Department of Physics and Astronomy, and Neurology, UCLA, USA
Wednesday 6 January 2010
Seminar Room B10 (Basement)
Alexandra House, 17 Queen Square, London, WC1N 3AR
Synaptic plasticity, oscillations and place cells
There are a few key hypotheses about hippocampal function. Hippocampal neurons fire in spatially selective fashion which is thought to mediate spatial learning. During exploration hippocampal activity is modulated by the theta rhythm which is hypothesized to be critical for hippocampal spatial selectivity and learning. Third, hippocampal learning and spatial selectivity are thought to be mediated by synaptic plasticity, especially the NMDAR dependent plasticity. I will discuss our recent efforts to test these hypotheses and understand the links between place cells, synaptic plasticity, oscillations and learning using computational modeling and in vivo electrophysiology in normal and transgenic rodents.