Sub-second dopamine recordings in humans during sequential decision-making tasks
MetadataShow full item record
One goal of neuroscience is to understand the connection between physical events in the brain and the mental states and behavioral output that such events support. One of the physical events thought to be important is the dynamic release and action of neurotransmitter molecules; however, there are no examples where moment-by-moment (sub-second) fluctuations in neurotransmitter levels have been related to quantitatively characterized behavior in humans. We have developed the capacity to make sub-second measurements of the neurotransmitter dopamine in human subjects during active decision-making experiments and connected the measured dopamine dynamics to variables important for making choices in simple, sequential decision-making tasks. These measurements have been made using an electrochemical technique called fast scan cyclic voltammetry in subjects being implanted (for clinical reasons) with deep brain stimulating electrodes. This work is in its early stages but may open the way for the development of other invasive and non-invasive methods for neurotransmitter tracking in humans.