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Motivational states and learning

Jonathan M Highsmith, Karl L Wuensch, Tuan Tran, Alexandra J Stephenson, D Erik Everhart
ERP studies commonly utilize gambling-based reinforcement tasks to elicit feedback negativity (FN) responses. This study used a pattern learning task in order to limit gambling-related fallacious reasoning and possible affective responses to gambling, while investigating relationships between the FN components between high and low reward expectation conditions. Eighteen undergraduates completed measures of reinforcement sensitivity, trait and state affect, and psychophysiological recording. The pattern learning task elicited a FN component for both high and low win expectancy conditions, which was found to be independent of reward expectation and showed little relationship with task and personality variables...
April 18, 2016: Brain Informatics
Ayaka Kato, Kenji Morita
It has been suggested that dopamine (DA) represents reward-prediction-error (RPE) defined in reinforcement learning and therefore DA responds to unpredicted but not predicted reward. However, recent studies have found DA response sustained towards predictable reward in tasks involving self-paced behavior, and suggested that this response represents a motivational signal. We have previously shown that RPE can sustain if there is decay/forgetting of learned-values, which can be implemented as decay of synaptic strengths storing learned-values...
October 2016: PLoS Computational Biology
Daniel García-Pérez, Szilamer Ferenczi, Krisztina J Kovács, M Luisa Laorden, M Victoria Milanés, Cristina Núñez
Drug-withdrawal aversive memories generate a motivational state leading to compulsive drug taking, with plasticity changes in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) being essential in aversive motivational learning. The conditioned-place aversion (CPA) paradigm allows for measuring the negative affective component of drug withdrawal. First, CPA triggers association between negative affective consequences of withdrawal with context (memory consolidation). Afterwards, when the animals are re-exposed to the paired environment, they avoid it due to the association between the context and aversive memories (memory retrieval)...
September 28, 2016: Psychoneuroendocrinology
Hannah Twarkowski, Denise Manahan-Vaughan
Neuromodulation by means of the catecholaminergic system is a key component of motivation-driven learning and behaviorally modulated hippocampal synaptic plasticity. In particular, dopamine acting on D1/D5 receptors and noradrenaline acting on beta-adrenergic receptors exert a very potent regulation of forms of hippocampal synaptic plasticity that last for very long-periods of time (>24 h), and occur in conjunction with novel spatial learning. Antagonism of these receptors not only prevents long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), but prevents the memory of the spatial event that, under normal circumstances, leads to the perpetuation of these plasticity forms...
2016: Frontiers in Synaptic Neuroscience
Evhen Y Strashko, Аnna A Kapustianska, Lyudmyla E Bobyreva
Matters of physical and medical rehabilitation of children with organic lesions of the nervous system, in particular, with cerebral palsy, are actual in countries around the world. Hippotherapy is neurophysiologically oriented therapy using horses. Determine whether a combination of hippotherapy as a method of rehabilitation in the aftermath of outpatient comprehensive impact on MS on a stationary phase; Study of the effect of hippotherapy as securing and preparation method for learning new postures and movements in children with spastic cerebral palsy forms; The study of the possible optimization of psychophysical state, activation motivations of patients; Determination of the optimal timing of hippotherapy sessions, the number of procedures, the study of possible fatigue factor children...
2016: Wiadomości Lekarskie: Organ Polskiego Towarzystwa Lekarskiego
Erinn H Finke
Purpose: Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have social deficits that affect making and maintaining friends. Many empirically tested methods to address these social deficits are available, yet difficulties related to the establishment and maintenance of authentic friendships persist. Method: This viewpoint article (a) briefly reviews the current state of the science relative to social and friendship skills training for individuals with ASD, (b) considers the potential links (or lack thereof) between current social and friendship skill interventions for individuals with ASD and outcomes related to making and maintaining friends, (c) examines how friendship-related outcomes might be maximized, and (d) proposes a framework for intervention planning that may promote these valued outcomes...
October 7, 2016: American Journal of Speech-language Pathology
Chinyere Mbachu, Obinna Onwujekwe, Nkoli Ezumah, Olayinka Ajayi, Olusola Sanwo, Benjamin Uzochukwu
Decentralisation is defined as the dispersion, distribution or transfer of resources, functions and decision-making power from a central authority to regional and local authorities. It is usually accompanied by assignment of accountability and responsibility for results. Fundamental to understanding decentralisation is learning what motivates central governments to give up power and resources to local governments, and the practical significance of this on their positions regarding decentralisation. This study examined key political and institutional influences on role-players' capacity to support decentralisation of HIV and AIDS treatment services to primary healthcare facilities, and implications for sustainability...
