Specific Brain Area Found Responsive for Rewards
According to researchers from the Centre de Neuroscience Cognitive (Cognitive Neuroscience Center) in Lyon, France, the orbitofrontal cortex, which is located in the anterior ventral part of the brain, is comprised of distinct regions that respond to rewards like money and chocolate.
Every day we must make reward choices. In order to do so, we have to compare their value on a single scale, which hints that all rewards are assessed in the same area. However, at the same time it is possible that different rewards activate different brain areas, depending on the characteristics of the reward.
To study the brain areas associated with rewards, scientists conducted a game as an experiment. Participants were rewarded with money and their cerebral activity was measured with an FMRI (functional magnetic resonance imaging) scanner.
The experiment concluded that reward association is shared between the cerebral regions known as the ventral striatum, insula, mesencephalon and the anterior cingulated cortex. Scientists also found that there is dissociation between primary and secondary awards, which supports the hypothesis of different brain areas responding to various gratifications.