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Definition ExternallySourcedDefinition Synonym
3 dB Frequency The frequency at which the signal voltage at the output of the filter falls to SQRT(1/2) of the amplitude of the input signal -3 dB Frequency Cutoff frequency
Corner frequency
AC Couple The continuous removal of DC shifts during signal recordings.
ADP amplitude Amplitude from first AP onset to maximum voltage, typically more depolarized that the resting membrane potential after-depolarization potential amplitude
afterdepolarization potential amplitude
ADP magnitude
ADP amplitude
ADP size
ADP peak amplitude
ADP
ADP duration Duration from first AP onset to maximum ADP after-depolarization potential duration
afterdepolarization potential duration
ADP duration
Access resistance Sum of the electrode resistance and the resistance at the electrode-cell junction access resistance
series resistance
Action potential A large, brief, all-or-nothing, regenerative electrical potential, that propagates along the axon, muscle fiber, or some dendrites. Action potentials are usually generated at the axon hillock and propagate uni-directionally down the axon. Adapted from Nicholls, Martin and Wallace 3rd edition. Firing
Spike
Axonal Action Potential
Action potential characteristic
Active dendrite Dendrites with active conductances which can influence the affects of synaptic inputs and are sometimes capable of generating action potentials.
Activity pattern In neurons, neural circuits or neural models refers to spatial or temporal patterns (or both) of spiking activity.
Adaptation ratio Ratio of durations between early and late AP inter-spike intervals adaptation percent
Amperometric electrode recording protocol
Attenuation Attenuation is the reciprocal of gain. (adapted from the Axon Guide)
Attractor Neural Network
Auditory cortex Neocortical areas that are functionally activated predominantly to sound, with the shortest latency.
Augmentation A form of short-term synaptic plasticity associated with an increase in the number of synaptic vesicles that release their transmitter and acts at the second scale.
Axoaxonic synapse The synapse made by an axon terminal of one neuron onto the axon of another. Axo-axonic synapse
Axodendritic synapse The synapse made by an axon terminal of one neuron onto the dendrite of another. Axo-dendritic synapse
Axon Hillock Cone shaped elevation from which the axon originates; in Nissl stained preparations, the axon hillock usually can be identified as a region of the perikaryon that is distinguished by a deficiency of Nissl substance (Peters, Palay and Webster, 1991). In physiology: A specialized component of the neuron, usually located in the initial segment of the axon where the action potential is initiated. Trigger zone
Action potential initial zone
initial segment
Axosomatic synapse The synapse made by an axon terminal of one neuron on the cell body of aanother. Axo-somatic synapse
Biofeedback The process of becoming aware of various physiological functions using instruments that provide information on the activity of those same systems, with a goal of being able to manipulate them at will
Cell Capacitance Neuron capacitance, typically measured by dividing membrane time constant by membrane resistance Cell_capacitance
Cm
C
capacitance
whole cell capacitance
Cell diameter Diameter of the cell soma diameter
soma diameter
Cell surface area Cross-sectional area of the cell area
surface area
Cell-attached single-channel recording protocol
Cell-detached inside-out single-channel recording protocol
Cell-detached outside-out single-channel recording protocol
Cell-detached single-channel recording protocol excised patch
Cellular physiology characteristic
Central pattern generator A network of neurons capable of generating rhythmic motor activity without any afferent activity or other source of rhythmic external drive., A network of neurons capable of generating rhythmic motor activity without any afferent activity or other source of rhythmic external drive., A network of neurons capable of generating rhythmic motor activity without any afferent activity or other source of rhythmic external drive.
Computational model
Conductance Measure of how easily electricity flows along a certain path through an electrical element. The SI derived unit of conductance is the siemens.
Conduction failure A failure of the action potential to propagate down the axon.
Connectionist model A model of neural function with parallel and distributed processing components. Also neural net model. Neural net model
Cuff-electrode recording protocol Suction electrode recording protocol
Current clamp voltage recording protocol
Cut open oocyte voltage clamp recording protocol A technique to measure the ion currents across the membrane of oocytes, while holding the membrane voltage at a set level, while using two electrodes, one holds the membrane potential steady while the other measures current and the feedback circuit used to bridge the electrodes.
Decerebrate preparation Experimental animal in which the brain stem is cut at the level of the midbrain. Used to study spinal reflexes.
Decreased threshold A threshold which is relatively low. low threshold
Dendritic action potential Action potentials generated in the dendrites of a neuron.
