Preference by Association: How Memory Mechanisms in the Hippocampus Bias Decisions

Description: Group-level SPM for the contrasts: 1) Reward phase stimulus onset value / stimulus reward prediction error, 2) Reward phase outcome reward prediction error, 3) Reward phase stimulus-stimulus association learning error, 4) Reward phase modulation by subsequent decision bias, 5) Reward phase decision bias PPI connectivity. Here, we show that the hippocampus, traditionally known for its role in building long-term declarative memories, enables the spread of value across memories, thereby guiding decisions between new choice options. Using functional brain imaging in humans, we discovered that giving people monetary rewards led to activation of a pre-established network of memories, spreading the positive value of reward to nonrewarded items stored in memory. Later, people were biased to choose these nonrewarded items. This decision bias was predicted by activity in the hippocampus, reactivation of associated memories, and connectivity between memory and reward regions in the brain.

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Add DateMarch 28, 2017, 10:42 p.m.
Uploaded bygewimmer
Related article DOI10.1126/science.1223252
Related article authorsG. E. Wimmer and D. Shohamy
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