Divide and conquer: an oscillatory division of labour in service of episodic memory

Griffiths, Benjamin James ORCID: 0000-0001-8600-4480 (2020). Divide and conquer: an oscillatory division of labour in service of episodic memory. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Both oscillatory synchronisation and oscillatory desynchronisation underpin the formation and retrieval of episodic memories. This paradox begs the question: how can two polar opposite neural phenomena produce the same outcome? Here, we investigate this conundrum by presenting a series of empirical experiments that test the hypothesis that these two phenomena reflect a division of labour in service of episodic memory. We demonstrate that neocortical desynchrony correlates with enhanced information representation, while hippocampal synchrony stiches this information together into a coherent memory trace. Critically, we demonstrate that these processes interact. Neocortical desynchrony precedes and predicts hippocampal synchrony during episodic memory formation, while hippocampal synchrony precedes and predicts neocortical desynchrony during episodic memory retrieval. This thesis suggests that the interaction between neocortical desynchrony and hippocampal synchrony sits at the heart of the formation and retrieval of episodic memories, providing empirical resolution to the so-called synchronisation/desynchronisation conundrum.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Psychology
Funders: European Research Council
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/10314


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