- Orientation selectivity and noise correlation in awake monkey area V1 are modulated by the gamma cycle
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- Volume | Issue number
- 109 | 11
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS)
Gamma-band synchronization adjusts the timing of excitatory and inhibitory inputs to a neuron. Neurons in the visual cortex are selective for stimulus orientation because of dynamic interactions between excitatory and inhibitory inputs. We hypothesized that these interactions and hence also orientation selectivity vary during the gamma cycle. We determined for each spike its phase relative to the gamma cycle. As a function of gamma phase, we then determined spike rates and their orientation selectivity. Orientation selectivity was modulated by gamma phase. The firing rate of spiking activity that occurred close to a neuron's mean gamma phase of firing was most orientation selective. This stimulus-selective signal could best be conveyed to postsynaptic neurons if it were not corrupted by noise correlations. Noise correlations between firing rates were modulated by gamma phase such that they were not statistically detectable for the spiking activity occurring close to a neuron's mean gamma phase of firing. Thus, gamma-band synchronization produces spiking activity that carries maximal stimulus selectivity and minimal noise correlation in its firing rate, and at the same time synchronizes this spiking activity for maximal impact on postsynaptic targets.
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