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J Comp Physiol A. 1999 Feb;184(2):185-94.

Bicuculline application affects discharge pattern and pulse-duration tuning characteristics of bat inferior collicular neurons.

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Division of Biological Sciences, University of Missouri-Columbia 65211, USA.


This study examines the contribution of GABAergic inhibition to the discharge pattern and pulse duration tuning characteristics of 101 bat inferior collicular neurons by means of bicuculline application to their recording sites. When stimulated with single pulses 56 (55%) neurons discharged 1 or 2 impulses (phasic responders), 42 (42%) discharged 3-10 impulses (phasic bursters) and 3 (3%) discharged impulses throughout the stimulus duration (tonic responders). Bicuculline application increased the number of impulses and changed the discharge patterns of 66 neurons. Using 50% difference between maximal and minimal responses as a criterion, the duration tuning characteristics of these neurons can be described as band-pass (20, 20%), long-pass (17, 17%), short-pass (33, 32%), and all-pass (31, 31%). Each band-pass neuron discharged maximally to a specific duration (the best duration) which was at least 50% larger than the neuron's responses to a long-duration pulse and a short-duration pulse. In contrast, each long- or short-pass neuron discharged maximally to a range of long or short duration pulses. Bicuculline application changed the duration tuning characteristics of 65 neurons. Possible mechanisms underlying duration tuning characteristics and the behavioral relevance to bat echolocation are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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