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Lesions of the basolateral amygdala disrupt selective aspects of reinforcer representation in rats

Blundell, Pam, Hall, Geoffrey and Killcross, Andrew Simon 2001. Lesions of the basolateral amygdala disrupt selective aspects of reinforcer representation in rats. Journal of Neuroscience 21 (22) , pp. 9018-9026.

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Abstract

The amygdala is known to play a role in learning about motivationally significant events. We investigated this role further by examining the effects of excitotoxic lesions of the basolateral amygdala on the ability of rats to use instrumental outcomes to direct responding (the differential outcomes effect) and on the ability of Pavlovian cues to modulate instrumental performance based on shared outcomes (reinforcer–selective Pavlovian-to-instrumental transfer). We found that basolateral amygdala (BLA) lesions did not affect the ability of rats to learn a basic instrumental conditional discrimination, but did disrupt the ability of differential outcomes to facilitate acquisition. In Pavlovian-to-instrumental transfer, BLA lesions did not disrupt the basic enhancement of instrumental performance but did abolish the reinforcer specificity of that enhancement. These results suggest that the BLA is involved in the representation of the sensory aspects of motivationally significant events.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords: appetitive conditioning; basolateral amygdala; reward; reinforcement; Pavlovian; instrumental
Additional Information: “Copyright of all material published in The Journal of Neuroscience remains with the authors. The authors grant the Society for Neuroscience an exclusive license to publish their work for the first 6 months. After 6 months the work becomes available to the public to copy, distribute, or display under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/ See: http://www.jneurosci.org/site/misc/ifa_policies.xhtml
Publisher: Society for Neuroscience
ISSN: 0270-6474
Last Modified: 12 Feb 2016 22:05
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/3346

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