Title: Andrea Burgalossi, Werner Reichardt Centre for Integrative Neuroscience
Start date: Nov 23 2017
Start time: 11:15 am
End time: 12:15 pm
Location: MRZ seminar room

The discovery of neurons which respond to a clear property of the external environment (the animal's location) has provided groundbreaking access to neural coding in high-end cortices, where complex cognitive and behavioural functions are most likely to be implemented. The discovery of place cells, grid cells, head-direction cells and border cells, and their dynamic interactions during behavior, undoubtedly represents a milestone towards understanding internal brain computations. Due to methodological limitations however, the cellular identity, projection patterns and plasticity of spatial representations have remained largely unresolved. In this talk, I will present recently developed techniques, which enable juxtacellular recording, stimulation and identification of single neurons in freely-moving rodents. I will provide examples on how this methodological approach can provide insights into the structural basis of the head-direction and the place-cell representation in the rat cortico-hippocampal circuits. I will also show how in-vivo single-cell stimulation can be used for probing the stability and/or plasticity of spatial representations during unrestrained behaviors.

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