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Biosystems. 2015 Oct;136:113-9. doi: 10.1016/j.biosystems.2015.06.010. Epub 2015 Jul 4.

Altered intensity coding in the salicylate-overdose animal model of tinnitus.

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Department of Physiology, Medical College, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan.
Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic.
Department of Biological Science and Technology, National Chiao Tung University, Hsinchu, Taiwan.
Institute of Physiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Prague, Czech Republic.


Tinnitus is one of the leading disorders of hearing with no effective cure as its pathophysiological mechanisms remain unclear. While the sensitivity to sound is well-known to be affected, exactly how intensity coding per se is altered remains unclear. To address this issue, we used a salicylate-overdose animal model of tinnitus to measure auditory cortical evoked potentials at various stimulus levels, and analyzed on single-trial basis the response strength and its variance for the computation of the lower bound of Fisher information. Based on Fisher information profiles, we compared the precision or efficiency of intensity coding before and after salicylate-treatment. We found that after salicylate treatment, intensity coding was unexpectedly improved, rather than impaired. Also, the improvement varied in a sound-dependent way. The observed changes are likely due to some central compensatory mechanisms that are activated during tinnitus to bring out the full capacity of intensity coding which is expressed only in part under normal conditions.


Auditory evoked potential; Electrocorticogram; Fisher information; Rat; Salicylate-overdose; Tinnitus

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