Biological neural networks with many plastic synaptic connections can store external input information in the map of synaptic weights as a form of unsupervised learning. However, the same neural network often produces dramatic reverberating events in which many neurons fire almost simultaneously – a phenomenon coined as ‘population burst.’ The autonomous bursting activity is a consequence of the delicate balance between recurrent excitation and self-inhibition; as such, any periodic sequences of burst-generating stimuli delivered even at a low frequency (~1 Hz) can easily suppress the entire network connectivity. Here we demonstrate that ‘Δt paired-pulse stimulation’, can be a novel way for encoding spatially-distributed high-frequency (~10 Hz) information into such a system without causing a complete suppression. The encoded memory can be probed simply by delivering multiple probing pulses and then estimating the precision of the arrival times of the subsequent evoked recurrent bursts.
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