31.10.2014 15:00

BCCN Lecture:

Spatial coding, exploratory behavior and network dynamics: towards the mechanism of learning.

Prof. Anton Sirota
BCCN Munich, Munich Cluster for Systems Neurology, Ludwig-
Maximilians University, München

What are the systems-level mechanisms allowing for formation of memories? The conceptual picture that emerges is that the representation of a novel object or event is incorporated into representation of the spatio-temporal context in the hippocampus, a structure critical for memory. The accepted broad mechanistic framework for this process is that perceived information about the world is transferred from multimodal neocortical areas to the hippocampal region where it is actively encoded for future use or long-term storage. Both transfer of information to and encoding in the hippocampus relies on the external sensory inputs and internal network dynamics, which both change with animal behaviour. However the quantitative link between diverse exploratory behaviour that rodents use to actively sample external sensory inputs during learning, oscillatory network dynamics that controls information flow and hippocampal encoding and population activity of hippocampal neurons is not established. We use marker-based high-resolution tracking of the rat biological motion to quantitatively and objectively segment and classify its exploratory behaviour. We combine behaviour analysis with state-of-the-art multichannel extracellular recording of populations of hippocampal neurons and oscillatory dynamics in entorhino-hippocampal circuits. In the talk I will present our recent advances along two directions. First, we show that population activity of hippocampal neurons is changing dynamically with changes of exploration modes. Second, we identify and characterize diverse local and global synchronization dynamics across entorhinal-hippocampal circuits.

Taken together the constraints imposed by spontaneous exploratory behaviour and network dynamics on activity of hippocampal neurons give rise to an important temporal framework for the analysis of the mechanisms of memory encoding.

ZI, Big Lecture Hall, Therapy Building, J5, Mannheim


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Professor Herta Flor erhält Ehrung für ihr wissenschaftliches Lebenswerk

flor.jpgProfessor Herta Flor, Wissenschaftliche Direktorin des Instituts für Neuropsychologie und Klinische Psychologie am ZI, wurde am 22. September 2014 von der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Psychologie (DGPs) für ihr wissenschaftliches Lebenswerk geehrt. Den Preis nahm die Schmerzforscherin, die in den Bereichen der Klinischen Psychologie, der Psychotherapie und der Neuropsychologie zu den bedeutendsten internationalen Wissenschaftlerinnen zählt, im Rahmen des 49. DGPs-Kongresses in Bochum entgegen. Externer Inhalt

New findings on the link between nerve cells at the interface to the hippocampus

EngelhardtA team led by Dr Jakob von Engelhardt focused on the ‘AMPA’ receptors. These bind the neurotransmitter ‘glutamate’ and are particularly common in the brain. “We looked at AMPA receptors in an area of the brain, which constitutes the main entrance to the hippocampus,” explains von Engelhardt, who works for the DZNE and DKFZ. “The hippocampus is responsible for learning and memory formation. Among other things it processes and combines sensory perception. We therefore asked ourselves how the flow of information into the hippocampus is controlled.” Externer Inhalt

German National Brain Bee was record breaking in 2014

The three Heidelberg University neuroscientists who served as judges were Prof. Dr. Armin Blesch, Director of the Laboratory for Neuroregeneration at the Spinal Cord Injury Center, Prof. Dr. Stephan Frings, Coordinator of the Interdisciplinary Neurosciences Centre Masters Program, and Dr. Lucia Poggi of the Neurodevelopment Division of the Centre for Organismal Studies. Externer Inhalt


Open positions at the IZN

  • The Carl group is seeking a highly motivated PhD student holding a masters/diploma degree in natural sciences. Experience in the fields of developmental and/or neurobiology as well as zebrafish and/or confocal imaging is preferred. Adobe

  • The Pollerberg group is offering a PhD position in a project studying the role of cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) and their interaction partners for axon growth and regeneration. Adobe

  • The Pollerberg group is offering a PhD position in a project studying the role of microtubules and microtubule-associated proteins for axon growth and navigation. Adobe


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Neurobiology, University of Heidelberg
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