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P2170-033 IBM i2 Intelligence Technical Mastery Test v1

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P2170-033 exam Dumps Source : IBM i2 Intelligence Technical Mastery Test v1

Test Code : P2170-033
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IBM is getting ready to close its $34 billion acquisition of crimson Hat, but Wall road has 'true query marks' after its 'mediocre' quarter | killexams.com Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

Analysts say that IBM delivered a "mediocre" quarter, however now all eyes are on its coming near near $34 billion acquisition of pink Hat and no matter if IBM's massive wager will repay.

On Tuesday, IBM introduced it generated $18.18 billion in income this past quarter, missing analysts' expectations of $18.fifty one billion. the following day, IBM's stock was down four%.

IBM's multibillion-dollar acquisition received the business lots of consideration, however hasn't resolved primary questions about its huge-graphic imaginative and prescient and strategy.

"IBM these days, they go to a hockey online game wearing a soccer uniform," Marty Wolf, the founder and president of the mergers and acquisitions advisory enterprise Martinwolf, told company Insider. "they are growing slower, their margins are less. Their business mannequin is simply too complex. They need to deconsolidate. Their perception is, they're searching like a rhino in a box of cheetahs."

As IBM prepares to shut its pink Hat acquisition within the coming quarters, the business has the improvement of a "wait and notice" angle from traders, Katy Ring, a research director for IT features at the 451 community, talked about.

particularly, IBM is having a bet on hybrid cloud, which makes it possible for corporations to run their workloads each on the general public cloud and on on-premise statistics facilities. whereas pink Hat might be an important part of doubling down on this method, that by myself might not support IBM at ease the cloud company, analysts say.

"I suppose IBM has got to make hybrid cloud work as a methodology with the intention to continue to be technically principal within the longer term," Ring referred to. "It is familiar with huge enterprise IT more suitable than every other cloud company, and so, may doubtlessly emerge as a a good deal enhanced twenty first century service issuer by using taking open source utility to its big blue heart."

'every little thing in the kitchen sink'

IBM observed its cloud business grew 10% yr-over-yr, generating salary of $19.5 billion. despite the fact, analysts say that after IBM studies cloud enterprise, it can additionally lump in different facets that aren't necessarily cloud purposes and cloud services however are concerning cloud, equivalent to consulting and hardware.

examine greater: IBM stock sinks 3% after hours after lacking Wall highway expectations on revenue

And the growth still lags the performance of other cloud providers: Microsoft Azure grew seventy six% from a yr in the past, and Amazon web services grew forty five%.

"they have an 'everything in the kitchen sink' strategy to cloud," Andrew Bartels, vice chairman and important analyst at Forrester, told business Insider. "They toss every little thing that could be concerning cloud into that bucket. there's lots of ambiguity and probably misdirection which is in their cloud numbers."

IBM's cloud and cognitive-software unit itself was down 2%, producing revenues of $5 billion, and analysts say this is as a result of IBM is facing fierce competition from other cloud providers, even in synthetic intelligence.

"I think this indicates that corporations like Microsoft and Google and Amazon are gaining extra cognitive answer company," Maribel Lopez, the founder and primary analyst at Lopez analysis, told enterprise Insider. "I think IBM should get forward of that vogue and ensure they don't lose that marketplace to the other massive cloud suppliers."

Investing.com senior analyst Haris Anwar pointed out IBM's turnaround method "remains very tons a piece in growth," as all its segments either declined or were flat.

"That was a bit disappointing for buyers," Anwar instructed enterprise Insider. "They were anticipating they'll see some clear advancements, however this is certainly no longer the case. they may be still struggling to compete in this cloud-computing section in which Amazon and Microsoft had a fine run."

That being spoke of, this lack of increase may no longer necessarily be certain to IBM, Bartels mentioned. On the downside, it could be reflective of the market as an entire as other tech companies document profits this month.

"It could smartly be that IBM is a harbinger of disappointing profits to come of other vendors in the coming weeks," Bartels mentioned.

and there's nevertheless some positives, John Roy, americas lead analyst, stated. He expects cloud and cognitive functions at IBM to develop, and the business will also improvement from removing underperforming belongings of the business that slow down the enterprise.

"they're doing greater work in synthetic intelligence and confidently i could hear extra about that," Roy said.

'actual question marks'

Analysts say the arriving quarters might be critical for IBM because it closes its acquisition of purple Hat. Analysts predict this could aid IBM generate salary.

as soon as the deal closes, IBM can focus on technical integrations and creating a product portfolio that contains purple Hat's choices — no longer to point out that there could be a cultural adjustment.

Wolf pointed out he has "real question marks" about this.

"a lot of people who work at pink Hat are not going to be that excited to work at IBM," Wolf mentioned. "there's a mixture thing. crimson Hat looks like a small piece of IBM's company. one of the most motives americans like working at purple Hat is since it's now not a large conglomerate."

besides the fact that children, analysts say, the query is whether the IBM salesforce can sell pink Hat and if IBM features can benefit from pink Hat being a part of the enterprise. It might take as a minimum two quarters for that to happen.

Ring believes the market sentiment toward IBM remains advantageous, however the business will should make "some daring moves."

"The purple Hat acquisition could be very decent for IBM if it takes on board the open supply lifestyle that the enterprise brings to IBM and its consumers," Ring referred to. "It can be a disaster if IBM doesn't adapt its tradition without delay ample to drag through this improvement for commercial enterprise consumers."


Sandvik and IBM herald the Fourth Industrial Revolution to the Mining industry with IBM Watson | killexams.com Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

Barminco, Hindustan Zinc, Petra Diamonds and Vedanta Zinc foreign tap into the Sandvik and IBM relationship to enhance operations and security in underground challenging-rock mining

Award-successful OptiMine® Analytics with IBM Watson IoT for predictive maintenance and optimization, analyzes, learns and communicates with equipment working lots of ft underground

TAMPERE, Finland and ARMONK, N.Y., April 1, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Joint consumers of IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Sandvik Mining and Rock know-how, one of the vital world's largest top class mining gadget producers, are tapping the powers of IoT, advanced analytics and synthetic intelligence to recognise protection, maintenance, productivity and operational efficiency.

