Opendata, web and dolomites


Translating rewards to eye movements

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "iMove" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
postcode: 91904

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 1˙570˙000 €
 EC max contribution 1˙570˙000 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2017-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-07-01   to  2023-06-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

The drive for rewards controls almost every aspect of our behavior, from stereotypic reflexive behaviors to complex voluntary action. It is therefore not surprising that the symptoms of neurological disorders that interrupt reward processing, such as those stemming from drug-abuse and depression, include deficits in the capacity to make even simple movements. Accordingly, how do rewards drive and shape movements? The brain uses two major subcortical networks to drive behavior: the basal ganglia and the cerebellum. Both areas are essential for the control of movement as damage to either structure leads to severe motor disabilities. Research on the basal ganglia has highlighted their importance in the control of reward-driven behavior-but how the reward information interacts with sensorimotor signals to drive the motor periphery is unknown. By contrast, research on the cerebellum has focused primarily on how sensory error signals are used to optimize motor commands but has mostly ignored the modulatory factors that influence behavior, such as reward. My goal is to unify research on the basal ganglia and cerebellum in order to understand how the computations underlying the influence of reward on action are implemented in the brain. I hypothesize that rewards drive and shape the motor commands in both subcortical networks, albeit with differing behavioral functions. While in the basal ganglia, information about reward is used to mediate selection between multiple actions; I predict that, in the cerebellum, reward potentiates movements to drive more accurate behavior. I will use the monkey smooth pursuit eye movement system as a powerful model motor system to study the neural mechanisms by which reward influences motor processing. I will combine the use of novel behavioral paradigms together with novel application of neural recording and optogenetic stimulation in primates to probe activity of neurons in the cerebral cortex, basal ganglia, and cerebellum.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Noga Larry, Merav Yarkoni, Adi Lixenberg, Mati Joshua
Cerebellar climbing fibers encode expected reward size
published pages: , ISSN: 2050-084X, DOI: 10.7554/elife.46870
eLife 8 2020-04-15
2020 Adi Lixenberg, Merav Yarkoni, Yehudit Botschko, Mati Joshua
Encoding of eye movements explains reward-related activity in cerebellar simple spikes
published pages: 786-799, ISSN: 0022-3077, DOI: 10.1152/jn.00363.2019
Journal of Neurophysiology 123/2 2020-04-15
2019 Gil Zur, Mati Joshua
Using extracellular low frequency signals to improve the spike sorting of cerebellar complex spikes
published pages: 108423, ISSN: 0165-0270, DOI: 10.1016/j.jneumeth.2019.108423
Journal of Neuroscience Methods 328 2020-04-15
2018 William Heffley, Eun Young Song, Ziye Xu, Benjamin N. Taylor, Mary Anne Hughes, Andrew McKinney, Mati Joshua, Court Hull
Coordinated cerebellar climbing fiber activity signals learned sensorimotor predictions
published pages: 1431-1441, ISSN: 1097-6256, DOI: 10.1038/s41593-018-0228-8
Nature Neuroscience 21/10 2020-04-15
2018 Adi Lixenberg, Mati Joshua
Encoding of Reward and Decoding Movement from the Frontal Eye Field during Smooth Pursuit Eye Movements
published pages: 10515-10524, ISSN: 0270-6474, DOI: 10.1523/jneurosci.1654-18.2018
The Journal of Neuroscience 38/49 2020-04-15

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