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      The relationship between second-to-fourth digit (2D:4D) ratios and problematic and pathological Internet use among Turkish university students

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          Background and aims

          The ratio of the second and fourth fingers (2D:4D ratio) is a sexually dimorphic trait, with men tending to have lower values than women. This ratio has been related to prenatal testosterone concentrations and addictive behaviors including problematic video-gaming. We aimed to investigate the possible association between 2D:4D ratios and Internet addiction and whether such a relationship would be independent of impulsivity.


          A total of 652 university students (369 women, 283 men), aged 17–27 years, were enrolled in the study. Problematic and pathological Internet use (PPIU) was assessed using the Internet Addiction Test (IAT). The participants also completed the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (version 11; BIS-11) and had their 2D:4D ratios measured.


          2D:4D ratios were not significantly different in women with PPIU and in those with adaptive Internet use (AIU). Men with PPIU exhibited lower 2D:4D ratios on both hands when compared with those with AIU. Correlation analysis revealed that 2D:4D ratios on both hands were negatively correlated with IAT scores among men, but not among women. The multiple linear regression analysis revealed that age, duration of weekly Internet use, impulsiveness, and 2D:4D ratios on the right hand were independently associated with IAT scores among men, and impulsivity did not mediate the relationship between 2D:4D ratios and PPIU.


          For men, 2D:4D ratios on the right hand were inversely correlated with Internet addiction severity even after controlling for individual differences in impulsivity. These findings suggest that high prenatal testosterone levels may contribute to the occurrence of PPIU among men.

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          Most cited references 68

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          Chi-Square Tests for Goodness of Fit and Contingency Tables

           Jacob Cohen (1977)
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            Impulsivity as a vulnerability marker for substance-use disorders: review of findings from high-risk research, problem gamblers and genetic association studies.

            There is a longstanding association between substance-use disorders (SUDs) and the psychological construct of impulsivity. In the first section of this review, personality and neurocognitive data pertaining to impulsivity will be summarised in regular users of four classes of substance: stimulants, opiates, alcohol and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Impulsivity in these groups may arise via two alternative mechanisms, which are not mutually exclusive. By one account, impulsivity may occur as a consequence of chronic exposure to substances causing harmful effects on the brain. By the alternative account, impulsivity pre-dates SUDs and is associated with the vulnerability to addiction. We will review the evidence that impulsivity is associated with addiction vulnerability by considering three lines of evidence: (i) studies of groups at high-risk for development of SUDs; (ii) studies of pathological gamblers, where the harmful consequences of the addiction on brain structure are minimised, and (iii) genetic association studies linking impulsivity to genetic risk factors for addiction. Within each of these three lines of enquiry, there is accumulating evidence that impulsivity is a pre-existing vulnerability marker for SUDs.
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              Introduction to mediation, moderation, and conditional process analysis: A regression-based approach


                Author and article information

                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                30 March 2017
                March 2016
                : 6
                : 1
                : 30-41
                [ 1 ]Department of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine , New Haven, CT, USA
                [ 2 ]Department of Psychiatry, Akdeniz University School of Medicine , Antalya, Turkey
                [ 3 ] Akdeniz University School of Medicine , Antalya, Turkey
                [ 4 ]Department of Psychiatry, Hallym University Medical Center, Chuncheon Sacred Heart Hospital , Chuncheon, South Korea
                [ 5 ]The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, Yale School of Medicine , New Haven, CT, USA
                [ 6 ] The Connecticut Mental Health Center , New Haven, CT, USA
                [ 7 ]Department of Neuroscience and Child Study Center, Yale School of Medicine , New Haven, CT, USA
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Fatih Canan; Department of Psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06510, USA; Phone: +1 203 8922744; Fax: +1 203 9747366; E-mail: fatihcanan@
                © 2017 The Author(s)

                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 for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 3, Tables: 6, Equations: 0, References: 56, Pages: 12
                Funding sources: MNP’s involvement in this work was supported by The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse and a Center of Excellence in Gambling Research Award from the National Center for Responsible Gaming. The funding agencies had no role in study design; data collection, analysis, and interpretation; preparation of the manuscript; or the decision to submit the paper for publication.
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