Inflammation Predicts Decision-Making Characterized by Impulsivity, Present Focus, and an Inability to Delay GratificationShow full item record
Inflammation Predicts Decision-Making Characterized by Impulsivity, Present Focus, and an Inability to Delay Gratification
Gassen, Jeffrey; Prokosch, Marjorie L.; Eimerbrink, Micah J.; Leyva, Randi P. Proffitt; White, Jordon D.; Peterman, Julia L.; Burgess, Adam; Cheek, Dennis J.; Kreutzer, Andreas; Nicolas, Sylis C.; Boehm, Gary W.; Hill, Sarah E.
Here, we propose a novel theoretical model linking present-focused decision-making to the activities of the immune system. We tested our model by examining the relationship between inflammatory activity - in vivo and in vitro - and decision-making characterized by impulsivity, present focus, and an inability to delay gratification. Results support our model, revealing that inflammation predicts these outcomes even after controlling for factors that may contribute to a spurious linkage between them. Moreover, subsequent analyses revealed that our model was a better fit for the data than alternative models using present-focused decision-making and its health-harming behavioural sequelae (e.g., smoking, risky sexual behaviour) to predict inflammation, lending support for the proposed directionality of this relationship. Together, these results suggest that inflammation may contribute to decision-making patterns that can result in undesirable personal and societal outcomes.