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Activities and Seminars

Simon Hanslmayr. The role of synchronized and desynchronized oscillations for episodic memory – Association vs information
 
Date: Feb 26, 2015

What: The role of synchronized and desynchronized oscillations for episodic memory – Association vs information

Where: BCBL auditorium

Who: Simon Hanslmayr, PhD, Senior Lecturer, School of Psychology, University of Birmingham, UK

When: 12 noon


Episodic memory refers to our ability to store highly associative events which are rich in their informational content. Brain oscillations induce synchronized activity in the human brain and are a powerful mechanism to associate, i.e. bind, information in memory. However, oscillations also strongly constrain the firing of neural populations by opening and closing the temporal windows where firing can occur which inevitably reduces the informational content expressed by a population of cells. Interestingly, we have learned from several recent studies that increases as well as decreases in brain oscillatory activity correlates with the formation and retrieval of episodic memories. In this talk I will present several recent studies that aimed at clarifying the roles of these memory-related synchronizing and desynchronizing oscillatory behaviours. I will argue that memory related synchronization occurs mainly in the medial temporal lobe and serves to associate information, whereas the memory-related desynchronization effects occur mainly in the cortex and serve the representation of information. Collectively, these two processes could enable the human brain to associate and represent information in episodic memory.