MathGroup Archive 1996

[Date Index] [Thread Index] [Author Index]

Search the Archive

Re: Q: Getting interspike intervals in neuronal firing patterns

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg3455] Re: Q: Getting interspike intervals in neuronal firing patterns
  • From: Harald Berndt <haraldb at>
  • Date: Fri, 8 Mar 1996 01:31:42 -0500
  • Organization: University of California Forest Prodcts Lab
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

Tobias Cottmann wrote:
> Hello,
> a friend of mine has some neuronal simulations which return the time
> course of the voltage across a neuronal membrane. These voltages exhibit
> sharp peaks of which he needs to know the position (i.e. the time or the
> time between two spikes).
> I'm posting this in comp.soft-sys.math.mathematica and
> since he uses Mathematica. So he'd like to have some package finding all
> the peaks in an automated fashion. But if there is any other program which
> is suited to get those intervals it will be fine as well.
> We are using Macs and Unix-Machines in our Lab.
> Any suggestions will be appreciated.
> Thanks in advance,
> Tobias


The answer depends on how clean a signal one is dealing with and how 
sophisticated one wants to get. For very clean signals and some good, 
reliable guess at the interval between the pulses, one might just use 
Position[ intervalLookedAt, Max[intervalLookedAt] ] or such like. Even 
simpler, if one has single-point spikes clearly above a noise level, 
just Chop[] the data with a safe cutoff value and find the Position[] 
of the remaining nonzero datapoints.

Using a bit more sophistication and still clean data, try spectral 
division deconvolution with a "standard" pulse (Mathematica's 
Fourier[] and InverseFourier[] can be adapted for that. 
Crosscorrelation with a "standard" pulse also might work.

More "state of the art" (I guess), and probably the best approach for 
noisy data is using wavelet transforms for filtering/extraction and 
then use some simpler peak finding method. (Wavelet.m is now available 
on MathSource, I believe. It was described in TMJ5(1):74-81.


Harald Berndt,                                University of California
Research Specialist                         Forest Products Laboratory

Phone:	510-215-4224                                FAX:			510-215-4299


  • Prev by Date: Re: Surface plot with unevenly spaced coordinate
  • Next by Date: MonteCarlo Integration
  • Previous by thread: Free differential calculus
  • Next by thread: Re: Q: Getting interspike intervals in neuronal firing patterns