Medical Research Council - London Institute of Medical Sciences

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Deep-brain Diving
13 March 2016

Deep-brain Diving

Nestled within our brain is the entorhinal cortex. It acts as a hub between memory and spatial navigation, helping to guide us through our environment. Signals from cells in the memory centre or hippocampus travel to cells deep in the entorhinal cortex before reaching the cerebral hemispheres from whence movement is controlled. But scientists have recently found that this road map of signals to and from the entorhinal cortex may be more complex than originally thought. They studied deep and superficial layers of the entorhinal cortex and discovered different types of cells in the deep layers. While one population (an example cell shown here in green) receives and integrates messages from cells in the superficial layers (in red) and from the hippocampus, another population (in blue) communicates with the cerebral hemispheres. Evidence of such distinct sub-populations brings a new level of understanding to the world of spatial navigation.

Written by Gaëlle Coullon

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