Mark W. Howe

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The basal ganglia are implicated in a remarkable range of functions influencing emotion and cognition as well as motor behavior. Current models of basal ganglia function hypothesize that parallel limbic, associative, and motor cortico-basal ganglia loops contribute to this diverse set of functions, but little is yet known about how these loops operate and(More)
Predictions about future rewarding events have a powerful influence on behaviour. The phasic spike activity of dopamine-containing neurons, and corresponding dopamine transients in the striatum, are thought to underlie these predictions, encoding positive and negative reward prediction errors. However, many behaviours are directed towards distant goals, for(More)
Rhythmic brain activity is thought to reflect, and to help organize, spike activity in populations of neurons during on-going behavior. We report that during learning, a major transition occurs in task-related oscillatory activity in the ventromedial striatum, a striatal region related to motivation-dependent learning. Early on as rats learned a T-maze(More)
A major physiologic sign in Parkinson disease is the occurrence of abnormal oscillations in cortico-basal ganglia circuits, which can be normalized by L-DOPA therapy. Under normal circumstances, oscillatory activity in these circuits is modulated as behaviors are learned and performed, but how dopamine depletion affects such modulation is not yet known. We(More)
The ventromedial striatum (VMS) is a node in circuits underpinning both affect and reinforcement learning. The cellular bases of these functions and especially their potential linkages have been unclear. VMS cholinergic interneurons, however, have been singled out as being related both to affect and to reinforcement-based conditioning, raising the(More)
Despite evidence that dopamine neurotransmission in the striatum is critical for learning as well as for movement control, little is yet known about how the learning-related dynamics of striatal activity are affected by dopamine depletion, a condition faced in Parkinson's disease. We made localized intrastriatal 6-hydroxydopamine lesions in rats and(More)
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