The mining and rock excavation trade is beneath growing power to enhance the world provide of minerals to satisfy the wants and expectations of a impulsively rising world population. This commonly requires extracting from expanding superior depths, which can make it complex to talk and act as critical when device fails or needs to be serviced.

OptiMine® Analytics transforms facts into procedure improvements by the use of predictive insights and actionable dashboards embedded into operation management methods. the usage of the analytics capabilities from IBM Watson IoT, this information administration answer permits mining groups to combine gadget and application data from disparate sources in true-time, inspecting patterns within the facts to aid improve availability, utilization and efficiency.

via a collection of IBM Design considering workshops, IBM and Sandvik work with valued clientele to increase a framework to shape choices round statistics pushed productivity and predictive maintenance. using the Watson IoT expertise, Sandvik and IBM have jointly created a platform able to conform to the stringent reliability and protection necessities of mining operations. Predictive renovation technology leveraging IoT sensor records has additionally been delivered as part of this platform.

"Proactively identifying protection needs earlier than something breaks is resulting in huge can charge and time discounts," referred to Patrick Murphy, president, Rock Drills & applied sciences, Sandvik. "Our award-successful OptiMine® Analytics with IBM Watson IoT options present their clients a more comprehensive view of their operations for smarter, safer and extra productive work."

Sandvik and IBM consumers similar to Petra Diamonds and Barminco are using IoT to support reduce miner exposure to hostile work environments and raise safeguard.

"Our desirable priority is the security of their employees and if a machine fails underground, they need immediate perception into what's occurring in that tunnel," spoke of Luctor Roode, govt operations at Petra Diamonds. "With the answer from Sandvik and IBM, they now have real-time information that enables us to immediately establish the root cause of the issue and act consequently." 

"Leveraging statistics is turn into increasingly effective throughout the mining sector. through analytics, computing device gaining knowledge of and AI, they are seeing new percentages for expanded operational efficiency," noted Paul Muller, chief executive officer, Barminco. "Our partnership with Sandvik's OptiMine® Analytics permits us to fast-music their efforts, leveraging Sandvik's entire-of-fleet facts and innate desktop skills."

OptiMine® Analytics will even be used by Vedanta Zinc overseas's Black Mountain Mining (BMM) operations in South Africa's Northern Cape Province, to speed up facts-driven operations for safety, effectivity and productivity for trucks, loaders and drills. additionally, Hindustan Zinc, one of the crucial world's largest integrated producers of zinc, lead and silver has tapped Sandvik to enforce an incredible digital transformation at its Sindesar Khurd Mine, India, to make sure all required infrastructure and structures can obtain world-classification mining protection, efficiency and productivity.

"Sensors and tracking techniques for asset management is only the beginning when it involves how synthetic intelligence will disrupt the mining business," observed Jay Bellissimo, prevalent supervisor, Cognitive manner Transformation, IBM world company functions. "growing a solution that turns the statistics into actionable insights is a delicate rely. It requires an interdisciplinary effort spanning throughout mining expertise, application engineering and facts science. IBM and Sandvik are now on direction to support seriously change the mining value chain with the fusion of cognitive capabilities into miners business and working tactics."

Story continues

Sandvik has been providing solutions within the mining automation business for decades, with self sustaining operations in more than 60 mines on six continents. This footprint is an incredible asset to the technique optimization solutions in greater and better demand. For its half, IBM has been working with leading mining consumers to infuse cognitive capabilities in their enterprise and working procedures, growing the Cognitive price Chain for Mining. This multidisciplinary method leverages and expands on the ideas of the fourth industrial revolution by helping miners obtain new efficiency discounts, with no need to make tremendous-scale capital investments.  

Sandvik neighborhood Sandvik is a excessive-tech and international engineering neighborhood providing products and functions that boost consumer productivity, profitability and defense. They dangle world-main positions in chosen areas – equipment and tooling methods for steel reducing; equipment and equipment, service and technical options for the mining industry and rock excavation in the building trade; items in advanced stainless steels and special alloys as well as items for industrial heating. In 2018, the community had about 42,000 personnel and revenues of about one hundred billion SEK in more than a hundred and sixty international locations within carrying on with operations.

Sandvik Mining and Rock expertise Sandvik Mining and Rock technology is a enterprise area within the Sandvik community and a world leading enterprise of gadget and tools, provider and technical solutions for the mining and building industries. utility areas include rock drilling, rock slicing, crushing and screening, loading and hauling, tunneling, quarrying and breaking and demolition. In 2018, revenue have been about 43 billion SEK with about 15,000 employees in carrying on with operations.

About IBM For extra tips about IBM capabilities please visit: https://www.ibm.com/capabilities

Contact:Jeannine Kilbride1-860-997-6277jkilbri@us.ibm.com

IBM corporation logo. (PRNewsfoto/IBM)

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IBM, PathFactory sign On as Lead Sponsors for the marketing artificial Intelligence convention (MAICON) | killexams.com Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

CLEVELAND, April 18, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- marketing synthetic Intelligence Institute introduced the first circular of advertising and marketing synthetic Intelligence convention (MAICON) sponsors, that includes IBM and PathFactory because the top-stage, Platinum companions. other experience sponsors encompass Conversica, HubSpot, MarketMuse, PR 20/20 and Vennli.

MAICON takes vicinity July sixteen - 18, 2019 on the Huntington conference center of Cleveland. The conference aspects more than forty classes designed to aid marketing leaders understand, pilot and scale AI.

