Interaction between hippocampal and striatal systems predicts subsequent consolidation of motor sequence memory

Geneviève Albouy, Virginie Sterpenich, Gilles Vandewalle, Annabelle Darsaud, Steffen Gais, Géraldine Rauchs, Martin Desseilles, Mélanie Boly, Thanh Dang-Vu, Evelyne Balteau, Christian Degueldre, Christophe Phillips, André Luxen, Pierre Maquet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The development of fast and reproducible motor behavior is a crucial human capacity. The aim of the present study was to address the relationship between the implementation of consistent behavior during initial training on a sequential motor task (the Finger Tapping Task) and subsequent sleep-dependent motor sequence memory consolidation, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and total sleep deprivation protocol. Our behavioral results indicated significant offline gains in performance speed after sleep whereas performance was only stabilized, but not enhanced, after sleep deprivation. At the cerebral level, we previously showed that responses in the caudate nucleus increase, in parallel to a decrease in its functional connectivity with frontal areas, as performance became more consistent. Here, the strength of the competitive interaction, assessed through functional connectivity analyses, between the caudate nucleus and hippocampo-frontal areas during initial training, predicted delayed gains in performance at retest in sleepers but not in sleep-deprived subjects. Moreover, during retest, responses increased in the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex in sleepers whereas in sleep-deprived subjects, responses increased in the putamen and cingulate cortex. Our results suggest that the strength of the competitive interplay between the striatum and the hippocampus, participating in the implementation of consistent motor behavior during initial training, conditions subsequent motor sequence memory consolidation. The latter process appears to be supported by a reorganisation of cerebral activity in hippocampo-neocortical networks after sleep.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e59490
JournalPLoS Genetics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Adult
  • Corpus Striatum
  • Female
  • Hippocampus
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Memory
  • Sleep
  • Sleep Deprivation
  • Young Adult


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