Integrating Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity: introduction

Author: Kevin Fox1, Michael Stryker2,3
1 School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Museum Avenue, Cardiff CF10 3AX, UK
2 Center for Integrative Neuroscience, University of California, 675 Nelson Rising Lane, San Francisco, CA 94158, USA.
3 Department of Physiology, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA.
Conference/Journal: Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci
Date published: 2017 Mar 5
Other: Volume ID: 372 , Issue ID: 1715 , Pages: 20160413 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0413. , Word Count: 182

Hebbian plasticity is widely considered to be the mechanism by which information can be coded and retained in neurons in the brain. Homeostatic plasticity moves the neuron back towards its original state following a perturbation, including perturbations produced by Hebbian plasticity. How then does homeostatic plasticity avoid erasing the Hebbian coded information? To understand how plasticity works in the brain, and therefore to understand learning, memory, sensory adaptation, development and recovery from injury, requires development of a theory of plasticity that integrates both forms of plasticity into a whole. In April 2016, a group of computational and experimental neuroscientists met in London at a discussion meeting hosted by the Royal Society to identify the critical questions in the field and to frame the research agenda for the next steps. Here, we provide a brief introduction to the papers arising from the meeting and highlight some of the themes to have emerged from the discussions.This article is part of the themed issue 'Integrating Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity'.

Keywords: LTD; LTP; cortical plasticity; disinhibition; negative feedback; synaptic scaling; consciousness

PMID: 28093560 PMCID: PMC5247598 DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0413