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Sharp wave ripples during learning stabilize the hippocampal spatial map

Nature Neuroscience (2017) (2017)

Roux L, Hu B, Eichler R, Stark E, Buzsáki G

Cognitive representation of the environment requires a stable hippocampal map, but the mechanisms maintaining a given map are unknown. Because sharp wave-ripples (SPW-R) orchestrate both retrospective and prospective spatial information, we hypothesized that disrupting neuronal activity during SPW-Rs affects spatial representation. Mice learned new sets of three goal locations daily in a multiwell maze. We used closed-loop SPW-R detection at goal locations to trigger optogenetic silencing of a subset of CA1 pyramidal neurons. Control place cells (nonsilenced or silenced outside SPW-Rs) largely maintained the location of their place fields after learning and showed increased spatial information content. In contrast, the place fields of SPW-R-silenced place cells remapped, and their spatial information remained unaltered. SPW-R silencing did not impact the firing rates or proportions of place cells. These results suggest that interference with SPW-R-associated activity during learning prevents stabilization and refinement of hippocampal maps.

 

 

Sharp wave ripples during learning stabilize the hippocampal spatial map