Columbia University in the City of New York

Jun 14, 20221:00 pm

Prefrontal-amygdala circuits in primate social interaction

Featuring Steve W. C. Chang, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience, Co-Director of Undergraduate Studies, Neuroscience Major, Wu Tsai Institute, Kavli Institute for Neuroscience, Yale University

June 14th, 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm at the Jerome L. Greene Science Center (9th floor lecture hall)

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Social interaction is essential to our daily lives, critically shaping interpersonal communication and the decisions we make. However, we know very little about how the brain enables real-life social interactions since research has mainly focused on using controlled images or videos which do not allow for dynamic gaze interactions. This presentation will describe our recent findings from studying the prefrontal-amygdala circuits during real-life social gaze interaction and social decision-making in pairs of non-human primates. During social decision-making, we found that inter-regional coupling in the prefrontal-amygdala networks is selectively increased for expressing prosocial preferences in frequency-specific and direction-selective manners. During naturalistic social gaze interactions, we found widespread and robust implementations of interactive social gaze signals in neurons spanning multiple brain areas involved in social cognition (dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, amygdala). Overall, these findings provide evidence supporting the importance of the primate prefrontal-amygdala circuits for guiding complex social behaviors involving social decisions and social gaze exchanges.


Those wishing to meet the speaker should contact Vincent Ferrera.

The Columbia Neuroscience Seminar series is a collaborative effort of Columbia's Zuckerman Institute, the Department of Neuroscience, the Doctoral Program in Neurobiology and Behavior and the Columbia Translational Neuroscience Initiative, and with support from the Kavli Institute for Brain Science.

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