Neuronal codes for visual perception and memory

Neuropsychologia. 2016 Mar;83:227-241. doi: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2015.12.016. Epub 2015 Dec 18.


In this review, I describe and contrast the representation of stimuli in visual cortical areas and in the medial temporal lobe (MTL). While cortex is characterized by a distributed and implicit coding that is optimal for recognition and storage of semantic information, the MTL shows a much sparser and explicit coding of specific concepts that is ideal for episodic memory. I will describe the main characteristics of the coding in the MTL by the so-called concept cells and will then propose a model of the formation and recall of episodic memory based on partially overlapping assemblies.

Keywords: Concept cells; Memory; Memory models; Neuronal coding; Perception.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Brain / physiology*
  • Brain Mapping*
  • Humans
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Visual Perception / physiology*