing the game). Furthermore, we also compared brain maps under both uncertainty (Lin et al., 2008a) and risk. The behavioral results indicated that choice patterns under uncertainty and risk were markedly different for most decks. Notably, the present behavioral observations and the Soochow groups findings (Chiu et al., 2006; Lin et al., 2008b; Yen et al., 2013) have consistently demonstrated that it is possible to change decision behavior under dynamic and ambiguous situations when decision makers possess both the experience of practice and relevant gamble information. On the other hand, the basal forebrain was involved in driving the decision while the parietal andfrontal lobes correlated to the consequences evaluationunder not only in situations of uncertainty but alsoinrisk situations. Remarkably, the variations in brain activation between uncertainty and risk situations mayrepresent the changed awareness of choice consequences. Moreover, under both types of situations, we found theinsula and striatum to be critical in responding to the anticipation (not outcome or reward).This finding might be valuable for clarifying certain controversial issues regarding the reward system (such as, for example, thefunction of the striatum; i.e., whether it is active in anticipation or reward-value representation) indynamicchoice situations. Nevertheless, the complex roles of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in the IGT should be further elucidated. The present pilot illustration combined both the effects of practice and ofproviding information, so a clarifying study in which each individual factoris examined and discussed should be conductedin the future.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Psychology Research
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)9781634825764
ISBN (Print)9781634825467
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015


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