Changing the Rules of the Game

23 Jun 2015
Laura Petersen
Changing the Rules of the Game

Figure 2. A schematic shows the two key behavioral tests presented to the rats. In both tests, rats were initially required to go to a right lever for a sugar pellet reward, and subsequently they had to change a strategy following a light cue that directs a correct lever. In one of the tests, there was initially no light when rats chose a right lever. But then a light started to shine above the correct lever, which switched randomly between left and right. In another test, a light shone above the either lever, but was irrelevant to the correct lever choice. Sometimes it lined up with the correct lever, and sometimes it did not. However, then the light did line up with the correct choice. In both tests, rats with damaged cholinergic interneurons could learn the initial strategy, but could not change strategies to adapt to the new rules.

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