Dendroaxonic synapse The synapse made by an axon terminal of one neuron onto the axon of another. Dendro-axonic_synapse
Discontinuous single cell voltage clamp An experimental protocol that prevents the opening and closing of voltage-gated channels and removes their influence on the membrane potential. A direct measure of membrane current can be obtained with this technique by recording the current that must be generated by the voltage clamp to keep the membrane potential from changing.
Electical overshoot When the phase shift in the pass band is not linearly dependent on the frequency of the sinusoidal component, the filtered signal generally exhibits overshoot. (adapted from the Axon Guide)
Electrical drift A gradual shift in DC potential during a recording period, seemingly unrelated to biological phenomena rather an artifact. drift
Electrical offset DC shift in input voltage required to produce a zero output voltage when no signal is applied to an amplifier. zeroing
Electrical recording assay Electrical recording
Electrical recording protocol Electrophysiology
Electrical saturation When the output voltage goes to either the extreme maximum or minimum end of its range, disallowing further discrimination of the signal. Saturation
Electrocardiography recording protocol
Electroencephalography recording protocol Electroencephalography
Electromotive force A source of electrical potential, suh as an ionic gradient. emf
electromotance
Electromyography surface recording protocol A macro-electrode recording technique for recording the activation signal of muscles through the use of surface electrode. EMG may also be performed intramuscularly by inserting a needle into the muscle (intramuscular EMG) Electromyography
Electrophysiology is the study of the electrical properties of biological cells and tissues. It involves measurements of voltage change or electric current on a wide variety of scales from single ion channel proteins to whole organs like the heart. In neuroscience, it includes measurements of the electrical activity of neurons, and particularly action potential activity. - definition adapted from Wikipedia
Electrosurgery Electrosurgery uses alternating current to achieve cutting and coagulation. The patient becomes part of the electrical circuit and current enters their body. Cautery uses direct current to coagulate. A heated wire or electrode comes in contact with tissue. Vary the voltage of the current and the pattern of electric pulses to achieve your desired cauterizing effect.
Electrotonic conduction The passive spread of voltage changes between different regions of the neuronal membrane.
Electrotonic potential a passive or analog electrical potential, that decays in space and time according to the time and space constants. subthreshold potential
Electrotonus Passive spread of charge within a neuron.
End-plate potential synaptic potential recorded from the muscle cells. EPP
muscle potential
Epilepsy A disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of paroxysmal brain dysfunction due to a sudden, disorderly, and excessive neuronal discharge. Epilepsy classification systems are generally based upon: (1) clinical features of the seizure episodes (e.g., motor seizure), (2) etiology (e.g., post-traumatic), (3) anatomic site of seizure origin (e.g., frontal lobe seizure), (4) tendency to spread to other structures in the brain, and (5) temporal patterns (e.g., nocturnal epilepsy) (MeSH). Epileptic Seizure
Seizure Disorder
Equilibrium potential The specific membrane potential for a given ion species at which the electrical force, due to the charge on the membrane is equal and oppositely directed to the chemical driving force resulting from the concentration gradient, so that no net movement of charge occurs. Nernst potential
Reversal potential
Equivalent circuit Representation of the electrical properties of individual neurons or groups of neurons in a conventional electrical circuit consisting only of conductors, resistors, batteries and capacitors.
Event related potential The recorded electrical responses from nerve, muscle, SENSORY RECEPTOR, or area of the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM following stimulation. They range from less than a microvolt to several microvolts. The evoked potential can be auditory (EVOKED POTENTIALS, AUDITORY), somatosensory (EVOKED POTENTIALS, SOMATOSENSORY), visual (EVOKED POTENTIALS, VISUAL), or motor (EVOKED POTENTIALS, MOTOR), or other modalities that have been reported. Often used synonymously to event-related potentials which are associated with higher level cognitive processes. ERPs
Evoked potential
Event related potential recording assay
Evoked Excitatory post synaptic potential An EPSP that was evoked by an action potential invading a presynaptic axon. This is as opposed to a spontaneous EPSP. Evoked EPSP
Evoked potential The recorded electrical responses from nerve, muscle, SENSORY RECEPTOR, or area of the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM following stimulation. They range from less than a microvolt to several microvolts. The evoked potential can be auditory (EVOKED POTENTIALS, AUDITORY), somatosensory (EVOKED POTENTIALS, SOMATOSENSORY), visual (EVOKED POTENTIALS, VISUAL), or motor (EVOKED POTENTIALS, MOTOR), or other modalities that have been reported. Often used synonymously to event-related potentials which are associated with higher level cognitive processes. Event Related Potentials
Excitatory Said of a neuron, synapse, or synaptic potential that produces depolarization of the postsynaptic cell.
