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Theses

Représentation des individus par le macaque Rhésus : approche neurophysiologique et comportementale

Abstract : Humans can individually recognize some hundreds of persons and therefore operate within a rich and complex society. Individual recognition can be achieved by identifying distinct elements such as the face or voice as belonging to one individual. In humans, those different cues are linked into one conceptual representation of individual identity. I demonstrated that rhesus monkeys, like humans, recognize familiarpeers but also familiar humans individually and that they match their voice to their corresponding memorized face. Thus it shows that fine individual recognition is a skill shared across a range of primate species, which may serve as the basis of a sophisticated social network. It also suggests that animals’ brains flexibly adapt to recognize individuals of other species when socio-ecologically relevant. Following at the neuronal level, this project put in light that social knowledge about other individuals is represented by hippocampal neurons as well as by inferotemporal neurons. For instance I observed the existence of face preferring neurons not only in the inferotemporal cortex as previously described but also in the hippocampus. Comparison of their properties across both structures, suggests that they could play complementary roles in recognition of individuals. Finally, because the hippocampus is a structure that evolved in various degrees to support autobiographical memory and spatial information in different mammals, I characterized the different subtypes of neurons and their network connectivity in the monkey hippocampus to provide a common anatomical framework to discuss hippocampal functions across species
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Julia Sliwa. Représentation des individus par le macaque Rhésus : approche neurophysiologique et comportementale. Neurosciences. Université Claude Bernard - Lyon I, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012LYO10011⟩. ⟨tel-00979701⟩

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