Have you ever felt a whirling sensation as if the world is spinning after just realizing you were lost in a city you were visiting for the first time? This happens when the neuronal circuits in your brain which allow you to navigate the world suddenly lose their confidence in the estimation of your location. Fortunately, this brain system excels in familiar environments and can quickly adapt to changing context.
Dr. Adrien Peyrache and his team study the neuronal basis of the navigation system (the brain’s GPS). In particular, they aim to unveil the architecture and dynamics of the neuronal circuits supporting the head-direction system (the neuronal compass). To this end, they use high-density electrophysiology allowing the monitoring of large ensembles of neurons in freely moving animals, optogenetics to manipulate neuronal circuits and advanced analysis of neuronal population dynamics. By recording neuronal activity during exploration and sleep Dr. Peyrache’s lab investigates how sensory inputs are combined with internally organized processes to generate a coherent and reliable sense of direction. Unraveling the relationship between cognitive processes and neuronal dynamics will take us one step further toward understanding the neural basis of brain disorders.
Internally-organized mechanisms of the head direction sense. Peyrache A, Lacroix M, Petersen P, Buzsaki G. Nature Neuroscience, 2015; 18(4):569-75.
Emergence of cognition from action. Buzsaki G, Peyrache A, Kubie J. Cold Spring Harb Symp Quant Biol. 2015;79:41-50.
Excitation and inhibition compete to control spiking during hippocampal ripples: intracellular study in behaving mice. English DF, Peyrache A, Stark E, Roux L, Vallentin D, Long MA, Buzsaki G. Journal of Neuroscience 2014; 4(49):16509-17.
Spatio-temporal dynamics of neocortical excitation and inhibition during human sleep. Peyrache A, Dehghani N, Eskandar EN, Madsen JR, Anderson WS, Donoghue JA, Hochberg LR, Halgren E, Cash SS, Destexhe A. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2012; 109(5):1731-6.
Inhibition recruitment in prefrontal cortex during sleep spindles and gating of hippocampal inputs. Peyrache A, Battaglia FP, Destexhe A. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2011; 108(41):17207-12.
Coherent theta oscillations and reorganization of spike timing in the hippocampal-prefrontal network upon learning. Benchenane K, Peyrache A, Khamassi M, Battaglia FP, Wiener SI. Neuron, 2010.
Replay of rule-learning related neural patterns in the prefrontal cortex during sleep. Peyrache A, Khamassi M, Benchenane K, Wiener SI, Battaglia FP. Nature Neuroscience, 2009.
Principal component analysis of ensemble recordings reveals cell assemblies at high temporal resolution. Peyrache A, Benchenane K, Khamassi M, Wiener SI, Battaglia FP.
Journal of Computational Neuroscience, 2009