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Zoological Research
Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences
ISSN: 2095-8137
Vol. 32, No. 3, 2011, pp. 337-342
Bioline Code: zr11048
Full paper language: Chinese
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Zoological Research, Vol. 32, No. 3, 2011, pp. 337-342

 en Effects of urethane on the response properties of visual cortical neurons in young adult and old cats
Peng, Qing-Song; Zhou, Jun; Shi, Xia-Ming; Hua, Guo-Peng & Hua, Tian-Miao

Abstract

Previous studies have shown that visual cortical neurons in old mammals exhibit higher spontaneous activity, higher responsiveness to visual stimuli, and lower selectivity for stimulus orientations and motion directions than did neurons in young adult counterparts. However, whether the responsive difference in cortical neurons between young and old animals resulted from different effects induced by anesthetics has remained unclear. To clarify this issue, we recorded the response properties of individual neurons in the primary visual cortex of old and young adult cats while systematically varying the anesthesia level of urethane, a widely used anesthetic in physiology experiments. Our results showed that cumulatively administrating 50 mg and 100 mg of urethane upon the minimal level of urethane required to anesthetize an old or young adult cat did not significantly alter the degree of neuronal response selectivity for stimulus orientations and motion directions nor significantly change the visually-driven response and spontaneous activity of neurons in old and young adult cats. Cumulatively administrating 150 mg of urethane decreased neuronal responsiveness similarly in both age groups. Therefore, urethane appears to exert similar effects on neuronal response properties of old and young adult animals.

Keywords
Urethane; Anesthesia effects; Neuronal response properties; Primary visual cortex; Young adult cats; Old cats

 
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