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Developing cortex generates endogenous activity that modulates the formation of functional units, but how this activity is altered to support mature function is poorly understood. Using recordings from the visual cortex of preterm human infants and neonatal rats, we report a "bursting" period of visual responsiveness during which the weak retinal output is(More)
During development, formation of topographic maps in sensory cortex requires precise temporal binding in thalamocortical networks. However, the physiological substrate for such synchronization is unknown. We report that early gamma oscillations (EGOs) enable precise spatiotemporal thalamocortical synchronization in the neonatal rat whisker sensory system.(More)
A primary feature of the preterm infant electroencephalogram is the presence of large infra-slow potentials containing rapid oscillations called slow activity transients (SATs). Such activity has not been described in animal models, and their generative mechanisms are unknown. Here we use direct-current and multisite extracellular, as well as whole-cell,(More)
Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is a valuable method for probing postnatal circuit refinement and plasticity. However, its use during early development has been hindered by uncertainty as to the nature of neurovascular coupling in young individuals. Here we used somatosensory stimulation in rats to determine age-related parameters of the blood(More)
The immature brain spontaneously expresses unique patterns of electrical activity that are believed to contribute to the development of neuronal networks. Certain electrographic features of this activity, particularly modulation on an infraslow time scale, resemble activity patterns observed in the mature brain at 'rest', loosely defined as the absence of(More)
Maturation of excitatory synaptic connections depends on the amount and pattern of their activity, and activity can affect development of inhibitory synapses as well. In the superficial visual layers of the superior colliculus (sSC), developmental increases in the effectiveness of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA(A)) receptor-mediated inhibition may be driven(More)
NMDA receptors (NMDARs) play an important role in the structural maintenance and functional strength of synapses. The causal relationship between these anatomical and functional roles is poorly defined. Using quantitative confocal microscopy, synaptic vesicle immunoreactivity, and differential label of retinal projections, we measured axon volume and(More)
During a short perinatal interval, N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) function is essential to a process in which spontaneous retinal waves focus retinal axon arbors in the superficial layers of the rodent superior colliculus (sSC). Here we provide evidence that this NMDAR-dependent axonal refinement occurs through elimination of uncorrelated retinal(More)
We have investigated the role of the NMDA glutamate receptor (NMDAR) in the genesis and regulation of structural plasticity during synaptogenesis in the visual layers of the rat superior colliculus (sSC). In this neuropil, three projections compete for synaptic space during development. By fluorescently labeling the projections of both eyes and imaging them(More)
The activity of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NR) regulates the composition of excitatory synapses and mediates multiple forms of synaptic and structural plasticity. In the superficial superior colliculus (sSC) of the rat, NR activity is essential for the full refinement of retinotopy during development. We have examined the NR's role in synaptic(More)