Send to

Choose Destination
Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2014 Apr;25:194-200. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2014.01.012. Epub 2014 Feb 21.

The role of efference copy in striatal learning.

Author information

McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, United States. Electronic address:


Reinforcement learning requires the convergence of signals representing context, action, and reward. While models of basal ganglia function have well-founded hypotheses about the neural origin of signals representing context and reward, the function and origin of signals representing action are less clear. Recent findings suggest that exploratory or variable behaviors are initiated by a wide array of 'action-generating' circuits in the midbrain, brainstem, and cortex. Thus, in order to learn, the striatum must incorporate an efference copy of action decisions made in these action-generating circuits. Here we review several recent neural models of reinforcement learning that emphasize the role of efference copy signals. Also described are ideas about how these signals might be integrated with inputs signaling context and reward.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center