Electrically Evoked Responses in Onset Chopper Neurons in Guinea Pig Cochlear Nucleus

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    Extracellular recordings were obtained from single cochlear nucleus neurons in guinea pigs anesthetized with Nembutal and Hypnorm. Neurons were classified by their spontaneous firing rates and responses to acoustic stimuli. In addition, electrical shocks were applied to the midline at the level of the IVth ventricle and spike responses were recorded. Spikes were evoked by shocks only in neurons that were classified as onset choppers (O-c). The shock-evoked spikes could be extinguished by acoustically evoked action potentials in the same neurons. In roughly 30% of the sample of O-c neurons, quantitative aspects of the timing of this extinction were not compatible with the shock-evoked spike being antidromically conducted from O-c output axons. Together with the presence of temporal jitter at high shock rates, the data suggest the possibility that at least some of the shock-evoked spikes may be generated by excitatory synaptic input to the O-c neurons, most likely from the collaterals of the medial olivocochlear system (MOCS), whose axons pass close to the floor of the IVth ventricle. This excitatory synaptic input may operate to modulate the activity of O-c neurons in addition to MOCS actions in the auditory periphery.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3288-3297
    JournalJournal of Neurophysiology
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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