ESI TALKS: Adrien Peyrache

At this bi-weekly event, we invite speakers from Neuroscience and related fields to share their current research in an informal and casual environment. The ESITALKS last around 45 minutes, followed by discussions.

We are very happy to invite you to this ESITALKS about

One ring to rule them all: origin and function of attractor dynamics in the head-direction system

Continuous attractor neural networks, which maintain population activity in a small number of possible states, are believed to support various cognitive functions, from working memory to spatial representations. One example of such networks is the head-direction (HD) circuit, a crucial signal for navigation. During sleep, HD neurons remain coordinated, coding for a “virtual” direction. This observation supports the idea that the HD network is driven by attractor dynamics, yet the origin and function of this coherent population activity during sleep remain unknown. Here, I will present evidence that the thalamus is crucial for the generation of this virtual signal during sleep. This observation confirms that the thalamus is not a mere relay of sensory signals but instead actively shapes representations. Furthermore, I will present evidence that this virtual signal during sleep actively participates in the replay of recently formed activity patterns in the hippocampus– a crucial phenomenon for memory formation. In summary, the thalamus plays a key role in conveying a coherent directional signal and actively contributes to memory processes in the hippocampus and associated structures during sleep.

More info at the Peyrache Lab Website.

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