Or can they fire few times then pause and again, firefew times and pause periodically? If the second case happens then do we know if the neurons that fire in synchronity fire the same number of times at each wave cycle?

  • $\begingroup$ Could you narrow down the question to a neural mechanism? I know of oscillatory systems that generate bursting behavior, but that doesn't mean it is always so. Without narrowing down the scope, this question is too broad. Until edited I vote to close. Please ping me (@Christiaan) after edits and I'll remove the vote. I'm more than happy to answer too! Interesting material :D $\endgroup$ – AliceD Feb 5 '16 at 21:14
  • $\begingroup$ @Christiaan Changing from neural oscillation to neural mechanism would "enlarge" the question no? I don't understand your suggestion. I just edited the question differently. I want to talk about group oscillations that propagate. I understand there can possibly be different answers depending on the type of wave. Slow wave having more chance to have randomn firing and thus less chance to have only one spike at each cycle. But the question could be: do mechanisms that create neural waves synchronize action potentials between neurons or do they only synchronize activity between neurons? $\endgroup$ – borilla Feb 6 '16 at 1:32
  • $\begingroup$ That last sentence in your comment doesn't makes sense and quite frankly I lost you here. However, the question is quite clear and there is an answer so I hope that'll answer your question. +1d both questions. Thanks for your edits. $\endgroup$ – AliceD Feb 6 '16 at 6:42

Probably, the "oscillation" refers to the signals of eeg/ecog/meg? If this is the case, then the answer is NO, individual neurons in a local network are firing with much higher rate then the frequency of the oscillatory field produced by the network. (Otherwise, the oscillations would look more like a ripples, not like the periodic function.) The exact number of spikes of any given individual neuron is vary over time within a certain range and most probably different from one cycle of the network-level oscillation to another.

In general, individual neuronal activity is probabilistic, not deterministic. So, any natural situation is changing the probability of the spike, but it is never 100% predictable.

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  • $\begingroup$ Any references you can add to this to allow users to background-read on this topic? $\endgroup$ – AliceD Feb 6 '16 at 6:45
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    $\begingroup$ My personal recommendation will be "Buzsaki, G., Anastassiou, C., & Koch, C. (2012). The origin of extracellular fields and currents — EEG, ECoG, LFP and spikes. Nature Reviews Neuroscience" $\endgroup$ – NovemberSierra Feb 6 '16 at 17:15
  • $\begingroup$ +1 perhaps you could add the ref and link to the answer $\endgroup$ – AliceD Feb 6 '16 at 17:21

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