A Caltech Library Service

Electrophysiological correlates of reward prediction error recorded in the human prefrontal cortex

Oya, Hiroyuki and Adolphs, Ralph and Kawasaki, Hiroto and Bechara, Antoine and Damasio, Antonio and Howard, Matthew A., III (2005) Electrophysiological correlates of reward prediction error recorded in the human prefrontal cortex. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 102 (23). pp. 8351-8356. ISSN 0027-8424. PMCID PMC1149421.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.

PDF (Methods) - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.

PDF (Supplementary Figures 6-11) - Supplemental Material
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Lesion and functional imaging studies have shown that the ventromedial prefrontal cortex is critically involved in the avoidance of risky choices. However, detailed descriptions of the mechanisms that underlie the establishment of such behaviors remain elusive, due in part to the spatial and temporal limitations of available research techniques. We investigated this issue by recording directly from prefrontal depth electrodes in a rare neurosurgical patient while he performed the Iowa Gambling Task, and we concurrently measured behavioral, autonomic, and electrophysiological responses. We found a robust alpha-band component of event-related potentials that reflected the mismatch between expected outcomes and actual outcomes in the task, correlating closely with the reward-related error obtained from a reinforcement learning model of the patient's choice behavior. The finding implicates this brain region in the acquisition of choice bias by means of a continuous updating of expectations about reward and punishment.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Oya, Hiroyuki0000-0002-1733-5478
Adolphs, Ralph0000-0002-8053-9692
Kawasaki, Hiroto0000-0002-7688-9171
Additional Information:© 2005 the National Academy of Sciences. Edited by Marcus E. Raichle, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, and approved April 20, 2005 (received for review February 2, 2005). Published online before print May 31, 2005, 10.1073/pnas.0500899102 We thank J. F. Brugge, H. Damasio, T. W. Buchanan, E. Recknor, O. Kaufman, and I. O. Volkov for help with the studies, and Natalie Denburg and Daniel Tranel for help with neuropsychological assessment. This work was supported by grants from the James S. McDonnell Foundation, the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression, and the Gimbel Discovery Fund in Neuroscience. Author contributions: H.O., R.A., and A.B. designed research; H.O. and M.A.H. performed research; H.O. and H.K. analyzed data; and R.A., H.O., and A.D. wrote the paper. This paper was submitted directly (Track II) to the PNAS office.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
James S. McDonnell FoundationUNSPECIFIED
National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and DepressionUNSPECIFIED
Gimbel Discovery FundUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:decision-making, emotion
Issue or Number:23
PubMed Central ID:PMC1149421
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:OYApnas05
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:8839
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:20 Sep 2007
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

Repository Staff Only: item control page