Prof. Upinder S. Bhalla - Mechanisms for temporal tuning
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Mechanisms for temporal tuning and filtering by postsynaptic signaling pathways.
Author: Upinder S. Bhalla: National Centre for Biological Sciences
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Networks of signaling pathways perform complex temporal decoding functions in diverse biological systems, including the synapse, development, and bacterial chemotaxis. This paper examines temporal filtering and tuning properties of synaptic signaling pathways as a possible substrate for emergent temporal decoding. A mass action kinetic model of 16 synaptic signaling pathways was used to dissect out the contribution of these pathways in linear cascades and when coupled to form a network. The model predicts two primary mechanisms of temporal tuning of pathways: a weighted summation of responses of pathways with different timings, and the presence of biochemical feedback loop(s) with emergent dynamics. Regulatory inputs act differently on these two tuning mechanisms. In the first case, regulators act like a gain-control on pathways with different intrinsic tuning. In the case of feedback loops, the temporal properties of the loop itself are changed. These basic tuning mechanisms may underlie specialized temporal tuning functions in more complex signaling systems in biology.