%0 Journal Article
%A Ishida, Itzel G.
%A Sethi, Sachin
%A Mohren, Thomas L.
%A Abbott, L.F.
%A Maimon, Gaby
%T Neuronal calcium spikes enable vector inversion in the *Drosophila* brain
%D 2023
%R 10.1101/2023.11.24.568537
%J bioRxiv
%P 2023.11.24.568537
%X A typical neuron signals to downstream cells when it is depolarized and firing sodium spikes. Some neurons, however, also fire calcium spikes when hyperpolarized. The function of such bidirectional signaling remains unclear in most circuits. Here we show how a neuron class that participates in vector computation in the fly central complex employs hyperpolarization-elicited calcium spikes to invert two-dimensional mathematical vectors. When cells switch from firing sodium to calcium spikes, this leads to a ∼180° realignment between the vector encoded in the neuronal population and the fly’s internal heading signal, thus inverting the vector. We show that the calcium spikes rely on the T-type calcium channel Ca-a1T, and argue, via analytical and experimental approaches, that these spikes enable vector computations in portions of angular space that would otherwise be inaccessible. These results reveal a seamless interaction between molecular, cellular and circuit properties for implementing vector math in the brain.Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest.
%U https://www.biorxiv.org/content/biorxiv/early/2023/11/28/2023.11.24.568537.full.pdf