September 2016: African Journal of AIDS Research: AJAR
Jens Walldorf, Tina Jähnert, Norman B Berman, Martin R Fischer
BACKGROUND: Learning with virtual patients (VPs) is considered useful in medical education for fostering clinical reasoning. As the authoring of VPs is highly demanding, an international exchange of cases might be desirable. However, cultural differences in foreign VPs might hamper learning success. OBJECTIVE: We investigated the need for support for using VPs from the United States at a German university, with respect to language and cultural differences. Our goal was to better understand potential implementation barriers of a intercultural VP exchange...
2016: Journal of Medical Internet Research
Victor Manuel Vergara, Andrew Mayer, Eswar Damaraju, Kent Kiehl, Vince D Calhoun
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) may adversely affect a person's thinking, memory, personality, and behavior. While mild TBI (mTBI) diagnosis is challenging, there is a risk for long-term psychiatric, neurologic, and psychosocial problems in some patients that motivates the search for new and better biomarkers. Recently, diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (dMRI) has shown promise in detecting mTBI, but its validity is still being investigated. Resting state functional network connectivity (rsFNC) is another approach that is emerging as a promising option for the diagnosis of mTBI...
September 27, 2016: Journal of Neurotrauma
Amanda R Mathew, Lee Hogarth, Adam M Leventhal, Jessica W Cook, Brian Hitsman
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Despite decades of research on co-occurring smoking and depression, cessation rates remain consistently lower for depressed smokers than for smokers in the general population, highlighting the need for theory-driven models of smoking and depression. This paper provides a systematic review with a particular focus on psychological states that disproportionately motivate smoking in depression, and frame an incentive learning theory account of smoking-depression co-occurrence...
September 15, 2016: Addiction
Johan W S Vlaeyen, Stephen Morley, Geert Crombez
Pain is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience urging the individual to take action to restore the integrity of the body. The transition from a common episode of acute pain to a state of intermittent or chronic pain has been a constant preoccupation of researchers and clinicians alike. In this review, we approach chronic pain from a modern learning perspective that incorporates cognitive, affective, behavioral and motivational aspects. We view pain as a biologically hard-wired signal of bodily harm that competes with other demands in the person's environment...
November 2016: Behaviour Research and Therapy
Marjorie Rhodes, Henry Wellman
We argue that moral learning, like much of conceptual development more generally, involves development and change in children's intuitive theories of the world. Children's intuitive theories involve coherent and abstract representations of the world, which point to domain-specific, unobservable causal-explanatory entities. From this perspective, children rely on intuitive sociological theories (in particular, an abstract expectation that group memberships constrain people's obligations), and their intuitive psychological theories (including expectations that mental states motivate individual behavior) to predict, explain, and evaluate morally-relevant action...
September 6, 2016: Cognition
Tuki Attuquayefio, Richard J Stevenson, Robert A Boakes, Megan J Oaten, Martin R Yeomans, Mehmet Mahmut, Heather M Francis
Animal data indicate that greater intake of fats and sugars prevalent in a Western diet impairs hippocampal memory and tests of behavioral inhibition known to be related to hippocampal function (e.g., feature negative discrimination tasks). It has been argued that such high-fat high-sugar diets (HFS) impair the hippocampus, which then becomes less sensitive to modulation by physiological state. Thus retrieval of motivationally salient memories (e.g., when seeing or smelling food) occurs irrespective of state...
October 2016: Journal of Experimental Psychology. Animal Learning and Cognition
Hua Tang, Fei Luo, Si-Hai Li, Bao-Ming Li
Decision making is dependent upon individual motivation. Previous studies showed that animals with higher levels of motivation are more likely to invest more time to acquire larger rewards rather than acquiring smaller rewards with less time to wait. However, little is known about how this motivation mediates the cognitive effort animals devote upon making said decisions in detail. In the present study, we investigated the behavioral response in a goal-directed action under a differential reward schedule by training rats to perform a "Do more, get more" (DM-GM) task using a nosepoke operandum when longer nosepoke durations resulted in correspondingly larger rewards...
