Tunable Oscillations in the Purkinje Neuron

NSF Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center, 3112 Etcheverry Hall, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.
Physical Review E (Impact Factor: 2.29). 04/2012; 85(4 Pt 1):041905. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.85.041905
Source: PubMed


In this paper, we experimentally study the dynamics of slow oscillations in Purkinje neurons in vitro, and derive a strong association with a forced parametric oscillator model. We observed the precise rhythmicity of these oscillations in Purkinje neurons, as well as a dynamic tunability of this oscillation using a photoswitchable compound. We found that this slow oscillation can be induced in every Purkinje neuron measured, having periods ranging between 10 and 25 s. Starting from a Hodgkin-Huxley model, we demonstrate that this oscillation can be externally modulated, and that the neurons will return to their intrinsic firing frequency after the forced oscillation is concluded. These findings signify an additional timing functional role of tunable oscillations within the cerebellum, as well as a dynamic control of a time scale in the brain in the range of seconds.

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    • "Granular layer network resonance, by reflecting millisecond regulation in spike emission, could fully exploit the outstanding timing capabilities of granule cells (Cathala et al., 2003; D’Angelo and De Zeeuw, 2009; Diwakar et al., 2009, 2011) and fine-tune information transfer (Arleo et al., 2010). One potential implication of GRL resonance is that, by occurring on the same band of Purkinje cell and inferior olive oscillations (Llinas and Yarom, 1986; Welsh et al., 1995; Lang et al., 2006; Abrams et al., 2012), could help maintaining a high level of coherence in the activity of the whole olivo-cerebellar system. On a larger scale, the cerebellum could be optimally designed to detect information carried by cerebro-cortical theta cycles implementing a well-tuned transmitter – receiver system (D’Angelo et al., 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: The neuronal circuits of the brain are thought to use resonance and oscillations to improve communication over specific frequency bands (Llinas, 1988; Buzsaki, 2006). However, the properties and mechanism of these phenomena in brain circuits remain largely unknown. Here we show that, at the cerebellum input stage, the granular layer (GRL) generates its maximum response at 5-7 Hz both in vivo following tactile sensory stimulation of the whisker pad and in acute slices following mossy fiber bundle stimulation. The spatial analysis of GRL activity performed using voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging revealed 5-7 Hz resonance covering large GRL areas. In single granule cells, resonance appeared as a reorganization of output spike bursts on the millisecond time-scale, such that the first spike occurred earlier and with higher temporal precision and the probability of spike generation increased. Resonance was independent from circuit inhibition, as it persisted with little variation in the presence of the GABAA receptor blocker, gabazine. However, circuit inhibition reduced the resonance area more markedly at 7 Hz. Simulations with detailed computational models suggested that resonance depended on intrinsic granule cells ionic mechanisms: specifically, K slow (M-like) and KA currents acted as resonators and the persistent Na current and NMDA current acted as amplifiers. This form of resonance may play an important role for enhancing coherent spike emission from the GRL when theta-frequency bursts are transmitted by the cerebral cortex and peripheral sensory structures during sensory-motor processing, cognition, and learning.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 04/2013; 7:64. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2013.00064 · 3.60 Impact Factor