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Neuron. 2006 Nov 22;52(4):577-85.

Experience-dependent plasticity in adult visual cortex.

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Division of Neurobiology, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology and Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute, University of California, Berkeley, California 94720, USA.


Experience-dependent plasticity is a prominent feature of the mammalian visual cortex. Although such neural changes are most evident during development, adult cortical circuits can be modified by a variety of manipulations, such as perceptual learning and visual deprivation. Elucidating the underlying mechanisms at the cellular and synaptic levels is an essential step in understanding neural plasticity in the mature animal. Although developmental and adult plasticity share many common features, notable differences may be attributed to developmental cortical changes at multiple levels. These range from shifts in the molecular profiles of cortical neurons to changes in the spatiotemporal dynamics of network activity. In this review, we will discuss recent progress and remaining challenges in understanding adult visual plasticity, focusing on the primary visual cortex.

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