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Cell types, circuits, computation

, : Cell types, circuits, computation. Current Opinion in Neurobiology 21(5): 664-671

How does the connectivity of a neuronal circuit, together with the individual properties of the cell types that take part in it, result in a given computation? We examine this question in the context of retinal circuits. We suggest that the retina can be viewed as a parallel assemblage of many small computational devices, highly stereotypical and task-specific circuits afferent to a given ganglion cell type, and we discuss some rules that govern computation in these devices. Multi-device processing in retina poses conceptual problems when it is contrasted with cortical processing. We lay out open questions both on processing in. Highlights: The retina can be viewed as a parallelized array of functionally distinct computational devices. Each device, a neuronal circuit, is assembled from a small subset of cell types. Key elements of computation are the dynamics of inhibition and the nonlinearities. An open question: How do cortical circuits process the multiple retinal outputs?


PMID: 21641794

DOI: 10.1016/j.conb.2011.05.007

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