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Nature. 2004 Oct 14;431(7010):782-8.

Cortical rewiring and information storage.

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  • 1Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbour, New York 11724, USA.


Current thinking about long-term memory in the cortex is focused on changes in the strengths of connections between neurons. But ongoing structural plasticity in the adult brain, including synapse formation/elimination and remodelling of axons and dendrites, suggests that memory could also depend on learning-induced changes in the cortical 'wiring diagram'. Given that the cortex is sparsely connected, wiring plasticity could provide a substantial boost in storage capacity, although at a cost of more elaborate biological machinery and slower learning.

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