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Gain modulation is a prominent feature of neuronal activity recorded in behaving animals, but the mechanism by which it occurs is unknown. By introducing a barrage of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances that mimics conditions encountered in vivo into pyramidal neurons in slices of rat somatosensory cortex, we show that the gain of a neuronal(More)
In neocortical circuits, repetitively active neurons evoke unitary postsynaptic potentials (PSPs) whose peak amplitudes either increase (facilitate) or decrease (depress) progressively. To examine the basis for these different synaptic responses, we made simultaneous recordings from three classes of neurons in cortical layer 2/3. We induced repetitive(More)
Populations of neurons in the retina, olfactory system, visual and somatosensory thalamus, and several cortical regions show temporal correlation between the discharge times of their action potentials (spike trains). Correlated firing has been linked to stimulus encoding, attention, stimulus discrimination, and motor behaviour. Nevertheless, the mechanisms(More)
1. The effects of excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) on interspike intervals (ISIs) of neocortical neurons can be mimicked by pulse potentials (PPs) produced by current injection. The present report documents the dependence of the ISI shortening on the amplitudes of PPs and EPSPs and on the firing rate of the affected neuron. 2. In rhythmically(More)
Neurons of the avian nucleus laminaris (NL) provide a neural substrate for azimuthal sound localization. We examined the optimal stimuli for NL neurons to maintain high discharge rates, reliable phase-locking, and sensitivity to time-delayed stimuli. Whole-cell recordings were performed in chick [embryonic days 19-21 (E19-E21)] NL neurons using an in vitro(More)
Neurons of the avian nucleus magnocellularis (NM) relay auditory information from the VIIIth nerve to other parts of the auditory system. To examine the cellular properties that permit NM neurons to transmit reliably the temporal characteristics of the acoustic stimulus, we performed whole-cell recordings in neurons of the chick NM using an in vitro thin(More)
1. The effects of small, brief depolarizing pulses and excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) on neuronal firing were examined in layer V neurons in slices of cat sensorimotor cortex. During intracellular recording, brief depolarizing current pulses (duration, 0.5-2.0 ms; amplitude, 0.1-4.0 nA) were injected in neurons to produce pulse potentials (PPs)(More)
The precise role of synchronous neuronal firing in signal encoding remains unclear. To examine what kinds of signals can be carried by synchrony, I reproduced a multilayer feedforward network of neurons in an in vitro slice preparation of rat cortex using an iterative procedure. When constant and time-varying frequency signals were delivered to the network,(More)
A fundamental problem in neuroscience is understanding how a neuron transduces synaptic input into action potentials. The dendrites form the substrate for consolidating thousands of synaptic inputs and are the first stage for signal processing in the neuron. Traditionally, dendrites are viewed as passive structures whose main function is to funnel synaptic(More)
The role of local cortical activity in shaping neuronal responses is controversial. Among other questions, it is unknown how the diverse response patterns reported in vivo-lateral inhibition in some cases, approximately balanced excitation and inhibition (co-tuning) in others-compare to the local spread of synaptic connectivity. Excitatory and inhibitory(More)