Modelling sensory map plasticity in barrel cortex

An important feature of the brain is its ability to retain plasticity not only during development, but also later in life in response to experience. This experience dependent plasticity (EPD) modulates connections between neurons and is also present during sensory map reorganization. In barrel cortex, whisker deprivation (plucking a whisker) diminishes the input to its corresponding barrel, after which reorganization of the sensory maps takes place. This causes the representation of the deprived whisker to shrink, while the representation of surrounding whiskers expands. Koen Kole investigated how such sensory experience affects supragranular cross-columnar synaptic communication. Linda Wouters showed with a computational model which connectivity changes could explain these experimental results.  


link to code:   GitHub