Receptive Fields of Auditory Neurons in the Frog’s Midbrain as Functional Elements for Acoustic Communication

  • Peter I. M. Johannesma
  • Jos J. Eggermont
Part of the NATO Advanced Science Institutes Series book series (NSSA, volume 56)


The receptive field is a functional descriptor of sensory neurons. It is that part of the sensory environment to which a neuron reponds. The receptive field (RF) of an auditory neuron describes the form and structure of its neuro-acoustic space; the coherent integration of all neuro-acoustic spaces represents the characteristics of the bio-acoustic space of the animal. Potential dimensions of the receptive field may, hypothetically at least, be derived from behavioral studies for the sensory system under consideration. Auditory perception is directed toward localization and identification of acoustic sources. As a consequence, incorporating at the same time arguments from neurophysiological experiments, receptive fields of auditory neurons can be considered as spatio-spectro-temporal configurations in acoustic space. The spatio-temporal aspects form the basis for determination of position and movement, while the spectro-temporal aspects contribute to the identification of acoustic sources.


Receptive Field Acoustic Communication Acoustic Source Auditory Neuron Good Frequency 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter I. M. Johannesma
    • 1
  • Jos J. Eggermont
    • 1
  1. 1.Workgroup Neurophysics Department of Medical Physics and BiophysicsUniversity of NijmegenNijmegenThe Netherlands

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