Emotional Experience and the Mood-Congruent Working Memory Effect in First-Onset and Untreated Depressive Disorder PatientsLi Mi1-3, Lu Shengfu1-3*, Feng Lei4,5, Fu Bingbing4, Wang Gang4,6, Zhong Ning1-3,7 and Hu Bin8
- Corresponding Author:
- Shengfu Lu
Laboratory of Intelligent Science & Technology, The International WIC Institute
Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100024, China
Received Date: May 16, 2016; Accepted Date: July 14, 2016; Published Date: July 20, 2016
Citation: Mi L, Shengfu L, Lei F, Bingbing F, Gang W, et al. (2016) Emotional Experience and the Mood-Congruent Working Memory Effect in First-Onset and Untreated Depressive Disorder Patients. J Psychiatry 19:79. doi:10.4172/2378- 5756.1000379
Copyright: © 2016 Mi L, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Using an improved Sternberg working memory paradigm and affective pictures of different valences, this study investigates the emotional experience capability of 22 first-onset and untreated major depressive disorder patients (MDD) compared with the matching 22 healthy control participants (HC) and whether there is a moodcongruent working memory effect. We employed a general linear model analysis of variance (ANOVA) with two-factor repeated measures analysis on the emotional experience capability (pupil diameter changes) and the working memory performance (accuracy). The results show that the pupil diameter changes of positive emotions are significantly greater in MDD than those in HC (p<0.001), and the pupil diameter changes of negative emotions are not significantly different between two groups (p=0.055), which suggest that MDD have a significantly decrease in the ability to experience pleasure (anhedonia). In addition, the results only present that the working memory performances of negative emotions are significantly greater in MDD than those of positive emotions (p<0.05), which indicates that there is a mood-congruent memory effect. Moreover, in MDD, a positive correlation is found between the pupil diameter changes and working memory performances of positive emotions, however there is no correlation between those of negative emotions. Taken together, these results suggest that MDD have a moodcongruent memory effect and anhedonia, and the mood-congruent memory effect may be due to the decreased memory performances of positive emotions (a decrease in the ability to experience pleasure), but not those of negative emotions increased. This study not only illustrates that the core symptoms of depressive patients may be a mood-congruent memory effect and anhedonia but also enriches the connotation of anhedonia as an endophenotype indicator.