Intracortical multiplication of thalamocortical signals in mouse auditory cortex

Abstract

Cortical processing of sensory information begins with the transformation of thalamically relayed signals. We optogenetically silenced intracortical circuits to isolate thalamic inputs to layer 4 neurons and found that intracortical excitation linearly amplified thalamocortical responses underlying frequency and direction selectivity, with spectral range and tuning preserved, and prolonged the response duration. This signal pre-amplification and prolongation enhanced the salience of thalamocortically relayed information and ensured its robust, faithful and more persistent representation.

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Figure 1: Optogenetic silencing of intracortical circuits in auditory cortex.
Figure 2: Intracortical input linearly amplifies frequency-tuned thalamocortical input.
Figure 3: Intracortical input preserves direction tuning of thalamocortical input.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by grants from the US National Institutes of Health (DC008983 to L.I.Z., EY019049 to H.W.T.) and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation (L.I.Z.).

Author information

L.I.Z. conceived and supervised the study. L.L., Y.L. and M.Z. performed the experiments. L.L., H.W.T. and L.I.Z. performed data analysis. H.W.T. and L.I.Z. wrote the paper.

Correspondence to Li I Zhang.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Supplementary Figures 1–5 and Supplementary Table 1 (PDF 224 kb)

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Li, L., Li, Y., Zhou, M. et al. Intracortical multiplication of thalamocortical signals in mouse auditory cortex. Nat Neurosci 16, 1179–1181 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/nn.3493

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