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Trends Cogn Sci. 2019 Jul;23(7):615-630. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2019.04.011. Epub 2019 May 23.

Mesoscopic Neural Representations in Spatial Navigation.

Author information

1
Epilepsy Center, Medical Center - University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany. Electronic address: lukas.kunz@uniklinik-freiburg.de.
2
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Columbia University, New York City, NY, USA. Electronic address: shachar.maidenbaum@columbia.edu.
3
CAS Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Beijing, China.
4
CAS Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Beijing, China; CAS Center for Excellence in Brain Science and Intelligence Technology, Shanghai, China; Department of Psychology, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China. Electronic address: lwang@psych.ac.cn.
5
Department of Biomedical Engineering, Columbia University, New York City, NY, USA. Electronic address: joshua.jacobs@columbia.edu.
6
Department of Neuropsychology, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, Faculty of Psychology, Ruhr University Bochum, Bochum, Germany. Electronic address: nikolai.axmacher@rub.de.

Abstract

Recent evidence suggests that mesoscopic neural oscillations measured via intracranial electroencephalography exhibit spatial representations, which were previously only observed at the micro- and macroscopic level of brain organization. Specifically, theta (and gamma) oscillations correlate with movement, speed, distance, specific locations, and goal proximity to boundaries. In entorhinal cortex (EC), they exhibit hexadirectional modulation, which is putatively linked to grid cell activity. Understanding this mesoscopic neural code is crucial because information represented by oscillatory power and phase may complement the information content at other levels of brain organization. Mesoscopic neural oscillations help bridge the gap between single-neuron and macroscopic brain signals of spatial navigation and may provide a mechanistic basis for novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets to treat diseases causing spatial disorientation.

KEYWORDS:

grid cells; intracranial EEG; memory; neural representation; oscillations; spatial navigation

PMID:
31130396
DOI:
10.1016/j.tics.2019.04.011

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