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Both nucleus accumbens and orexin play clear roles in motivated behavior, but the functions of orexin projections to accumbens are poorly understood. Blomeley et al. show that this pathway, via specific orexin excitation of dopamine D2 receptor–expressing neurons, can inhibit reward seeking and exploratory drive when danger is perceived.

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Author information

Affiliations

  1. Department of Neurobiology & Behavior, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA, USA

    • Stephen V. Mahler

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Competing interests

The author declares no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Stephen V. Mahler.