Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The error-related negativity (ERN) is a negative deflection in the event-related brain potential associated with error processing. A recent theory holds that the ERN is elicited by the impact of a reward prediction error signal carried by the mesencephalic dopamine system on anterior cingulate cortex. The theory predicts that larger ERNs should be elicited by unexpected unfavorable outcomes than by expected unfavorable outcomes. We tested the theory in an experiment in which the frequency of occurrence of reward was varied by condition, reasoning that the system that produces the ERN would come to expect non-reward when rewards were infrequent. Consistent with the theory, we found that larger ERNs were elicited by unexpected absences of reward.

Original publication

DOI

10.1097/01.wnr.0000099601.41403.a5

Type

Journal article

Journal

Neuroreport

Publication Date

19/12/2003

Volume

14

Pages

2481 - 2484

Keywords

Adult, Brain, Evoked Potentials, Feedback, Psychological, Female, Humans, Male, Predictive Value of Tests, Reward