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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The valuation cost decreases as a function of extended exposure to a risky-choice procedure


Several studies in pigeons and rats have reported a predictable relation between latencies during no-choice trials and the ulterior preference in choice trials. The Sequential Choice Model (SCM) was proposed in 2008 to account for these results, and more importantly to make precise predictions about the correlation between latency and preference. Eight male Wistar rats were exposed to 48 sessions in a risk-sensitive procedure, each session was composed by 10 blocks of trials (2 no-choice and 4 choice trials). We analyzed data taking latencies of response and testing the SCM’s predictions. Our data support partially the SCM’s predictions, but a monotonic decrease to a floor effect in all latencies of response does not allow confirming all predictions. The results are discussed regarding a decrease in the valuation cost as a result of extended exposure, and arguing that diminishing latencies in this particular procedure contributed to increase the whole rate of reinforcement.

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