MiS Preprint Repository

We have decided to discontinue the publication of preprints on our preprint server as of 1 March 2024. The publication culture within mathematics has changed so much due to the rise of repositories such as ArXiV ( that we are encouraging all institute members to make their preprints available there. An institute's repository in its previous form is, therefore, unnecessary. The preprints published to date will remain available here, but we will not add any new preprints here.

MiS Preprint

Computation of spiking activity for a stochastic spatial neuron model: effects of spatial distribution of input on bimodality and CV of the ISI distribution

Henry Tuckwell


We obtain computational results for a new extended spatial neuron model in which the neuronal electrical depolarization from resting level satisfies a cable partial differential equation and the synaptic input current is also a function of space and time, obeying a first order linear partial differential equation driven by a two-parameter random process. The model is first described explicitly with the inclusion of all biophysical parameters. Simplified equations are obtained with dimensionless space and time variables.

A standard parameter set is described, based mainly on values appropriate for cortical pyramidal cells. When the noise is small and the mean voltage crosses threshold, a formula is derived for the expected time to spike. A simulation algorithm, involving one-dimensional random processes is given and used to obtain moments and distributions of the interspike interval (ISI). The parameters used are those for a near balanced state and there is great sensitivity of the firing rate around the balance point. This sensitivity may be related to genetically induced pathological brain properties (Rett's syndrome). The simulation procedure is employed to find the ISI distribution for some simple patterns of synaptic input with various relative strengths for excitation and inhibition. With excitation only, the ISI distribution is unimodal of exponential type and with a large coefficient of variation. As inhibition near the soma grows, two striking effects emerge.

The ISI distribution shifts first to bimodal and then to unimodal with an approximately Gaussian shape with a concentration at large intervals. At the same time the coefficient of variation of the ISI drops dramatically to less than 1/5 of its value without inhibition.

Stochastic neuron, Spatial Model, Balanced input

Related publications

2007 Repository Open Access
Henry C. Tuckwell

Computation of spiking activity for a stochastic spatial neuron model : effects of spatial distribution of input on bimodality and CV of the ISI distribution

In: Mathematical biosciences, 207 (2007) 2, pp. 246-260