Activity-Driven Mechanisms for Sharpening Retinotopic Projections: Correlated Activity, NMDA Receptors, Calcium Entry, and Beyond

  • John T. Schmidt


The precise organization of visual projections develops by selective stabilization of appropriate synapses from a more diffuse set of initial connections, a process that requires normal patterns of activity during the sensitive period. This chapter covers research on the establishment of retinotopic precision in the direct retinal map on tectum of fish and frog. This research grew out of two separate lines of inquiry: early demonstrations of plasticity in both developing and adult retinotectal projection, and studies of the effects of experience on development of visual cortex in mammals. Of course, Mike Gaze was the leader in demonstrating plasticity within the retinotectal projection, which initially had been thought to be rigidly specified (Sperry, 1963).


NMDA Receptor Ocular Dominance NMDA Receptor Blocker Monocular Deprivation Retinal Axon 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1993

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  • John T. Schmidt

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