Successful navigation requires the ability to separate memories in a context-dependent manner. For example, to find lost keys, one must first remember whether the keys were left in the kitchen or the office. How does the human brain retrieve the contextual memories that drive behavior? J.B. Julian of the Princeton Neuroscience Institute at Princeton University, USA, and Christian F. Doeller of the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany, found in a recent study that modulation of map-like representations in our brain’s hippocampal formation can predict contextual memory retrieval in an ambiguous environment.
Although decades of research indicate that the human hippocampus is critical for contextual memory, no previous studies have linked context-specific signals in this formation of the brain to spatial behavior in a way that clearly separates memory from non-memory factors. This research was performed in collaboration with the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, NTNU, Trondheim, Norway and supported by the European Research Council (ERC-CoG GEOCOG).
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- Joshua B. Julian, Christian F. Doeller. Remapping and realignment in the human hippocampal formation predict context-dependent spatial behavior. Nature Neuroscience, 2021; DOI: 10.1038/s41593-021-00835-3
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Max-Planck-Gesellschaft. (2021, April 30). Hippocampal maps predict context-dependent behavior. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 1, 2021 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/04/210430120351.htm
Max-Planck-Gesellschaft. “Hippocampal maps predict context-dependent behavior.” ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/04/210430120351.htm (accessed May 1, 2021).