Crossmodal training reduces behavioral deficits in rats after either auditory or visual cortex lesions

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Rats were trained with either visual or auditory intensity cues until they emitted nine avoidance responses in 10 trials ( 9 10) prior to bilateral ablation of the corresponding sensory neocortex. Six days after surgery, rats were trained to 5 10 criterion in one of the following conditions: within-modality direct, within-modality reversal, crossmodality direct, crossmodality reversal, or no training control. The next day all rats were retrained to 9 10 on their preoperative tasks. For visual decorticate rats, the no training and the visual within-modality direct groups relearned the discrimination at the same rate as preoperative learning. Auditory crossmodal direct training enhanced relearning more than other forms of training and visual within-modality reversal training hindered retraining. For auditory decorticate rats, similar postoperative auditory within-modality and visual crossmodality training effects were seen during retraining of the auditory discrimination. These findings suggest crossmodality training facilitates functional recovery through relational information and learning sets transferred from experimental training to the relearning task. © 1994.

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