October 6, 2016: Neuroscience Letters
Will Lawn, Tom P Freeman, Rebecca A Pope, Alyssa Joye, Lisa Harvey, Chandni Hindocha, Claire Mokrysz, Abigail Moss, Matthew B Wall, Michael Ap Bloomfield, Ravi K Das, Celia Ja Morgan, David J Nutt, H Valerie Curran
RATIONALE: Anecdotally, both acute and chronic cannabis use have been associated with apathy, amotivation, and other reward processing deficits. To date, empirical support for these effects is limited, and no previous studies have assessed both acute effects of Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), as well as associations with cannabis dependence. OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this study were (1) to examine acute effects of cannabis with CBD (Cann + CBD) and without CBD (Cann-CBD) on effort-related decision-making and (2) to examine associations between cannabis dependence, effort-related decision-making and reward learning...
October 2016: Psychopharmacology
Chris Lonsdale, Taren Sanders, Kristen E Cohen, Philip Parker, Michael Noetel, Tim Hartwig, Diego Vasoncellos, Morwenna Kirwan, Philip Morgan, Jo Salmon, Marj Moodie, Heather McKay, Andrew Bennie, Ron Plotnikoff, Renata L Cinelli, David Greene, Louisa R Peralta, Dylan P Cliff, Gregory S Kolt, Jennifer M Gore, Lan Gao, David R Lubans
BACKGROUND: Despite the health benefits of regular physical activity, most children are insufficiently active. Schools are ideally placed to promote physical activity; however, many do not provide children with sufficient in-school activity or ensure they have the skills and motivation to be active beyond the school setting. The aim of this project is to modify, scale up and evaluate the effectiveness of an intervention previously shown to be efficacious in improving children's physical activity, fundamental movement skills and cardiorespiratory fitness...
August 24, 2016: BMC Public Health
Joanes Grandjean, Damiano Azzinnari, Aline Seuwen, Hannes Sigrist, Erich Seifritz, Christopher R Pryce, Markus Rudin
Human depression, for which chronic psychosocial stress is a major risk factor, is characterized by consistent alterations in neurocircuitry. For example, there is increased functional connectivity (FC) within and between regions comprising the default mode network (DMN) including prefrontal cortex and cingulate cortex. Alterations in network FC are associated with specific aspects of psychopathology. In mice, chronic psychosocial stress (CPS) leads to depression-relevant behavior, including increased fear learning, learned helplessness, fatigue and decreased motivation for reward...
August 9, 2016: NeuroImage
Y Yamazaki, K Hikishima, M Saiki, M Inada, E Sasaki, R N Lemon, C J Price, H Okano, A Iriki
Complex motor skills of eventual benefit can be learned after considerable trial and error. What do structural brain changes that accompany such effortful long-term learning tell us about the mechanisms for developing innovative behavior? Using MRI, we monitored brain structure before, during and after four marmosets learnt to use a rake, over a long period of 10-13 months. Throughout learning, improvements in dexterity and visuo-motor co-ordination correlated with increased volume in the lateral extrastriate cortex...
2016: Scientific Reports
Mei R Fu, Deborah Axelrod, Amber A Guth, Kavita Rampertaap, Nardin El-Shammaa, Karen Hiotis, Joan Scagliola, Gary Yu, Yao Wang
BACKGROUND: Many women suffer from daily distressing symptoms related to lymphedema following breast cancer treatment. Lymphedema, an abnormal accumulation of lymph fluid in the ipsilateral body area or upper limb, remains an ongoing major health problem affecting more than 40% of 3.1 million breast cancer survivors in the United States. Patient-centered care related to lymphedema symptom management is often inadequately addressed in clinical research and practice. mHealth plays a significant role in improving self-care, patient-clinician communication, and access to health information...
July 2016: MHealth
Seong Gon Kim, Nawanol Theera-Ampornpunt, Chih-Hao Fang, Mrudul Harwani, Ananth Grama, Somali Chaterji
BACKGROUND: Gene expression is mediated by specialized cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), the most prominent of which are called enhancers. Early experiments indicated that enhancers located far from the gene promoters are often responsible for mediating gene transcription. Knowing their properties, regulatory activity, and genomic targets is crucial to the functional understanding of cellular events, ranging from cellular homeostasis to differentiation. Recent genome-wide investigation of epigenomic marks has indicated that enhancer elements could be enriched for certain epigenomic marks, such as, combinatorial patterns of histone modifications...
2016: BMC Systems Biology
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