Inference of topology and the nature of synapses, and the flow of information in neuronal networks

F. S. Borges, Ewandson L. Lameu, Kelly C. Iarosz, Paulo R. Protachevicz, Iberê L. Caldas, Ricardo L. Viana, Elbert E. N. Macau, Antonio M. Batista, Murilo da Silva Baptista

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Abstract

The characterisation of neuronal connectivity is one of the most important matters in neuroscience. In this work, we show that a recently proposed informational quantity, the causal mutual information, employed with an appropriate methodology, can be used not only to correctly infer the direction of the underlying physical synapses, but also to identify their excitatory or inhibitory nature, considering easy to handle and measure bivariate time-series. The success of our approach relies on a surprising property found in neuronal networks by which non-adjacent neurons do “understand” each other (positive mutual information), however this exchange of information is not capable of causing effect (zero transfer entropy). Remarkably, inhibitory connections, responsible for enhancing synchronisation, transfer more information than excitatory connections, known to enhance entropy in the network. We also demonstrate that our methodology can be used to correctly infer directionality of synapses even in the presence of dynamic and observational Gaussian noise,
and is also successful in providing the effective directionality of inter modular connectivity, when only mean fields can be measured.
Original languageEnglish
Article number022303
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalPhysical Review. E, Statistical, Nonlinear and Soft Matter Physics
Volume97
Issue number2
Early online date7 Feb 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

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