Article

Learned spatiotemporal sequence recognition and prediction in primary visual cortex

  • Nature Neuroscience volume 17, pages 732737 (2014)
  • doi:10.1038/nn.3683
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Abstract

Learning to recognize and predict temporal sequences is fundamental to sensory perception and is impaired in several neuropsychiatric disorders, but little is known about where and how this occurs in the brain. We discovered that repeated presentations of a visual sequence over a course of days resulted in evoked response potentiation in mouse V1 that was highly specific for stimulus order and timing. Notably, after V1 was trained to recognize a sequence, cortical activity regenerated the full sequence even when individual stimulus elements were omitted. Our results advance the understanding of how the brain makes 'intelligent guesses' on the basis of limited information to form visual percepts and suggest that it is possible to study the mechanistic basis of this high-level cognitive ability by studying low-level sensory systems.

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Change history

  • Corrected online 30 March 2014

    In the version of this article initially published online, the asterisk was defined in the Figure 2 legend as P > 0.05 rather than P < 0.05, and the grant number in the Acknowledgments was given as NIMH:1K99MH099654-01 rather than K99MH099654. The errors have been corrected for the print, PDF and HTML versions of this article.

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Acknowledgements

We thank A. Heynen and S. Cooke for helpful comments on the manuscript, and S. Meagher for administrative support. This work was supported by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Picower Institute Innovation Fund and a grant from the US National Institute of Mental Health (K99MH099654).

Author information

Affiliations

  1. Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

    • Jeffrey P Gavornik
    •  & Mark F Bear

Authors

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Contributions

J.P.G. and M.F.B contributed to study design and wrote the paper. J.P.G. performed all of the experiments.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Mark F Bear.

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