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You are here: Home Data Sets Prefrontal Cortex (PFC) pfc-1 About pfc-1.

About pfc-1.

Description of dataset pfc-1 (prefrontal cortex 1).

Summary of the data

Single-unit neural responses were recorded from areas mPFC (121 single units) and primary auditory cortex (99 single units) while rats were performing either a stimulus selection task. In this task, the rat heard two simultaneous sounds, but had to select and respond only to one of them. Thus, the same pair of auditory stimuli could produce a different behavioral response, depending on the trial. This has some similarities with the way in which a human can pay attention to a single voice at a crowded cocktail party. Single-unit activity in both mPFC and A1 encoded the task selection rule (that is, which sound should be selected), especially in the period of time immediately preceding the stimulus. Also, electrically disrupting mPFC significantly impaired task performance. Finally, a network simulation shows how simple task-specific excitation could underlie stimulus selection, even without reweighting synapses or changing receptive fields. Details of the experiments are described in:

Rodgers CC, DeWeese MR. “Neural correlates of task switching in prefrontal cortex and primary auditory cortex in a novel stimulus selection task for rodents.” Neuron. 2014 Jun 4;82(5):1157-70. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2014.04.031.

Format of the data

For each recording session there is a file that has the spike times for all the units recorded in that session, and two other files that specify the stimuli and behavioral response and other events that occurred during the session. Instructions for loading these files into Python are provided. Details about the data files are given in document crcns_pfc-1_data_description.pdf.  Total size (compressed) of the data is about 327 MB. 

Conditions for usage of this data in publications

If you publish any work using the data, please cite the publication above and also cite the data set in the following recommended format:

Rodgers CC, DeWeese MR. (2014); Spiking responses of neurons in rodent prefrontal cortex and auditory cortex during a novel stimulus selection task.

The above citation uses a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) which is assigned to the data set.  The DOI was created using DataCite ( and the California Digital Library, "EZID" system (

How to download the data

Data may be downloaded from:
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Getting help using the data

If you have questions about using the data, please post them on the forum for using data sets.

Documentation file

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