Long-term modification of cortical synapses improves sensory perception
Froemke, Robert C.
Barker, Alison J.
Martins, Ana Raquel O.
Levis, Philip A.
Merzenich, Michael M.
Schreiner, Christoph E.Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.
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CitationFroemke, R. C., I. Carcea, A. J. Barker, K. Yuan, B. Seybold, A. R. O. Martins, N. Zaika, et al. 2013. “Long-term modification of cortical synapses improves sensory perception.” Nature neuroscience 16 (1): 79-88. doi:10.1038/nn.3274. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nn.3274.
AbstractSynapses and receptive fields of the cerebral cortex are plastic. However, changes to specific inputs must be coordinated within neural networks to ensure that excitability and feature selectivity are appropriately configured for perception of the sensory environment. Long-lasting enhancements and decrements to rat primary auditory cortical excitatory synaptic strength were induced by pairing acoustic stimuli with activation of the nucleus basalis neuromodulatory system. Here we report that these synaptic modifications were approximately balanced across individual receptive fields, conserving mean excitation while reducing overall response variability. Decreased response variability should increase detection and recognition of near-threshold or previously imperceptible stimuli, as we found in behaving animals. Thus, modification of cortical inputs leads to wide-scale synaptic changes, which are related to improved sensory perception and enhanced behavioral performance.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:11717587
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