Synaptic transmission is the mechanism of information transfer from one neuron to another (or from a neuron to a muscle or to an endocrine cell). An important step in this physiological process is the stochastic release of neurotransmitter from vesicles that fuse with the presynaptic membrane and spill their contents into the synaptic cleft. We are concerned here with the formulation, analysis, and simulation of a mathematical model that describes the stochastic docking, undocking, and release of synaptic vesicles and their effect on synaptic signal transmission. The focus of this talk is on the parameter p_0, the probability of release for each docked vesicle when an action potential arrives. We study the influence of this parameter on the statistics of the release process and on the theoretical capability of the model synapse in reconstructing various desired outputs based on the timing and amount of neurotransmitter release. This theoretical capability is assessed by formulating and solving an optimal filtering problem. Methods for parameter identification are proposed and applied to simulated data. This is joint work done in collaboration with Charles S. Peskin at the Courant Institute, New York University.

About Applied and computational maths seminars

Our seminars bring together UQ's applied and computational mathematics communities.

UQ and invited scientists deliver the presentations, which are informal and promote discussion.

We welcome suggestions for speakers and topics from staff, students and visitors, and encourage students to share their work.

Our seminars are held on Thursdays from 3pm to 4pm in the Priestley Building (Building 67), Room 442.

To suggest a topic or speaker, and for more information, contact Dr Dietmar Oelz or Dr Fred Roosta-Khoransani.


Priestley #67