Optimal entrainment of heterogeneous noisy neurons

Dan Wilson, Abbey B. Holt, Theoden I. Netoff, Jeff Moehlis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


We develop a methodology to design a stimulus optimized to entrain nonlinear, noisy limit cycle oscillators with uncertain properties. Conditions are derived which guarantee that the stimulus will entrain the oscillators despite these uncertainties. Using these conditions, we develop an energy optimal control strategy to design an efficient entraining stimulus and apply it to numerical models of noisy phase oscillators and to in vitro hippocampal neurons. In both instances, the optimal stimuli outperform other similar but suboptimal entraining stimuli. Because this control strategy explicitly accounts for both noise and inherent uncertainty of model parameters, it could have experimental relevance to neural circuits where robust spike timing plays an important role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number00192
JournalFrontiers in Neuroscience
Issue numberMAY
StatePublished - 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Wilson, Holt, Netoff and Moehlis.


  • Entrainment
  • Noisy neurons
  • Noisy oscillators
  • Optimal control theory
  • Uncertainty


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