Imaging the Dynamics of Mammalian Neocortical Population Activity In Vivo

  • Amiram Grinvald
  • David Omer
  • Shmuel Naaman
  • Dahlia Sharon


Neural computations underlying sensory perception, cognition, and motor control are performed by populations of neurons at different anatomical and temporal scales. Few techniques are currently available for exploring dynamics of local and large range populations. Voltage-sensitive dye imaging (VSDI) reveals neural population activity in areas ranging from a few tens of microns to a couple of centimeters, or two areas up to ∼10 cm apart. VSDI provides a sub-millisecond temporal resolution, and a spatial resolution of about 50 µm. The dye signal emphasizes subthreshold synaptic potentials. VSDI has been applied in the mouse, rat, gerbil, ferret, tree shrew, cat, and monkey cortices, in order to explore lateral spread of retinotopic or somatotopic activation, the dynamic spatiotemporal pattern resulting from sensory activation, including the somatosensory, olfactory, auditory, and visual modalities, as well as motor preparation and the properties of spontaneously occurring population activity. In this chapter we focus on VSDI in vivo and review the results obtained mostly in the visual system in our laboratory.


Tuning Curve Intracellular Recording Orientation Selectivity Membrane Potential Change Cortical Column 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amiram Grinvald
    • 1
  • David Omer
    • 1
  • Shmuel Naaman
    • 1
  • Dahlia Sharon
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of NeurobiologyWeizmann Institute of ScienceRehovotIsrael
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyStanford UniversityStanfordUSA

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