Emergent global oscillations in heterogeneous excitable media: the example of pancreatic beta cells.

  title={Emergent global oscillations in heterogeneous excitable media: the example of pancreatic beta cells.},
  author={Julyan H. E. Cartwright},
  journal={Physical review. E, Statistical physics, plasmas, fluids, and related interdisciplinary topics},
  volume={62 1 Pt B},
Using the standard van der Pol-FitzHugh-Nagumo excitable medium model, I demonstrate a generic mechanism, diversity, that provokes the emergence of global oscillations from individually quiescent elements in heterogeneous excitable media. This mechanism may be operating in the mammalian pancreas, where excitable beta cells, quiescent when isolated, are found to oscillate when coupled, despite the absence of a pacemaker region. 

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