Linking layers and connecting columns

Lawrence C. Katz

in Molecular and Cellular Approaches to Neural Development

Published in print April 1998 | ISBN: 9780195111668
Published online May 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780199865833 | DOI:
 Linking layers and connecting columns

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There is growing consensus that in the visual cortex, many cortical properties arise in whole or in part from the local circuits created by richly interconnected neuronal assemblies. While considerable progress has been made in determining the patterns of anatomical connectivity and functional interactions in the adult brain, relating specific circuits to specific function properties remains a challenge. One potentially powerful strategy employs correlative developmental analyses to relate the emergence of particular neuronal assemblies to emergence of a distinct visual response property, such as orientation. Uncovering the mechanisms by which such assemblies form may provide insight into the capabilities of the adult cortex and into the forces which drive its assembly. This chapter discusses recent experimental approaches aimed at deciphering these mechanisms, and relates these findings to the emergence of functional architecture, especially orientation selectivity in the visual cortex.

Keywords: visual cortex; orientation; vertical connections; clustered connections; neuronal assemblies; anatomical connectivity

Chapter.  7401 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neuroscience

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