The Current Opinion journals were developed out of the recognition that it is increasingly difficult for specialists to keep up to date with the expanding volume of information published in their subject. Elsevier’s Current Opinion journals comprise of 26 leading titles in life sciences and adjacent fields.

Current Opinion in Neurobiology

IMPACT FACTOR: 6.373
5-Year Impact Factor: 6.958
Issues per year: 6 issues
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Current Opinion in Neurobiology

Current Opinion in Neurobiology contains:
• Over 90 reviews a year from leading international contributors
• Evaluated reference lists for all reviews

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The Editor(s) and Publisher of this Journal believe that there are fundamental principles underlying scholarly or professional publishing. While this may not amount to a formal 'code of conduct', these fundamental principles with respect to the authors' paper are that the paper should: i) be the authors' own original work, which has not been previously published elsewhere, ii) reflect the authors' own research and analysis and do so in a truthful and complete manner, iii) properly credit the meaningful contributions of co-authors and co-researchers, iv) not be submitted to more than one journal for consideration, and v) be appropriately placed in the context of prior and existing research. Of equal importance are ethical guidelines dealing with research methods and research funding, including issues dealing with informed consent, research subject privacy rights, conflicts of interest, and sources of funding. While it may not be possible to draft a 'code' that applies adequately to all instances and circumstances, we believe it useful to outline our expectations of authors and procedures that the Journal will employ in the event of questions concerning author conduct. With respect to conflicts of interest, the Publisher now requires authors to declare any conflicts of interest that relate to papers accepted for publication in this Journal. A conflict of interest may exist when an author or the author's institution has a financial or other relationship with other people or organizations that may inappropriately influence the author's work. A conflict can be actual or potential and full disclosure to the Journal is the safest course. All submissions to the Journal must include disclosure of all relationships that could be viewed as presenting a potential conflict of interest. The Journal may use such information as a basis for editorial decisions and may publish such disclosures if they are believed to be important to readers in judging the manuscript. A decision may be made by the Journal not to publish on the basis of the declared conflict.

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Best Cited over the last year.

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The root of all value: A neural common currency for choice

© 2012 Elsevier Ltd.How do humans make choices between different types of rewards? Economists have long argued on theoretical grounds that humans typically make these choices as if the values of the options they consider have been mapped to a single common scale for comparison. Neuroimaging studies in humans have recently begun to suggest the existence of a small group of specific brain sites that appear to encode the subjective values of different types of rewards on a neural common scale,…

Volume 22, Issue 6, 01 December 2012, Pp 1027-1038
Dino J. Levy | Paul W. Glimcher

Updating dopamine reward signals

Recent work has advanced our knowledge of phasic dopamine reward prediction error signals. The error signal is bidirectional, reflects well the higher order prediction error described by temporal difference learning models, is compatible with model-free and model-based reinforcement learning, reports the subjective rather than physical reward value during temporal discounting and reflects subjective stimulus perception rather than physical stimulus aspects. Dopamine activations are primarily…

Volume 23, Issue 2, 01 April 2013, Pp 229-238
Wolfram Schultz

Regulation of AMPA receptor trafficking and synaptic plasticity

AMPA receptors (AMPARs) mediate the majority of fast excitatory synaptic transmission in the brain. Dynamic changes in neuronal synaptic efficacy, termed synaptic plasticity, are thought to underlie information coding and storage in learning and memory. One major mechanism that regulates synaptic strength involves the tightly regulated trafficking of AMPARs into and out of synapses. The life cycle of AMPARs from their biosynthesis, membrane trafficking, and synaptic targeting to their…

Volume 22, Issue 3, 01 June 2012, Pp 461-469
Victor Anggono | Richard L. Huganir

Understanding the role of TDP-43 and FUS/TLS in ALS and beyond

Dominant mutations in two DNA/RNA binding proteins, TDP-43 and FUS/TLS, are causes of inherited Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). TDP-43 and FUS/TLS have striking structural and functional similarities, implicating alterations in RNA processing as central in ALS. TDP-43 has binding sites within a third of all mouse and human mRNAs in brain and this binding influences the levels and splicing patterns of at least 20% of those mRNAs. Disease modeling in rodents of the first known cause of…

