2019 年 38 巻 1 号 p. 118-122
The neural circuits related to somatosensory perception, the flow of information between the circuits, and the neural activity which represents the content of perception still remains elusive. Recently, by using optogenetic methods, we identified top-down circuits essential for tactile perception. Selective suppression of this circuit resulted in inaccurate tactile perception; mice cannot distinguish between smooth and rough floors. Moreover, we found that this circuit is active during sleep. Suppression of this circuit during non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep blocked memory consolidation of tactile perception. This lecture introduces the outline of these findings.