Novel computational neuroscience model offers new areas for experimentation
Our ability to understand speech or decide which fruit in the store is freshest depends on the brains dexterity in integrating information over time. The prefrontal cortex, where working memory resides, plays a critical role in helping us make these countless everyday decisions. A novel computational study by Brandeis researchers in this weeks issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences proposes for the first time a neuronal model for the mechanisms underlying a time-related task in this complex decision-making process.
Essentially, the study shows that neurons in the prefrontal cortex fire with greater or lesser intensity to finely control, or inhibit behavior, based on a neuronal feedback signal, or circuit mechanism. Such integral feedback control is probably at work in many regulatory areas of the body, such as temperature control and feelings of satiety to prevent overeating, but this is the first time this mechanism has been suggested as a role of neuronal firing.
Laura Gardner | EurekAlert!
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Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.
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