Egocentric boundary vector tuning of the retrosplenial cortex [article]

Andrew S. Alexander, Lucas C. Carstensen, James R. Hinman, Florian Raudies, G. William Chapman, Michael E. Hasselmo
2019 bioRxiv   pre-print
AbstractThe retrosplenial cortex is reciprocally connected with a majority of structures implicated in spatial cognition and damage to the region itself produces numerous spatial impairments. However, in many ways the retrosplenial cortex remains understudied. Here, we sought to characterize spatial correlates of neurons within the region during free exploration in two-dimensional environments. We report that a large percentage of retrosplenial cortex neurons have spatial receptive fields that
more » ... eptive fields that are active when environmental boundaries are positioned at a specific orientation and distance relative to the animal itself. We demonstrate that this vector-based location signal is encoded in egocentric coordinates, localized to the dysgranular retrosplenial sub-region, independent of self-motion, and context invariant. Further, we identify a sub-population of neurons with this response property that are synchronized with the hippocampal theta oscillation. Accordingly, the current work identifies a robust egocentric spatial code in retrosplenial cortex that can facilitate spatial coordinate system transformations and support the anchoring, generation, and utilization of allocentric representations.
doi:10.1101/702712 fatcat:t7cjno2wzfcd5audvbo6fddy4a