Behavioral approach system (BAS) sensitivity and bipolar spectrum disorders: A retrospective and concurrent behavioral high-risk design

Lauren B. Alloy*, Lyn Y. Abramson, Patricia D. Walshaw, Alex Cogswell, Jeannette M. Smith, Amy M. Neeren, Megan E. Hughes, Brian M. Iacoviello, Rachel K. Gerstein, Jessica Keyser, Snezana Urosevic, Robin Nusslock

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

71 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this article, we tested the vulnerability hypothesis of the behavioral approach system (BAS) hypersensitivity model of bipolar disorders. We examined whether self-reported BAS sensitivity predicts lifetime bipolar spectrum diagnoses as well as symptoms and personality characteristics associated with bipolar disorder using a retrospective and concurrent behavioral high-risk design. Participants with high (HBAS; n=28) or moderate (MBAS; n=24) BAS sensitivity were selected and given a lifetime psychiatric diagnostic interview and self-report measures of proneness to bipolar symptoms, current symptoms, and personality characteristics relevant to bipolarity. HBAS participants were significantly and substantially more likely to have a lifetime bipolar spectrum disorder diagnosis than were MBAS participants, but did not differ from MBAS participants in their likelihood of a unipolar depression diagnosis. Also, the HBAS group exhibited higher impulsivity and proneness to hypomanic symptoms than the MBAS group, and BAS-reward responsiveness predicted hypomanic personality characteristics. Finally, high behavioral inhibition system (BIS) sensitivity was associated with proneness to and current depressive symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)143-155
Number of pages13
JournalMotivation and Emotion
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2006

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Keywords

  • Behavioral approach system
  • Behavioral high-risk design
  • Behavioral inhibition system
  • Bipolar disorders
  • Depression
  • Hypomania

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology

Cite this

Alloy, L. B., Abramson, L. Y., Walshaw, P. D., Cogswell, A., Smith, J. M., Neeren, A. M., Hughes, M. E., Iacoviello, B. M., Gerstein, R. K., Keyser, J., Urosevic, S., & Nusslock, R. (2006). Behavioral approach system (BAS) sensitivity and bipolar spectrum disorders: A retrospective and concurrent behavioral high-risk design. Motivation and Emotion, 30(2), 143-155. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11031-006-9003-3