Orbitofrontal lesions impair use of cue-outcome associations in a devaluation task

Charles L. Pickens, Michael P. Saddoris, Michela Gallagher, Peter C. Holland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Scopus citations


The orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) has been implicated in the use of outcome expectancies to guide behavior. The present study used a devaluation task to examine this function. Rats first received light-food pairings followed by food-toxin pairings designed to devalue the food. After either excitotoxic or sham OFC lesions, responding to the light was reassessed. Sham-lesioned rats showed reduced responding to the light relative to behavioral controls, which had received food and toxin unpaired. In contrast, OFC-lesioned rats showed no such reductions. Combined with previous data (C. L. Pickens, M. P. Saddoris, B. Setlow, M. Gallagher, P. C. Holland, & G. Schoenbaum, 2003), these results indicate that the OFC is critical for the maintenance of information about the current incentive value of reinforcers or the use of that information to guide behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-322
Number of pages6
JournalBehavioral Neuroscience
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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