Homeostasis at multiple spatial and temporal scales
Houweling, A. R., and Van Ooyen, A. (2008). In: Squire, L., ed. New Encyclopedia of Neuroscience. Amsterdam: Elsevier Press. [Full text: PDF]
Neural circuits are constantly perturbed throughout life by changes in synaptic strength, connectivity, morphology, sensory input and protein turnover. When left unchecked, these disturbances will alter neural activity levels beyond the range where neural circuits can operate properly. A variety of mechanisms operating at different spatial and temporal scales have been suggested to contribute to the homeostasis of neural activity. Important questions that remain to be answered involve the nature of the set point of such homeostasis and whether synaptic and cellular mechanisms are capable of achieving homeostasis of activity at the network level.