A Replay-Driven Model of Spatial Sequence Learning in the Hippocampus-PFC Network using Reservoir Computing


Dates: 2014-2019

Principal Investigators

Alfredo Weitzenfeld (University of South Florida)
Jean-Marc Fellous (University of Arizona)

Peter Dominey (INSERM, France)

Main Participants

Martin Llofriu (University of South Florida)
Pablo Scleidorovich (University of South Florida)

Marco Contreras (University of Arizona)

Nicolas Cazin (University of Lyon, France)


In a complex environment, animals and humans learn to navigate between sequences of significant places. Such spatial sequence learning has been shown to involve brain areas including the hippocampus (HC) and the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Recent studies show that spatial navigation in the rat hippocampus involves the replay of place cell firing during awake and sleep states generating small sequences of spatially related place cells firing. These replay episodes occur primarily during sharp-wave-ripple events. Much attention has been paid to replay during sleep in the context of long term memory consolidation. Here we focus on the role of replay during the awake state, as the animal is learning across multiple trials. We hypothesize that the generation of these short sequences of place cells during replay allow for global spatial sequence learning in PFC. We propose to develop an integrated model of the hippocampus-PFC network that is able to form spatial navigation sequences based on replay..

Selected Bibliography

Fellous, J., Dominey, P. & Weitzenfeld, A., 2020, Complex spatial navigation in animals, computational models and neuro-inspired robots. Biological Cybernetics 114,137–138, https://doi.org/10.1007/s00422-020-00832-y

Cazin, N., Scleidorovich, P., Weitzenfeld, A., Dominey, P., 2020, Real-Time Sensory-Motor integration of Hippocampal Place Cell Replay and Prefrontal Sequence Learning in Simulated and Physical Rat Robots for Novel Path Optimization, Special Issue entitled ‘Complex Spatial Navigation in Animals, Computational Models and Neuro-inspired Robots’, Guest Editors P. Dominey, J.M. Fellous, and A. Weitzenfeld, Biological Cybernetics.

Cazin, N., Llofriu, M., Scleidorovich, P., M., Pelc, T., Harland, B., Weitzenfeld, A., Fellous, J.M., Dominey, P.F., 2019, Reservoir Computing Model of Prefrontal Cortex Creates Novel Combinations of Previous Navigation Sequences from Hippocampal Place-cell Replay with Spatial Reward Propagation, PLOS Computational Biology, 15(7): e1006624, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1006624