Nature Reviews Neuroscience 10, 272-282 (April 2009) | doi:10.1038/nrn2614

Article series: Memory systems

The anatomy of memory: an interactive overview of the parahippocampal–hippocampal network

N. M. van Strien1,4, N. L. M. Cappaert2,4 & M. P. Witter1,3  About the authors


Converging evidence suggests that each parahippocampal and hippocampal subregion contributes uniquely to the encoding, consolidation and retrieval of declarative memories, but their precise roles remain elusive. Current functional thinking does not fully incorporate the intricately connected networks that link these subregions, owing to their organizational complexity; however, such detailed anatomical knowledge is of pivotal importance for comprehending the unique functional contribution of each subregion. We have therefore developed an interactive diagram with the aim to display all of the currently known anatomical connections of the rat parahippocampal–hippocampal network. In this Review, we integrate the existing anatomical knowledge into a concise description of this network and discuss the functional implications of some relatively underexposed connections.

Author affiliations

  1. Department of Anatomy and Neurosciences, VU University Medical Center, P.O. Box 7057, 1007 MB Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
  2. SILS Center for Neuroscience, University of Amsterdam, 1098 SM Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
  3. Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, and Centre for the Biology of Memory, Department of Neuroscience, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, N-7489 Trondheim, Norway.
  4. These authors contributed equally to this work.

Correspondence to: N. M. van Strien1,4 Email:


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