November 30, 2020

Causal evidence of network communication in whole-brain dynamics through a multiplexed neural code

An important question in neuroscience is how local activity can be flexibly and selectively routed across the brain network. A proposed mechanism to flexibly route information is frequency division multiplexing: selective readout can be achieved by segregating the signal into non-overlapping frequency bands. Here, in wild-type mice and in a transgenic model (3xTgAD) of Alzheimer s Disease (AD), we use optogenetic activation of the entorhinal cortex, concurrent whole-brain fMRI, and hidden Markov modeling.

We demonstrate how inducing neuronal spiking with different theta frequencies causes spatially distinct states of brain network dynamics to emerge and to preferentially respond to one frequency, showing how selective information streams can arise from a single neuronal source of activity. This theta modulation mechanism, however, is impaired in the AD model.

This work demonstrates that neuronal multiplexing is a sufficient mechanism to enable flexible brain network communication, and provides insight into the aberrant mechanisms underlying cognitive decline.

 bioRxiv Subject Collection: Neuroscience

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