New findings reveal surprising role of the cerebellum in reward and social behaviors

A study in rodents found that the brain’s cerebellum – known to play a role in motor coordination – also helps control the brain’s reward circuitry. Researchers found a direct neural connection from the cerebellum to the ventral tegmental area (a brain area long known to be involved in reward processing and encoding). The findings shed light on the brain circuits critical to the affective and social dysfunction seen across multiple psychiatric disorders.