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Neuron. 2017 May 17;94(4):880-890.e8. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2017.04.015.

Transformation of Cortex-wide Emergent Properties during Motor Learning.

Author information

1
Neurobiology Section, Center for Neural Circuits and Behavior, Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA; Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 308232, Singapore. Electronic address: hmakino@ntu.edu.sg.
2
Neurobiology Section, Center for Neural Circuits and Behavior, Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA.
3
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA.
4
Neurobiology Section, Center for Neural Circuits and Behavior, Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA; JST, PRESTO, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA. Electronic address: tkomiyama@ucsd.edu.

Abstract

Learning involves a transformation of brain-wide operation dynamics. However, our understanding of learning-related changes in macroscopic dynamics is limited. Here, we monitored cortex-wide activity of the mouse brain using wide-field calcium imaging while the mouse learned a motor task over weeks. Over learning, the sequential activity across cortical modules became temporally more compressed, and its trial-by-trial variability decreased. Moreover, a new flow of activity emerged during learning, originating from premotor cortex (M2), and M2 became predictive of the activity of many other modules. Inactivation experiments showed that M2 is critical for the post-learning dynamics in the cortex-wide activity. Furthermore, two-photon calcium imaging revealed that M2 ensemble activity also showed earlier activity onset and reduced variability with learning, which was accompanied by changes in the activity-movement relationship. These results reveal newly emergent properties of macroscopic cortical dynamics during motor learning and highlight the importance of M2 in controlling learned movements.

KEYWORDS:

emergent properties; macroscopic cortical circuit; motor learning; premotor cortex; two-photon calcium imaging; wide-field calcium imaging

PMID:
28521138
PMCID:
PMC5502752
DOI:
10.1016/j.neuron.2017.04.015
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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