Hippocampal place cells, context, and episodic memory

  title={Hippocampal place cells, context, and episodic memory},
  author={David M. Smith and Sheri J. Y. Mizumori},
Although most observers agree that the hippocampus has a critical role in learning and memory, there remains considerable debate about the precise functional contribution of the hippocampus to these processes. Two of the most influential accounts hold that the primary function of the hippocampus is to generate cognitive maps and to mediate episodic memory processes. The well‐documented spatial firing patterns (place fields) of hippocampal neurons in rodents, along with the spatial learning… 
The hippocampus , context processing and episodic memory
It is suggested that episodic memory impairments resulting from hippocampal damage in humans and animals could be secondary to context processing deficits, and that the primary function of the hippocampus is the identification and encoding of contexts.
The Hippocampal Ensemble Code for Spatial Navigation and Episodic Memory.
It is argued that the sequential activity pattern of hippocampal place cells is capable of encoding not only future trajectory but also future events that occur along space and time, and can be reactivated in a temporally compressed fashion while the animal briefly pauses.
A bird-brain view of episodic memory
Spatial Representations of Hippocampal CA1 Neurons Are Modulated by Behavioral Context in a Hippocampus-Dependent Memory Task
The results suggest that trial-phase-selective coding is common in tasks that require rapid alternation between encoding and retrieval processes, especially in hippocampus-dependent tasks.
The form and function of hippocampal context representations
Complimentary roles of the hippocampus and retrosplenial cortex in behavioral context discrimination
The results suggest that the hippocampus and RSC play distinct, but complimentary roles in mediating context appropriate memories and behaviors.
Does the dorsal hippocampus process navigational routes or behavioral context? A single‐unit analysis
It is proposed that the principle source of re‐mapping in the dorsal hippocampus is changes in the animal’s trajectories rather than behavioral context, and relatively few place cells displayed re-mapping between the two conditions.
Hippocampal Lesions Impair Rapid Learning of a Continuous Spatial Alternation Task
The findings establish the W-track continuous alternation task as a hippocampally-dependent learning paradigm which may be useful for identifying changes in the neural representation of spatial sequences and reward contingencies as rats learn and apply new task rules.


The global record of memory in hippocampal neuronal activity
Training rats to perform the same recognition memory task in several distinct locations in a rich spatial environment found that the activity of many hippocampal neurons was related consistently to perceptual, behavioural or cognitive events, regardless of the location where these events occurred, indicating that non-spatial events are fundamental elements of hippocampal representation.
Hippocampus as a memory map: Synaptic plasticity and memory encoding by hippocampal neurons
Two complementary experimental approaches are described that illustrate two important mechanisms that confer enduring spatial memory and stable place fields each depend upon synaptic plasticity mechanisms that normally rely on the same NMDA‐receptor mediated metabolic events as long‐term potentiation (LTP).
Conservation of hippocampal memory function in rats and humans
Normal rats demonstrated two forms of flexible memory expression, transitivity, the ability to judge inferentially across stimulus pairs that share a common element, and symmetry, the able to associate paired elements presented in the reverse of training order, indicating that non-spatial declarative processing depends specifically on the hippocampus in animals as it does in humans.
Parallel processing across neural systems: Implications for a multiple memory system hypothesis
Learning-Related Development of Context-Specific Neuronal Responses to Places and Events: The Hippocampal Role in Context Processing
Results provide direct support for a context processing role of the hippocampus and suggest that the hippocampus contributes contextual representations to episodic memories.
New views on old memories: re-evaluating the role of the hippocampal complex
Episodic memory and the hippocampus: another view.
Hippocampus, space, and memory
It is proposed that the hippocampus is selectively involved in behaviors that require working memory, irrespective of the type of material (spatial or nonspatial) that is to be processed by that memory.
Neural systems underlying episodic memory: insights from animal research.
  • J. Aggleton, J. Pearce
  • Biology, Psychology
    Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences
  • 2001
A review of lesion, disconnection and immediate early-gene studies in animals reveals the importance of interactions between the hippocampus and specific nuclei in the diencephalon (most notably the anterior thalamic nuclei) for spatial memory.