Morphological Measurements in the Aging Rat Cerebral Cortex

  • Marian C. Diamond
  • James R. Connor

Abstract

This chapter deals with the structural changes seen in the brains of aging rats exposed to differential environments. We have previously reviewed the overall progress of experiments from our laboratory indicating brain changes due to modified external stimuli (Diamond and Connor, 1981, 1982). We showed changes in occipital cortical cell number and pyramidal cell dendrites from animals living in enriched, standard colony, and impoverished conditions. The present chapter includes some of the same data, but adds new information from the somatosensory cortex which has more recently been obtained. New dendritic spine data have also been presented to compare with our previous work.

Keywords

Cage Dementia Neurol Pyrami 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Brizzee, K. R., Sherwood, N., and Timiras, P. S., 1968, A comparison of various depth levels in cerebral cortex of young adults and aged Long-Evans rats, J. Gerontol. 23:289–297.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Buell, S., and Coleman, P., 1979, Dendritic growth in the aged human brain and failure of growth in senile dementia, Science 206:854–856.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Connor, J. R., Jr., 1981, Environmental influences on aging brain morphology, Ph.D. thesis, Department of Physiology-Anatomy, University of California, Berkeley, California.Google Scholar
  4. Connor, J. R., and Diamond, M. C., 1982, A comparison of dendritic spine number and type on pyramidal neurons of the visual cortex of old adult rats from social or isolated environments, J. Comp. Neurol. 210:99–106.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Connor, J. R., Diamond, M. C., and Johnson, R. E., 1980a, Occipital cortical morphology of the rat: Alteration with age and environment, Exp. Neurol. 68:158–170.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Connor, J. R., Diamond, M. C., and Johnson, R. E., 1980b, Aging and environmental influence on two types of dendritic spines in the rat occipital cortex, Exp. Neurol. 70:371–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Connor, J. R., Diamond, M. C., Connor, J. A., and Johnson, R. E., 1981a, A Golgi study of dendritic morphology in the occipital cortex of socially reared aged rats, Exp. Neurol. 73:525–533.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Connor, J. R., Melone, J. H., Yuen, A. R., and Diamond, M. C., 1981b, Dendritic length in aged rats’ occipital cortex: An environmentally induced response, Exp. Neurol. 73:827–830.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Connor, J. R., Beban, S. E., Hopper, P. A., Hansen, B., and Diamond, M. C., 1982a, A Golgi study of the superficial pyramidal cells in the somatosensory cortex of socially reared old adult rats, Exp. Neurol. 76:35–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Connor, J. R., Beban, S. E., Melone, J. H., Yuen, A., and Diamond, M. C., 1982b, A quantitative Golgi study in the occipital cortex of pyramidal dendritic topology of old adult rats from social or isolated environments, Brain Res. 251:39–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Connor, J. R., Wang, E. C., and Diamond, M. C., 1982c, Increased length of terminal dendritic segments in old rats’ somatosensory cortex: An environmentally induced response, Exp. Neurol. 78:466–470.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Diamond, M. C., 1976, Anatomical brain changes induced by environment, in: Knowing, Thinking, and Believing( J. McGaugh and L. Petrinovich, eds.), Plenum Press, New York, pp. 215–241.Google Scholar
  13. Diamond, M. C., and Connor, J. R., Jr., 1981, A search for the potential of the aging brain, in: Brain Neurotransmitters and Receptors in Aging and Age-Related Disorders( S. Enna, T. Samorajski, and B. Beer, eds.), Raven Press, New York, pp. 43–58.Google Scholar
  14. Diamond, M. C., and Connor, J. R., 1982, Plasticity of the aging cerebral cortex, in: Physiological and Pathophysiological Aspects of the Aging Brain( S. Hoyer, ed.), Springer-Verlag, New York, pp. 36–44.Google Scholar
  15. Diamond, M. C., Law, F., Rhodes, H., Lindner, B., Rosenzweig, M., Krech, D., and Bennett, E. L., 1966, Increases in cortical depth and glia numbers in rats subjected to enriched environments, J. Comp. Neurol. 128:117–126.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Diamond, M. C., Johnson, R. E., and Gold, M. W., 1977, Changes in neuron and glia number in the young, adult, and aging rat occipital cortex, Behav. Biol. 20:409–418.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Feldman, M. L., 1976, Aging changes in the morphology of cortical dendrites, in: Neurobiology of Aging( R. D. Terry and S. Gershon, eds.), Raven Press, New York, pp. 221–227.Google Scholar
  18. Hinds, J. W., and McNelly, N. A., 1977, Aging of the rat olfactory bulb: Growth and atrophy of constituent layers and changes in size and number of mitral cells, J. Comp. Neurol. 171:345–369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Holloway, R. L., 1966, Increased dendritic branching in layer II stellate neurons of occipital cortex as compared to deprived littermates, Brain Res. 2:393–396.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Miller, M., and Peters, A., 1981, Maturation of rat visual cortex. II. Electron microscopic study of pyramidal neurons, J. Comp. Neurol. 203:555–573.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Minot, C. S., 1908, The Problem of Age, Growth, and Death, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York.Google Scholar
  22. Scheibel, M. E., Lindsay, R. D., Tomiyasu, U., and Scheibel, A. B., 1975, Progressive dendritic changes in aging human cortex, Exp. Neurol. 47:392–403.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Valverde, F., 1970, The Golgi method: A tool for comparative structural analyses, in: Contemporary Research Methods in Neuroanatomy( W. J. H. Nauta and S. O. E. Ebbesson, eds.), Springer- Verlag, New York, pp. 12–28.Google Scholar
  24. Van der Loos, H., 1959, Dendro-dendritische Verbindingen in de Schors der Grote Hersenen, H. Stam, Haarlem.Google Scholar
  25. Yakovlev, P. I., and Lecours, A. R., 1967, The myelogentic cycles of regional maturation of the brain, in: Development of the Brain in Early Life (A. Minkowski, ed.), Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford, Edinburgh, pp. 3–70.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marian C. Diamond
    • 1
  • James R. Connor
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology-AnatomyUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

Personalised recommendations