ELSC Seminar Series
Prof. Galit Ophir
Studying mechanisms that shape the interplay between social interaction and motivation
My lab studies the interplay between social interaction and motivation, we are studying mechanisms that encode change in motivation in response to previous social experience. Motivation is an internal state that drive goal directed behaviors like eating when we are hungry, drinking when we are thirsty. Satisfying these drives and other long-term drives like sex and social interaction is essential for survival and reproduction. Living in a social environment involves diverse types of interactions during which animals integrate environmental inputs together with their internal physiological state with the, and subsequently choose one action over another to increase their chances of survival and reproduction. We are studying how different motivational states result in different sensory sensitivity, reward value, reproductive physiology, how they are integrated with energetic demand, metabolism and physiology and ultimately how different motivational states are encoded within the brain.
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