Linking context with reward: A functional circuit from hippocampal CA3 to ventral tegmental area

Alice H. Luo, Pouya Tahsili-Fahadan, Roy A. Wise, Carl R. Lupica, Gary Aston-Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

212 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Reward-motivated behavior is strongly influenced by the learned significance of contextual stimuli in the environment. However, the neural pathways that mediate context-reward relations are not well understood. We have identified a circuit from area CA3 of dorsal hippocampus to ventral tegmental area (VTA) that uses lateral septum (LS) as a relay. Theta frequency stimulation of CA3 excited VTA dopamine (DA) neurons and inhibited non-DA neurons. DA neuron excitation was likely mediated by disinhibition because local antagonism of γ-aminobutyric acid receptors blocked responses to CA3 stimulation. Inactivating components of the CA3-LS-VTA pathway blocked evoked responses in VTA and also reinstatement of cocaine-seeking by contextual stimuli. This transsynaptic link between hippocampus and VTA appears to be an important substrate by which environmental context regulates goal-directed behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)353-357
Number of pages5
JournalScience
Volume333
Issue number6040
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 15 2011
Externally publishedYes

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Ventral Tegmental Area
Reward
Dopaminergic Neurons
Hippocampus
Aminobutyrates
Neural Pathways
Cocaine
Neurons

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

Cite this

Luo, Alice H. ; Tahsili-Fahadan, Pouya ; Wise, Roy A. ; Lupica, Carl R. ; Aston-Jones, Gary. / Linking context with reward : A functional circuit from hippocampal CA3 to ventral tegmental area. In: Science. 2011 ; Vol. 333, No. 6040. pp. 353-357.
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Linking context with reward : A functional circuit from hippocampal CA3 to ventral tegmental area. / Luo, Alice H.; Tahsili-Fahadan, Pouya; Wise, Roy A.; Lupica, Carl R.; Aston-Jones, Gary.

In: Science, Vol. 333, No. 6040, 15.07.2011, p. 353-357.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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