A Caltech Library Service

Segregation of stimulus phase and intensity coding in the cochlear nucleus of the barn owl

Sullivan, W. E. and Konishi, M. (1984) Segregation of stimulus phase and intensity coding in the cochlear nucleus of the barn owl. Journal of Neuroscience, 4 (7). pp. 1787-1799. ISSN 0270-6474. PMCID PMC6564872. doi:10.1523/jneurosci.04-07-01787.1984.

[img] PDF - Published Version
Creative Commons Attribution.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


The cochlear nucleus of the barn owl is composed of two anatomically distinct subnuclei, n. magnocellularis (the magnocellular nucleus) and n. angularis (the angular nucleus). In the magnocellular nucleus, neurons tend to respond at a particular phase of a stimulus sine wave. Phase locking was observed for frequencies up to 9.0 kHz. The intensity- spike count functions of magnocellular units are characterized by high rates of spontaneous activity, a narrow range of intensities over which spike counts changed from spontaneous to saturation levels, and a small increase in spike counts with intensity over that range. In the angular nucleus, neurons showed little or no tendency to respond at a certain sinusoidal phase, although some showed weak phase locking for frequencies below 3.5 kHz. Angular units typically had low spontaneous rates, large dynamic ranges, and large increases in spike counts with intensity, resulting in high saturation levels. The clear difference between the two nuclei in sensitivity to both phase and intensity and the reciprocity in response properties support the hypothesis that each nucleus is specialized to process one parameter (phase or intensity) and not the other.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Additional Information:© 1984 by Society for Neuroscience. For the first six months after publication SfN’s license will be exclusive. Beginning six months after publication the Work will be made freely available to the public on SfN’s website to copy, distribute, or display under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license ( Received October 7, 1983; Revised January 16, 1984; Accepted January 20, 1984. We thank M. Walsh and D. Hodge for designing and building some of our electronic equipment. Drs. T. Takahashi, A. Moiseff, and E. Knudsen provided helpful comments during the course of the experiments and on the manuscript. The work was supported by National Institutes of Health Grant NS 14617-04 to M. K. and National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellowship NS 07045-01 to W. S.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIHNS 14617-04
NIH Postdoctoral FellowshipNS 07045-01
Issue or Number:7
PubMed Central ID:PMC6564872
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20151202-110632037
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Segregation of stimulus phase and intensity coding in the cochlear nucleus of the barn owl WE Sullivan and M Konishi The Journal of Neuroscience, 1 July 1984, 4(7):1787-1799
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:62542
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:02 Dec 2015 19:31
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 23:03

Repository Staff Only: item control page