There can be greater than 60 audio system, including presenters from Amazon, Conversica, supply Thornton, HubSpot, IBM, MIT expertise review, Publicis Sapient, SoftBank Robotics, The Natori enterprise and Yext.

The adventure generally caters to non-technical audiences, that means attendees will not have backgrounds in analytics, facts science, or programming to consider and observe what they gain knowledge of.

"there is a enormous shift going on in advertising and marketing this is being accelerated by AI," stated Paul Roetzer, founder and CEO, advertising synthetic Intelligence Institute. "consumers are disturbing stronger personalization, technology is getting smarter, career paths are evolving, and brands are facing mounting challenges to seriously change."

"entrepreneurs can take a seat returned and watch for the world to exchange round them, or they can embrace AI to create a competitive potential. MAICON is for those that choose to take motion, and it is made feasible by means of the assist of IBM, PathFactory and the relaxation of their awesome sponsors," brought Roetzer.

visit www.MAICON.ai for full event details. Register with the aid of June 3 to take talents of early fowl pricing.

About advertising artificial Intelligence Institute

PR 20/20 launched advertising synthetic Intelligence Institute in 2016 with a mission to make AI approachable and actionable for marketers through content material, training and events, together with the marketing artificial Intelligence conference (MAICON).

View fashioned content material:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ibm-pathfactory-signal-on-as-lead-sponsors-for-the-advertising and marketing-artificial-intelligence-convention-maicon-300834607.html

source marketing artificial Intelligence Institute

Copyright (C) 2019 PR Newswire. All rights reserved


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Google AI Beats Grandmaster in First 'Go' Showdown | killexams.com real questions and Pass4sure dumps

A Google-developed supercomputer stunned South Korean Go grandmaster Lee Se-Dol by taking the first game of a five-match showdown between man and machine in Seoul on Wednesday.

After about 3-1/2 hours of play, Lee, one of the greatest players of the ancient board game in the modern era, resigned when it became clear the AlphaGo computer had taken an unassailable lead.

"I was shocked by the result," Lee acknowledged afterwards.

"AlphaGo made some moves that no human would ever make. It really surprised me," he said, adding that the computer had shut out the game "in a perfect manner."

Despite the shock loss, Lee said he had no regrets and was looking forward to the remaining four matches.

"I had some failures in the early stages today so if I improve on this, I think I still have some chance to win," he said.

Although the computer had whitewashed European champion Fan Hui 5-0 last October, it had been expected to struggle against 33-year-old Lee, who has topped the world rankings for most of the past decade.

But its creators had been bullish going into the match at the Four Seasons hotel in the South Korean capital, saying the computer, which employs algorithms that allow it to learn and improve from matchplay experience, was even stronger than when it took on Fan.

"We are very, very excited by this historic moment and very, very pleased with how AlphaGo performed," Demis Hassabis, the CEO of AlphaGo developer DeepMind, said after the victory.

"We think that Lee will come up with new strategies and... try some different things tomorrow. We'll have to see how AlphaGo will deal with it," Hassabis said.

The match-up sparked enough interest to warrant an Internet live-stream as well as live TV broadcasts in South Korea, China and Japan.

"I was shocked. Everyone was," said Kim Seong-Ryong, a Korean Go commentator and professional player.

"Something none of us thought would happen has just happened."

The five-day battle for supremacy between man and machine has been seen as a major test of what scientists and engineers have achieved in the sphere of Artificial Intelligence over the past 10 years or so.

The most famous A.I. victory to date came in 1997, when the IBM-developed supercomputer Deep Blue beat the then-world class chess champion Garry Kasparov.

But experts say Go presents an entirely different challenge as the complexity of the game and almost incalculable number of move options mean that the computer must be capable of human-like "intuition" to prevail.

"Go really is their Mount Everest," said Hassabis, adding that the public response to the clash with Lee had been "far bigger than they expected."

When Lee first accepted the A.I. challenge, he had confidently predicted a clear-cut win, saying that AlphaGo's performance against Fan had been nowhere near good enough to defeat him.

But the grandmaster had confessed to some pre-match nerves on Tuesday.

Technical Breakthrough Go involves two players alternately laying black and white stones on a checkerboard-like grid of 19 lines by 19 lines. The winner is the player who manages to seal off more territory.

The game reputedly has more possible board configurations than there are atoms in the Universe, and mastery by a computer was thought to be at least a decade away until the victory over Fan last year.

Creating "general" or multi-purpose, rather than "narrow," task-specific intelligence, is the ultimate goal in A.I. -- something resembling human reasoning based on a variety of inputs, and self-learning from experience In the case of Go, Google developers realized a more "human-like" approach would win over brute computing power.

AlphaGo uses two sets of "deep neural networks" containing millions of connections similar to neurons in the brain.

It is able to predict a winner from each move, thus reducing the search base to manageable levels -- something co-creator David Silver has described as "more akin to imagination."


Multisensory integration in rodent tactile but not visual thalamus | killexams.com real questions and Pass4sure dumps

Evoked potentials in VPM and dLGN as a result of unimodal versus bimodal visual-tactile stimulation

Throughout the study they use the following terms as defined here: unimodal describes a modality-specific stimulus of one single sensory modality; cross-modal describes a modality non-specific stimulus; bimodal describes two co-occurring stimuli from different sensory modalities, e.g. simultaneous visual and tactile stimulation; multisensory integration describes a process involving multisensory processing that leads to a different neural response after bimodal when compared to unimodal stimulation (i.e. a statistically significant difference in the rate and/or temporal pattern of spiking activity at the level of single neurons, or a statistically significant difference of neural activity at subthreshold/local field potential (LFP) level).

