Dynamic synapses in the cortex

Zador, A. M., Dobrunz, L. E. (1997) Dynamic synapses in the cortex. Neuron, 19 (1). pp. 1-4.

URL: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9247258
DOI: 10.1016/S0896-6273(00)80341-4


Synapses are the specialized connections that allow signals to propagate from one nerve cell to the next. Their privileged position gives them a unique role in neural computation. Synapses are not merely passive relays that faithfully transmit the signal they receive. They are, rather, gatekeepers that actively govern and modulate the flow of information in neuronal circuits. It is the precise pattern of synaptic connectivity and the variable strengths of the individual connections that endow a neural circuit with the capacity to perform specific computations. Synapses are dynamic: they exhibit use-dependent changes in efficacy on timescales ranging from milliseconds to days, weeks, or longer. Many varieties of short-term synaptic plasticity have been described (reviewed by9, 17 and 6), but synapses are often studied under conditions specifically designed to minimize the effect of such plasticity. Thus, we know comparatively little about the functional consequences of short-term plasticity at central synapses. Recent papers by two groups (1, 16, 11 and 15) are beginning to address this question by investigating the synaptic responses to more behaviorally relevant neural stimuli. Their results may have important consequences for our understanding of neural coding in the central nervous system.

Item Type: Paper
Subjects: organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > tissues types and functions > cerebral cortex
organs, tissues, organelles, cell types and functions > cell types and functions > cell functions > synaptic plasticity
CSHL Authors:
Communities: CSHL labs > Zador lab
Depositing User: Matt Covey
Date: 1997
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2014 16:13
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2014 16:13
Related URLs:
URI: https://repository.cshl.edu/id/eprint/30945

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