Using latent profile analyses to classify subjects with anhedonia based on reward-related measures obtained in the FAST-MAS study

Sabrina M. Darrow, Diego A. Pizzagalli, Moria Smoski, Sanjay J. Mathew, John Nurnberger, Sarah H. Lisanby, Dan Iosifescu, James W. Murrough, Hongqiu Yang, Richard D. Weiner, Gerard Sanacora, Richard S.E. Keefe, Allen Song, Wayne Goodman, Alexis E. Whitton, William Z. Potter, Andrew D. Krystal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Growing evidence indicates that anhedonia is a multifaceted construct. This study examined the possibility of identifying subgroups of people with anhedonia using multiple reward-related measures to provide greater understanding the Research Domain Criteria's Positive Valence Systems Domain and pathways for developing treatments. Methods: Latent profile analysis of baseline data from a study that examined the effects of a novel kappa opioid receptor (KOR) antagonist drug on measures and biomarkers associated with anhedonia was used to identify subgroups. Measures included ventral striatal activation during the Monetary Incentive Delay task, response bias in the Probabilistic Reward Task, reward valuation scores from the Effort-Expenditure for Rewards Task, and scores from reward-related self-report measures. Results: Two subgroups were identified, which differed on self-report measures of reward. Participants in the subgroup reporting more anhedonia also reported more depression and had greater illness severity and functional impairments. Graphs of change with treatment showed a trend for the less severe subgroup to demonstrate higher response to KOR antagonist treatment on the neuroimaging measure, probabilistic reward task, and ratings of functioning; the subgroup with greater severity showed a trend for higher treatment response on reward-related self-report measures. Limitations: The main limitations include the small sample size and exploratory nature of analyses. Conclusions: Evidence of possible dissociation between self-reported measures of anhedonia and other measures with respect to treatment response emerged. These results highlight the importance for future research to consider severity of self-reported reward-related deficits and how the relationship across measurement methods may vary with severity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)584-592
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2023


  • Anhedonia
  • Mood disorders
  • Research domain criteria (RDoC)
  • Reward processes


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