Front-end Weber-Fechner gain control enhances the fidelity of combinatorial odor coding.

PubMedID: 
31251174
Abstract: 

We showed previously (Gorur-Shandilya et al., 2017) that olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) expressing the co-receptor Orco scale their gain inversely with mean odor intensity according to Weber-Fechner's law. Here, we show that this front-end adaptation promotes the reconstruction of odor identity from dynamic odor signals, even in the presence of confounding background odors and rapid intensity fluctuations. These enhancements are further aided by known downstream transformations in the antennal lobe and mushroom body. Our results, which are applicable to various odor classification and reconstruction schemes, stem from the fact that this adaptation mechanism is not intrinsic to the identity of the receptor involved. Instead, a feedback mechanism adjusts receptor sensitivity based on the activity of the receptor-Orco complex, according to Weber-Fechner's law. Thus, a common scaling of the gain across Orco-expressing ORNs may be a key feature of ORN adaptation that helps preserve combinatorial odor codes in naturalistic landscapes.

Author: 
Kadakia, Nirag; Emonet, Thierry;
Year: 
2019
Program: 
Training
Funding Opportunities Number: 
RFA-MH-18-510
Journal Name: 
Elife
Priority Area: 
Cell Type
Circuit Diagrams
Human Neuroscience
Integrated Approaches
Interventional Tools
Monitor Neural Activity
Theory & Data Analysis Tools