Loading Events

« All Events

Seminar – Lee Hogarth

Friday 17 September / 11:30 - 12:30


The persistence of addiction is better explained by socioeconomic deprivation related factors powerfully motivating goal-directed drug choice than by automaticity, habit or compulsion theories favoured by the brain disease model


Since its inception, the brain disease model of addiction (BDMA) has iteratively explained the puzzle of addiction (why drug use persists despite harms) by appealing to various automaticity accounts, including (but not limited to) automatic cue reactivity, habit and compulsion theories. The current talk will evaluate this claim of the BDMA by reviewing studies which have experimentally tested whether individual variation in addiction (dependence) severity can plausibly be explained by propensity to automatic cue-elicited, habitual or compulsive control over drug choice. The evidence clearly indicates that drug choice, even in dependent individuals, is not automatic, habitual or compulsive in nature. Rather, the puzzle of addiction is better explained by factors related to socioeconomic deprivation powerfully augmenting the expected value of the drug relative to alternative rewards, promoting persistent goal-directed drug choice by outweighing expected harms. The implication is that there should be a reorientation of research funding priorities to focus on interventions that address social structural, environmental and psychosocial factors that motivate goal-directed drug choice, rather than pursuing (thus far) fruitless (in terms of therapeutic impact) investigations into proposed biomedical mechanisms underpinning automatic, habitual or compulsive drug seeking.

Key publications

Hogarth L, Mathew AR, Hitsman B (In Press). Current major depression is associated with greater sensitivity to the motivational effect of both negative mood induction and abstinence on tobacco-seeking behavior. Drug and Alcohol Dependence Full text.

Hogarth L, Lam-Cassettari C, Pacitti H, Currah T, Mahlberg J, Hartley L, Moustafa A (2018). Intact goal-directed control in treatment-seeking drug users indexed by outcome-devaluation and Pavlovian to instrumental transfer: Critique of habit theory. European Journal of Neuroscience, 50(3), 2513-2525. Full text.

Mathew AR, Hogarth L, Leventhal AM, Cook JW, Hitsman B (2017). Cigarette smoking and depression comorbidity: systematic review and proposed theoretical model. Addiction, 112(3), 401-412. Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Hogarth L, He Z, Chase HW, Wills AJ, Troisi J, Leventhal AM, Mathew AR, Hitsman B (2015). Negative mood reverses devaluation of goal-directed drug-seeking favouring an incentive learning account of drug dependence. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 232(17), 3235-3247. Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Hogarth L, Maynard OM, Munafò MR (2015). Plain cigarette packs do not exert Pavlovian to instrumental transfer of control over tobacco-seeking. Addiction, 110(1), 174-182. Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Hogarth L, Retzler C, Munafò MR, Tran DMD, Troisi JR, Rose AK, Jones A, Field M (2014). Extinction of cue-evoked drug-seeking relies on degrading hierarchical instrumental expectancies. Behav Res Ther, 59, 61-70. Abstract.  Author URL.  Full text.

Lee Hogarth
University of Exeter (UK)


Invited by Véronique Deroche-Gamonnet (Neurocentre Magendie)

I subscribe to the newsletter:


Friday 17 September
11:30 - 12:30
Event Categories:
, ,