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Analysis of synaptic connectivity and function in the cerebellum in vivo

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Christian Scheppach.

An understanding of brain function requires knowledge of the numbers and types of constituent neurons, the information processing carried out by each neuron and the connectivity pattern or synaptic weight distribution by which the neurons are interconnected. With this information at hand it is possible to reconstruct the function and computational properties of the different parts of the neuronal circuitry as well as the potential functional impact of plasticity at specific synapses.

For the cerebellar subsystem involved in arm-hand movement control (the C3 zone and the anterior interposed nucleus), much of this type of information has gradually become available. Nearly 50 years of studies using classical neuroanatomical and electrophysiological techniques has laid an important foundation for understanding and systematizing the overall connectivity of this system. With the in vivo whole cell patch clamp recording technique, we have been able to combine this background knowledge with an intracellular analysis of synaptic weight distribution and input-output conversions of the neurons in response to natural patterns of synaptic input. In the talk, I will present and discuss our ambition to reach a circuitry-level understanding of this brain subsystem.

This talk is part of the Foster Talks series.

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