Perceiving time is important to prepare a behavioral outcome, for example, a walking person needs to know whether he can cross a road or not by estimating if he will have enough time for it before a car comes. Understanding how we learn to time a particular interval is intrinsic to increase our comprehension of time perception and interval time acquisition. Different theories and studies look to unveil the neural basis of this temporal learning. Hippocampus (HPC) and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) play a role in a variety of timing tasks. Besides, our preliminary results suggest that temporal tasks are learned in an abrupt way, not gradually, as is the gradual traditional view. Our aim is to study the HPC and mPFC interaction in a timing task learning. To accomplish such objectives, we are going to massively record both areas with silicon probes (256 channels each) while animal learns a temporal bisection task. Also, we are going to disconnect both areas with optogenetics and a closed-loop approach in off-task periods, where propitious states of learning occur. This will allow us to study (i) HPC-mPFC network interactions in both LFP and spike level. (ii) Identify how does HPC-mPFC change after learning a time task. (iii) Study the causality between HPC-mPFC interaction and timing learning.
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