“….dopamine neurons appear to emit an alerting message about the surprising presence or absence of rewards. All responses to rewards and reward-predicting stimuli depend on event predictability. Dopamine neurons are activated by rewarding events that are better than predicted, remain uninfluenced by events that are as good as predicted, and are depressed by events that are worse than predicted.”

“…dopamine neurons appear to emit an alerting message about the surprising presence or absence of rewards. All responses to rewards and reward-predicting stimuli depend on event predictability. Dopamine neurons are activated by rewarding events that are better than predicted, remain uninfluenced by events that are as good as predicted, and are depressed by events that […]

Birdsong and Music Stimulate Same Brain Parts

Two studies on audio signaling thru birdsong songs and mating states:Birdsong study pecks theory that music is uniquely human (Medical Xpress)—A bird listening to birdsong may experience some of the same emotions as a human listening to music, suggests a new study on white-throated sparrows, published in Frontiers of Evolutionary Neuroscience. “We found that: the […]

How the Brain Handles Different Goals

The best-laid plans: How we update our goals based on new information Princeton University researchers have identified mechanisms that govern how the brain incorporates information about new situations into our existing goals…. updating goals takes place in a region known as the prefrontal cortex, and appears to involve signals associated with the brain chemical dopamine. […]

Scientific Definitions: Motivation (Geeky Science Version – Dopamine)

Here is a good technical discussion on motivation In view of the fact that motivational stimuli usually are available at some physical or psychological distance from the organism, the only way to gain access to these stimuli is to engage in behavior that brings them closer, or makes their occurrence more likely.  This phase of […]

Science Definitions: The Problem with Idea of “Reward”

Economists like the term “reward” – animals are not as simple as econ models propose, of course. “..the term ‘‘reward’’ has been criticized in detail elsewhere. Though the term reward has meaning as a synonym for ‘‘reinforcer,’’ there is no consistent scientific meaning of ‘‘reward’’ when used to describe a neurobehavioral process; some employ it […]