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Behavior-dependent directional tuning in the human visual-navigation network

MPS-Authors

Nau,  Matthias
Egil and Pauline Braathen and Fred Kavli Centre for Cortical Microcircuits, Kavli Institute, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway;
Department Psychology (Doeller), MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

Frey,  Markus
Egil and Pauline Braathen and Fred Kavli Centre for Cortical Microcircuits, Kavli Institute, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway;
Department Psychology (Doeller), MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Doeller,  Christian F.
Egil and Pauline Braathen and Fred Kavli Centre for Cortical Microcircuits, Kavli Institute, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway;
Department Psychology (Doeller), MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Nau, M., Navarro Schröder, T., Frey, M., & Doeller, C. F. (2020). Behavior-dependent directional tuning in the human visual-navigation network. Nature Communications, 11(1): 3247. doi:10.1038/s41467-020-17000-2.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0006-8EF0-B
Abstract
The brain derives cognitive maps from sensory experience that guide memory formation and behavior. Despite extensive efforts, it still remains unclear how the underlying population activity unfolds during spatial navigation and how it relates to memory performance. To examine these processes, we combined 7T-fMRI with a kernel-based encoding model of virtual navigation to map world-centered directional tuning across the human cortex. First, we present an in-depth analysis of directional tuning in visual, retrosplenial, parahippocampal and medial temporal cortices. Second, we show that tuning strength, width and topology of this directional code during memory-guided navigation depend on successful encoding of the environment. Finally, we show that participants' locomotory state influences this tuning in sensory and mnemonic regions such as the hippocampus. We demonstrate a direct link between neural population tuning and human cognition, where high-level memory processing interacts with network-wide visuospatial coding in the service of behavior.