Séminaire de Simon Thorpe, jeudi 7 juin 2012 à 16h00 - salle 101 pôle AAFE
DR CNRS au CERCO Université de Toulouse
« Grandmother Cells, Neocortical Dark Matter and the puzzle of extremely long-term memories»
We appear to be able to recognize visual and auditory stimuli that we have not experienced for decades. How can the brain store memories for such long periods of time without reactivating them? I will argue that one option would be to store memories using highly selective neurons (effectively "Grandmother Cells") that will only fire if a stimulus very similar to the originally learned one is presented. The neocortex may contain billions of neurons that are normally totally silent, constituting a sort of Neocortical Dark Matter, each waiting for a particular stimulus to reappear.