Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Mathematical model of a simple circuit in a chicken brain raises fundamental questions

In work published in the online edition of Physical Review E on November 25th, biophysicists and theoretical physicists at Washington University in St. Louis describe an elegant compromise. They devised a simple mathematical model that accurately represents a three-cell microcircuit in a chicken's brain. They then found, to their surprise, that they could collapse their model mathematically to one equation with two parameters, which are derived from but not the same as the strength of the connections between neurons (the synaptic strength) that neural models usually emphasize.
Mathematical model of a simple circuit in a chicken brain raises fundamental questions
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