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Synaptic depression: a key player in the cortical balancing act


What regulates the balance between cortical excitation and inhibition? Galaretta and Hestrin show that prolonged firing induces a much stronger depression at excitatory synapses than at inhibitory ones, making the network more stable and less prone to runaway excitation.

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Figure 1: Differential synaptic depression dynamically adjusts the balance between cortical excitation and inhibition to promote stability.


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Nelson, S., Turrigiano, G. Synaptic depression: a key player in the cortical balancing act. Nat Neurosci 1, 539–541 (1998).

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