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Long-term coding of personal and universal associations underlying the memory web in the human brain.

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posted on 09.12.2016, 17:13 by Emanuela De Falco, Matias J. Ison, I Fried, Rodrigo Quian Quiroga
Neurons in the medial temporal lobe (MTL), a critical area for declarative memory, have been shown to change their tuning in associative learning tasks. Yet, it is unclear how durable these neuronal representations are and if they outlast the execution of the task. To address this issue, we studied the responses of MTL neurons in neurosurgical patients to known concepts (people and places). Using association scores provided by the patients and a web-based metric, here we show that whenever MTL neurons respond to more than one concept, these concepts are typically related. Furthermore, the degree of association between concepts could be successfully predicted based on the neurons' response patterns. These results provide evidence for a long-term involvement of MTL neurons in the representation of durable associations, a hallmark of human declarative memory.

Funding

This work was supported by grants from the Human Frontiers Research Program.

History

Citation

Nature Communications, 2016, 7:13408

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING/Department of Engineering

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Nature Communications

Publisher

Nature Publishing Group

eissn

2041-1723

Acceptance date

30/09/2016

Available date

09/12/2016

Publisher version

http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms13408

Notes

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request. Supplementary Information accompanies this paper at http://www.nature.com/naturecommunications

Language

en

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