Ontogeny of odor discrimination

A method to assess novel odor discrimination in neonatal rats

Max Fletcher, D. A. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Recent research using molecular and functional imaging techniques has demonstrated a highly precise spatial representation of odor quality in the rodent olfactory bulb, which is enhanced by extensive lateral inhibitory circuitry. Much of this olfactory bulb circuitry develops postnatally in the rat, leading to the prediction that behavioral discrimination of odor quality may also emerge postnatally. However, currently no behavioral paradigm has been identified to test this prediction. The present report describes the expression and habituation of odor-evoked heart rate-orienting responses in neonatal rats. The results demonstrate that odor-evoked-orienting responses can be observed at least as early as postnatal day 4 (PN 4), and in those animals showing orienting responses, habituation is constant throughout the postnatal period. Furthermore, the results suggest that examination of cross-habituation using this paradigm can be used to explore odor discrimination ability in neonates. These results lay the foundation for future studies of precise mapping of the ontogeny of novel odor discrimination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)589-593
Number of pages5
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Volume74
Issue number4-5
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 12 2001
Externally publishedYes

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Olfactory Bulb
Molecular Imaging
Odorants
Rodentia
Heart Rate
Research

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Cite this

Ontogeny of odor discrimination : A method to assess novel odor discrimination in neonatal rats. / Fletcher, Max; Wilson, D. A.

In: Physiology and Behavior, Vol. 74, No. 4-5, 12.11.2001, p. 589-593.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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