A comparison of the effects of frontal cortical and thalamic lesions on measures of spatial learning and memory in the rat.

Academic Article


  • Two experiments were conducted to compare the effects of radiofrequency lesions of thalamus and frontal cortex on three measures of spatial learning and memory: delayed non-matching to sample (DNMTS), radial arm maze with imposed delays, and serial reversal learning. Thalamic lesions were aimed at the lateral internal medullary lamina (L-IML) and cortical lesions at the projection areas of the mediodorsal nucleus along the medial wall (MW) and dorsal to the rhinal sulcus (RS) in frontal cortex. In Experiment 1 rats were trained on DNMTS prior to surgery. After recovery, rats with MW lesions showed persistent deficits on DNMTS that were significantly greater than for RS lesions. The deficits observed in MW lesioned animals were comparable to the effects of L-IML lesions on this task that have been described in previous studies. In Experiment 2 animals were trained to perform the radial arm maze task prior to treatment. After recovery, animals with L-IML lesions were impaired on the radial arm maze and on subsequent acquisition of the serial reversal task. Rats with RS and MW lesions showed transient impairments on the radial arm maze task, but otherwise performed as well as controls on both these tasks.
  • Authors

  • Harrison, LM
  • Mair, Robert
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • February 1996
  • Published In


  • Animals
  • Male
  • Maze Learning
  • Memory
  • Prefrontal Cortex
  • Rats
  • Serial Learning
  • Space Perception
  • Thalamic Nuclei
  • Thalamus
  • Wheat Germ Agglutinin-Horseradish Peroxidase Conjugate
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 8800656
  • Start Page

  • 195
  • End Page

  • 206
  • Volume

  • 75
  • Issue

  • 1-2