Computational and Theoretical Neuroscience Seminar

September 24, 2020 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Wulfram Gerstner

Duke Computational and Theoretical Neuroscience Group welcomes Wulfram Gerstner, Chair for Computational Neuroscience at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), for his Zoom seminar "Neo-Hebbian three-factor rules of synaptic plasticity, eligibility traces and surprise."
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Abstract: Hebbbian learning has been the dominant paradigm of synaptic plasticity. Hebbian learning works with two factors, i.e., a combination of presynaptic spike arrivals with postsynaptic activation. In a more general theory, Hebbian learning just sets an eligibility trace and marks the synapse as being ready for change, but a third factor is needed to turn the potential plasticity into an actual change of synaptic weight. In this talk I discuss experimental and theoretical evidence supporting such a framework: In biology, the third factor could be provided by broadly projecting neuromodulators. In models, the third factor could be not just moments of reward, but also moments of surprise.