We have new papers out in press or in preprint!
The first is just out in Neuropsychopharmacology [here] from a long running collaboration with Eli Lilly, lead first by Soon-Lim Shin and then expertly shepherded to completion by Emilie Werlen. We used oxygen amperometry in freely-moving rats and found that haemodynamic signals in nucleus accumbens and orbitofrontal cortex during probabilistic learning reflect signed and unsigned prediction errors respectively. Moreover, both of these signatures were disrupted by a hyperdopaminergic state induced by acute amphetamine. This paper is dedicated to Soon-Lim who sadly passed away to cancer in 2017.
The second is a preprint [here], constituting a large body of Clio Korn’s thesis work (and a heroic number of hours spent collecting the data), investigating the influence of different dopamine clearance mechanisms on decision making strategies and dopamine release. She showed that the precision of striatal dopamine signalling, through DAT, has a selective role in shaping behavioural flexibility only when reward probabilities change, but not if action-state transitions are altered.
Last but certainly not least, Caroline Jahn’s re-analysis of local coeruleus and midbrain dopamine neuronal data collected by our collaborator Sebastien Bouret’s lab is also out as a preprint [here]. She uncovered intriguing differences between putative dopamine neurons that care most about the immediate decision to engage based on future reward versus noradrenergic neurons that also encode the likelihood of future engagement after an error. Moreover, the latter were also sensitive to changes in task state.