Exploring retrograde signaling via astrocytes as a mechanism for self repair

John J. Wade, Liam J. McDaid, Jim Harkin, Vincenzo Crunelli, J. A.Scott Kelso, Valeriu Beiu

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    13 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Recent work has shown that astrocytes are capable of bidirectional communication with neurons which leads to modulation of synaptic activity. Moreover, indirect signaling pathways of retrograde messengers such as endocannabinoids lead to modulation of synaptic transmission probability. In this paper we hypothesize that this signaling underpins fault tolerance in the brain. In particular, faults manifest themselves in silent or near silent neurons, which is caused by low transmission probability synapses, and the enhancement of the transmission probability of a "faulty" synapse by indirect retrograde feedback is the repair mechanism. Furthermore, based on recent findings we present a model of self repair at the synaptic level, where retrograde signaling via astrocytes increases the probability of neurotransmitter release at damaged or low transmission probability synapses. Although our model is still at the embryo stage, results presented are encouraging and highlight a new research direction on brain-like self repair.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication2011 International Joint Conference on Neural Networks, IJCNN 2011 - Final Program
    Pages3149-3155
    Number of pages7
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2011
    Event2011 International Joint Conference on Neural Network, IJCNN 2011 - San Jose, CA, United States
    Duration: Jul 31 2011Aug 5 2011

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of the International Joint Conference on Neural Networks

    Other

    Other2011 International Joint Conference on Neural Network, IJCNN 2011
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CitySan Jose, CA
    Period7/31/118/5/11

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Software
    • Artificial Intelligence

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