Collaborators and I have a new paper in Nature Neuroscience: A hierarchy of intrinsic timescales across primate cortex. In collaboration with electrophysiologists in six labs, this project analyzed the timescales of intrinsic fluctuations in neural activity across seven cortical areas and found that these timescales increase along the cortical hierarchy. We propose that these differential timescales may reflect functional specialization of cortical circuitry. The abstract is below:
Specialization and hierarchy are organizing principles for primate cortex, yet there is little direct evidence for how cortical areas are specialized in the temporal domain. We measured timescales of intrinsic fluctuations in spiking activity across areas and found a hierarchical ordering, with sensory and prefrontal areas exhibiting shorter and longer timescales, respectively. On the basis of our findings, we suggest that intrinsic timescales reflect areal specialization for task-relevant computations over multiple temporal ranges.