Pacemaker Neurons: Effects of Regularly Spaced Synaptic Input

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Science  03 Jul 1964:
Vol. 145, Issue 3627, pp. 61-63
DOI: 10.1126/science.145.3627.61


The consequences of inhibitory or excitatory synaptic input between pacemaker neurons were predicted mathematically and through digital-computer simulations, and the predicted behavior was found to occur in abdominal ganglia of Aplysia and in stretch receptors of Procambarus. Discharge patterns under conditions that do not involve interneuronal feedback are characteristic and self-stabilizing. Paradoxically, increased arrival rates of inhibitory input can increase firing rates, and increased excitatory input rates can decrease firing rates.