Models of spatial and temporal dimensions of memory

Curr Opin Behav Sci. 2017 Oct;17:27-33. doi: 10.1016/j.cobeha.2017.05.024. Epub 2017 Jun 15.


Episodic memory involves coding of the spatial location and time of individual events. Coding of space and time is also relevant to working memory, spatial navigation, and the disambiguation of overlapping memory representations. Neurophysiological data demonstrate that neuronal activity codes the current, past and future location of an animal as well as temporal intervals within a task. Models have addressed how neural coding of space and time for memory function could arise, with both dimensions coded by the same neurons. Neural coding could depend upon network oscillatory and attractor dynamics as well as modulation of neuronal intrinsic properties. These models are relevant to the coding of space and time involving structures including the hippocampus, entorhinal cortex, retrosplenial cortex, striatum and parahippocampal gyrus, which have been implicated in both animal and human studies.