Edvard I. Moser

The Brain’s Codes for Space and Time


Abstract

The ability to map space is critical to survival. In mammals, space is mapped by neural networks in the hippocampus and the entorhinal cortex. These brain areas contain specialized position-coding cell types, including grid cells, which are active only when animals are at locations that tile environments in a periodic hexagonal pattern. I will first show how space is mapped by spatial cells in the medial entorhinal cortex. Then I will switch to time, which is less well understood. I will show how episodic temporal information is encoded across scales from seconds to hours within the overall population state of the lateral entorhinal cortex. In the hippocampus, this task-dependent representation of time may be integrated with spatial inputs from medial entorhinal cortex, allowing it to store a unified representation of experience.


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