Frontal-parietal and limbic-striatal activity underlies information sampling in the best choice problem

Vincent Costa, Bruno B. Averbeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Best choice problems have a long mathematical history, but their neural underpinnings remain unknown. Best choice tasks are optimal stopping problem that require subjects to view a list of options one at a time and decide whether to take or decline each option. The goal is to find a high ranking option in the list, under the restriction that declined options cannot be chosen in the future. Conceptually, the decision to take or decline an option is related to threshold crossing in drift diffusion models, when this process is thought of as a value comparison. We studied this task in healthy volunteers using fMRI, and used a Markov decision process to quantify the value of continuing to search versus committing to the current option. Decisions to take versus decline an option engaged parietal and dorsolateral prefrontal cortices, as well ventral striatum, anterior insula, and anterior cingulate. Therefore, brain regions previously implicated in evidence integration and reward representation encode threshold crossings that trigger decisions to commit to a choice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)972-982
Number of pages11
JournalCerebral Cortex
Volume25
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Corpus Striatum
Markov Chains
Gyrus Cinguli
Prefrontal Cortex
Reward
Healthy Volunteers
History
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Brain
Ventral Striatum

Keywords

  • Bayesian
  • decision-making
  • fMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

Cite this

Frontal-parietal and limbic-striatal activity underlies information sampling in the best choice problem. / Costa, Vincent; Averbeck, Bruno B.

In: Cerebral Cortex, Vol. 25, No. 4, 01.04.2015, p. 972-982.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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