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Orbitofrontal cortical activity during repeated free choice

Campos, Michael and Koppitch, Kari and Andersen, Richard A. and Shimojo, Shinsuke (2012) Orbitofrontal cortical activity during repeated free choice. Journal of Neurophysiology, 107 (12). pp. 3246-3255. ISSN 0022-3077. PMCID PMC3378409. doi:10.1152/jn.00690.2010.

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Neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) have been shown to encode subjective values, suggesting a role in preference-based decisionmaking, although the precise relation to choice behavior is unclear. In a repeated two-choice task, subjective values of each choice can account for aggregate choice behavior, which is the overall likelihood of choosing one option over the other. Individual choices, however, are impossible to predict with knowledge of relative subjective values alone. In this study we investigated the role of internal factors in choice behavior with a simple but novel free-choice task and simultaneous recording from individual neurons in nonhuman primate OFC. We found that, first, the observed sequences of choice behavior included periods of exceptionally long runs of each of two available options and periods of frequent switching. Neither a satiety-based mechanism nor a random selection process could explain the observed choice behavior. Second, OFC neurons encode important features of the choice behavior. These features include activity selective for exceptionally long runs of a given choice (stay selectivity) as well as activity selective for switches between choices (switch selectivity). These results suggest that OFC neural activity, in addition to encoding subjective values on a long timescale that is sensitive to satiety, also encodes a signal that fluctuates on a shorter timescale and thereby reflects some of the statistically improbable aspects of free-choice behavior.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Andersen, Richard A.0000-0002-7947-0472
Additional Information:© 2012 the American Physiological Society. Submitted 4 August 2010; accepted in final form 12 March 2012; First published March 14, 2012. We thank Tomomi Kano and Tessa Yao for administrative support, Kelsie Pesja and Nicole Sammons for assistance with the animals, Victor Schebertayuk for technical support, Rick Paniagua for custom machine shop assistance, and Tim Heitzman for electrical shop assistance. This work was supported by JST.ERATO Shimojo Implicit Brain Functions Project, JST.CREST Implicit Interpersonal Information Project, National Eye Institute (to R. A. Andersen), and Moore Foundation (to R. A. Andersen). Author contributions: M.C., R.A.A., and S.S. conception and design of research; M.C. and K.K. performed experiments; M.C. and K.K. analyzed data; M.C., K.K., R.A.A., and S.S. interpreted results of experiments; M.C. prepared figures; M.C. drafted manuscript; M.C., K.K., R.A.A., and S.S. edited and revised manuscript; M.C., K.K., R.A.A., and S.S. approved final version of manuscript. No conflicts of interest, financial or otherwise, are declared by the author(s).
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Japan Science and Technology (JST) Exploratory Research for Advanced Technology (ERATO)UNSPECIFIED
Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology (CREST)UNSPECIFIED
National Eye InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:action selection; frontal cortex; reward; preferences; monkey
Issue or Number:12
PubMed Central ID:PMC3378409
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20120713-142836047
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Official Citation:Michael Campos, Kari Koppitch, Richard A. Andersen, and Shinsuke Shimojo Orbitofrontal cortical activity during repeated free choice J Neurophysiol June 15, 2012 107:(12) 3246-3255; published ahead of print March 14, 2012, doi:10.1152/jn.00690.2010
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:32438
Deposited On:13 Jul 2012 21:51
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 21:27

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