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LearnAnx_CircAmyg SIGNED

Learning and Anxiety in Amygdala-based Neural Circuits

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 LearnAnx_CircAmyg project word cloud

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stimuli    stress    light    majority    neural    learning    environments    primates    mal    acquisition    connectivity    neurons    venues    posit    models    off    primate    emotional    mechanisms    rule    major    safe    associative    amygdala    underlie    simultaneously    dangerous    record    traumatic    human    contact    medial    lab    translation    enabled    behavioural    context    protocols    expanded    elaborated    maladaptive    pfc    functional    rodents    deep    gained    insights    cutting    exploring    trade    mainly    computations    logical    repertoire    shock    techniques    tone    physiological    anxiety    cortex    stimulation    edge    form    arrays    conditioning    underlying    evolutionary    animal    tradeoff    dozens    learned    shed    codes    aversive    embarked    adaptive    post    discriminate    made    generalization    supplemented    disorders    examine    circuits    basic    powerful    complex    unveil    prefrontal    extinguish    pioneering    behaviours    circuitry    exploration    suggest    extinction    circuit   

Project "LearnAnx_CircAmyg" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: HERZL STREET 234
postcode: 7610001

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Israel [IL]
 Total cost 2˙000˙000 €
 EC max contribution 2˙000˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2016-COG
 Funding Scheme ERC-COG
 Starting year 2017
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2017-09-01   to  2022-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    WEIZMANN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE IL (REHOVOT) coordinator 2˙000˙000.00


 Project objective

Major advances were made in understanding circuits that underlie aversive emotional learning. The majority gained by using classical associative models, mainly tone/context-shock conditioning. Failure to extinguish the response or to discriminate from other safe stimuli (generalization), form two main animal models for human anxiety-disorders and post-traumatic-stress. These simple yet powerful approaches enabled cutting-edge techniques in rodents to unveil amygdala circuitry and its connectivity with the medial-prefrontal-cortex. Yet, we have less understanding of the mechanisms that underlie elaborated behavioural models of mal-adaptive behaviour, as well as less understanding of neural codes and computations in the evolutionary-expanded primate amygdala. Our lab recently embarked on exploring these venues by pioneering physiological studies of generalization and extinction protocols in primates. The goal of the current project is to develop behavioural models of complex learning and maladaptive behaviour, and then examine and shed light on the underlying computations in primate amygdala-PFC circuit. We design a novel rule-based learning task, and examine its acquisition, extinction, generalization and exploration-exploitation trade-off in dangerous environments. Specifically, the concepts of rule learning and exploration-exploitation tradeoff form novel insights and aspects of [mal-]adaptive behaviours, and will suggest new animal models of learned anxiety. We record dozens of neurons in the amygdala and prefrontal-cortex simultaneously using deep multi-contact arrays, supplemented by stimulation to address functional connectivity, and development of modelling approaches for the behaviour and neural codes. We posit that the development of more [complex] models is crucial and the next logical step in achieving translation of animal models of anxiety disorders, as well as in understanding basic mechanisms behind the rich repertoire of emotional behaviours.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Raviv Pryluk, Yoav Kfir, Hagar Gelbard-Sagiv, Itzhak Fried, Rony Paz
A Tradeoff in the Neural Code across Regions and Species
published pages: 597-609.e18, ISSN: 0092-8674, DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.12.032
Cell 176/3 2019-06-05
2018 Aryeh H. Taub, Yosef Shohat, Rony Paz
Long time-scales in primate amygdala neurons support aversive learning
published pages: , ISSN: 2041-1723, DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-07020-4
Nature Communications 9/1 2019-06-05

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