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Journal Article

Response Transformation and Receptive−Field Synthesis in the Lemniscal Trigeminothalamic Circuit

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http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons92344

Bruno,  Randy M.
Department of Cell Physiology, Max Planck Institute for Medical Research, Max Planck Society;
Whisker Representation, Max Planck Institute for Medical Research, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Minnery, B. S., Bruno, R. M., & Simons, D. J. (2003). Response Transformation and Receptive−Field Synthesis in the Lemniscal Trigeminothalamic Circuit. Journal of Neurophysiology, 90(3), 1556-1570. doi:10.1152/jn.00111.2003.


Abstract
To understand how the lemniscal trigeminothalamic circuit (PrV−VPM) of the rodent whisker−to−barrel pathway transforms afferent signals, we applied ramp−and−hold deflections to individual whiskers of lightly narcotized rats while recording the extracellular responses of neurons in either the ventroposterior medial (VPM) thalamic nucleus or in brain stem nucleus principalis (PrV). In PrV, only those neurons antidromically determined to project to VPM were selected for recording. We found that VPM neurons exhibited smaller response magnitudes and greater spontaneous firing rates than those of their PrV inputs, but that both populations were similarly well tuned for stimulus direction. In addition, fewer VPM (74%) than PrV neurons (93%) responded with sustained, or tonic, discharges during the plateau phase of the stimulus. Neurons in both populations responded most robustly to deflections of a single