The dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) is a complex laminar structure (Lorente de Nó, 1981; Osen et al., 1990) which receives inputs from the auditory nerve (Osen, 1970) and from other sources, including some non-auditory ones (Itoh et al., 1987; Burian and Gestoettner, 1988). Its output axons form one of the major ascending pathways to the contralateral inferior colliculus (Osen, 1972). The DCN is characterized by an intricate internal neuropil in which inhibitory interneurons figure prominently (Osen et al., 1990). As a result of this interneuronal processing, the principal cells of the DCN display complex and nonlinear responses to sound (Spirou and Young, 1991; Nelken and Young, 1994). In this paper, we review the internal organization of the DCN, from the perspective of the importance of inhibitory interneurons in shaping its responses to sound.
Interneurons which shape response properties in dorsal cochelar nucleus
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