The hippocampus has been known to be a critical brain region to learning and memory. Additionally it has been shown that single neurons in the hippocampus are active based on an animal’s location in its environment. In order for a neural code to form a representation of an animal’s space, it must receive many kinds of information about the environment in relation to the organism itself (idiothetic cues), such as self-motion and head direction as well as information about the surroundings in relation to each other (allothetic cues). Two questions remaining about hippocampal function remain as to (1) how spatial maps in the brain may be constructed differently in real worlds in comparison to virtual worlds and (2) how visual cues contribute to the aforementioned neural code. We aim to tackle these intersecting questions.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, NUS