The basic unit of computation in the brain is the neuron, which has a cellular machinery that can generate sudden and brief electrical discharges (action potentials) in response to small electrical stimulations.Find out more
The cerebral cortex is characterized by a high density of synaptic connections between neurons of the local circuit. If this connectivity is sufficiently strong and dense, the transient activation of the circuit can take it to a state in which the neurons of the network feedback repeatedly onto each other, establishing a state of persistent activation, sustained autonomously by the circuit.
This persistent activity that is maintained in the local circuit of the prefrontal cortex due to its dense connectivity could therefore be the neural substrate of working memory at the circuit level.
When a neuron 'fires' an action potential, it transmits this signal to other neighboring neurons (postsynaptic neurons) through chemical contacts (synapse).
If one neuron receives enough synaptic inputs within a small temporal window, it will reach its firing threshold and it will generate a new action potential.Find out more