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Pattern-forming roles of heterogeneous dendritic geometry and synaptic input in electrical activity of neocortical pyramidal neurons

English title Pattern-forming roles of heterogeneous dendritic geometry and synaptic input in electrical activity of neocortical pyramidal neurons
Applicant Larkum Matthew
Number 110892
Funding scheme SCOPES
Research institution Institut für Physiologie Medizinische Fakultät Universität Bern
Institution of higher education University of Berne - BE
Main discipline Neurophysiology and Brain Research
Start/End 01.10.2005 - 31.12.2008
Approved amount 72'000.00
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All Disciplines (3)

Neurophysiology and Brain Research
Cellular Biology, Cytology

Keywords (6)

neuron doctrine; arborization asymmetry; ion channles; multielectrode recording; reconstruction; simulation

Lay Summary (English)

Lay summary
The general objective is to disclose the biophysical mechanisms determining spatial-temporal patterns of electrical activity in individual pyramidal neurons of neocortex in the brain.Combined experimental and theoretical methods will be used to ascertain the biophysical mechanisms underlying morphology-related partitioning of neocortical pyramidal neuron into electrically coupled domains. The spatial-temporal signal processing in complex asymmetrical dendritic arborizations and the formation of patterns of neuronal electrical and biochemical processes will be determined. The study will particularly focus on the impact of heterogeneous geometry (asymmetry) and active membrane properties of the dendritic arborization, including its apical, oblique and basal sub-trees.The result will be gaining new insight into the structural/functional organization of pyramidal neurons by further developing and extending the notion of multiple zones of spike initiation. Thus the classical neuron doctrine will be substantially upgraded by demonstrating that the output patterns known mainly from single-site recordings, predominantly somatic, are fragments of complex spatial-temporal activity with a certain geometry-induced cooperativity between different parts of a cell.In addition to scientific results and in line with the SCOPES objectives, undertaking this project will help to overcome difficulties of the transition period faced by the Ukrainian partner by enhancing professional qualifications and strengthening competitiveness of scientists, including young researchers and university teachers. It will promote integration of Ukrainian partners into international system of research and education by providing them, particularly young researchers/teachers with the possibility to join Europe- and world-recognized research and get new professional skills in modern electrophysiology and imaging techniques, experimental neuroscience in a leading Swiss research and education center. On the other hand, professional skills of the Ukrainian partners in theoretical neuroscience and in modeling approach to studies of spatial-temporal patterns of electrical and biochemical processes in morphologically complex neurons will be shared with the Swiss partners.This will help in enhancement of professional qualification of both partner teams. Experience obtained by Ukrainian partners will be used during elaboration of new teaching curricula and contents of teaching courses as a part of educational reform taking place in Ukraine and aimed at joining “the Bologna process” of the creation of a European space for higher education.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

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