Self-organization of Hebbian Synapses in Hippocampal Neurons

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 3 (NIPS 1990)

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Thomas Brown, Zachary Mainen, Anthony Zador, Brenda Claiborne


We are exploring the significance of biological complexity for neuronal computation. Here we demonstrate that Hebbian synapses in realistical(cid:173) ly-modeled hippocampal pyramidal cells may give rise to two novel forms of self -organization in response to structured synaptic input. First, on the basis of the electrotonic relationships between synaptic contacts, a cell may become tuned to a small subset of its input space. Second, the same mechanisms may produce clusters of potentiated synapses across the space of the dendrites. The latter type of self-organization may be functionally significant in the presence of nonlinear dendritic conduc(cid:173) tances.