what's the role of the basolateral amygdala?

MS marshmallow5 at yahoo.com
Fri Nov 10 00:16:04 EST 2000

I've often wondered about this. It seems that the role of the amygdala is in
the emotional significance of sensory stimuli.  There is plenty of evidence
to support its role in both pleasurable and aversive stimuli (e.g. fear,
anxiety etc.)  However, it seems that most research has focused on the
aversive aspect.

I don't think it has to be an either/or formulation, it can play a role in
both positive and negative states. But I don't think anyone has clearly
explained how it operates differently in pleasurable vs aversive situations.

See these:
Parkinson JA, Robbins TW, Everitt BJ . Dissociable roles of the central and
basolateral amygdala in appetitive emotional learning.  J Comp Neurol 1995
Dec 25;363(4):615-641

Hitchcott PK, Phillips GD. Amygdala and hippocampus control dissociable
aspects of drug-associated conditioned rewards. Psychopharmacology (Berl)
1997 May;131(2):187-95.

Breiter HC, Rosen BR. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of brain reward
circuitry in the human. Ann N Y Acad Sci 1999 Jun 29;877:523-47.


Shamim Khaliq <shamim at khaliq.intensive.co.uk> wrote in message
news:3a0aa1c1$1_3 at news.intensive.net...
> i thought it was important in classical conditioning of fear responses,
> associating a neutral stimulus with an internal aversive affective state
> generated by an unconditioned aversive stimulus. but i'm reading depue's
> 1999 paper where he says it's important in stimulus-reinforcement
> conditioning, with lesions impairing association of stimuli with
> reinforcement (appetitive stimuli). is the basolateral amygdala then also
> important in associating a neutral stimulus with an internal appetitive
> affective state generated by an unconditioned appetitive stimulus?
> and why have i heard about conditioned fear responses and not conditioned
> pleasure responses?

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