1. Neuroscience
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Stimulus background influences phase invariant coding by correlated neural activity

  1. Michael G Metzen
  2. Maurice J Chacron  Is a corresponding author
  1. McGill University, Canada
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  • Cited 11
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Cite this article as: eLife 2017;6:e24482 doi: 10.7554/eLife.24482

Abstract

We recently reported that correlations between the activities of peripheral afferents mediate a phase invariant representation of natural communication stimuli that is refined across successive processing stages thereby leading to perception and behavior in the weakly electric fish Apteronotus leptorhynchus (Metzen et al., 2016). Here, we explore how phase invariant coding and perception of natural communication stimuli are affected by changes in the sinusoidal background over which they occur. We found that increasing background frequency led to phase locking, which decreased both detectability and phase invariant coding. Correlated afferent activity was a much better predictor of behavior as assessed from both invariance and detectability than single neuron activity. Thus, our results not only provide further evidence that correlated activity likely determines perception of natural communication signals, but also provide a novel explanation as to why these preferentially occur on top of low frequency as well as low intensity sinusoidal backgrounds.

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Author details

  1. Michael G Metzen

    Department of Physiology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-2365-4192
  2. Maurice J Chacron

    Department of Physiology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
    For correspondence
    maurice.chacron@mcgill.ca
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-3032-452X

Funding

Canadian Institutes of Health Research (Operating grant)

  • Maurice J Chacron

Canada Research Chairs

  • Maurice J Chacron

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Animal experimentation: All experimental procedures were approved by McGill University's animal care committee under protocol number 5285.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Ronald L Calabrese, Emory University, United States

Publication history

  1. Received: December 22, 2016
  2. Accepted: March 17, 2017
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: March 18, 2017 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: April 12, 2017 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2017, Metzen & Chacron

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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