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Neuroimage. 2019 Jan 1;184:943-953. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2018.10.018. Epub 2018 Oct 5.

Ventral striatum links motivational and motor networks during operant-conditioned movement in rats.

Author information

1
Department of Advanced Neuroimaging, Integrative Brain Imaging Center, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan; Department of Functional Brain Research, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan.
2
Department of Mental Disorder Research, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan.
3
Department of Functional Brain Research, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan.
4
Brain Science Institute, Tamagawa University, Machida City, Tokyo 194-8610, Japan.
5
Department of Advanced Neuroimaging, Integrative Brain Imaging Center, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan; Department of Functional Brain Research, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira City, Tokyo 187-8551, Japan. Electronic address: hanakawa@ncnp.go.jp.

Abstract

Voluntary actions require motives. It is already known that the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) assess the motivational values. However, it remains unclear how the motivational process gains access to the motor execution system in the brain. Here we present evidence that the ventral striatum (VS) plays a hub-like role in mediating motivational and motor processing in operant behavior. We used positron emission tomography (PET) to detect the neural activation areas associated with motivational action. Using obtained regions, partial correlation analysis was performed to examine how the motivational signals propagate to the motor system. The results revealed that VS activity propagated to both MPFC and primary motor cortex through the thalamus. Moreover, muscimol injection into the VS suppressed the motivational behavior, supporting the idea of representations of motivational signals in VS that trigger motivational behavior. These results suggest that the VS-thalamic pathway plays a pivotal role for both motivational processing through interactions with the MPFC and for motor processing through interactions with the motor BG circuits.

KEYWORDS:

(18)F-FDG PET; Brain connectivity; Motivation; Operant behavior; Ventral striatum

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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