The effect of pulse repetition rate, pulse intensity, and bicuculline on the minimum threshold and latency of bat inferior collicular neurons

J Comp Physiol A. 1998 Apr;182(4):455-65. doi: 10.1007/s003590050193.


This study examines the effect of pulse repetition rate (PRR), pulse intensity, and bicuculline on the minimum threshold (MT) and latency of inferior collicular neurons of the big brown bat, Eptesicus fuscus, under free-field stimulation conditions. It tests the hypothesis that changes in MT and latency of collicular neurons are co-dependent on PRR. The number of impulses in inferior collicular neurons (n = 245) increased either monotonically (25%) or non-monotonically (75%) with pulse intensity. Latencies either decreased to a plateau (72%), fluctuated unpredictably within 3 ms (21%) or changed very little (7%) with increasing pulse intensity. Latencies and MTs of most collicular neurons increased by 1.5-24 ms (mean +/- SD = 4.8 +/- 3.3 ms) and 4-75 dB (mean +/- SD = 22.1 +/- 16.2 dB) with increasing PRR. In most neurons (94%), the latency increase was completely (42%) or partially (52%) eliminated when pulse intensity was compensated for the MT increase with PRR. Complete elimination of latency was achieved by bicuculline application. In a few neurons (6%), the latency increase with PRR was not affected by compensated pulse intensity or bicuculline application.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bicuculline / pharmacology*
  • Chiroptera / physiology*
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory / drug effects
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory / physiology
  • GABA Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Inferior Colliculi / cytology*
  • Inferior Colliculi / drug effects*
  • Neurons, Afferent / drug effects*
  • Sensory Thresholds / drug effects*


  • GABA Antagonists
  • Bicuculline