Excitatory post synaptic potential A temporary change in postsynaptic membrane potential, usually a depolarization, resulting from presynaptic release of neurotransmitter. This is usually due to the flow of positively charged ions into the postsynaptic cell, but can also be due to a reduction in negatively charged ionic current or the turning off of a potassium current. An EPSP generally increases the likelihood of action potential discharge in the postsynaptic neuron. In common usage, the EPSP typically refers to an evoked EPSP. Excitatory post-synaptic potential
Excitatory postsynaptic potential
Extracellular electrode recording protocol
Extracellular field potential A potential difference in voltage between two spatial regions, both outside of cellular membrane. Extracellular Field
Facilitation Facilitation Increase in the probability that an event of interest happens. Typically related to the probability of spiking in response to stimulation or to an increase in the efficacy of synaptic input.
Fast afterhyperpolarization amplitude Amplitude from first AP onset to minimum voltage, explictly refered to as fast fAHP size
fAHP amp
fAHP amplitude
fast AHP amplitude
fast AHP size
Fast afterhyperpolarization duration Duration from first AP onset to minimum voltage, explictly refered to as fast fAHP duration
fAHP time
fast AHP duration
fast AHP time
Fast potential A class of synaptic potential that persists over the millisecond time scale. Typical fast potentials have direct mechanisms such as activation of transmitter-gated ion channels. The term is found in older electrophysiology literature.
Field electrode recording protocol Surface electrode recording protocol
First spike latency Duration to first AP following a depolarizing current step of fixed amplitude; Time lag between the start of the input to a neuron or model of a neuron and the occurance of the first action potential. 1st AP time
spike latency
G-protein gated channel A type of ligand gated channel, sensitive to intracellular G-protein binding
Grid electrode recording protocol
I L high threshold "Long-lasting"; slowly inactivating; threshold around -20 mV I Calcium
I N "Neither"; rapidly inactivating; threshold around -20 mV I Calcium
Increased threshold A threshold which is relatively high. High threshold
Inhibition The process by which a response (neural or behavioral) is diminished.
Inhibitory A synapse in which an action potential in the presynaptic cell reduces the probability of an action potential occurring in the postsynaptic cell.
Input Resistance Input resistance at steady-state (steady-state of voltage response to current injection) Rin
RN
Maximum Rin
Rinput
Rin
RN
Intracellular electrode recording assay Intracellular electrode recording
intracellular recording
Intracellular electrode recording protocol
Ion channel recording protocol
Ion-sensitive electrode recording protocol
Junctional fold The specialized membrane in folding at the end plate of a muscle fiber in the region of the motor nerve terminal
Lateral inhibition the capacity of an excited neuron to reduce the activity of its neighbors. Feedback inhibition
lateral inhibition
Leakage conductance The total conductance of a population of resting ion channels.
Lesion A localized pathological or traumatic structural change, damage, deformity, or discontinuity of tissue, organ, or body part (adapted from NCI Metathesaurus)
Local Circuit role A series of connections between neurons that constitute a functional unit Pathway
Small circuit
Localization theory A theory of brain function, which states that individual mental functions or behaviors are performed by specific parts of brain, rather than by the brain as a whole.
Long-QT A condition that is characterized by episodes of fainting (SYNCOPE) and varying degree of ventricular arrhythmia as indicated by the prolonged QT interval. The inherited forms are caused by mutation of genes encoding cardiac ion channel proteins
Macro-electrode recording protocol
Macropatch voltage clamp recording protocol
Mathematical expression Formal representation of a calculus linking parameters and variables of a model.
Mechanically gated channel An ion channel that transduces mechanical stimuli into electrical responses. Stretch receptor channel
Membrane potential A quality inhering in a cell's plasma membrane by virtue of the electric potential difference across it.
Micro-electrode recording assay Microelectrode recording
micro-electrode recording
Micro-electrode recording protocol
Microelectrode array assay An assay that uses a microelectrode device. A microelecrtode device contain multiple plates or shanks through which neural signals are obtained or delivered, essentially serving as neural interfaces that connect neurons to electronic circuitry. There are two general classes of MEAs: implantable MEAs, used in vivo, and non-implantable MEAs, used in vitro (adapted from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multielectrode_array).
