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The Neuropsychology of AnxietyAn enquiry into the function of the septo-hippocampal system$
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Jeffrey A. Gray and Neil McNaughton

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780198522713

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198522713.001.0001

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Hippocampal place fields

Hippocampal place fields

(p.140) 7 Hippocampal place fields
The Neuropsychology of Anxiety

Jeffrey A. Gray

Neil McNaughton

Oxford University Press

Possibly the most influential view of the hippocampus has been that it processes spatial information and that the firing patterns of its cells represent ‘place fields’. While ‘place field’ is often a succinct way of describing the pattern of firing, this chapter reviews a variety of data showing that hippocampal fields are not uniquely spatial. Even more spatially correlated fields have properties that are inconsistent with encoding of position in spatial coordinates and are, instead, consistent with the firing of hippocampal cells when particular goals are available. On this view, cells that fire in the same place may be encoding quite different goals — and do so to allow the hippocampus to detect goal conflict.

Keywords:   hippocampus, place field, spatial map, goals

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