Date of Award
Zhang, Huiming (Biological Sciences)
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The inferior colliculus plays a key role in auditory processing. In the current study I used the albino rat, Rattus norvegicus, as an animal model to investigate auditory responses in single neurons in the dorsomedial subdivision of the inferior colliculus (ICd). My results reveal that ICd neurons exhibit various temporal firing patterns and long and variable first spike latencies. These neurons displayed a variety of frequency-tuning curves. Both monotonic and non-monotonic rate-level functions were present in these neurons. ICd neurons displayed stimulus-specific adaptation by reducing the strength of firing during repetitive tone burst stimulation but restored their responses when the quality of sound was changed. Functional decortication changed the strength of firing in ICd neurons, suggesting these neurons were controlled by the auditory cortex. My results suggest that the ICd may provide a gating mechanism that helps the auditory system to selectively process novel sounds in the acoustic environment.
Lumani, Ariana, "Auditory Neurons in the Dorsal Cortex of the Inferior Colliculus: Responses to Contralateral Tone Bursts and Modulations by the Auditory Cortex" (2009). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 293.