Research ArticleNEUROSCIENCE

Locally sequential synaptic reactivation during hippocampal ripples

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Science Advances  12 Feb 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 7, eaay1492
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aay1492


The sequential reactivation of memory-relevant neuronal ensembles during hippocampal sharp-wave (SW) ripple oscillations reflects cognitive processing. However, how a downstream neuron decodes this spatiotemporally organized activity remains unexplored. Using subcellular calcium imaging from CA1 pyramidal neurons in ex vivo hippocampal networks, we discovered that neighboring spines are activated serially along dendrites toward or away from cell bodies. Sequential spine activity was engaged repeatedly in different SWs in a complex manner. In a single SW event, multiple sequences appeared discretely in dendritic trees, but overall, sequences occurred preferentially in some dendritic branches. Thus, sequential replays of multineuronal spikes are distributed across several compartmentalized dendritic foci of a postsynaptic neuron, with their spatiotemporal features preserved.

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