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Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2013 Oct;6:23-9. doi: 10.1016/j.dcn.2013.06.002. Epub 2013 Jun 19.

Neural mechanisms of impulse control in sexually risky adolescents.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles, 1285 Franz Hall, Box 951563, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA.

Abstract

The consequences of risky sexual behavior are of public concern. Adolescents contribute disproportionately to negative consequences of risky sexual behavior. However, no research has examined the neural correlates of impulse control and real-world engagement in risky sexual behavior in this population. The aim of the present study was to examine this question. Twenty sexually active adolescents performed an impulse control task during a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan and risky sexual behaviors were assessed through self-report. Sexual riskiness ratings were negatively associated with activation in the prefrontal cortex during response inhibition. These results suggest that diminished engagement of impulse control circuitry may contribute to sexual riskiness in adolescents.

KEYWORDS:

Adolescence; Brain development; Impulse control; Risky sexual behavior

PMID:
23835204
PMCID:
PMC3924962
DOI:
10.1016/j.dcn.2013.06.002
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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