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By Gordon M. Shepherd

Yale Univ., New Haven, CT. accommodates the result of the mouse and human genome venture for the 1st time. New advances coated comprise 2-photon confocal laser microscopy of dendrites and dentritic spines, biochemical analyses, and twin patch and multielectrode recordings. Softcover, hardcover additionally on hand.

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Chapter 1. Introduction to Synaptic Circuits 27 tivity spreads effectively to the soma depends on modulatory gating by both excitatory and inhibitory inputs along the apical shaft (D). There is a further stage of summation between the activities spreading to the soma from the apical (D) and basal (E) dendrites. Finally, there are direct inputs to the soma, many of them inhibitory, which provide for global integration and modulation of the neuronal output, in contrast to the local activities taking place within each dendritic branch and field.

In addition, there is feedforward excitation (AFF3) through stellate cells (S), as described earlier (Fig. 11). The excited P cells have recurrent axon collaterals (rac) that recurrently and laterally excite the P cells (rac 1) as well as inhibitory cells (i 2) that provide for feedback and lateral inhibition. The balance of excitation and inhibition controls the output of the P cells (EFF 1,2). Note how the properties of the canonical pyramidal neuron depicted in Fig. 9 are incorporated into the basic circuit that contains it.

The Concept of the Canonical Neuron. From these experiments on cortical pyramidal neurons and mitral cells, it is clear that the central neurons are much more complex integrative units than is usually realized. A key question that follows is: How much of this complexity is necessary to build realistic neuronal and network models in order to simulate brain functions? The pyramidal neuron of the cerebral cortex is a prime example of this problem. Clearly, an understanding of the functional organization of this type of neuron is critical for an understanding of cognitive functions.

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