Lamberto Maffei

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In young animals, monocular deprivation leads to an ocular dominance shift, whereas in adults after the critical period there is no such shift. Chondroitin sulphate proteoglycans (CSPGs) are components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) inhibitory for axonal sprouting. We tested whether the developmental maturation of the ECM is inhibitory for(More)
Maturation of the visual cortex is influenced by visual experience during an early postnatal period. The factors that regulate such a critical period remain unclear. We examined the maturation and plasticity of the visual cortex in transgenic mice in which the postnatal rise of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was accelerated. In these mice, the(More)
Postnatal development of rat visual cortical functions was studied by recording extracellularly from the primary visual cortex of 22 animals ranging in age from postnatal day 17 (P17) to P45. We found that in the youngest animals (P17-P19) all visual cortical functions tested were immature. Selectivity for orientation and movement direction of visual(More)
In the mammalian visual system the formation of eye-specific layers at the thalamic level depends on retinal waves of spontaneous activity, which rely on nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation. We found that in mutant mice lacking the beta2 subunit of the neuronal nicotinic receptor, but not in mice lacking the alpha4 subunit, retinofugal projections(More)
Simple and complex cells of striate cortex of anaesthetized and paralysed cats were stimulated with two superimposed one-dimensional grating stimuli of different orientations to investigate inhibitory effects of non-optimally oriented stimuli. We confirmed that a stimulus of orientation orthogonal to a cell's long axis significantly reduces the cell's(More)
We investigated whether fluoxetine, a widely prescribed medication for treatment of depression, restores neuronal plasticity in the adult visual system of the rat. We found that chronic administration of fluoxetine reinstates ocular dominance plasticity in adulthood and promotes the recovery of visual functions in adult amblyopic animals, as tested(More)
Visual deficits caused by abnormal visual experience during development are hard to recover in adult animals. Removal of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans from the mature extracellular matrix with chondroitinase ABC promotes plasticity in the adult visual cortex. We tested whether chondroitinase ABC treatment of adult rats facilitates anatomical,(More)
Loss of visual acuity caused by abnormal visual experience during development (amblyopia) is an untreatable pathology in adults. We report that environmental enrichment in adult amblyopic rats restored normal visual acuity and ocular dominance. These effects were due to reduced GABAergic inhibition in the visual cortex, accompanied by increased expression(More)
Genetically manipulated mice are important tools for studies on plasticity and degeneration/regeneration in the visual system. However, a description of the basic properties of the visual performance of the wild type mouse is still lacking. To characterize the visual physiology of the wild type (C57BL/6J) mouse we recorded Visual Evoked Potentials (VEPs)(More)