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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Disruption of cortical activity prevents ocular dominance changes in monocularly deprived kittens.

Abundant evidence now indicates that atypical visual exposure early in the life of cats and primates can cause profound alterations in cortical organization. In particular, it has been shown that preventing the use of one eye for vision early in life results in a marked shift of ocular preference among neurones of kitten visual cortex in favour of the exposed eye. The cellular mechanisms underlying these alterations remain uncertain, but much recent attention has focused on the possible role of pharmacological agents in modifying cortical plasticity, with particular reference to catecholamines. These experiments, which have shown that agents which modify cortical noradrenaline levels can alter the degree of cortical plasticity, do not specify the mechanism of action, and leave open the possibility that other neurotransmitter systems may also be involved in cortical modifiability. We now report that chronic intracortical administration of L-glutamate during a period of monocular vision imposed on young kittens largely prevents the ocular dominance shift which normally occurs under these circumstances.[1]


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