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Front Cell Neurosci. 2015 Feb 3;9:15. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2015.00015. eCollection 2015.

Plasticity in the prefrontal cortex of adult rats.

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Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience, University of Lethbridge Lethbridge, AB, Canada.


We review the plastic changes of the prefrontal cortex of the rat in response to a wide range of experiences including sensory and motor experience, gonadal hormones, psychoactive drugs, learning tasks, stress, social experience, metaplastic experiences, and brain injury. Our focus is on synaptic changes (dendritic morphology and spine density) in pyramidal neurons and the relationship to behavioral changes. The most general conclusion we can reach is that the prefrontal cortex is extremely plastic and that the medial and orbital prefrontal regions frequently respond very differently to the same experience in the same brain and the rules that govern prefrontal plasticity appear to differ for those of other cortical regions.


experience-dependent plasticity; metaplasticity; prefrontal cortex; psychoactive drugs; stress

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