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Isolated cortical computations during delta waves support memory consolidation

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Science  18 Oct 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6463, pp. 377-381
DOI: 10.1126/science.aay0616

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Special moments at cortical quiet states

Delta waves are moments of widespread cortical silence that alternate with active states during slow-wave sleep. However, upon closer examination, single neuronal action potentials can be detected during delta waves. Todorova and Zugaro sought to determine whether this neuronal noise could instead be an important signal (see the Perspective by Ikegaya and Matsumoto). They found that persisting action potential firing during delta waves is an overlooked but widespread phenomenon, which could potentially involve all neurons and all delta waves. A critical role of the delta wave may be to insulate specific cortical computations taking place in response to hippocampal replay and involved in memory consolidation.

Science, this issue p. 377; see also p. 306

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