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Automatic objective thresholding to detect neuronal action potentials

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 2016 24th European Signal Processing Conference (EUSIPCO)
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-9928-6265-7
Publication statusPublished - 29 Aug 2016
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventEuropean Signal Processing Conference -
Duration: 1 Jan 1900 → …

Publication series

ISSN (Electronic)2076-1465


ConferenceEuropean Signal Processing Conference
Period1/01/00 → …


In this paper, we introduce a fully objective method to set thresholds (THs) for neuronal action potential spike detection from extracellular field potential signals. Although several more sophisticated methods exist, thresholding is still the most used spike detection method. In general, it is employed by setting a TH as per convention or operator decision, and without considering either the undetected or spurious spikes. Here, we demonstrate with both simulations and real microelectrode measurement data that our method can fully automatically and objectively yield THs comparable to those set by an expert operator. A Matlab function implementation of the method is described, and provided freely in Matlab Central File Exchange.

ASJC Scopus subject areas


  • Neuronal action potential, Thresholding, Spike detection, Microelectrode array, Electric field potential

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland

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