Motivational value: Contribution of ventral prefrontal areas and catecholaminergic systems in monkeys.
|Sebastien Bouret, 4pm Wednesday 19th January 2011|
Team Motivation Brain & Behavior. Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle Epiniere. Paris, France.
Motivational value depends upon multiple parameters including the size
of the reward, the cost of obtaining it, or the internal state of the
subject. This value drives a variety of behaviors, ranging from
appetitive reflexes to more elaborate, goal directed actions. In order
to understand the neuronal processes by which value information drives
behavioral responses, we recorded the activity of single neurons in
behaving monkeys. Animals performed simple tasks enabling us to
compare the influence of motivational value on Pavlovian reflexes and
goal-directed actions. A first set of experiments was aimed at
comparing the contribution of the ventromedial and orbitofrontal
cortices to the assessment of motivational value. Another set of
experiments was designed to understand the role of the noradrenergic
nucleus locus coeruleus in motivational processes, and the extent to
which this role differs from that of dopaminergic neurons from the
substancia nigra. This work provides new insights into the neuronal
mechanis ms underlying the regulation of appetitive reflexes and goal
directed actions as a function of motivational value.