Volume 21, Issue 6, 01 December 2011, Pp 904-919
Sandrine Da Cruz | Don W. Cleveland

Cortical progenitor expansion, self-renewal and neurogenesis-a polarized perspective

Neural stem and progenitor cells giving rise to neurons in developing mammalian neocortex fall into two principal classes with regard to location of mitosis-apical and basal, and into three principal classes in terms of cell polarity during mitosis-bipolar, monopolar, and nonpolar. Insight has been gained into how inheritance of polarized, apical and basal, cell constituents is related to symmetric versus asymmetric divisions of these progenitors, and how this inheritance is linked to their…

Volume 21, Issue 1, 01 February 2011, Pp 23-35
Simone A. Fietz | Wieland B. Huttner

Network attributes for segregation and integration in the human brain

Network studies of large-scale brain connectivity have begun to reveal attributes that promote the segregation and integration of neural information: communities and hubs. Network communities are sets of regions that are strongly interconnected among each other while connections between members of different communities are less dense. The clustered connectivity of network communities supports functional segregation and specialization. Network hubs link communities to one another and ensure…

Volume 23, Issue 2, 01 April 2013, Pp 162-171
Olaf Sporns

Structural plasticity of dendritic spines

Dendritic spines are small mushroom-like protrusions arising from neurons where most excitatory synapses reside. Their peculiar shape suggests that spines can serve as an autonomous postsynaptic compartment that isolates chemical and electrical signaling. How neuronal activity modifies the morphology of the spine and how these modifications affect synaptic transmission and plasticity are intriguing issues. Indeed, the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) or depression (LTD) is associated…

Volume 22, Issue 3, 01 June 2012, Pp 383-388
Miquel Bosch | Yasunori Hayashi

Metabolic and hedonic drives in the neural control of appetite: Who is the boss?

Obesity is on the rise in all developed countries, and a large part of this epidemic has been attributed to excess caloric intake, induced by ever present food cues and the easy availability of energy dense foods in an environment of plenty. Clearly, there are strong homeostatic regulatory mechanisms keeping body weight of many individuals exposed to this environment remarkably stable over their adult life. Other individuals, however, seem to eat not only because of metabolic need, but also…

Volume 21, Issue 6, 01 December 2011, Pp 888-896
Hans Rudolf Berthoud

Human sensorimotor learning: Adaptation, skill, and beyond

Recent studies of upper limb movements have provided insights into the computations, mechanisms, and taxonomy of human sensorimotor learning. Motor tasks differ with respect to how they weight different learning processes. These include adaptation, an internal-model based process that reduces sensory-prediction errors in order to return performance to pre-perturbation levels, use-dependent plasticity, and operant reinforcement. Visuomotor rotation and force-field tasks impose systematic errors…

Volume 21, Issue 4, 01 August 2011, Pp 636-644
John W. Krakauer | Pietro Mazzoni

Wnt signaling during synaptic development and plasticity

The formation of synaptic connections requires a dialogue between pre and postsynaptic cells to coordinate the assembly of the presynaptic release machinery and the postsynaptic receptive complexes. Signaling molecules of the Wnt family of proteins are central to this trans-synaptic dialogue. At the neuromuscular junction and central synapses, Wnts promote synaptic assembly by signaling to the developing pre and postsynaptic compartments. In addition, new studies reveal that expression of Wnt…

Volume 21, Issue 1, 01 February 2011, Pp 151-159
Vivian Budnik | Patricia C. Salinas

Analysing connectivity with Granger causality and dynamic causal modelling

This review considers state-of-the-art analyses of functional integration in neuronal macrocircuits. We focus on detecting and estimating directed connectivity in neuronal networks using Granger causality (GC) and dynamic causal modelling (DCM). These approaches are considered in the context of functional segregation and integration and. - within functional integration. - the distinction between functional and effective connectivity. We review recent developments that have enjoyed a rapid…

