Theta oscillations in memory

I just happen to cross paths with this new fresh article on theta oscillations and human memory:

Published: February 03, 2020. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2019.12.006

Theta Oscillations in Human Memory

I’m a big fan of how they start the paper:

“Forming associations between different aspects of our sensory and cognitive experience allows us to remember specific events and abstract knowledge about the world that surrounds us. Our coworkers do not query us each morning about who we are and where we are from, since they have associated that information with the visual inputs corresponding to our faces. If they instead ask us how our weekend was, we can use that cue to remember our visit to the beach and tell them about our experience. We do not need to consult a map to make it from our desks to the coffee machine, since we have associated those objects with locations in space. And we also do not need to worry about our coffee being too hot, since we have associated the machine’s output with a reasonable temperature. It could have been a very bewildering and inefficient start to our day, but thanks to associations, it was not.”

Astonishing, right? You want to read more of it! The general idea that the paper covers is the paper is that human memory relies on the same neural mechanisms as spatial navigation and that theta oscillations are involved in the process for the memory formation for associations between sequentially visited places and events experienced.

This review provides different controversy findings on theta oscillations and human memory for the past two decades. Some studies observe increases in theta power associated with successful memory, whereas other studies observe a spectral tilt of the power spectrum with increased high frequency and decreased low-frequency power during successful memory formation or retrieval. So, Herweg and colleagues consider the distinction between narrow-band theta oscillations and cooccurring broad-band effects among all these findings and show how recording methods, as well as analytical choices, may alter the balance between the two phenomena.

Enjoy the paper!

Sources

Feature image from Pexels – CC0.

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