May, 1 2019 UGOE published the work “Principles underlying the input-dependent formation and organization of memories “
The neuronal system exhibits the remarkable ability to dynamically store and organize incoming information into a web of memory representations (items), which is essential for the generation of complex behaviors. Central to memory function is that such memory items must be (1) discriminated from each other, (2) associated to each other, or (3) brought into a sequential order. However, how these three basic mechanisms are robustly implemented in an input-dependent manner by the underlying complex neuronal and synaptic dynamics is still unknown. Here, we develop a mathematical framework, which provides a direct link between different synaptic mechanisms, determining the neuronal and synaptic dynamics of the network, to create a network that emulates the above mechanisms. Combining correlation-based synaptic plasticity and homeostatic synaptic scaling, we demonstrate that these mechanisms enable the reliable formation of sequences and associations between two memory items still missing the capability for discrimination. We show that this shortcoming can be removed by additionally considering inhibitory synaptic plasticity. Thus, the here-presented framework provides a new, functionally motivated link between different known synaptic mechanisms leading to the self-organization of fundamental memory mechanisms.