Propofol Resistance of Functional Domains with Orientation and Direction Sensitivity of the Primary Visual Cortex in Rats
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A method consisting of optical mapping of the intrinsic signal was used to study the activity of functional domains of the primary visual cortex at the population level in response to changes in the stimulus situation. Transient administration of propofol on the background of stable anesthesia allowed determination of the extent to which different functional domains of the cortex are stable to the systemic action of pharmacological agents. This substance was selected for the experiments because published data have demonstrated its affinity for GABAA receptors. Experiments were performed on seven adult clinically healthy cats. Analysis of the experimental data identified statistically significant differences between the responses of direction and orientation columns: signals in orientation domains were 1.6 times greater than responses in modules with directional selectivity. Analysis of changes in the structure of optical maps (i.e., the characteristic patterns of the distribution of functional columns in areas of the visual cortex) showed decreases in the level of correlation between the regions of interest by 60% for direction maps and 40% for orientation maps. Orientation columns were more stable to propofol. Additional analysis addressed the stability of the encoding of defined orientations in the cortex, which showed that the functional elements of the cortex with the greatest stability were those detecting near-vertical orientations.
Keywordsprimary visual cortex functional domains with orientation and direction stability optical mapping of the intrinsic signal propofol
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