Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Neuron. 2019 Dec 18;104(6):1180-1194.e7. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2019.09.025. Epub 2019 Nov 11.

A Critical Role for Neocortical Processing of Threat Memory.

Author information

1
Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, 60438 Frankfurt, Germany.
2
Institute of Clinical Neurobiology, University Hospital Würzburg, 97078 Würzburg, Germany.
3
Institute of Clinical Neurobiology, University Hospital Würzburg, 97078 Würzburg, Germany; Department of Psychiatry, Center of Mental Health, 97078 Würzburg, Germany.
4
Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, 60438 Frankfurt, Germany; School of Life Sciences, Technical University of Munich, 85354 Freising, Germany.
5
Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, 60438 Frankfurt, Germany. Electronic address: johannes.letzkus@brain.mpg.de.

Abstract

Memory of cues associated with threat is critical for survival and a leading model for elucidating how sensory information is linked to adaptive behavior by learning. Although the brain-wide circuits mediating auditory threat memory have been intensely investigated, it remains unclear whether the auditory cortex is critically involved. Here we use optogenetic activity manipulations in defined cortical areas and output pathways, viral tracing, pathway-specific in vivo 2-photon calcium imaging, and computational analyses of population plasticity to reveal that the auditory cortex is selectively required for conditioning to complex stimuli, whereas the adjacent temporal association cortex controls all forms of auditory threat memory. More temporal areas have a stronger effect on memory and more neurons projecting to the lateral amygdala, which control memory to complex stimuli through a balanced form of population plasticity that selectively supports discrimination of significant sensory stimuli. Thus, neocortical processing plays a critical role in cued threat memory.

KEYWORDS:

associative learning; auditory cortex; behavior; brain-wide circuits; learning-related plasticity; neocortical circuits; neural population coding; stimulus complexity; temporal association cortex; threat conditioning

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center