A simple program for simulating the responses of neurons with arbitrarily structured and active dendritic trees

Yidao Cai, Edward J. Walsh, Joann McGee

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4 Scopus citations


We describe a simple program to simulate neural responses. This program is based on the compartmental approach, in which all compartments of a neuron (i.e. axon, soma or dendrite) are represented by the same basic electrical structure. A parameter file is used to store the model parameters, including the nonlinear channel characteristics of each compartment. The model is then automatically configured according to the values specified in the parameter file. The computation of the conductance of:each active channel over time is handled by a unique subroutine optimized according to the kinetics of each channel. The equations for arbitrarily structured trees are solved implicitly using a simple algorithm similar to that of Hines (Hines, M. (1984) Int. J. Biomed. Comput., 15:69-76). The output of the model uses PostScript format. The advantage of this program is that it is small in size, simple to use, efficient, and is platform independent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-35
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Methods
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jun 6 1997



  • Active
  • Compartment model
  • Dentritic tree
  • Program

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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