A Basis Set of Elementary Operations Captures Recombination of Neocortical Cell Assemblies During Basal Conditions and Learning
57 Pages Posted: 20 Aug 2019 Publication Status: Review CompleteMore...
Cell assemblies — subgroups within neuronal networks — are believed to serve as functional entities underlying cognitive capabilities such as categorical perception or memory formation and storage. However, little is known about their long-term dynamics. Using chronic in vivo calcium imaging in the mouse auditory cortex, we find that cell assemblies undergo continuous recombination, even under behaviorally stable conditions. We identify a basis set of elementary operations capturing the dynamics of cell assemblies, which involve plasticity of both the stimulus tuning of particular assemblies as well as the cellular composition of an assembly. Auditory fear conditioning introduces biases in the frequency of specific cell assembly operations that lead to increased association of representations and improved sound encoding. Thus, decomposing cell assembly dynamics during basal conditions into a basis set of elementary operations provides a general framework to explain learning-induced changes in global population activity.
Keywords: Mouse, Auditory cortex, Population coding, Perception, Two-photon microscopy, Calcium imaging, Cell assembly
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