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Firing control of ink gland motor cells in Aplysia californica

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  • The release of ink in Aplysia californica occurs selectively to long-lasting stimuli. There is a good correspondence between features of the behavior and the firing pattern of the ink gland motor neurons. Indeed, the neurons do not fire for brief inputs and there is a delayed firing for long duration inputs. The biophysical mechanisms for the long delay before firing is due to a transient potassium current which activates rapidly but inactivates more slowly. Based on voltage-clamp experiments, a nine-variable Hodgkin-Huxley-like model for the ink gland motor neurons was developed by Byrne. Here, fast-slow analysis and two-parameter dynamical analysis are used to investigate the contribution of different currents and to predict various firing patterns, including the long latency before firing.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 34C05, 34C23, 34G20; Secondary: 92C20.


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