Sep 7, 2016

Transition between Functional Regimes in an Integrate-And-Fire Network Model of the Thalamus

PloS One
Alessandro BarardiAlberto Mazzoni

Abstract

The thalamus is a key brain element in the processing of sensory information. During the sleep and awake states, this brain area is characterized by the presence of two distinct dynamical regimes: in the sleep state activity is dominated by spindle oscillations (7 - 15 Hz) weakly affected by external stimuli, while in the awake state the activity is primarily driven by external stimuli. Here we develop a simple and computationally efficient model of the thalamus that exhibits two dynamical regimes with different information-processing capabilities, and study the transition between them. The network model includes glutamatergic thalamocortical (TC) relay neurons and GABAergic reticular (RE) neurons described by adaptive integrate-and-fire models in which spikes are induced by either depolarization or hyperpolarization rebound. We found a range of connectivity conditions under which the thalamic network composed by these neurons displays the two aforementioned dynamical regimes. Our results show that TC-RE loops generate spindle-like oscillations and that a minimum level of clustering (i.e. local connectivity density) in the RE-RE connections is necessary for the coexistence of the two regimes. We also observe that the transition...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

Single-Cell Analysis
Spindle
Cortex Bone Disorders
Adrenal Cortex Diseases
Sleep, Slow-Wave
Neurons
Brain
Total cholesterol
Sensory Stimulation
Disease Transmission

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