OBSESSIVE-COMPULSIVE DISORDER DOESN’T AFFECT THE VISUALLY-GUIDED ASSOCIATIVE LEARNING IN CHILDREN
Ákos Pertich1, Márton Edelmayer1, Zsófia Giricz1, Balázs Bodosi1,Diána Nyujtó1, Ágnes Fehér1, Attila Öze1, András Puszta1, Laura Németh3, Péter Nagy3, 1, Attila Nagy1, Gabriella Eördegh2
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) manifests itself as obsessions (recurrent, persistent thoughts, which the individual may try to suppress) and/or compulsions (repetitive behaviors or mental acts, which serve as a prevention or reduction of anxiety). There is a growing body of evidence on the neural bases of OCD, which involves cortical areas as well as the caudate nucleus. The aim of our study was to investigate whether OCD affects basal ganglia and hippocampus mediated associative learning functions in children suffering from OCD. We applied a modified version of the Rutgers Acquired Equivalence Learning Test (RAET), a visually-guided learning paradigm proved to be able to dissociate basal ganglia-mediated learning processes from hippocampus-mediated ones with a total of 29 children diagnosed with OCD according to the DSM-V criteria and 29 matched healthy control participants. The two investigated groups did not differ significantly regarding the median number of the trials required for completing the acquisition phase (p=0.779). There was no significant difference between the OCD children and the control group regarding the error ratios in the acquisition phase (p=0.938), and in the retrieval (p=0.800) and generalization (p=0.431) parts of the testing phase.The children suffering from OCD had the same performance as the controls in all aspects of the applied associative RAET. Thus both of the acquisition and the test parts, which connected primarily to the function of the basal ganglia and the hippocampi, respectively are not affected negatively by OCD. The present study was supported by a grant from SZTE ÁOK-KKA Grant No.: 2019/270-62-2.