Bracciali A, Brunelli M, Cataldo E & Degano P (2007) Expressive models for synaptic plasticity. In: Calder M & Gilmore S (eds.) Computational Methods in Systems Biology. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 4695. International Conference CMSB 2007, Edinburgh, Scotland, 20.09.2007-21.09.2007. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, pp. 152-167. http://conferences.inf.ed.ac.uk/cmsb07/; https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-75140-3_11
Abstract We explore some presynaptic mechanisms of the calyx of Held synapse through a stochastic model. The model, drawn from a kinetic approach developed in literature, exploits process calculi as formal grounds, enjoys nice compositional properties, has a direct computational implementation that supports simulation trials, and, to our knowledge, represents the first process calculi based model of a presynaptic terminal. Simulation results have shown coherence with experimental data and robustness against sensitivity analysis. The core model has been extended in order to address some issues related to open problems: we discuss hypotheses on short-term synaptic enhancement (facilitation) and depression, i.e. plasticity mechanism that are related to memory and learning. The two aims of our work, i.e. addressing neural mechanisms and validating and possibly improving, process calculi based modeling techniques are discussed throughout the paper, together with the results of experiments.