Spike timing-dependent plasticity of neural circuits

Neuron. 2004 Sep 30;44(1):23-30. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2004.09.007.


Recent findings of spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) have stimulated much interest among experimentalists and theorists. Beyond the traditional correlation-based Hebbian plasticity, STDP opens up new avenues for understanding information coding and circuit plasticity that depend on the precise timing of neuronal spikes. Here we summarize experimental characterization of STDP at various synapses, the underlying cellular mechanisms, and the associated changes in neuronal excitability and dendritic integration. We also describe STDP in the context of complex spike patterns and its dependence on the dendritic location of the synapse. Finally, we discuss timing-dependent modification of neuronal receptive fields and human visual perception and the computational significance of STDP as a synaptic learning rule.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Neuronal Plasticity / physiology*
  • Time Factors