A reinforcement learning algorithm shapes maternal care in mice

Xie, Yunyao, Huang, Longwen, Corona, Alberto, Pagliaro, Alexa H, Shea, Stephen D (March 2022) A reinforcement learning algorithm shapes maternal care in mice. BioRxiv. (Unpublished)

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URL: https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2022.03.21...
DOI: 10.1101/2022.03.21.485130

Abstract

The neural substrates for processing classical rewards such as food or drugs of abuse are well-understood. In contrast, the mechanisms by which organisms perceive social contact as rewarding and subsequently modify their interactions are unclear. Here we tracked the gradual emergence of a repetitive and highly-stereotyped parental behavior and show that trial-by-trial performance correlates with the history of midbrain dopamine (DA) neuron activity. We used a novel behavior paradigm to manipulate the subject’s expectation of imminent pup contact and show that DA signals conform to reward prediction error, a fundamental component of reinforcement learning (RL). Finally, closed-loop optogenetic inactivation of DA neurons at the onset of pup contact dramatically slowed emergence of parental care. We conclude that this prosocial behavior is shaped by an RL mechanism in which social contact itself is the primary reward.

Item Type: Paper
Subjects: organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > dopaminergic neuron
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > dopaminergic neuron
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > dopaminergic neuron
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > neurons > dopaminergic neuron
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > neurons > dopaminergic neuron
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell types > neurons > dopaminergic neuron
organism description > animal behavior > learning
organism description > animal behavior > maternal
Investigative techniques and equipment > optogenetics
CSHL Authors:
Communities: CSHL labs > Shea lab
CSHL labs > Zador lab
SWORD Depositor: CSHL Elements
Depositing User: CSHL Elements
Date: 21 March 2022
Date Deposited: 25 May 2022 15:12
Last Modified: 25 May 2022 15:12
URI: https://repository.cshl.edu/id/eprint/40620

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