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Modelling homeostatic control of high-frequency post-synaptic transmission and its effect on metabolic efficiency in the auditory brainstem
© Sweeney et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013
- Published: 8 July 2013
- Nitric Oxide
- Metabolic Efficiency
- Axon Initial Segment
- Relay Neuron
- Intrinsic Excitability
Intrinsic electrical properties of neurons are controlled by a number of homeostatic mechanisms, among which is the modulation of conductances of voltage-dependent ion channels. One such example is mediated by Nitric Oxide (NO) in principal neurons of the Medial Nucleus of the Trapezoid Body (MNTB) in the auditory brainstem. These act as relay neurons, receiving excitatory input and transmitting inhibitory signals to the auditory nuclei involved in sound localisation. NO is released here in an activity-dependent manner and switches the basis of action potential (AP) repolarisation from Kv3 to Kv2, decreasing intrinsic excitability and improving faithful following of high frequency input trains . We have replicated these effects in a biophysically detailed neuron model and have measured both transmission fidelity and metabolic efficiency of AP generation, quantified by the Na+/K+ charge overlap ratio , across varying states of NO activation.
This work was supported by the Erasmus Mundus EuroSPIN programme (YS) and MRC Fellowship G0900425 (MHH).
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