Rahimi O, Tatham D, Juliano SL (2000) Sensory training improves the ability to process stimuli in barrel cortex after basal forebrain lesion. Neuroscience 2000 Abstracts 51.22. Society for Neuroscience, New Orleans, LA.
Summary: Lesions of the basal forebrain deplete the cerebral cortex of acetylcholine and result in decreased ability to process stimuli. Using a model of unilateral basal forebrain lesion (BFL), we previously determined that the ability to perceive simple touch to the whiskers is impaired after BFL, but improves over time. Functional responses in barrel cortex, however, as measured by 2-deoxyglucose uptake (2DG) or electrophysiological recordings, remain reduced even after long survival times. We questioned whether the impaired cortical responses could be improved with behavioral training involving sensory discrimination using the whiskers. To do this, one group of rats was trained to discriminate between different textures using the whiskers on one side of the face, which projected to the lesioned hemisphere. After learning the task, this group of rats received a BFL using the immunotoxin, 192-IgG Saporin. They then continued the sensory discrimination task for at least 2 months. The second group of rats received a BFL, but no sensory training. They survived after the lesion for comparable periods of time; each rat of both groups then underwent a 2DG experiment. During the 2DG study, 1-4 matched sets of whiskers on both sides of the face were stimulated using an electromagnetic device. The magnitude of the response was measured in barrel cortex by preparing 2-dimensional maps of the label evoked by whisker stimulation. The area of barrel cortex activated in each hemisphere by whisker stimulation was measured and expressed as a ratio of the lesioned to normal hemisphere. We found that the evoked response in the lesioned hemisphere remained diminished compared to the normal side regardless of training. When the magnitude of response was compared between the trained and untrained group, however, the area of 2DG uptake in each barrel in response to stimulation was significantly increased in the animals receiving sensory discrimination training. These findings suggest that sensory training plays a role in improving cortical responses to stimulation after lesion of the basal forebrain.
Related Products: 192-IgG-SAP (Cat. #IT-01)