Isofrequency band-like zones of activation revealed by optical imaging of intrinsic signals in the cat primary auditory cortex

Cereb Cortex. 2005 Oct;15(10):1497-509. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhi028. Epub 2005 Jan 19.


Neurons of similar frequency preference are arranged in isofrequency bands (IFBs) across the primary auditory cortex (AI) of many mammals. Across the AI of the cat, one of the most frequently studied species for auditory anatomy and function, we demonstrate IFB-like responses using optical imaging of intrinsic signals (OIS). Optically defined activations were extensively elongated along the dorsoventral axis of AI (the ratio of the major and minor axes was approximately 2:1), and systematically shifted as a function of stimulus frequency. The elongation of this IFB-like zone was more conspicuous at higher frequencies. In the ventral sector of the imaged field, the IFB-like zones of activation evoked at different pure tone frequencies tended to overlap extensively. Electrophysiological recording from loci within the optically defined zones of activation revealed matched responses to the frequencies used for optical imaging at 65% of these loci. The dorsoventral orientation of these zones of activation was also closely matched with the orientation of tangentially spreading intrinsic axon terminals, as revealed anatomically. The visualization of IFB-like architecture and tonotopic organization by OIS provides a basic framework for investigating the relationships of different spectral channels and between multiple acoustic parameters at a neuronal population level.

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation
  • Animals
  • Auditory Cortex / physiology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Cats
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Electrophysiology
  • Female
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Neural Pathways / physiology
  • Pressure
  • Presynaptic Terminals / physiology
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*