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Bayesian Bi-clustering of Neural Spiking Activity with Latent Structures

Ganchao Wei

Halle B #64
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Wed 8 May 7:30 a.m. PDT — 9:30 a.m. PDT


Modern neural recording techniques allow neuroscientists to obtain spiking activity of multiple neurons from different brain regions over long time periods, which requires new statistical methods to be developed for understanding structure of the large-scale data. In this paper, we develop a bi-clustering method to cluster the neural spiking activity spatially and temporally, according to their low-dimensional latent structures. The spatial (neuron) clusters are defined by the latent trajectories within each neural population, while the temporal (state) clusters are defined by (populationally) synchronous local linear dynamics shared with different periods. To flexibly extract the bi-clustering structure, we build the model non-parametrically, and develop an efficient Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm to sample the posterior distributions of model parameters. Validating our proposed MCMC algorithm through simulations, we find the method can recover unknown parameters and true bi-clustering structures successfully. We then apply the proposed bi-clustering method to multi-regional neural recordings under different experiment settings, where we find that simultaneously considering latent trajectories and spatial-temporal clustering structures can provide us with a more accurate and interpretable result. Overall, the proposed method provides scientific insights for large-scale (counting) time series with elongated recording periods, and it can potentially have application beyond neuroscience.

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