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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2014 Feb;24(1):68-75. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2013.08.016. Epub 2013 Sep 17.

Neural maps for target range in the auditory cortex of echolocating bats.

Author information

1
Institute for Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Max-von-Laue-Str. 13, 60439 Frankfurt, Germany. Electronic address: koessl@bio.uni-frankfurt.de.
2
Institute for Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Max-von-Laue-Str. 13, 60439 Frankfurt, Germany.
3
Department of Animal and Human Biology, Faculty of Biology, Havana University, calle 25 No. 455 entre J e I, Vedado, CP 10400, Ciudad de La Habana, Cuba.
4
Institute for Biochemistry and Biology, University of Potsdam, Karl Liebknecht Str. 26, 14476 Golm, Germany.

Abstract

Computational brain maps as opposed to maps of receptor surfaces strongly reflect functional neuronal design principles. In echolocating bats, computational maps are established that topographically represent the distance of objects. These target range maps are derived from the temporal delay between emitted call and returning echo and constitute a regular representation of time (chronotopy). Basic features of these maps are innate, and in different bat species the map size and precision varies. An inherent advantage of target range maps is the implementation of mechanisms for lateral inhibition and excitatory feedback. Both can help to focus target ranging depending on the actual echolocation situation. However, these maps are not absolutely necessary for bat echolocation since there are bat species without cortical target-distance maps, which use alternative ensemble computation mechanisms.

PMID:
24492081
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2013.08.016
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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