• Researchers have long hypothesized that changes in neuronal activity are responsible for our ability to make decisions, remember things, and learn. The team wanted to drill down further and identify how changes at specific connections encode a particular behavioral response.
  • To do this, the team focused on how rats translate sound cues into behavior. The researchers trained rats to associate a specific tone with a reward. Changes in the tone – like the difference between a tuba and a flute – signaled the animal to look for the reward either on the left or right side of a training box.
  • Based upon this information, the team reasoned that they might be able to use postmortem brain slices to “predict” (obviously, in retrospect) how these or other rats had been trained. In all cases, the predictions – left or right – were correct. In essence, they could read the minds of these rats.

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