Motor unit An alpha motor neuron with its axon and the muscle fibers which it supplies. (Brodal, P., Neurological Anatomy, 1981, Oxford University Press, pg 151) In Physiology: A single motor neuron and all fibers of the several muscles that it innervates.
Multiple electrode extracellular recording protocol
Multiple-electrode voltage clamp recording protocol
Neural circuit neural network describes a population of physically interconnected neurons or a group of disparate neurons whose inputs or signalling targets define a recognizable circuit. Communication between neurons often involves an electrochemical process. The interface through which they interact with surrounding neurons usually consists of several dendrites (input connections), which are connected via synapses to other neurons, and one axon (output connection). If the sum of the input signals surpasses a certain threshold, the neuron sends an action potential (AP) at the axon hillock and transmits this electrical signal along the axon. In contrast, a neuronal circuit is a functional entity of interconnected neurons that influence each other (similar to a control loop in cybernetics). - definition adapted from Wikipedia Neural network
Neuronal signaling
Neural networks
Neural encoding The process by which a neuron translates physical energy of a stimulus into electrical activity representing features of the stimulus
Neurophysiology A discipline which utilizes physiological techniques to study the nervous system. Psychophysiology
Non-gated channel An ion channel that passively conducts ions across the cell membrane. Resting channel
Leak channel
Nonsynaptic conduction current flow through an area of postsynaptic membrane that surrounds a region containing synaptically activated ion channels.
PH-sensitive electrode recording protocol
Pain sensation An unpleasant sensation induced by noxious stimuli and generally received by specialized nerve endings (MeSH). * The series of events required for an organism to receive a painful stimulus, convert it to a molecular signal, and recognize and characterize the signal. Pain is medically defined as the physical sensation of discomfort or distress caused by injury or illness, so can hence be described as a harmful stimulus which signals current (or impending) tissue damage. Pain may come from extremes of temperature, mechanical damage, electricity or from noxious chemical substances. (http://www.onelook.com/) (GO) * The stimulus-response process involving the stimulation of peripheral pain-carrying nerve fibers (e.g., C-fibers, A-delta fibers) and the transmission of impulses along peripheral nerves of the central nervous system, where the stimulus is perceived as pain. (Taber's) (NCI) Physical suffering
Nociception
Pain perception
Ache
Pain
Parameter Fitting
Pass band Frequency region below the 3DB frequency (adapted from the Axon Guide)
Patch clamp technique A method for recording the electrical activity of neurons or small pathes of membrane by forming a tight seal between electrode and membrane Patching
patch
Pathophysiology Used with organs and diseases for disordered function in disease states.
Pattern Recognition
Perceptual Categories A process that involves higher-level neural processing of continuous sensory information into discrete categories, e.g. resolving wavelengths of light into hues of color, or gradual differences of auditory frequencies into musical intervals.
Phase shift the phase of sinusoidal componens of the input signal is shifted by the filer. (adapted from the Axon Guide)
Physiology Instrument A device or instrument that is used to measure attributes of living cells, tissues or organisms while the cells, tissues or organism is alive.
Place cell Cells that spike to indicate a specific spatial location in the environment. The spatial locations that results in place cell spiking are called place fields. Place field
Presynaptic inhibition action by a presynaptic cell at an axo-axonic synapse to reduce the communication of the postsynaptic cell with any downstream cell. Axo-axonic inhibition
Pruning A process by which some neuronal elements are removed during development. Typically a function of sensory experience.
Quantal transmission Transmission of information from pre-synaptic axons to post-synaptic elements, which occurs in steps or quanta. Quanta have generally been though of as vesicles releasing their content.
Reconstituted bilayer electrical recording protocol
Reconstituted bilayer single-channel patch recording protocol Procedure by which a part of cellular membrane is recorded from. The notion is to isolate a single or at least a small number of channels in a "patch" of membrane. patch recording
patch clamp
Refractory state A period of time, usually after the firing of an action potential, where the cell is less likely to fire a subsequent action potential
Reinforcement Learning In neural modeling, a learning method where a neural network changes based on a positive or negative reward. The reward is an input to the network which depends on the model's behavior as it explores a solution space.
Rheobase Current threshold to discharge APs during a ramp depolarization. Minimum current required to fire an action potential during very slow increases in current. current threshold
I thresh
Ithresh
AP rheobase
Sag ratio Ratio between exponentially extrapolated voltage and steady-state voltage sag-ratio
sag index
sag
Saltatory conduction A form of conduction found in myelinated nerves, whereby the action potential jumps rapidly from one node of Ranvier to another
Sampling rate The rate at which a point is taken and recorded in a digital system.
