Recollection in the human hippocampal-entorhinal cell circuitry

Bernhard P Staresina, Thomas P Reber, Johannes Niediek, Jan Boström, Christian E Elger, Florian Mormann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
176 Downloads (Pure)


Imagine how flicking through your photo album and seeing a picture of a beach sunset brings back fond memories of a tasty cocktail you had that night. Computational models suggest that upon receiving a partial memory cue ('beach'), neurons in the hippocampus coordinate reinstatement of associated memories ('cocktail') in cortical target sites. Here, using human single neuron recordings, we show that hippocampal firing rates are elevated from ~ 500-1500 ms after cue onset during successful associative retrieval. Concurrently, the retrieved target object can be decoded from population spike patterns in adjacent entorhinal cortex (EC), with hippocampal firing preceding EC spikes and predicting the fidelity of EC object reinstatement. Prior to orchestrating reinstatement, a separate population of hippocampal neurons distinguishes different scene cues (buildings vs. landscapes). These results elucidate the hippocampal-entorhinal circuit dynamics for memory recall and reconcile disparate views on the role of the hippocampus in scene processing vs. associative memory.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1503
Number of pages11
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by a Wellcome Trust/Royal Society Sir Henry Dale Fellowship to B.P.S. (107672/Z/15/Z), Volkswagen Foundation and German Research Council grants to F.M. (MO930/4-1, SFB1089), and a Swiss National Science Foundation grant to T.P.R. (P300P1_161178). We thank B. Samimizad for help with spike-sorting.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, The Author(s).

Copyright 2019 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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