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Amplitude modulated photostimulation for probing neuronal network dynamics
© Newman et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2012
Published: 16 July 2012
Sensory input arrives in the cortex in the form of dynamic synaptic currents to populations of neurons. How cortical neurons encode and transmit these inputs ultimately determines the cognitive and behavioral response of the animal. Therefore, a number of theoretical studies have attempted to explain the cortical population response in model neuronal networks . Yet, there are few experimental platforms for studying the dynamical rate responses in large living networks that match the manipulability of computational models. As a result, most experimental studies examining cortical input response properties are confined to independent or single neurons, e.g. .
These results indicate that amplitude modulated optogenetic stimulation with LEDs is an efficient tool for providing correlated input currents to thousands of pyramidal cells embedded in DCNs while recording spiking activity in hundreds of individual neurons using an MEA. Because DCNs can be created with specified proportions of different cell types and allow easy pharmacological access, this technique opens a new level of control over living neuronal populations for testing theories of cortical response properties and small signal representation under different network parameter regimes.
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