Sensory threshold The minimum amount of stimulus energy necessary to elicit a sensory response.
Signaling pathway The molecular interactions that lead to the concentration of one molecule being converted to the chemical concentration or activation of another. In some cases the transduction occurs through a membrane bound protein, in others the molecules share the same compartment.
Single electrode extracellular recording protocol
Single-electrode voltage clamp recording protocol
Slice preparation protocol Protocol in which slices of tissue are excised from an animal and kept alive in vitro. Slice preparation
Slow afterhyperpolarization amplitude Amplitude from first AP onset to minimum voltage, explictly refered to as slow sAHP size
sAHP amp
sAHP amplitude
slow AHP amplitude
slow AHP size
Slow afterhyperpolarization duration Duration from first AP onset to minimum voltage, explictly refered to as slow sAHP duration
sAHP time
slow AHP duration
slow AHP time
Sodium pump Transporter protein that uses ATP to move sodium against its electrochemical gradient. Sodium-potassium pump
Na+/K+-ATPase
Na+/K+ pump
Somatosensory map A homunculus measured in the somatosensory cortex. Humunculus
Spatio-temporal activity pattern In neural tissue or in models of neural networks, patterns of spiking activity that change over both space and time.
Spike Frequency Adaptation Repetitive spiking that decreases in frequency over time. Eventually, spiking activity may cease.
Spike Train A spike train is a temporal series of all-or-none action potentials. (source: http://www.nature.com/nrn/journal/v6/n5/glossary/nrn1668_glossary.html)
Spike half-width Average time for first AP half amp to the same voltage during offset spike halfwidth
half-width of spike
half-width of action potential
half amplitude duration
spike half width
spike half duration
Spike overshoot Difference between the peak of the action potential and 0 mV action potential overshoot
overshoot
AP overshoot
Spike peak Maximum voltage of AP AP peak
Spike threshold Membrane potential required to initiate an action potential. action potential threshold
Spike width Duration of AP, not explictly refered to as half-width AP width
action potential width
AP duration
spike duration
Spontaneous Excitatory post synaptic potential An EPSP that is elicited by the random fusion of a synaptic vesicle, in contrast to an evoked EPSP. mini
mEPSP
miniature EPSP
Spontaneous firing rate AP discharge rate in the absence of current injection or a stimulus spontaneous firing frequency
Stop band Frequency region above the 3DB frequency (adapted from the Axon Guide)
Stuttering In neurons, rythmic high frequency bursts of action potentials with unpredictable periods of quiescence.
Summation Addition of two or more individual currents. Summation
Surgical protocol
T(10-90) the time it takes for a signal to rise from 10% of its final value to 90% of its final value. For a signal passing through a low pass filter, t(10-90) increases as the -3 dB frequency of the filter is lowered. (adapted from the Axon Guide) 10-90% Rise time
Therapeutic Treatment and care to combat disease or alleviate pain or injury.
Threshold A quality inhering in a bearer by virtue of its sensitivity towards a fixed location or value where change is observed; upper limit.
Timothy Syndrome A rare autosomal dominant disorder characterized by physical malformations, as well as neurological and developmental defects, including heart QT-prolongation, heart arrhythmias, structural heart defects, syndactyly (webbing of fingers and toes) and autism spectrum disorders.
Transmitter gated channel An ion channel whose opening and closing is regulated by the binding of a chemical messenger such as a neurotransmitter. Ligand gated channel
Two electrode voltage clamp recording protocol A technique to measure the ion currents across the membrane of excitable cells, such as neurons, while holding the membrane voltage at a set level, while using two electrodes, one holds the membrane potential steady while the other measures current and the feedback circuit used to bridge the electrodes. Two electrode voltage clamp
Unsupervised Learning Approaches for organizing data where the learner is given only unlabeled examples.
Visual cortex A region of cortex that is involved in vision Visual area
Voltage clamp current recording protocol
Voltage gated channel An ion channel that opens and closes in response to depolarization of the membrane potential.
Whole-cell voltage clamp recording protocol
Winner-take-all Computational approach where after some time only one neuron in a network remains active corresponding to the largest of a set of inputs.

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*Note: Neurolex imports many terms and their ids from existing community ontologies, e.g., the Gene Ontology. Neurolex, however, is a dynamic site and any content beyond the identifier should not be presumed to reflect the content or views of the source ontology. Users should consult with the authoritative source for each ontology for current information.