To get first insights into the convergence of visual and tactile information in FO thalamus, they assessed the impact of unimodal and bimodal stimulation on the LFP in VPM and dLGN when simultaneously recorded with the primary sensory cortices S1 and V1 of postnatal day (P) 19–23 Brown Norway rats (n = 18) (Fig. 1a–d). All recordings were conducted under urethane anaesthesia to avoid the impact of spontaneous whisking and varying alert states on the feedforward mechanisms of multisensory processing24. The good visual acuity of pigmented Brown Norway rats compared to albino rats25 makes them well-suited for testing visual-tactile processing. Thalamic and cortical regions were targeted according to stereotaxic coordinates26 that were confirmed post-mortem by reconstructions of the electrode tracks confined to the area of interest (Fig. 1b–d) as well as according to electrophysiological landmarks (evoked potentials (EPs) in S1, V1, VPM, dLGN, and layer 4 reversal in S1 and V1).

Figure 1

Uni- versus bimodal evoked responses in primary sensory cortices and corresponding first-order thalamic nuclei. (a) Schematic drawing displaying the sensory stimulation via light flashes and whisker deflections as well as the position of recording electrodes in S1, VPM, V1, and dLGN of a Brown Norway rat. (b) (i) Schematic drawing displaying the location of all recording sites in VPM (n = 18) that were used for the analysis of the LFP and SUA. (ii) Same as (i) for dLGN. (c) (i) Nissl stained coronal section displaying the location of the custom-made DiI-labelled multi-site recording electrode in the S1 of a Brown Norway rat. Note that the silicon probe is inserted angularly to target both S1 and VPM. (ii) Same as (i) for VPM. (iii) Nissl stained coronal section displaying the position of recording sites in the VPM in (ii) when displayed at higher magnification. (d) Same as (c) for V1 and dLGN. (e) Positive (P1) and negative (N1) peaks of EPs averaged across animals after visual (red), tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation in granular layers of S1 (top) and VPM (bottom). Inset displays the EP in VPM at larger magnification. Black arrow marks the stimulation. (f) (i) Bar diagrams displaying the maximum amplitude of P1 and N1 across animals after visual (red), tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation in VPM. (ii) Bar diagrams displaying the latency of the maximum amplitude of P1 (left) and N1 (right) after tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation in VPM. (g) Same as (e) for granular layers of V1 and dLGN. (h) Same as (f) for dLGN. A1 = primary auditory cortex, PtCx = parietal cortex, RSC = retrosplenial cortex. (*p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001; paired sample t-test). The schematic drawing in (a) was obtained and modified from Bieler et al80. Visual-tactile processing in primary somatosensory cortex emerges before cross-modal experience. Synapse. 2017 Jun;71(6). John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, USA.

In the absence of sensory stimulation, neural activity in VPM and dLGN was characterized by network oscillations in delta (1–4 Hz) to beta-low gamma (12–45 Hz) frequency range. These spontaneous rhythms in VPM and dLGN had a similar temporal structure and low amplitude when compared with the simultaneously recorded activity of S1 and V1 (Supplementary Fig. S1). Their power peaked in the delta-theta band (Supplementary Fig. 1, Supplementary Table S1). Even in the absence of stimuli, multi-unit activity (MUA) discharge of thalamic neurons was prominent (VPM: 7.94 ± 2.78 Hz; dLGN: 4.47 ± 1.97 Hz) (Supplementary Fig. S1).

Tactile stimulation led to evoked responses with fast peaks (P1) followed by slower components (N1) in VPM and S1 (Fig. 1e). Previous investigations showed that bimodal stimulation enhances the amplitude of EPs in S17. Similarly, the amplitude of P1 of VPM EPs was significantly (paired sample t-test, n = 18, t = −2.62, p < 0.018) enhanced after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation (tactile: −73.08 ± 9.51 µV, bimodal: −91.37 ± 13.97 µV), whereas the amplitude of N1 remained unaffected (paired sample t-test, n = 18, t = −1.985, p = 0.063, tactile: 107.73 ± 10.97 µV, bimodal: 94.93 ± 8.87 µV) (Fig. 1fi, Table 1). The multisensory enhancement of the P1 response in VPM was not supra-additive, as the arithmetic sum of the P1 amplitude after visual and after tactile stimulation was not significantly larger when compared to bimodal visual-tactile stimulation (paired sample t-test, n = 18, t = 0.058, p = 0.96, arithmetic sum visual and tactile: −91.83 ± 13.13 µV, bimodal: −91.37 ± 13.97 µV). Bimodal stimulation did not decrease the latency of the P1 peak in VPM (paired sample t-test, n = 18, t = 0.59, p = 0.633, tactile: 15.41 ± 1.4 ms, bimodal: 15.66 ± 1.38 ms) (Fig. 1fii, Table 1). Thus, visual stimulation modulated the tactile evoked responses in VPM. This effect was variable as revealed by visual inspection of averaged EP traces across trials of individual animals. Overall, 10 animals showed an increase in the VPM P1 peak after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation, 6 animals a decrease and 2 animals displayed no change (as compared to S1 where 12 animals displayed an increase and 6 animals a decrease in the amplitude of the EP after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation). The source of these variable responses is unknown, but it might represent the variable processing along sensory tracts27,28.

Table 1 Peak amplitude and latency of EPs in first-order thalamus and primary sensory cortex after unimodal and bimodal stimulation.

The prominent changes caused by bimodal stimulation in VPM seemed to be structure-specific, since visual-tactile stimulation did not similarly affect the EPs in dLGN along the visual tract (Fig. 1g,h, Table 1).

Thus, co-occurring visual stimuli facilitate the tactile evoked responses in VPM, yet tactile modulation of sensory evoked responses was absent in dLGN and V1.