Volume 23, Issue 2, 01 April 2013, Pp 172-178
Karl Friston | Rosalyn Moran | Anil K. Seth

Development and functional organization of spinal locomotor circuits

The coordination and timing of muscle activities during rhythmic movements, like walking and swimming, are generated by intrinsic spinal motor circuits. Such locomotor networks are operational early in development and are found in all vertebrates. This review outlines and compares recent advances that have revealed the developmental and functional organization of these fundamental spinal motor networks in limbed and non-limbed animals. The comparison will highlight common principles and…

Volume 21, Issue 1, 01 February 2011, Pp 100-109
Ole Kiehn

Short-term forms of presynaptic plasticity

Synapses exhibit several forms of short-term plasticity that play a multitude of computational roles. Short-term depression suppresses neurotransmitter release for hundreds of milliseconds to tens of seconds; facilitation and post-tetanic potentiation lead to synaptic enhancement lasting hundreds of milliseconds to minutes. Recent advances have provided insight into the mechanisms underlying these forms of plasticity. Vesicle depletion, as well as inactivation of both release sites and calcium…

Volume 21, Issue 2, 01 April 2011, Pp 269-274
Diasynou Fioravante | Wade G. Regehr

Synaptic organizing complexes

A number of synaptogenic factors induce presynaptic or postsynaptic differentiation when presented to axons or dendrites. Many such factors participate in bidirectional trans-synaptic adhesion complexes. Axonal neurexins interacting in an isoform-specific code with multiple dendritic partners (neuroligins, LRRTMs, or Cbln-GluRδ), and axonal protein tyrosine phosphatase receptors interacting with dendritic NGL-3, nucleate local networks of high-affinity protein-protein interactions leading to…

Volume 21, Issue 1, 01 February 2011, Pp 132-143
Tabrez J. Siddiqui | Ann Marie Craig

Human connectomics

Recent advances in non-invasive neuroimaging have enabled the measurement of connections between distant regions in the living human brain, thus opening up a new field of research: Human connectomics. Different imaging modalities allow the mapping of structural connections (axonal fibre tracts) as well as functional connections (correlations in time series), and individual variations in these connections may be related to individual variations in behaviour and cognition. Connectivity analysis…

Volume 22, Issue 1, 01 February 2012, Pp 144-153
Timothy E J Behrens | Olaf Sporns

Neuroscience of affect: Brain mechanisms of pleasure and displeasure

Affective neuroscience aims to understand how affect (pleasure or displeasure) is created by brains. Progress is aided by recognizing that affect has both objective and subjective features. Those dual aspects reflect that affective reactions are generated by neural mechanisms, selected in evolution based on their real (objective) consequences for genetic fitness. We review evidence for neural representation of pleasure in the brain (gained largely from neuroimaging studies), and evidence for…

Volume 23, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 294-303
Kent C. Berridge | Morten L. Kringelbach

Oscillations in the prefrontal cortex: A gateway to memory and attention

We consider the potential role of oscillations in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) in mediating attention, working memory and memory consolidation. Activity in the theta, beta, and gamma bands is related to communication between PFC and different brain areas. While gamma/beta oscillations mediate bottom-up and top-down interactions between PFC and visual cortices, related to attention, theta rhythms are engaged by hippocampal/PFC interplay. These interactions are dynamic, depending on the nature and…

Volume 21, Issue 3, 01 June 2011, Pp 475-485
Karim Benchenane | Paul H. Tiesinga | Francesco P. Battaglia

Brain networks underlying episodic memory retrieval

The importance of the medial temporal lobe to episodic memory has been recognized for decades. Recent human fMRI findings have begun to delineate the functional roles of different MTL regions, most notably the hippocampus, for the retrieval of episodic memories. Importantly, these studies have also identified a network of cortical regions. - each interconnected with the MTL. - that are also consistently engaged during successful episodic retrieval. Along with the MTL these regions appear to…

