Variability and information content in auditory cortex spike trains during an interval-discrimination task.

Abstract:

:Processing of temporal information is key in auditory processing. In this study, we recorded single-unit activity from rat auditory cortex while they performed an interval-discrimination task. The animals had to decide whether two auditory stimuli were separated by either 150 or 300 ms and nose-poke to the left or to the right accordingly. The spike firing of single neurons in the auditory cortex was then compared in engaged vs. idle brain states. We found that spike firing variability measured with the Fano factor was markedly reduced, not only during stimulation, but also in between stimuli in engaged trials. We next explored if this decrease in variability was associated with an increased information encoding. Our information theory analysis revealed increased information content in auditory responses during engagement compared with idle states, in particular in the responses to task-relevant stimuli. Altogether, we demonstrate that task-engagement significantly modulates coding properties of auditory cortical neurons during an interval-discrimination task.

journal_name

J Neurophysiol

authors

Abolafia JM,Martinez-Garcia M,Deco G,Sanchez-Vives MV

doi

10.1152/jn.00381.2013

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2013-11-01 00:00:00

pages

2163-74

issue

9

eissn

0022-3077

issn

1522-1598

pii

jn.00381.2013

journal_volume

110

pub_type

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