Reflections on Early Studies of Cortical Unit Activity During Conditioning in the Monkey
Changes in cortical cell activity in all five areas studied was observed in response to both the UCS and the CS administered independently prior to associative conditioning.
The number, intensity, and pattern of these responses were reduced and altered by habituation to the CS alone without reenforcement, but some generalized responses remained.
Unit responses in the form of excitation, inhibition, or change in pattern occurred in a significant number of cells in all five cortical areas even after conditioned avoidance was well established.
Excitatory responses were most prominent in sensory and motor areas while inhibitory responses predominated in frontal and parietal areas, though both types of response occurred in all areas. The parietal area appeared to play a critical role in frequency selectivity of differential conditoning.
Attempts to differentiate processes of habituation, generalized arousal, mechanisms of motor response, and associative conditioning were not successful. It was concluded that they all participate in the conditioning process throughout.
KeywordsConditioning Stimulus Motor Cortex Motor Response Conditioned Response Delay Period
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