1. Neuroscience
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Olfaction: Minority odors get equal say

  1. Priyanka Gupta
  2. Upinder S Bhalla  Is a corresponding author
  1. National Centre for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, India
  2. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, United States
Cite this article as: eLife 2016;5:e18037 doi: 10.7554/eLife.18037
1 figure


The olfactory response in M71 transgenic mice. 

M71 transgenic mice are genetically modified to over-express the M71 receptor (shown in purple) in olfactory receptor neurons (top). However, mice can still detect other ‘minority’ odors because the neurons in the olfactory bulb (which receive signals from the olfactory receptor neurons) become less sensitive to signals from the dominant M71 receptors, and more sensitive to signals from other receptors (shown here in yellow, green, black and blue). The heights of the sliders in the ovals represent the level of gain in that circuit: high gain leads to high sensitivity. This ultimately enables each odor to produce an equal-sized output from the olfactory bulb (represented by the width of the arrows at the bottom of the figure).

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