On the Relation between Bursts and Dynamic Synapse Properties: A Modulation-Based Ansatz

Chair for Parallel VLSI Systems and Neural Circuits, Dresden University of Technology, 01062 Dresden, Germany.
Computational Intelligence and Neuroscience (Impact Factor: 0.6). 02/2009; 2009:658474. DOI: 10.1155/2009/658474
Source: PubMed


When entering a synapse, presynaptic pulse trains are filtered according to the recent pulse history at the synapse and also with respect to their own pulse time course. Various behavioral models have tried to reproduce these complex filtering properties. In particular, the quantal model of neurotransmitter release has been shown to be highly
selective for particular presynaptic pulse patterns. However, since the original, pulse-iterative quantal model does not lend itself to mathematical analysis, investigations have only been carried out via simulations. In contrast, we derive a comprehensive explicit expression for the quantal model. We show the correlation between the parameters of this explicit
expression and the preferred spike train pattern of the synapse. In particular, our analysis of the transmission of modulated pulse trains across a dynamic synapse links the original parameters of the quantal model to the transmission efficacy of two major spiking regimes, that is, bursting and constant-rate ones.

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    ABSTRACT: Classically, action-potential-based learning paradigms such as the Bienenstock-Cooper-Munroe (BCM) rule for pulse rates or spike timing-dependent plasticity for pulse pairings have been experimentally demonstrated to evoke long-lasting synaptic weight changes (i.e., plasticity). However, several recent experiments have shown that plasticity also depends on the local dynamics at the synapse, such as membrane voltage, Calcium time course and level, or dendritic spikes. In this paper, we introduce a formulation of the BCM rule which is based on the instantaneous postsynaptic membrane potential as well as the transmission profile of the presynaptic spike. While this rule incorporates only simple local voltage- and current dynamics and is thus neither directly rate nor timing based, it can replicate a range of experiments, such as various rate and spike pairing protocols, combinations of the two, as well as voltage-dependent plasticity. A detailed comparison of current plasticity models with respect to this range of experiments also demonstrates the efficacy of the new plasticity rule. All experiments can be replicated with a limited set of parameters, avoiding the overfitting problem of more involved plasticity rules.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2010 · Frontiers in Synaptic Neuroscience