Nencki Institute Seminar

Dear All,

Next Thursday, January 21st at 3pmMaciej Winiarski, who is a PhD student working under the supervision of prof. Ewelina Knapska head of the Laboratory of Emotions Neurobiology, will give a talk under the title: Social learning about rewards – how information from others helps to adapt to changing environment.


Being a part of a social structure is key for survival and reproduction. Living with conspecifics boosts evolutionary fitness, in no small part by providing essential information about the environment. Nonetheless, studying social learning and neural mechanisms of socially-driven spreading of information has not yet been established under laboratory conditions. To examine how socially passed olfactory information about the reward affects behavior of individuals we used Eco-HAB, an automated system for tracing voluntary behavior of group-housed mice living under semi-naturalistic conditions. We show that presence of a scent of a rewarded individual has profound effects on social behavior of mice and their ability to find the reward in both familiar and  novel environments. Importantly, the animals display clear and stable individual differences in social behavior. As a result, socially-conveyed information has different effects on individual mice. Further, we show that disrupting  neuronal plasticity in the prelimbic cortex with nanoparticles gradually releasing TIMP metallopeptidase inhibitor 1, disrupts animals’ social behavior and results in decreased  ability to adapt to environmental changes. The experimental paradigm we developed can be further used to study neuronal mechanisms of social learning, in particular social learning strategies.

Zoom link:
Meeting ID: 912 6224 3656
Passcode: 485625
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15 January 2021
2021-01-21 15:00:00
2021-01-21 16:00:00