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J Acoust Soc Am. 1994 Sep;96(3):1501-14.

A computational model with ionic conductances for the fusiform cell of the dorsal cochlear nucleus.

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Department of Surgery, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington 06030-1110.


A computational model of a fusiform cell of the dorsal cochlear nucleus was developed. The results of model simulations are compared with the results of in vitro experimental observations obtained by other investigators. The structure of the present model is similar to that of Hodgkin-Huxley [J. Physiol. 117, 500-544 (1952)]. The model incorporates five nonlinear voltage-dependent conductances (three potassium and two sodium types) and their associated equilibrium-potential batteries, a leakage conductance, the membrane capacitance, and a current source. Model responses were obtained under both current- and voltage-clamp conditions. When a hyper- and depolarizing current sequence was applied [Manis, J. Neurosci. 10, 2338-2351 (1990)], the cell model was able to reproduce builduplike and pauserlike discharge patterns closely resembling Manis' observations. A transient "A"-type potassium conductance in the model played a major role in generating this phenomenon. The model predicts that blocking the "A" conductance should convert a builduplike or pauserlike pattern into a sustained regular pattern. A persistent sodium conductance in the model played the main role in reproducing: Spontaneous regular discharge; a discharge after a long latency under a long small (+0.025 nA) current; and nonlinear voltage-current characteristics with positive currents. Usefulness of the model can be seen as follows: (1) Several sets of experimental observations can be integrated into a common framework; (2) possible roles of different ionic conductances postulated to be present in the cell can be inferred by observing the model behavior with the conductances intact or blocked; and (3) time courses of ionic currents and conductance values obtained from the model under current- and voltage-clamp conditions can serve as predictions to be tested in future experimental studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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