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Title: Explorations of neurobiology with analogue integrated circuits : ion channels and intraneuronal adaptation
Author: Breslin, Catherine J.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1998
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One method for exploring neurobiology is to build analogue integrated, circuits which are then used as models for developing and testing theories of the brain. The original motivation for the use of analogue integrated circuits was the concept of a physical equivalence between field-effect transistors operating in the weak-inversion region and ion channels permitting ion conductance through the neuronal membrane. The concept of physical equivalence is examined, with respect to both the physical processes occurring in ion channels and transistors and the equivalences that can be found between neurobiology and models of neurobiology. Changes in ion conductance are the basis for the transmission of electrical impulses in neurons and nervous systems. For the transmission to benefit, or at least not harm, the chances of survival for the organism's genetic material, it must be capable of adapting to changing environment. It has been suggested that ion channels undergoing electrokinesis along the neuronal membrane are a component of intraneuronal adaptation. Analogue integrated circuitry is built to represent the neuronal membrane, a population of dendritic N-type Ca++ channels and intraneuronal adaptation. This is used to link the electrokinesis theory with recent observations of ion channel behaviour, specifically the ion channel gating mechanism, gating modes and transitions between them. The effect of gating in ion channels on the overall output of a neuron is examined and the circuitry is shown to perform a simple adaptation task.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available