[Comp-neuro] Review announcement

Christiane Linster cl243 at cornell.edu
Fri Jul 18 18:19:32 CEST 2008


I will add my two cents to Jim's. Theoretical work showing that noise 
can be useful is not new, but rather old - my knowledge of it goes back 
at least 30 years when simulated annealing etc was much talked about. 
Noise helping synchronization is also not a novel idea.

jim bower wrote:
> Haven't done this in a long time. But who says neurons are noisy?  
> 
> From the point of view of information theory, why isn't the apperance of noise expected in a highly optimized coding scheme?  And why isn't synchrony to be avoided as redundency. Engineers avoid it, why shouldn't evolution. 
> 
> Just curious. 
> 
> Jim bower
> Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Nathan Urban <nurban at cmu.edu>
> 
> Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2008 08:41:22 
> To: <comp-neuro at neuroinf.org>
> Subject: [Comp-neuro] Review announcement
> 
> 
> Review announcement
> 
> This review describes a constructive role for noise in synchronizing 
> populations of neurons and should be of interest to computaional 
> neurosciuentists.
> 
> 
> Trends Neurosci. 2008 Jul 4. [Epub ahead of print]
>     Reliability, synchrony and noise.
>     Ermentrout GB, Galán RF, Urban NN.
> 
> The brain is noisy. Neurons receive tens of thousands of highly 
> fluctuating inputs and generate spike trains that appear highly 
> irregular. Much of this activity is spontaneous - uncoupled to overt 
> stimuli or motor outputs - leading to questions about the functional 
> impact of this noise. Although noise is most often thought of as 
> disrupting patterned activity and interfering with the encoding of 
> stimuli, recent theoretical and experimental work has shown that noise 
> can play a constructive role - leading to increased reliability or 
> regularity of neuronal firing in single neurons and across populations. 
> These results raise fundamental questions about how noise can influence 
> neural function and computation.
> 
>     PMID: 18603311 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
> 
> http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T0V-4SXC918-1&_user=525223&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000026389&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=525223&md5=22a86291fe13cd59541d841f692f24a2
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-- 
*********************************
Christiane Linster
Associate Professor
Neurobiology and Behavior
Cornell University
Mudd Hall W245 607 2544331
Ithaca, NY 14853
cl243 at cornell.edu
www.cpl.cornell.edu




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