Several functions, motor or sensory, rely on the ability of neurons to modify their discharge pattern to faithfully encode the characteristics of a sensory stimulus or to reflect a rhythmic motor control for example. Changes in firing pattern often involve particular ion channels and are intimately related to the function of the circuit. Our recent work shows how astrocytes, astrocytic coupling and the astrocytic calcium-binding protein, S100b, and modulate Na+ currents by regulating the extracellular Ca2 + concentration and determine the neuronal firing pattern in brainstem and cortical circuits.
The F.C. MacIntosh Lectureship supports special seminars in honour of Dr. F.C. MacIntosh.