Neuronal Firing Rate Homeostasis Is Inhibited by Sleep and Promoted by Wake

Keith B. Hengen, Alejandro Torrado Pacheco, James N. McGregor, Stephen D. Van Hooser, Gina G. Turrigiano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

188 Scopus citations


Summary Homeostatic mechanisms stabilize neural circuit function by keeping firing rates within a set-point range, but whether this process is gated by brain state is unknown. Here, we monitored firing rate homeostasis in individual visual cortical neurons in freely behaving rats as they cycled between sleep and wake states. When neuronal firing rates were perturbed by visual deprivation, they gradually returned to a precise, cell-autonomous set point during periods of active wake, with lengthening of the wake period enhancing firing rate rebound. Unexpectedly, this resetting of neuronal firing was suppressed during sleep. This raises the possibility that memory consolidation or other sleep-dependent processes are vulnerable to interference from homeostatic plasticity mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-191
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 24 2016


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