Thursday, October 01, 2009

How our brain remembers the consequences of our actions

A fundamental building block in shaping our behavior is the relationship between a sensory event, a chosen action and its consequences. Histed et al. now point to how the brain stores this information by showing that neurons in the monkey prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia display persistent activity that is related to the outcomes of previous actions. Seo and Lee review this work in Nature, noting in the figure the sort of stimulus, action, outcome sequence that is in question :

Basically, the data suggest that the prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia might be essential brain areas for storing information about action–outcome associations

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