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, 93 (6), 3353-64

The Spectral Shaping of Neural Discharges by Refractory Effects


The Spectral Shaping of Neural Discharges by Refractory Effects

B W Edwards et al. J Acoust Soc Am.


It has previously been shown that post-stimulus time (PST) histograms have autoregressive properties, which implies that the neural firings have spectral components that are determined by these properties. The expected power spectral density of neural discharges is derived when the process is firing at a constant rate (similar to tonal stimulation at CF with no phase locking). Although the unconditional intensity of the process is not time varying, the spectrum exhibits prominent spectral peaks. The effect of histogram bin size, stimulus intensity, and refractory effects are examined with respect to spectral shape and it is shown that stimulus intensity determines the magnitude of spectral peaks while refractory duration determines the peak locations. The effectiveness of predicting the spectrum is demonstrated with eight-nerve data and point process simulations.

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