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Abstract #2930

Lack of visual critical period of plasticity induces BOLD modulations in the rat binocular subregion of the primary visual cortex

Rita Gil1, Frederico Severo1, and Noam Shemesh1
1Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Lisbon, Portugal

Experience induced visual cortical (VC) plasticity is key for adequate pathway maturation and circuitry refinement. Competing inputs from each eye arriving to the thalamic lateral geniculate nucleus and, later, to VC, are necessary to shape and develop visual binocularity. Without such competition, an increased responsiveness and number of binocular cortical neurons has been reported. Here, we investigated monocular stimulation in rats that had been dark reared and compared their cortical BOLD responses with normal reared animals. Increased BOLD responses appeared along the VC of the dark reared group, suggesting a lack of pathway maturation and binocular integration.

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