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NeurogastronomyHow the Brain Creates Flavor and Why It Matters$
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Gordon Shepherd

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231159111

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231159111.001.0001

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Enhancing the Image

Enhancing the Image

(p.92) Chapter Ten Enhancing the Image

Gordon M. Shepherd

Columbia University Press

There are two levels of processing in the olfactory bulb. The first consists of the glomerular layer, which forms an image representing the smell molecules and performs signal-to-noise operations and lateral interactions to begin the processing of the image. The image is then sent to the second level within the olfactory bulb. The cells that connect these two levels collect the input in their dendritic branches in the glomerulus, transfer the processed signal to the next level through a long primary dendrite, and send it out through their long axon to the olfactory cortex. However, at least two operations are required before the image can be sent further. First, there must be coordination with all other glomerular modules. Second, lateral inhibition between coordinated glomerular modules must be carried out. The granule cell is key to this coordinated inhibitory processing, whose function is to format the odor image for output to the next stage, the olfactory cortex. This chapter discusses how the granule cell does it.

Keywords:   smell, olfactory bulb, glomerular layer, glomerulus, granule cell, inhibitory processing, odor image, image processing, human brain

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