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Publications in Cognitive Map by NOMIS researchers

NOMIS Researcher(s)

Published in

March 2, 2022

Hippocampal place cells underlie spatial navigation and memory. Remarkably, CA1 pyramidal neurons can form new place fields within a single trial by undergoing rapid plasticity. However, local feedback circuits likely restrict the rapid recruitment of individual neurons into ensemble representations. This interaction between circuit dynamics and rapid feature coding remains unexplored. Here, we developed “all-optical” approaches combining novel optogenetic induction of rapidly forming place fields with 2-photon activity imaging during spatial navigation in mice. We find that induction efficacy depends strongly on the density of co-activated neurons. Place fields can be reliably induced in single cells, but induction fails during co-activation of larger subpopulations due to local circuit constraints imposed by recurrent inhibition. Temporary relief of local inhibition permits the simultaneous induction of place fields in larger ensembles. We demonstrate the behavioral implications of these dynamics, showing that our ensemble place field induction protocol can enhance subsequent spatial association learning.

Research field(s)
Health Sciences, Clinical Medicine, Neurology & Neurosurgery