Induced oscillatory activity in the VPM and dLGN as a result of unimodal versus bimodal visual-tactile stimulation

In addition to the spontaneous and stimulus-evoked network activity, stimulus-induced oscillations have been detected (Supplementary Fig. S2). In contrast to the stimulus-evoked activity, stimulus-induced network oscillations are causally related but not phase-locked to the sensory stimuli. Previous studies showed that in the superior colliculus (SC) and primary sensory cortices these patterns of oscillatory activity are profoundly modulated by bimodal stimulation7,17,29,30,31. To test whether visual-tactile stimulation modulates network activity in the corresponding FO thalamic nuclei, they assessed the temporal dynamics of stimulus-induced oscillations in different frequency bands. First, they analysed individual frequency spectra corresponding to a large number of unimodal stimulation trials. In VPM, shortly after the stimulus-evoked response (i.e. 50–150 ms post-stimulus), the amplitude of stimulus-induced oscillations significantly increased particularly in the 1–4 Hz, 4–8 Hz, and 8–12 Hz frequency bands when compared with baseline conditions (i.e. 200–300 ms pre-stimulus). In dLGN, unimodal visual stimulation led to similar modulation of network oscillations as observed after whisker deflections in VPM (Supplementary Fig. S2).

Second, they assessed the effects of bimodal visual-tactile stimulation on the induced oscillatory activity in FO thalamus. For this, they pooled the multiple-trial baseline normalised Morlet wavelet spectra across animals (n = 18) separately for the three different conditions: unimodal tactile, unimodal visual and bimodal visual-tactile stimulation. Visual or tactile stimulation led to minor modifications of the frequency distribution in VPM or dLGN, respectively (Fig. 2a,c). Unimodal stimulation (tactile for VPM and visual for dLGN) modulated the power of oscillatory activity mainly in beta-low gamma band (20–45 Hz) in VPM and in delta (1–4 Hz) and gamma band (50–128 Hz) in dLGN. The modulatory effects augmented during bimodal visual-tactile stimulation. To assess the power of oscillatory activity in VPM and dLGN after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation, they compared the baseline-normalised power range for each time-frequency point of the Morlet wavelet spectra. The time points with significant power changes after bimodal versus unimodal stimulation were clustered using a previously developed protocol7. In VPM, three such time-windows were identified in delta (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, n = 100035 time-frequency values, Z = −90.04, p < 0.001, tactile: 1.19 ± 0.0007, bimodal: 1.33 ± 0.0007), beta-low gamma (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, n = 7000 time-frequency values, Z = −75.50, p < 0.001, tactile: 1.09 ± 0.0006, bimodal: 1.21 ± 0.0004), and gamma frequency (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, n = 14400 time-frequency values, Z = −97.04, p < 0.001, tactile: 1.09 ± 0.0003, bimodal: 1.16 ± 0.0004) (Fig. 2a,b). In dLGN, two clustered time-windows with significant power changes in delta (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, n = 40425 time-frequency values, Z = 177.33, p < 0.001, visual: 1.12 ± 0.0001, bimodal: 1.06 ± 0.0001) and theta band (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, n = 2170 time-frequency values, Z = −42.41, p < 0.001, visual: 1.26 ± 0.003, bimodal: 1.48 ± 0.003) were detected (Fig. 2c,d). With the exception of delta power in dLGN, which decreased after visual-tactile stimulation, bimodal stimulation augmented the oscillatory power of network oscillations in FO thalamic nuclei in a frequency-specific pattern (Fig. 2b,d).

Figure 2

Uni- and bimodal induced responses in first-order thalamic nuclei. (a) Baseline normalised Morlet wavelet spectra of the LFP in VPM averaged for all rats (n = 18) 200 ms pre-stimulus and 1000 ms post-stimulus after unimodal visual (left), unimodal tactile (middle) and bimodal visual-tactile (right) stimulation. Magenta dotted boxes indicate significant time and frequency windows of power modulation (z-score <= −2.56/z-score >= 2.56) after bimodal stimulation when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation. Black arrow marks the stimulation. (b) Bar diagram displaying the mean power of oscillatory activity in VPM during previously defined post-stimulus time-windows normalised to the power of activity before stimulation (baseline). (c) Same as (a) for dLGN after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation when compared to unimodal visual stimulation. (d) Same as (b) for dLGN. (*p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001; Wilcoxon signed-rank test).

These results indicate that at the level of FO thalamus, visual-tactile stimulation modifies the power of induced network oscillations in VPM, while this effect is inconsistent in dLGN.

Cross-modal phase reset as a mechanism of multisensory integration in first-order thalamus

Next, they aimed to elucidate the mechanism by which the co-occurring visual-tactile stimuli modulate the evoked and induced network activity in FO thalamic nuclei. Alignment of oscillatory activity to a specific phase has been proposed to prime the neural system about forthcoming sensory stimuli, and by these means, to augment their effectiveness for multisensory perception and behavior32. While this cross-modal phase reset has been found ubiquitary in primary sensory cortices7,8, it remains unknown whether a similar mechanism exists at the level of FO thalamus. Therefore, they compared the phase synchrony of spontaneous oscillations in VPM and dLGN during a large number of cross-modal stimulation trials (visual stimulation when recording in VPM or tactile stimulation when recording in dLGN) and calculated the mean resultant vector (MRV) length of oscillatory phases of the previously identified spontaneous delta (1–4 Hz), theta (4–12 Hz) and beta-low gamma (12–45 Hz) activity in VPM and dLGN (Supplementary Fig. S1). If the oscillatory phase is the same in each trial, the MRV length will be 1, whereas if the oscillatory phase is absolutely random, the value will be 0 (Fig. 3a,c). In addition, to exclude the EP-related synchrony, they calculated the post-/pre-stimulus power ratio ([0–250 ms post-stimulus]/[200–300 ms pre-stimulus])8. In contrast to a true phase reset, the EP-related synchrony is accompanied by a pre- to post-stimulus power increase in the single-trial responses33,34. Therefore, a post-/pre-stimulus power ratio of 1 and a MRV > 0 correspond to true phase synchrony. These conditions were fulfilled only by the oscillatory activity in the 1–4 Hz range in VPM, but not dLGN (Fig. 3b,d). Thus, visual stimulation enhances the phase synchrony of oscillatory activity in VPM.

