Suppression of cortical representation through backward conditioning

Shaowen Bao, Vincent T. Chan, Li I. Zhang, Michael M. Merzenich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Temporal stimulus reinforcement sequences have been shown to determine the directions of synaptic plasticity and behavioral learning. Here, we examined whether they also control the direction of cortical reorganization. Pairing ventral tegmental area stimulation with a sound in a backward conditioning paradigm specifically reduced representations of the paired sound in the primary auditory cortex (Al). This temporal sequence-dependent bidirectional cortical plasticity modulated by dopamine release hypothetically serves to prevent the over-representation of frequently occurring stimuli resulting from their random pairing with unrelated rewards.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1405-1408
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 4 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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