Instructed knowledge shapes feedback- driven aversive learning in striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, but not the amygdala

Lauren Y. Atlas, Bradley B. Doll, Jian Li, Nathaniel D. Daw, Elizabeth Phelps

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Socially-conveyed rules and instructions strongly shape expectations and emotions. Yet most neuroscientific studies of learning consider reinforcement history alone, irrespective of knowledge acquired through other means. We examined fear conditioning and reversal in humans to test whether instructed knowledge modulates the neural mechanisms of feedback-driven learning. One group was informed about contingencies and reversals. A second group learned only from reinforcement. We combined quantitative models with functional magnetic resonance imaging and found that instructions induced dissociations in the neural systems of aversive learning. Responses in striatum and orbitofrontal cortex updated with instructions and correlated with prefrontal responses to instructions. Amygdala responses were influenced by reinforcement similarly in both groups and did not update with instructions. Results extend work on instructed reward learning and reveal novel dissociations that have not been observed with punishments or rewards. Findings support theories of specialized threat-detection and may have implications for fear maintenance in anxiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere15192
JournaleLife
Volume5
Issue numberMAY2016
DOIs
StatePublished - May 12 2016

Fingerprint

Amygdala
Prefrontal Cortex
Reinforcement
Learning
Feedback
Reward
Fear
Reinforcement learning
Dissociative Disorders
Punishment
Emotions
Anxiety
History
Maintenance
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Reinforcement (Psychology)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Medicine(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Instructed knowledge shapes feedback- driven aversive learning in striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, but not the amygdala. / Atlas, Lauren Y.; Doll, Bradley B.; Li, Jian; Daw, Nathaniel D.; Phelps, Elizabeth.

In: eLife, Vol. 5, No. MAY2016, e15192, 12.05.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Atlas, Lauren Y. ; Doll, Bradley B. ; Li, Jian ; Daw, Nathaniel D. ; Phelps, Elizabeth. / Instructed knowledge shapes feedback- driven aversive learning in striatum and orbitofrontal cortex, but not the amygdala. In: eLife. 2016 ; Vol. 5, No. MAY2016.
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