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NEUR 2600 (19)

Developmental Neuroscience

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NEUR 2600
Ian Whishaw

Developmental Neuroscience March-01-13 11:01 AM Critical Periods - Konrad Lorenz (1973 NP) - Imprinting ○ German scientist ○ Hisdiscovery: if you took baby geeseand hatched them, they'd followyou around and imprinton you thinking you were the mother goose ○ Something about brain just after birth to latch onto something  Wait a little longer, losescapacity to imprint  Critical period □ Younger is better, things can only happen at some age □ Genome is somehowprepared to do - Gerald Edelman- 1972 NP ○ Malthusian survival Functional validation - Visual system: ○ If the right experiences happen, the brain changes ○ What changes?  When they project, they're haphazard □ Respond to seek out consistency, and eventuallythey end up with a proper pattern □ The retinal ganglioncellsthat project to the tectum send out random axons, which then are pruned to their adult pattern through visual experiences Ocular dominance columns - White is the input from one visual field, and the black is the input from the other - You would think in an adult brain that it's wired that way ○ The left and right eye form alternating columns called ocular dominance columns in the visual cortex ○ The absence of visual input from one eyeallowsthe good eye to expand its territory - Experiment: ○ Implanteda third eye in the embryo of a frog  Tectum accommodated the third eye: ocular dominance columns forming in the tectum as the old and new eye share the projection fields Jean Piaget - CognitiveDevelopmentalStages ○ Each transition is associated with a brain growth spurt ○ Object permanence - Sensorimotor ○ Conservation - Concrete Operations Behavioural Darwinism - Richard Tees - Janet Werker ○ At first, babies use all possiblesounds in human speech ○ Upon listening to their native language,they lose babbling sounds that are not used and even lose the abilityto hear those sounds Other evidence - Accent and age - between 5 and 13 years of age, people losethe bailityto learn a language with a native accent - Brain damageand language - at about 5 years of age, brain damagethat impairslanguage prevents the relearningof language prevents the relearningof language Harry Harlow - The effects of deprivationin early lifeare profound - There are many kinds of deprivation ○ Food, contact, social Environmental Depriva
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