How many inputs are needed to excite/saturate a neuron

Douglas Fitts dfitts at carson.u.washington.edu
Fri Feb 26 01:00:27 EST 1993


In article <TAL.93Feb25224725 at copley.bu.edu> tal at copley.bu.edu (Doron Tal) writes:
>
>On the one hand, anatomical evidence suggests that a neuron has, on
>average, on the order of THOUSANDS of neurons impinging on it.  On the
>other hand, physiological evidence shows that only a few epsps are
>needed to generate an action potential - which would imply that ONE
>cell is sufficient for exciting the postsynaptic neuron.
>
>Can anyone explain this disparity between anatomy and physiology?
>
>Some hypotheses:
>
>1. most of the thousands of synapses on a neuron are inactive
>(unlikely)
>2. a neuron that has thousands of inputs has an extremely large and
>finely-tuned range
>
>If we knew what the range of a neuron is, on average, then we'd be
>able to tell between the two above hypotheses.
>
>-Doron
3. Lots of the synapses are inhibitory.

-

Doug Fitts
dfitts at u.washington.edu



More information about the Neur-sci mailing list