Document Detail

Rate-level functions of neurons in the inferior colliculus of cats measured with the use of free-field sound stimuli.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2016647     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
1. The responses as a function of stimulus level of 125 single units in the inferior colliculus of anesthetized cats were studied with the use of free-field acoustic stimuli. 2. The characteristic frequency (CF; frequency at which threshold was lowest) of each unit was determined, and stimuli were presented from one of three speaker positions: 45 degrees contralateral to the midline, midline, and 45 degrees ipsilateral to the midline. 3. For each unit a variety of stimulus levels was presented at CF, and the total spike count was summed for 20 stimuli at each level. If time permitted, a similar series of levels of noise was presented. 4. Four classes of rate-level (RL) functions were observed. Monotonic increases in firing rate were observed in 10% of units stimulated with CF stimuli and 57% of units studied with noise. Nonmonotonic RL functions, for which firing first increased and then declined to less than 50% of the peak level, were observed in 61% of units responding to CF tones and in 10% responding to noise. Plateau functions, with shapes lying between these, accounted for 19% of CF responses and the remaining units excited by noise. Some very complex shapes that could not be categorized into the above groups were seen in the remaining 10% of the units responding to CF stimuli. 5. The RL functions of units studied with both noise and CF tones could belong to different classes; commonly, nonmonotonic RL functions to tones were associated with monotonic RL functions to noise. The noise thresholds averaged 10 dB, some 10-20 dB less sensitive than those to CF stimuli. 6. For the vast majority of both noise and tone responses, stimuli from the contralateral location were more effective than those from the other two positions in terms of a lower threshold, higher peak discharge rate, and, for nonmonotonic units, a lower sound level at which the function became nonmonotonic (turnover point). 7. The turnover points of nonmonotonic functions at any given CF could be spread broadly but, overall, tended to be concentrated between -6 and 44 dB. 8. The dynamic ranges (range of levels over which firing rate increased) were larger for monotonic and plateau functions than for nonmonotonic functions, which had dynamic ranges less than 45 dB. The median dynamic range for units stimulated with CF tones was 20 dB and for noise stimuli, 40 dB.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)
L Aitkin
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of neurophysiology     Volume:  65     ISSN:  0022-3077     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Neurophysiol.     Publication Date:  1991 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1991-05-17     Completed Date:  1991-05-17     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0375404     Medline TA:  J Neurophysiol     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  383-92     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Physiology, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.
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MeSH Terms
Acoustic Stimulation*
Action Potentials / physiology*
Inferior Colliculi / cytology,  physiology*
Neurons / physiology*

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