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Front Behav Neurosci. 2012 Jul 19;6:46. doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2012.00046. eCollection 2012.

Neurophysiological correlates of object recognition in the dorsal subiculum.

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  • 1Laboratory of Immune and Neural Networks, Center for Biomedical Science, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, North Shore-LIJ Health System, Manhasset NY, USA.

Abstract

The medial temporal lobe (MTL) encompasses a network of interconnected cortical areas that is considered the neural substrate for some types of memory, such as spatial, episodic, recognition, and associative memory. Within the MTL, the subiculum has been well characterized in terms of its connectivity and structure, but its functional role remains elusive. A long-held view is that the subiculum is mainly involved in spatial encoding because it exhibits spatially selective firing and receives prominent projections from the CA1 field, which is an essential substrate for spatial memory. However, the dorsal subiculum (DS) is also reciprocally connected to the perirhinal and postrhinal cortices, which are critically involved in recognition memory. This connectivity pattern suggests that DS might encode not only spatial signals but also recognition signals. Here, we examined this hypothesis by recording with multi-electrodes in DS and CA1 of freely behaving mice, as they performed the novel object recognition (NOR) task. Analysis of network oscillations revealed that theta power was significantly higher in DS when mice explored novel objects as compared to familiar objects and that this theta modulation was absent in CA1. We also found significant differences in coherence between DS and CA1, in the theta and gamma bands, depending on whether mice examined objects or engaged in spatial exploration. Furthermore, single-unit recordings revealed that DS cells did not exhibit phase-locked firing to theta and differed from CA1 place cells in that they had multiple peaks of spatially selective firing. We also detected DS units that were responsive specifically to novel object exploration, indicating that a subset of DS neurons were tuned to novelty during the NOR task. We have thus identified clear neurophysiological correlates for recognition within the DS, at the network and single-unit levels, strongly suggesting that it participates in encoding recognition-related signals.

KEYWORDS:

coherence; gamma; mouse; novel object; place cell; theta

PMID:
22833721
[PubMed]
PMCID:
PMC3400129
Free PMC Article
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