Mark E Walton
Wellcome Trust Advanced Training Fellow
My research focuses on the neural basis of cost-benefit decision-making, using neuropsychological and functional neuroimaging techniques to investigate how our brains evaluate which actions are worth taking.
Paul Phillips, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, USA
Department Department of Experimental Psychology
I've been interested in how different parts of the frontal lobe – concentrating on the anterior
cingulate and orbitofrontal cortex – make use of information about the costs and benefits
associated with available options and integrate outcome information obtained over time to guide decisions. Recently, I've been extending this research, using specific monoamine depletions and fast-scan cyclic voltammetry, to examine the role of dopamine and serotonin in guiding such choices and how frontal cortical areas interact with subcortical structures and monoamine systems when evaluating the costs and benefits of alternatives.
Sources of Funding
Wellcome Trust 2007- 2009
I graduated in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford, before accepting a Wellcome Trust 4 year prize studentship at this university to fund an MSc in Neuroscience and subsequent doctorate under the supervision of Matthew Rushworth and David Bannerman. I have subsequently held a Wellcome Trust Prize Fellowship at Oxford, a Human Frontiers Short Term Fellowship at the University of Washington in Seattle with Paul Phillips, and am currently a Wellcome Trust Advanced Training Fellow, divided between Oxford and Seattle.
Awards Training and Qualifications
1999 BA in Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford
2000 MSc in Neuroscience (Distinction), University of Oxford
2004 DPhil, University of Oxford
2003- 2005 Wellcome Trust Prize Fellowship, Wellcome Trust
2005 Human Frontiers Short Term Fellowship, HFSP
2007- 2009 Wellcome Trust Advanced Training Fellowship, Wellcome Trust
Phillips Paul EM, Walton Mark E, and Jhou Thomas C (2007) Calculating utility: preclinical evidence for cost-benefit analysis by mesolimbic dopamine. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 191(3):483-95.
Walton Mark E, Croxson Paula L, Behrens Timothy EJ, Kennerley Steven W, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2007) Adaptive decision making and value in the anterior cingulate cortex. Neuroimage, 36 Suppl 2:T142-54.
Walton Mark E, Rudebeck Peter H, Bannerman David M, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2007) Calculating the cost of acting in frontal cortex. Ann N Y Acad Sci, 1104:340-56.
Kennerley Steven W, Walton Mark E, Behrens Timothy EJ, Buckley Mark J, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2006) Optimal decision making and the anterior cingulate cortex. Nat Neurosci, 9(7):940-7.
Rudebeck Peter H, Walton Mark E, Smyth Angharad N, Bannerman David M, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2006) Separate neural pathways process different decision costs. Nat Neurosci, 9(9):1161-8.
Walton M E, Kennerley S W, Bannerman D M, Phillips P EM, and Rushworth M FS (2006) Weighing up the benefits of work: behavioral and neural analyses of effort-related decision making. Neural Netw, 19(8):1302-14.
Walton M E, Croxson P L, Rushworth M FS, and Bannerman D M (2005) The mesocortical dopamine projection to anterior cingulate cortex plays no role in guiding effort-related decisions. Behav Neurosci, 119(1):323-8.
Walton Mark E, Devlin Joseph T, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2004) Interactions between decision making and performance monitoring within prefrontal cortex. Nat Neurosci, 7(11):1259-65.
Walton Mark E, Bannerman David M, Alterescu Karin, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2003) Functional specialization within medial frontal cortex of the anterior cingulate for evaluating effort-related decisions. J Neurosci, 23(16):6475-9.
Walton Mark E, Bannerman David M, and Rushworth Matthew FS (2002) The role of rat medial frontal cortex in effort-based decision making. J Neurosci, 22(24):10996-1003.