Cluster analysis-based physiological classification and morphological properties of inhibitory neurons in layers 2-3 of monkey dorsolateral prefrontal cortex

J Neurophysiol. 2005 Nov;94(5):3009-22. doi: 10.1152/jn.00156.2005. Epub 2005 Jun 29.


In primates, little is known about intrinsic electrophysiological properties of neocortical neurons and their morphological correlates. To classify inhibitory cells (interneurons) in layers 2-3 of monkey dorsolateral prefrontal cortex we used whole cell voltage recordings and intracellular labeling in slice preparation with subsequent morphological reconstructions. Regular spiking pyramidal cells have been also included in the sample. Neurons were successfully segregated into three physiological clusters: regular-, intermediate-, and fast-spiking cells using cluster analysis as a multivariate exploratory technique. When morphological types of neurons were mapped on the physiological clusters, the cluster of regular spiking cells contained all pyramidal cells, whereas the intermediate- and fast-spiking clusters consisted exclusively of interneurons. The cluster of fast-spiking cells contained all of the chandelier cells and the majority of local, medium, and wide arbor (basket) interneurons. The cluster of intermediate spiking cells predominantly consisted of cells with the morphology of neurogliaform or vertically oriented (double-bouquet) interneurons. Thus a quantitative approach enabled us to demonstrate that intrinsic electrophysiological properties of neurons in the monkey prefrontal cortex define distinct cell types, which also display distinct morphologies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / physiology
  • Animals
  • Cell Size
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Interneurons / classification
  • Interneurons / physiology*
  • Interneurons / ultrastructure*
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Nerve Net / cytology*
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Neural Inhibition / physiology*
  • Pattern Recognition, Automated
  • Prefrontal Cortex / cytology*
  • Prefrontal Cortex / physiology*