Figure 3

Event-related phase synchrony in first-order thalamic nuclei after visual or tactile stimulation. (a) Plot displaying the baseline normalised mean resultant vector (MRV) length of oscillatory phases in VPM after visual stimulation (dotted line, black arrow). The values were averaged over each time point in all 18 rats for three frequency bands, 1–4 Hz (red), 4–12 Hz (green) and 12–45 Hz (black). Note, visual stimulation caused strong and long-lasting (413 ms for 1–4 Hz, 266 ms for 4–12 Hz, 219 ms for 12–45 Hz) augmentation of phase synchrony in all frequencies compared to baseline (i.e. >99% confidence interval). (b) Boxplots displaying the post-/pre-stimulus power ratio for 1–4 Hz (red), 4–12 Hz (green) and 12–45 Hz (black) oscillations. (c) Same as (a) for dLGN. Note, a similar significant increase in phase synchrony (i.e. >99% confidence interval) for 4–12 Hz and 12–45 Hz as compared to VPM was found in dLGN. (d) Same as (b) for dLGN. (Horizontal coloured lines mark the border of confidence α = 0.001).

Neuronal firing in the VPM and dLGN as a result of unimodal versus bimodal visual-tactile stimulation

Previous studies revealed that the information content from multiple senses is encoded in primary sensory cortices not only at population level but also by the firing of individual neurons16,35. For this, both rate and temporal coding strategies are used. To assess whether single thalamic neurons process multisensory information by means of rate and temporal coding, they examined single unit activity (SUA) obtained by clustering the extracellularly recorded spikes according to their waveform shape. The patterns of thalamic firing resembled the previously described spiking patterns of cortical neurons after visual, tactile and bimodal visual-tactile stimulation (Supplementary Fig. 3)16. Only neurons that responded to stimulation by increasing their firing rate after unimodal and bimodal stimulation were considered for further analyses. In the VPM, unimodal tactile stimulation led in a large fraction of neurons (75 out of 126) to a strong firing increase peaking at 16.64 ± 0.63 ms after the stimulus (Fig. 4a, Table 2). When compared to baseline, the firing increase in VPM was followed by a non-significant decrease and subsequently, by a long-lasting low-magnitude augmentation of firing beginning 200 ms after stimulation (Fig. 4a). A fraction of neurons in VPM (50 out of 126) responded to visual stimuli by either augmenting or depressing their firing probability (Fig. 4c, Table 2). The firing of dLGN neurons was similarly affected by unimodal visual and bimodal visual-tactile stimulation (Fig. 4b), yet only 19 out of 66 dLGN neurons changed their firing probability after tactile stimulation, and the majority of those neurons (14 out of 19) displayed a reduction in firing probability (Table 2).

Figure 4

Neuronal firing in first-order thalamic nuclei after uni- and bimodal stimulation. (a) (i) Rasterplot depicting the firing of single cells for each trial after unimodal tactile (orange, top) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue, bottom) stimulation. (ii) Bar diagram displaying the firing probability after unimodal tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation of single neurons that enhance their firing after stimulation. (iii) Bar diagram displaying the firing variability measured by the Fano factor of single neurons that enhance their firing after stimulation. (b) Same as (a) for dLGN. (c) (i) Rasterplot depicting the firing of single cells in VPM (12 out of 126) that showed a firing enhancement after unimodal visual stimulation (marked by dotted line and black arrow) (top) and line plot displaying the corresponding firing probability (bottom). Inset displays the firing response of the strongly responding neuron marked by black arrow above. Grey line corresponds to the firing probability after exclusion of the strong visual responsive neuron. (ii) Same as (i) for neurons in VPM that showed a depression of firing probability after visual stimulation (38 out of 126). (d) (i) Bar diagram displaying the MRV of VPM-S1 spike-LFP locking strength 0–80 ms after visual (red), tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation. (ii) Polar plot displaying the coupling of spikes of VPM neurons to the phase of 1–4 Hz network oscillations in S1. (iii) Bar diagram displaying the fraction of significantly phase-locked neurons. White numbers indicate the total number of significantly phase-locked neurons after stimulation. (e) Same as (f) for dLGN spikes phase locked to 1–4 Hz oscillations in granular layers of V1. (*p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001; one sample t-test, z-test for two proportions).

Table 2 Firing patterns of thalamic neurons after uni- and bimodal stimulation.

Though the majority of clustered units in VPM (75 out of 126) enhanced their firing shortly after stimulation, there was no statistically significant difference in the augmentation of firing probability between unimodal and bimodal stimulation (Fig. 4aii). However, the neuronal firing after bimodal stimulation was more variable, since the Fano factor (FF), which captures the response variability of single neurons, increased when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation (one sample t-test, n = 59 units, t = 2.02, p = 0.04, tactile: 0.45 ± 0.04, bimodal: 0.57 ± 0.05) (Fig. 4aiii). Given that a similar amount of VPM neurons reponded to bimodal and unimodal stimulation, the increase in variance can most likely be attributed to a few individual neurons that increased their firing variability rather than to a population effect. Bimodal stimulation neither affected the firing probability (one sample t-test, n = 48 units, t = 0.44, p = 0.66, visual: 0.39 ± 0.06, bimodal: 0.41 ± 0.06) nor the firing variability of neurons in dLGN (one sample t-test, n = 48 units, t = 0.74, p = 0.46, visual: 0.55 ± 0.06, bimodal: 0.61 ± 0.07) (Fig. 4bii,iii).

