A Computational Model of Parallel Navigation Systems in Rodents

Ricardo Chavarriaga, Thomas Strösslin, Denis Sheynikhovich and Wulfram Gerstner (2005)


Several studies in rats support the idea of multiple neural systems competing to select the best action for reaching a goal or food location. Locale navigation strategies, necessary for reaching invisible goals, seem to be mediated by the hippocampus and the ventral and dorsomedial striatum whereas taxon strategies, applied for approaching goals in the visual field, are believed to involve the dorsolateral striatum. A computational model of action selection is presented, where different experts, implementing locale and taxon strategies, compete in order to select the appropriate behavior for the current task. The model was tested in a simulated robot and its performance in an experimental paradigm which dissociates the use of cue and spatial information is compared to the behavior observed in animals.