Prof. Jan Born

University of Tübingen
Institute of Medical Psychology and Behavioral Neurobiology

Systems consolidation of memory during sleep

Whereas memories are optimally encoded and retrieved when the brain is awake, the consolidation and formation of long-term memory requires an offline mode of processing as optimally established only during sleep. Based on evidence from behavioral and neurobiological studies in humans and rodents, I will consider the formation of long-term memory during sleep as an “active systems consolidation” process in which  the repeated neuronal replay of representations originating from the hippocampus during slow-wave sleep (SWS) leads to a gradual transformation and integration of representations in extrahippocampal, mainly neocortical networks. I will highlight three features of this process: (i) Hippocampal replay that, by capturing episodic memory aspects, drives consolidation of both hippocampus-dependent and non-hippocampus-dependent memory; (ii) brain oscillations hallmarking SWS and rapid-eye movement (REM) sleep, respectively, which provide mechanisms to regulate both information flow across distant brain networks and local synaptic plasticity; and (iii) qualitative transformations of memories during sleep-dependent systems consolidation resulting in abstract schema-like representations. Here, I will emphasize the importance of sleep for memory transformation during early development.

Seminar Date & Time:

December 10th, 2020
14:00 (IST)
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Systems consolidation of memory during sleep