To decide whether thalamic neurons process multisensory information using a temporal code, they assessed the impact of visual-tactile stimulation on the timing of neuronal firing in FO thalamic nuclei to network oscillations in primary sensory cortices. The analysis was performed during the first 80 ms after sensory stimulation, the time window with the strongest firing response. The spike-LFP coupling analysis revealed that VPM neurons increase their locking strength to delta oscillations in granular (G) layers of S1 after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation (circ_cm test, n = 43 units tactile, n = 64 units bimodal, p = 0.0001, tactile: 0.52 ± 0.03, bimodal: 0.65 ± 0.02) (Fig. 4di,ii). The enhancement of VPM-S1 spike-LFP coupling strength was accompanied by a significant increase in the number of VPM neurons significantly phase-locked to delta oscillations in G layers of S1 after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation (two proportion z-test, n = 126 units, Z = −2.68, p = 0.007, tactile: 43 out of 126 neurons, bimodal: 64 out of 126 neurons) (Fig. 4diii). This was not the case for the spike-LFP coupling in the dLGN-V1 circuit (two proportion z-test, n = 66 units, Z = −1.56, p = 0.12, visual: 44 out of 66 neurons, bimodal: 52 out of 66 neurons) (Fig. 4e). Few VPM neurons (20 out of 126 neurons) timed their firing to S1 network oscillations after unimodal visual stimulation as well, though their locking strength was not augmented when compared to bimodal stimulation (circ_cm test, n = 20 units visual, n = 64 units bimodal, p = 0.60, visual: 0.71 ± 0.05, bimodal: 0.65 ± 0.02) (Fig. 4d).

Finally, they tested whether VPM neurons apply a dual rate and temporal coding strategy to process and relay multisensory information. They found that the majority of VPM neurons that are phase-locked to S1 delta oscillations also showed an enhancement in firing probability after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation (tactile: 37 out of 43 phase-locked neurons showed an increase in firing probability, bimodal: 55 out of 64 phase-locked neurons showed an increase in firing probability). In contrast, visual responsive neurons in VPM that were phase-locked to delta oscillations in G layers of S1 were less likely to display an increase in their firing probability (4 neurons out of 12). Thus, unimodal as well as multisensory neurons in VPM display a dual rate and temporal coding mechanism, which was absent for visually responsive neurons in VPM.

Taken together, these results indicate that neurons in VPM largely enhance their firing probability after tactile and bimodal stimulation. Few VPM neurons respond to visual stimulation. Overall, VPM neurons process multisensory stimulation by increasing their spiking variability and timing their firing output to ongoing network oscillations in S1 when compared to unimodal tactile processing. These effects were absent in dLGN neurons.

Thalamo-cortical coupling as a result of unimodal versus bimodal visual-tactile stimulation

The data above indicate that the FO thalamic nuclei, in particular VPM, are sites of multisensory integration. Relaying visual-tactile information from FO thalamus to primary sensory cortices by timing the firing output of single thalamic neurons to cortical network oscillations is an efficient neuronal coding mechanism. Next, they investigated in more detail how visual-tactile stimuli are transferred from the thalamic to cortical level.

Phase-amplitude cross-frequency coupling (CFC) has been identified as a powerful mechanism of regulating multi-scale networks and transferring information between areas after sensory events36. This mechanism has received little attention in multisensory research despite its critical role in memory and executive processing37,38,39. In a first step, they assessed the thalamo-cortical phase-amplitude CFC along the tactile processing stream between VPM and G layers of S1. They calculated the relative change [(post-stimulus) – (pre-stimulus)] of the modulation index (MI), which captures the CFC induced by stimulation. Bimodal stimulation significantly augmented the coupling of theta-beta phase in VPM to the amplitude of gamma oscillations in the G layers of S1 when compared to unimodal tactile stimulation (one-tailed paired t-test, n = 17, t = 3.21, p = 0.002, tactile: 0.05 ± 0.04, bimodal: 0.62 ± 0.18) (Fig. 5a). Notably, the amplitude of gamma oscillations (30–100 Hz) in G layers of S1 significantly increased after both unimodal (one-tailed paired t-test, n = 17, t = −5.08, p < 0.001, pre-stimulation: 751.54 ± 102.95 µV2, post-stimulation: 1180.38 ± 154.57 µV2) and bimodal stimulation (one-tailed paired t-test, n = 17, t = −3.58, p = 0.001, pre-stimulation: 778.87 ± 116.05 µV2, post-stimulation: 1151.79 ± 160.77 µV2). Thus, despite the presence of cortical gamma oscillations induced by unimodal tactile and bimodal visual-tactile stimulation, the coupling between VPM beta and S1 gamma oscillations is only enhanced after bimodal stimulation. In a second step, they assessed the thalamo-cortical phase-amplitude CFC along the visual processing stream. The MI was not significantly modulated after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation when compared to unimodal visual stimulation for CFC between dLGN and G layers of V1 (one-tailed paired t-test, n = 17, t = −0.69, p = 0.25, visual: 0.56 ± 0.10, bimodal: 0.47 ± 0.11) (Fig. 5b).

Figure 5

Thalamo-cortical phase-amplitude cross-frequency coupling and directed interactions after uni- and bimodal stimulation. (a) Schematic diagram of assessed coupling. (i) Heat maps displaying the relative (post-stimulation – pre-stimulation) phase amplitude cross-frequency coupling (CFC) between VPM and G layers of S1 after visual, tactile and bimodal stimulation. (ii) Bar diagram displaying the averaged relative modulation index (MI) for visual (red), tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation. (b) Same as (a) for the coupling between dLGN and G layers of V1. (c) Schematic diagram of assessed directed interactions. (i) Plot displaying the relative partial directed coherence change (post-stimulus/pre-stimulus) 100–600 ms after unimodal visual (red), unimodal tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation when assessed for 2–40 Hz oscillations in VPM and G layers of S1. (ii) Bar diagram displaying the relative partial directed coherence change (post-stimulus/pre-stimulus) 100–600 ms after unimodal visual (red), unimodal tactile (orange) and bimodal visual-tactile (blue) stimulation when assessed for the frequency range marked in (i) by the grey box. (d) Same as (c) for the information flow between dLGN and G layers of V1. Red dotted lines mark the border of an enhanced information flow (>1) or decreased information flow (<1.0). (*p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001; paired sample t-test).

