Mar 28, 2020

Heterosynaptic Plasticity Determines the Set Point for Cortical Excitatory-Inhibitory Balance

Rachel E FieldRobert C Froemke


Excitation in neural circuits must be carefully controlled by inhibition to regulate information processing and network excitability. During development, cortical inhibitory and excitatory inputs are initially mismatched but become co-tuned or balanced with experience. However, little is known about how excitatory-inhibitory balance is defined at most synapses or about the mechanisms for establishing or maintaining this balance at specific set points. Here we show how coordinated long-term plasticity calibrates populations of excitatory-inhibitory inputs onto mouse auditory cortical pyramidal neurons. Pairing pre- and postsynaptic activity induced plasticity at paired inputs and different forms of heterosynaptic plasticity at the strongest unpaired synapses, which required minutes of activity and dendritic Ca2+ signaling to be computed. Theoretical analyses demonstrated how the relative rate of heterosynaptic plasticity could normalize and stabilize synaptic strengths to achieve any possible excitatory-inhibitory correlation. Thus, excitatory-inhibitory balance is dynamic and cell specific, determined by distinct plasticity rules across multiple excitatory and inhibitory synapses.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Dendritic Cells
Cell Plasticity
Neuron of Cerebral Cortex
Theoretical Study
Cerebral Cortex
Laboratory mice
Gene Circuits
Postsynaptic Potentials

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