Neurophysiological signatures of temporal coordination between retrosplenial cortex and the hippocampal formation.

Retrosplenial cortex (RSC) is heavily interconnected with a multitude of cortical regions and is directly connected with the hippocampal formation. As such, it is a likely coordinator of information transfer between the hippocampus (HPC) and cortex in the service of spatial cognition and episodic memory. The current work examined three potential temporal frameworks for retrosplenial–hippocampal communication, namely, theta frequency oscillations (6–12 Hz), sharp-wave/ripple events, and repeating, theta phase-locked shifts from low (30–65 Hz) to high (120–160 Hz) gamma frequency oscillations. From simultaneous recordings of single units and local field potentials (LFPs) in RSC and HPC, we report the presence of prominent theta, low-gamma, and high-gamma oscillations in the retrosplenial LFP. Retrosplenial and hippocampal theta rhythms were strongly coherent and subgroups of retrosplenial neurons exhibited either spiking at theta frequencies and/or spike-phase-locking to theta. Retrosplenial neurons were also phase-locked to local low- and high-gamma rhythms, and power in these frequency bands was coupled in a sequential fashion to specific phases of hippocampal and retrosplenial theta rhythms. Coordinated activity between the two regions also occurred during hippocampal sharp-wave/ripple events, where retrosplenial neuron populations were modulated in their spiking and retrosplenial LFPs exhibited sharp-wave-like events that co-occurred with those observed in HPC. These results identify several temporal windows of synchronization between RSC and HPC that may mediate cortico-hippocampal processes related to learning, memory, and spatial representation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)