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2016 Feb 1;12(2):e1004720. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1004720. eCollection 2016.

Recovery of Dynamics and Function in Spiking Neural Networks with Closed-Loop Control.


There is a growing interest in developing novel brain stimulation methods to control disease-related aberrant neural activity and to address basic neuroscience questions. Conventional methods for manipulating brain activity rely on open-loop approaches that usually lead to excessive stimulation and, crucially, do not restore the original computations performed by the network. Thus, they are often accompanied by undesired side-effects. Here, we introduce delayed feedback control (DFC), a conceptually simple but effective method, to control pathological oscillations in spiking neural networks (SNNs). Using mathematical analysis and numerical simulations we show that DFC can restore a wide range of aberrant network dynamics either by suppressing or enhancing synchronous irregular activity. Importantly, DFC, besides steering the system back to a healthy state, also recovers the computations performed by the underlying network. Finally, using our theory we identify the role of single neuron and synapse properties in determining the stability of the closed-loop system.

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