The cerebellum may influence addiction and social behavior
Today’s Video of the Day from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine describes the unexpected role of the cerebellum in addictive and social behavior.
Dr. Kamran Khodakhah is a professor and chair in the college’s Department of Neuroscience.
While previous research has pointed to a connection between the cerebellum and non-motor functioning, Dr. Khodakhah explains that this is the first time that experts have demonstrated a direct connection between the cerebellum and an area of the brain involved in reward processing, known as the ventral tegmental area (VTA).
The research team conducted behavioral experiments in mice that showed this connection may be quite powerful. The study revealed that the cerebellum, which is best known for its control over motor function and movement, may actually have an influence on mental disorders such as autism and schizophrenia.
Video Credit: Albert Einstein College of Medicine