Neural consequences of enviromental enrichment

  title={Neural consequences of enviromental enrichment},
  author={Henriette van Praag and Gerd Kempermann and Fred H. Gage},
  journal={Nature Reviews Neuroscience},
Neuronal plasticity is a central theme of modern neurobiology, from cellular and molecular mechanisms of synapse formation in Drosophila to behavioural recovery from strokes in elderly humans. Although the methods used to measure plastic responses differ, the stimuli required to elicit plasticity are thought to be activity-dependent. In this article, we focus on the neuronal changes that occur in response to complex stimulation by an enriched environment. We emphasize the behavioural and… 
Environmental enrichment and the brain.
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Environment and brain plasticity: towards an endogenous pharmacotherapy.
This survey aims to review past and recent work concerning the influence exerted by the environment on brain plasticity processes, with special emphasis on the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms and starting from experimental work on animal models to move to highly relevant work performed in humans.
Functional implications of hippocampal adult neurogenesis in intellectual disabilities
This work reviews the process of generating functional neurons from precursors in the adult brain and its implications in intellectual disability disorders.
Transformation of cortical and hippocampal neural circuit by environmental enrichment
Neurobehavioral Rehabilitation of Visual Deficits in Older Patients
Both behavioral and neuroimaging studies show that this cortical plasticity with negative consequences can be reversed through neurobehavioral restorative training, which results in improved normal and deficient visual processing in aging.
Environmental enrichment, new neurons and the neurobiology of individuality
Kempermann discusses how this paradigm can be further developed in order to capture the essence of interindividual differences in brain function.


Enhancement of hippocampal field potentials in rats exposed to a novel, complex environment
Psychobiology of plasticity: effects of training and experience on brain and behavior
Associative plasticity in striatal transplants.
This work has used a lateralized-discrimination task and a transfer-of-training paradigm to demonstrate that recovery requires relearning specific lateralized stimulus-response associations and cannot be explained simply by a generalized training-dependent improvement in motor skill.
Changes in hippocampal neuronal nuclei in response to environmental stimulation.
It is proposed that increased variability in nuclear size in the hippocampus reflects an environmentally restricted development of these neurons.
Enrichment induces structural changes and recovery from nonspatial memory deficits in CA1 NMDAR1-knockout mice
It is found that enrichment induced an increase of the synapse density in the CA1 region in knockouts as well as control littermates, which indicates that CA1 NMDA receptor activity is critical in hippocampus-dependent nonspatial memory, but is not essential for experience-induced synaptic structural changes.
Prenatal stress produces learning deficits associated with an inhibition of neurogenesis in the hippocampus.
It is reported that prenatal stress in rats induced lifespan reduction of neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus and produced impairment in hippocampal-related spatial tasks and pathophysiological hypotheses that propose an early neurodevelopmental origin for psychopathological vulnerabilities in aging are strengthened.
A synaptic model of memory: long-term potentiation in the hippocampus
The best understood form of long-term potentiation is induced by the activation of the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor complex, which allows electrical events at the postsynaptic membrane to be transduced into chemical signals which, in turn, are thought to activate both pre- and post Synaptic mechanisms to generate a persistent increase in synaptic strength.
Maternal care, hippocampal synaptogenesis and cognitive development in rats
The offspring of mothers that show high levels of pup licking and grooming and arched-back nursing showed increased expression of NMDA receptor subunit and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA, increased cholinergic innervation of the hippocampus and enhanced spatial learning and memory.
Mechanisms mediating the production of environmentally induced brain changes.
Evidence is presented to suggest that the arousal reaction (orienting response) may be a major mediating mechanism by showing that the aroused histories of stimulus-enriched and stimulus-deprived animals are different, and that the properties and consequences of the aroused reaction are such as may account for much current knowledge of environmental effects.
Effect of Enriched Environment Rearing on Impairments in Cortical Excitability and Plasticity after Prenatal Alcohol Exposure
It is predicted that combinations of interventions will be necessary to completely restore cortical function after exposure of the fetal brain to alcohol and that exposing prenatal alcohol-exposed rats to enriched rearing conditions significantly improves all measured cortical functions but does not restore normal values.