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Oxytocin modulates social value representations in the amygdala

Liu, Y; Li, S; Lin, W; Li, W; Yan, X; Wang, X; Pan, X; ... Ma, Y; + view all (2019) Oxytocin modulates social value representations in the amygdala. Nature Neuroscience , 22 pp. 633-641. 10.1038/s41593-019-0351-1. Green open access

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Abstract

Humans exhibit considerable variation in how they value their own interest relative to the interests of others. Deciphering the neural codes representing potential rewards for self and others is crucial for understanding social decision-making. Here we integrate computational modeling with functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the neural representation of social value and the modulation by oxytocin, a nine-amino acid neuropeptide, in participants evaluating monetary allocations to self and other (self-other allocations). We found that an individual's preferred self-other allocation serves as a reference point for computing the value of potential self-other allocations. In more prosocial participants, amygdala activity encoded a social-value-distance signal; that is, the value dissimilarity between potential and preferred allocations. Intranasal oxytocin administration amplified this amygdala representation and increased prosocial behavior in more individualistic participants but not in more prosocial ones. Our results reveal a neurocomputational mechanism underlying social-value representations and suggest that oxytocin may promote prosociality by modulating social-value representations in the amygdala.

Type: Article
Title: Oxytocin modulates social value representations in the amygdala
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41593-019-0351-1
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41593-019-0351-1
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10071667
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