Global organization of neuronal activity only requires unstructured local connectivity

David Dahmen, Moritz Layer, Lukas Deutz, Paulina Anna Dąbrowska, Nicole Voges, Michael von Papen, Thomas Brochier, Alexa Riehle, Markus Diesmann, Sonja Grün, Moritz Helias
2022 eLife  
Modern electrophysiological recordings simultaneously capture single-unit spiking activities of hundreds of neurons spread across large cortical distances. Yet, this parallel activity is often confined to relatively low-dimensional manifolds. This implies strong coordination also among neurons that are most likely not even connected. Here, we combine in vivo recordings with network models and theory to characterize the nature of mesoscopic coordination patterns in macaque motor cortex and to
more » ... ose their origin: We find that heterogeneity in local connectivity supports network states with complex long-range cooperation between neurons that arises from multi-synaptic, short-range connections. Our theory explains the experimentally observed spatial organization of covariances in resting state recordings as well as the behaviorally related modulation of covariance patterns during a reach-to-grasp task. The ubiquity of heterogeneity in local cortical circuits suggests that the brain uses the described mechanism to flexibly adapt neuronal coordination to momentary demands.
doi:10.7554/elife.68422 pmid:35049496 pmcid:PMC8776256 fatcat:diwg6ofu5zfv3kuph2t3twm25e