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Neuron. 2003 Apr 24;38(2):265-76.

Functional topography of connections linking mirror-symmetric maps in the mouse olfactory bulb.

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  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Neurobiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.


In rodents, each main olfactory bulb contains two mirror-symmetric glomerular maps, a feature not found in the initial topographic maps of other sensory systems. Targeting tracer injections to identified glomeruli revealed that isofunctional odor columns-translaminar assemblies connected to a given glomerulus-were specifically and reciprocally interconnected through a mutually inhibitory circuit with exquisite topographic specificity. Thus, instead of containing two mirror-symmetric maps, we propose that the olfactory bulb contains a single integrated map in which isofunctional odor columns are connected through an intrabulbar link, analogous to the specific horizontal connections linking iso-orientation columns in primary visual cortex.

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