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A Computational Model of How Cholinergic Interneurons Protect Striatal-dependent Learning
 

Summary: A Computational Model of How Cholinergic Interneurons
Protect Striatal-dependent Learning
F. Gregory Ashby and Matthew J. Crossley
Abstract
An essential component of skill acquisition is learning the en-
vironmental conditions in which that skill is relevant. This article
proposes and tests a neurobiologically detailed theory of how such
learning is mediated. The theory assumes that a key component of
this learning is provided by the cholinergic interneurons in the
striatum known as tonically active neurons (TANs). The TANs are
assumed to exert a tonic inhibitory influence over cortical inputs to
the striatum that prevents the execution of any striatal-dependent
actions. The TANs learn to pause in rewarding environments, and
this pause releases the striatal output neurons from this inhibitory
effect, thereby facilitating the learning and expression of striatal-
dependent behaviors. When rewards are no longer available, the
TANs cease to pause, which protects striatal learning from decay.
A computational version of this theory accounts for a variety of
single-cell recording data and some classic behavioral phenom-
ena, including fast reacquisition after extinction.

  

Source: Ashby, F. Gregory - Department of Psychology, University of California at Santa Barbara

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine; Computer Technologies and Information Sciences