Temporal structure in neuronal activity during working memory in macaque parietal cortex

Nat Neurosci. 2002 Aug;5(8):805-11. doi: 10.1038/nn890.


Many cortical structures have elevated firing rates during working memory, but it is not known how the activity is maintained. To investigate whether reverberating activity is important, we studied the temporal structure of local field potential (LFP) activity and spiking from area LIP in two awake macaques during a memory-saccade task. Using spectral analysis, we found spatially tuned elevated power in the gamma band (25-90 Hz) in LFP and spiking activity during the memory period. Spiking and LFP activity were also coherent in the gamma band but not at lower frequencies. Finally, we decoded LFP activity on a single-trial basis and found that LFP activity in parietal cortex discriminated between preferred and anti-preferred direction with approximately the same accuracy as the spike rate and predicted the time of a planned movement with better accuracy than the spike rate. This finding could accelerate the development of a cortical neural prosthesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology
  • Animals
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Male
  • Memory, Short-Term / physiology*
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Parietal Lobe / cytology
  • Parietal Lobe / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Saccades / physiology
  • Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Wakefulness / physiology