Temporally patterned pulse trains affect duration tuning characteristics of bat inferior collicular neurons

J Comp Physiol A. 1999 Nov;185(5):471-8. doi: 10.1007/s003590050408.


This study examines the effect of temporally patterned pulse trains on duration tuning characteristics of inferior collicular neurons of the big brown bat. Eptesicus fuscus, under free-field stimulation conditions. Using a 50% difference between maximal and minimal responses as a criterion, the duration tuning characteristics of inferior collicular neurons determined with pulse trains of different pulse durations are described as band-pass, long-pass, short-pass, and all-pass. Each band-pass neuron discharged maximally to a specific pulse duration that was at least 50% larger than the neuron's responses to a long- and a short-duration pulse. In contrast, each long- or short-pass neuron discharged maximally to a range of long- or short-duration pulses that were at least 50% larger than the minimal responses. The number of impulses of an all-pass neuron never differed by more than 50%. When pulse trains were delivered at different pulse repetition rates, the number of short-pass and band-pass neurons progressively increased with increasing pulse repetition rates. The slope of the duration tuning curves also became sharper when determined with pulse trains at high pulse repetition rates. Possible mechanisms underlying these findings are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Action Potentials / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Chiroptera / physiology*
  • Echolocation / physiology*
  • Inferior Colliculi / physiology*