- Poster presentation
- Open Access
The influence of stationary synaptic activity on the PRC
BMC Neuroscience volume 12, Article number: P264 (2011)
A useful measurable property of a neural oscillator is its Phase Response Curve (PRC). PRCs measure the phase-shift resulting from perturbing the oscillator with a brief stimulus at different times of the cycle. They have been extensively used to understand the synchronous activity patterns emerging from a network of weakly coupled oscillators.
PRCs have been classified into two types: type I (PRC is always positive) and type II (PRC has positive and negative regions) . Theoretical results  have shown that the type of PRC combined with the temporal dynamics of the synapses yield different synchronization properties when two neurons are coupled together (neurons can synchronize in-phase, out of phase or in anti-phase).
PRCs are typically measured in vitro, considering only the intrinsic properties of the neuron. However, in vivo neurons constantly receive background synaptic inputs that play an important role sculpting the dynamics of neurons. Indeed experimental data showed that membrane excitability  can change in response to variations in background synaptic activity .
In this work we study the effects of the background synaptic activity on the shape of the Phase Response Curve, and its synchronization properties. To perform this study, we consider two neuron models: the Wang-Buzsáki model  and the Morris-Lecar model . We explore the effect of a constant excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductance input (that can be seen as an average of the background input) on the type of membrane excitability and PRC shape in the spiking regime.
We found that changes in the mean background conductances in a biologically plausible range  lead to changes in the type of PRC. As we increased the inhibitory conductance, for a constant value of the excitatory one, we observed a switch from type I to type II PRC. We correlated the shape of the PRC with the synchronization properties. We studied the effect of the temporal dynamics of synaptic activation on the synchronization properties of a coupled pair of neurons, as we switched them from type I to type II PRC. We characterized how solutions change with these parameters in a network motif of two reciprocally coupled neurons.
Ermentrout GB: Type I membranes, Phase Resetting Curves, and Synchrony. Neural Computation. 1996, 8 (5): 979-1001. 10.1162/neco.19184.108.40.2069.
Vreeswijk C, Abbott LF, Ermentrout GB: When inhibition not excitation synchronizes neural firing. Journal of Computational Neuroscience. 1994, 1 (4): 313-321. 10.1007/BF00961879.
Rinzel J, Ermentrout GB: Analysis of Neural Excitability and Oscillations. Methods in neuronal modeling: from ions to networks. Edited by: Koch C and Segev I. 1998, Cambridge: MIT Press, 2
Prescott SA, Ratte S, De Koninck Y, Sejnowski TJ: Pyramidal Neurons Switch from Integrators In Vivo to Resonators Under in Vivo-Like Conditions. J. Neurophysiology. 2008, 100 (6): 3030-3042. 10.1152/jn.90634.2008.
Wang XJ, Buzsáki G: Gamma Oscillation by Synaptic Inhibition in Hippocampal Interneuronal Network Model. The journal of Neuroscience. 1996, 16 (20): 6402-6413.
Morris C, Lecar H: Voltage Oscillations in the Barnacle Giant Muscle Fiber. Biophysical Journal. 1981, 35 (1): 193-213. 10.1016/S0006-3495(81)84782-0.
Destexhe A, Rudolph M, Fellous JM, Sejnowski TJ: Fluctuating synaptic conductances recreate in vivo-like activity in neocortical neurons. Neuroscience. 2001, 107 (1): 13-24. 10.1016/S0306-4522(01)00344-X.
About this article
Cite this article
Garcia, G.C., Huguet, G. & Rinzel, J. The influence of stationary synaptic activity on the PRC. BMC Neurosci 12, P264 (2011) doi:10.1186/1471-2202-12-S1-P264
- Temporal Dynamic
- Neuron Model
- Synaptic Input
- Network Motif
- Neural Oscillator