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Science. 2013 Apr 5;340(6128):1232627. doi: 10.1126/science.1232627.

Optogenetic dissection of entorhinal-hippocampal functional connectivity.

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Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience and Centre for Neural Computation, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Olav Kyrres gate 9, Norwegian Brain Centre, 7491 Trondheim, Norway.

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  • Science. 2013 Apr 19;340(6130):273.


We used a combined optogenetic-electrophysiological strategy to determine the functional identity of entorhinal cells with output to the place-cell population in the hippocampus. Channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) was expressed selectively in the hippocampus-targeting subset of entorhinal projection neurons by infusing retrogradely transportable ChR2-coding recombinant adeno-associated virus in the hippocampus. Virally transduced ChR2-expressing cells were identified in medial entorhinal cortex as cells that fired at fixed minimal latencies in response to local flashes of light. A large number of responsive cells were grid cells, but short-latency firing was also induced in border cells and head-direction cells, as well as cells with irregular or nonspatial firing correlates, which suggests that place fields may be generated by convergence of signals from a broad spectrum of entorhinal functional cell types.

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