Both sides now: Brain reward molecule helps learning to avoid unpleasant experience, too …

IMAGE: Dopamine innervation into the hippocampus. Green denotes general catecholamine – a general name for dopamine — innervation of the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Yellows denotes dopamine nerve endings in… view more Credit: Credit: John Dani, Ph.D., Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania PHILADELPHIA – The brain chemical dopamine regulates how mice learn to avoid a disagreeable encounter, according to new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. “We know that dopamine reinforces ‘rewarding’ behaviors, but to our surprise, we have now shown that situations that animals learn to avoid are also regulated by dopamine,” said senior author John Dani, PhD, chair of the department of Neuroscience. The team’s findings are published this month in Cell Reports. Special neurons in the brain send out…


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