The role of amygdala in devaluation: a model tested with a simulated robot

This paper presents an embodied biologically-plausible model investigating the relationships existing between Pavlovian and instrumental conditioning. The model is validated by successfully reproducing the primary outcomes of instrumental-conditioning devaluation tests conducted with normal and amygdala-lesioned rats. These experiments are particularly important as they show how the sensitivity to motivational states exhibited by the Pavlovian system can transfer to instrumentally acquired behaviors. The results presented are relevant not only for neuroscience but also for robotics as they start to investigate how internal motivational systems, as those found in real organisms, might modulate the learning and performance of goal-directed actions in artificial machines, so to improve their behavioral flexibility.

Publication type: 
Contributo in volume
Author or Creator: 
Mannella F.
Mirolli M.
Baldassarre G.
Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Epigenetic Robotics (EpiRob2007), edited by Berthouze L., Prince C.G., Littman M., Kozima H., Balkenius C., 2007
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Francesco Mannella's picture
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