Volume 23, Issue 2, 01 April 2013, Pp 255-260
Michael D. Rugg | Kaia L. Vilberg

The role of neurexins and neuroligins in the formation, maturation, and function of vertebrate synapses

Neurexins (NXs) and neuroligins (NLs) are transsynaptically interacting cell adhesion proteins that play a key role in the formation, maturation, activity-dependent validation, and maintenance of synapses. As complex alternative splicing processes in nerve cells generate a large number of NX and NLs variants, it has been proposed that a combinatorial interaction code generated by these variants may determine synapse identity and network connectivity during brain development. The functional…

Volume 22, Issue 3, 01 June 2012, Pp 412-422
Dilja D. Krueger | Liam P. Tuffy | Theofilos Papadopoulos | Nils Brose

Large-scale brain networks in affective and social neuroscience: Towards an integrative functional architecture of the brain

Understanding how a human brain creates a human mind ultimately depends on mapping psychological categories and concepts to physical measurements of neural response. Although it has long been assumed that emotional, social, and cognitive phenomena are realized in the operations of separate brain regions or brain networks, we demonstrate that it is possible to understand the body of neuroimaging evidence using a framework that relies on domain general, distributed structure-function mappings. We…

Volume 23, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 361-372
Lisa Feldman Barrett | Ajay Bhaskar Satpute

A neurocognitive approach to understanding the neurobiology of addiction

Recent concepts of addiction to drugs (e.g. cocaine) and non-drugs (e.g. gambling) have proposed that these behaviors are the product of an imbalance between three separate, but interacting, neural systems: an impulsive, largely amygdala-striatum dependent, neural system that promotes automatic, habitual and salient behaviors; a reflective, mainly prefrontal cortex dependent, neural system for decision-making, forecasting the future consequences of a behavior, and inhibitory control; and the…

Volume 23, Issue 4, 01 August 2013, Pp 632-638
Xavier Noël | Damien Brevers | Antoine Bechara

Long-term plasticity at inhibitory synapses

Experience-dependent modifications of neural circuits and function are believed to heavily depend on changes in synaptic efficacy such as LTP/LTD. Hence, much effort has been devoted to elucidating the mechanisms underlying these forms of synaptic plasticity. Although most of this work has focused on excitatory synapses, it is now clear that diverse mechanisms of long-term inhibitory plasticity have evolved to provide additional flexibility to neural circuits. By changing the…

Volume 21, Issue 2, 01 April 2011, Pp 328-338
Pablo E. Castillo | Chiayu Q. Chiu | Reed C. Carroll

Amygdala microcircuits mediating fear expression and extinction

This review summarizes the latest developments in our understanding of amygdala networks that support classical fear conditioning, the experimental paradigm most commonly used to study learned fear in the laboratory. These recent advances have considerable translational significance as congruent findings from studies of fear learning in animals and humans indicate that anxiety disorders result from abnormalities in the mechanisms that normally regulate conditioned fear. Because of the…

Volume 22, Issue 4, 01 August 2012, Pp 717-723
Denis Pare | Sevil Duvarci

The ubiquity of model-based reinforcement learning

© 2012 Elsevier Ltd.The reward prediction error (RPE) theory of dopamine (DA) function has enjoyed great success in the neuroscience of learning and decision-making. This theory is derived from model-free reinforcement learning (RL), in which choices are made simply on the basis of previously realized rewards. Recently, attention has turned to correlates of more flexible, albeit computationally complex, model-based methods in the brain. These methods are distinguished from model-free learning…

Volume 22, Issue 6, 01 December 2012, Pp 1075-1081
Bradley B. Doll | Dylan A. Simon | Nathaniel D. Daw

Making decisions through a distributed consensus

© 2012 Elsevier Ltd.How does the brain decide between actions? Is it through comparisons of abstract representations of outcomes or through a competition in a sensorimotor map defining the actions themselves? Here, I review strengths and limitations of both of these proposals, and suggest that decisions emerge through a distributed consensus across many levels of representation.

Volume 22, Issue 6, 01 December 2012, Pp 927-936
Paul Cisek