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      Canonical computations of cerebral cortex

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      Current opinion in neurobiology

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          Abstract

          The idea that there is a fundamental cortical circuit that performs canonical computations remains compelling though far from proven. Here we review evidence for two canonical operations within sensory cortical areas: a feedforward computation of selectivity; and a recurrent computation of gain in which, given sufficiently strong external input, perhaps from multiple sources, intracortical input largely, but not completely, cancels this external input. This operation leads to many characteristic cortical nonlinearities in integrating multiple stimuli. The cortical computation must combine such local processing with hierarchical processing across areas. We point to important changes in moving from sensory cortex to motor and frontal cortex and the possibility of substantial differences between cortex in rodents vs. species with columnar organization of selectivity.

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          Contributors
          Journal
          9111376
          2201
          Curr Opin Neurobiol
          Curr. Opin. Neurobiol.
          Current opinion in neurobiology
          0959-4388
          1873-6882
          7 July 2016
          08 February 2016
          April 2016
          01 April 2017
          : 37
          : 75-84
          Affiliations
          Center for Theoretical Neuroscience, Department of Neuroscience, Swartz Program in Theoretical Neuroscience, Kavli Institute for Brain Science, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032-2695, United States
          Author notes
          Corresponding author: Miller, Kenneth D, ( ken@ 123456neurotheory.columbia.edu )
          Article
          PMC4944655 PMC4944655 4944655 nihpa799795
          10.1016/j.conb.2016.01.008
          4944655
          26868041
          edb2e537-5c6a-4b2a-ae42-9274009a9674
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