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The action potential (AP) is transmitted by the concerted action of voltage-gated ion channels. Thermodynamic fluctuations in channel proteins produce probabilistic gating behavior, causing channel noise. Miniaturizing signaling systems increases susceptibility to noise, and with many cortical, cerebellar, and peripheral axons <0.5 mum diameter [1, 2 and(More)
It is generally assumed that axons use action potentials (APs) to transmit information fast and reliably to synapses. Yet, the reliability of transmission along fibers below 0.5 microm diameter, such as cortical and cerebellar axons, is unknown. Using detailed models of rodent cortical and squid axons and stochastic simulations, we show how conduction along(More)
Most behavioral tasks have time constraints for successful completion, such as catching a ball in flight. Many of these tasks require trading off the time allocated to perception and action, especially when only one of the two is possible at any time. In general, the longer we perceive, the smaller the uncertainty in perceptual estimates. However, a longer(More)
THE ACTION POTENTIAL (AP), THE FUNDAMENTAL SIGNAL OF THE NERVOUS SYSTEM, IS CARRIED BY TWO TYPES OF AXONS: unmyelinated and myelinated fibers. In the former the action potential propagates continuously along the axon as established in large-diameter fibers. In the latter axons the AP jumps along the nodes of Ranvier-discrete, anatomically specialized(More)
Post-synaptic potential (PSP) variability is typically attributed to mechanisms inside synapses, yet recent advances in experimental methods and biophysical understanding have led us to reconsider the role of axons as highly reliable transmission channels. We show that in many thin axons of our brain, the action potential (AP) waveform and thus the Ca++(More)