Thus, a change in coupling strength between VPM and G layers of S1 was only detected after bimodal visual-tactile stimulation despite the presence of induced cortical gamma oscillations by uni- and bimodal stimulation. The MI was similar after uni- and bimodal stimulation in dLGN. Thus, phase-amplitude CFC is a mechanism by which bimodal information is processed and conveyed between VPM and S1.

Directionality of information flow within thalamo-cortical circuits as a result of unimodal versus bimodal visual-tactile stimulation

The FO thalamic nuclei strongly project to G layers of primary sensory cortices40. By these means, modality-specific sensory information is reliably relayed from the periphery to the cortex. To decide whether co-occurring visual and tactile stimuli impact the thalamo-cortical information flow, they analysed the generalised partial directed coherence (gPDC), a measure that reflects the directionality of network interactions in different frequency bands41. First, they calculated the gPDC values for interactions between VPM and G layers of S1 after unimodal tactile and bimodal visual-tactile stimulation, normalised to the baseline condition (i.e pre-stimulus) (Fig. 5c). Values of relative gPDC >1 mirror an increase in the flow of sensory information between the investigated brain areas, whereas values <1 correspond to a decrease of directed interactions. Shortly (100–600 ms) after stimulus, the relative gPDC significantly increased in the 20–40 Hz frequency range when visual and tactile stimuli were presented concurrently (paired sample t-test, n = 17, t = 3.63, p = 0.001, tactile: 0.89 ± 0.04, bimodal: 1.09 ± 0.05). An augmented flow of information was not present along the visual tract, the directionality of interactions between dLGN and G layers of V1 being similar for unimodal and bimodal conditions (one-tailed paired t-test, n = 17, t = −1.24, p = 0.12, visual: 0.96 ± 0.06, bimodal: 0.86 ± 0.05) (Fig. 5d). In line with the analyses of thalamo-cortical coupling, these results indicate that bimodal visual-tactile stimulation modulates the information flow between VPM and S1 by augmenting the thalamic drive to the primary sensory cortex. In contrast, the information flow between dLGN and V1 is not modulated in a similar way.

Anatomical substrate of visual-tactile interactions in FO thalamic nuclei

Direct axonal connectivity between S1 and V1 has been proposed as substrate of functional interactions accounting for multisensory integration at the level of primary sensory cortices7,13,16. The presence of similar processing mechanisms at the level of FO thalamus raises the question whether thalamo-thalamic connectivity may account for multisensory integration observed in FO nuclei or whether visual-tactile information is integrated at even earlier stages such as the midbrain or brainstem. First, they assessed the direct connectivity between VPM and dLGN by anatomical tracing. Small amounts of cholera toxin subunit B (CTB) were injected either into the VPM or dLGN by iontophoresis (VPM: n = 3, dLGN: n = 4). The procedure confined the tracer to the area of interest without reflux to neighboring areas (Fig. 6aii,iii,bii,iii). CTB injections did not reveal direct projections between VPM and dLGN. Retrogradely stained neurons were neither detected in dLGN when VPM was targeted (Fig. 6aiv) nor in VPM when CTB was confined to dLGN (Fig. 6biv). To elucidate the potential source of visual inputs to VPM and the absent tactile responses in dLGN, they further analysed retrogradely labelled cell bodies in upstream targets. They found that CTB injections into VPM revealed backlabelled cell bodies particularly in the parafiscicular nucleus (PF) of the intralaminar thalamus (Fig. 6av–vii). The PF nucleus shares anatomical connections with other brain areas, such as the SC, brainstem and basal ganglia42,43. The dLGN received strong projections from the superficial layers of the SC (Fig. 6bv–vii).

Figure 6

Thalamo-thalamic and thalamo-cortical connectivity revealed by retrograde tracing. (a) Assessment of projections from dLGN to VPM. (i) Schematic diagram displaying the site of CTB injection into VPM. (ii) Photograph displaying the CTB injection confined to VPM. (iii) Larger magnification of the CTB injection in VPM and backlabelled neurons in infragranular layers of S1. (iv) Photograph illustrating the absence of dLGN neurons projecting to VPM. (v) Photograph displaying the backlabelled neurons in the intralaminar thalamus (yellow dotted box) after CTB injections into VPM. (vi) Photograph of the intralaminar thalamus at larger magnification of the area outlined by the dotted yellow box in (v) showing backlabelled neurons in the parafascicular nucleus (PF, yellow dotted box) after CTB injections into VPM. (vii) Larger magnification of the area outlined by the dotted yellow box in (vi) showing backlabelled neurons in PF. (b) Same as (a) for CTB injection into dLGN and backlabelled cells in superficial layers of the SC. (c) Assessment of projections from VPM to V1. (i) Schematic diagram displaying the site of FG injection into V1. (ii) Photograph displaying the FG injection confined to V1. (iii) Photograph of dLGN and VPM with a retrogradely labelled neuron in VPM. The inset shows the neuron at larger magnification in the area outlined by the dotted yellow box. APtN = anterior pretectal thalamic nucleus, PO = posterior nucleus.

Second, they investigated whether VPM projects not only to S1 but also to the V1, thereby relaying multisensory information from VPM to other primary sensory cortices7. For this, small amounts of the retrograde tracer fluorogold (FG) were injected into V1 and covered the supragranular (S), G, and infragranular (I) layers (Fig. 6c). FG injected into V1 stained few neurons in VPM. These results confirm the previously reported sparse feedforward VPM-V1 connections22.

Thus, these data suggest that the putatively unimodal tactile nucleus of the thalamus receives (multi-) sensory information from other thalamic nuclei, which is then further processed and sent to putatively unimodal primary somatosensory and visual cortices, bypassing the dLGN.



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