Our daily lives include hundreds of routine habits. Credit: bigstockphoto
Study discovers how our habits are formed in the brain

Our daily routine includes a huge number of habits, tasks that our brain performs automatically. MIT scientists have now found that certain neurons in the brain are responsible for marking the beginning and end of routine behaviors. These neurons, located in a brain region highly involved in habit formation, are activated at the outset of a learned routine, go quiet while it is carried out, then they become active again once the routine has ended. This process is apparently important when a routine is initiated and when it is completed. Moreover, two populations of neurons have been linked with the habit formation: inhibitory and excitatory neurons.

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Scientific publication: Current Biology