Neural population dynamics and frontal-parietal circuit for context-dependent sensorimotor computations
von Hao Guo
Datum der mündl. Prüfung:2019-05-23
Betreuer:Prof. Dr. Alexander Gail
Gutachter:Prof. Dr. Alexander Gail
Gutachter:Prof. Dr. Hansjörg Scherberger
EnglischThis dissertation investigated the computational strategies in the primate's brain for goal-directed movement control and the information stream in inter-areal brain circuits. The animal model used in this research was rhesus monkey, and the main focus was laid on two brain areas: the dorsal premotor cortex (PMd) and the parietal reach region (PRR). Two approaches were used to study different aspects of the research topic. First, to investigate the underlying neural computations, neural state space methods were applied onto extracellular recording datasets. The datasets were collected from rhesus monkeys while they were performing goal-directed reach movements in distinct behavioral contexts. Second, an optogenetic approach was developed and used to investigate the function of the inter-areal information stream. Activities of single neurons in PMd and PRR were recorded in combination with optogenetic inhibition. This research investigated distinct neural dynamics between PMd and PRR during planning-to-execution transition, and varied computational strategies exploited by both brain areas for sensorimotor transformations in different behavioral contexts. In addition, the evidence from optogenetics experiments confirmed the context-dependent information flows from PMd to PRR. In conclusion, this work provided both computational and neuronal evidence emphasizing flexible and dynamic sensorimotor transformations within the frontoparietal reach network.
Keywords: sensorimotor; optogenetics; monkey