Synaptic Potentiation Facilitates Memory-like Attractor Dynamics in Cultured In Vitro Hippocampal Networks

Mark Niedringhaus, Xin Chen, Katherine Conant, Rhonda Dzakpasu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Collective rhythmic dynamics from neurons is vital for cognitive functions such as memory formation but how neurons self-organize to produce such activity is not well understood. Attractor-based computational models have been successfully implemented as a theoretical framework for memory storage in networks of neurons. Additionally, activity-dependent modification of synaptic transmission is thought to be the physiological basis of learning and memory. The goal of this study is to demonstrate that using a pharmacological treatment that has been shown to increase synaptic strength within in vitro networks of hippocampal neurons follows the dynamical postulates theorized by attractor models. We use a grid of extracellular electrodes to study changes in network activity after this perturbation and show that there is a persistent increase in overall spiking and bursting activity after treatment. This increase in activity appears to recruit more "errant" spikes into bursts. Phase plots indicate a conserved activity pattern suggesting that a synaptic potentiation perturbation to the attractor leaves it unchanged. Lastly, we construct a computational model to demonstrate that these synaptic perturbations can account for the dynamical changes seen within the network.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere57144
JournalPLoS One
Volume8
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 20 2013
Externally publishedYes

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Neurons
neurons
Data storage equipment
synaptic transmission
cognition
Synaptic Transmission
electrodes
Cognition
Electrodes
inflorescences
learning
Learning
Pharmacology
In Vitro Techniques
leaves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Synaptic Potentiation Facilitates Memory-like Attractor Dynamics in Cultured In Vitro Hippocampal Networks. / Niedringhaus, Mark; Chen, Xin; Conant, Katherine; Dzakpasu, Rhonda.

In: PLoS One, Vol. 8, No. 3, e57144, 20.03.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Niedringhaus, Mark ; Chen, Xin ; Conant, Katherine ; Dzakpasu, Rhonda. / Synaptic Potentiation Facilitates Memory-like Attractor Dynamics in Cultured In Vitro Hippocampal Networks. In: PLoS One. 2013 ; Vol. 8, No. 3.
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