The model provides a tool in the quest to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms behind this incurable degenerative disorder.
Researchers from IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis) reduced the complex biology of the basal ganglia, a part of the brain involved in voluntary motor control, down to a key system of two interconnected cells. The cells were linked together in an inhibitory relationship, meaning a signal from one cell would suppress the second cell’s firing. The team ran simulations of the two-cell system while tinkering with the parameters of the model.
For example, since levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine decrease in Parkinson’s patients, increasing the inhibitory coupling strength between cells, the team tested how the strength of the inhibitory connection affected the cells’ synchronization.
In a paper in the AIP’s journal Chaos, the researchers identified specific ranges of coupling strength most likely to lead to bursts of intermittently synchronized firings.
The team also produced squiggly-lined graphs showing how the complex interactions between slow-changing variables such as calcium ion concentration can cause intermittent synchronization of the two cells. Although the model is based on a neural network known to be affected by Parkinson’s disease, the authors believe that their mathematical model might also yield insights into the operation of more generic neural systems.
Article: “Intermittent synchronization in a network of bursting neurons” is accepted for publication in Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science.
Authors: Choongseok Park (1) and Leonid L. Rubchinsky (1,2).(1) Department of Mathematical Sciences and Center for Mathematical Biosciences, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis
(2) Stark Neurosciences Research Institute, Indiana University School of Medicine
Catherine Meyers | EurekAlert!
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Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
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Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
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