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Estimation of numerical density and mean synaptic height in chick hippocampus 24 and 48 hours after passive avoidance training

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Philip Bradley


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The effects of passive avoidance learning on synaptic morphology and number in the dorsolateral hippocampus of chick were investigated at 24 and 48 h after training. chicks of both sexes were used. The numerical density of synapses and mean synaptic height were determined using design-based quantitative electron microscopic techniques. Our results suggest that after training there is a significant increase in synaptic density in the dorsolateral hippocampus of chicks at both 24 and 48 h, and also that the mean synaptic height was significantly different between trained and control groups. The increase in synaptic density was due to shaft (type II) synapses. It is known that during synaptogenesis, shaft synapses are formed first and are then converted to spine synapses. The only hemispheric asymmetry was found in the 24 h water-trained (W-trained) males where the numerical density of spine synapses was significantly higher in the left hippocampus. No significant differences due to gender in either numerical synaptic density or synapse height were observed at either 24 and 48 h. Comparison of the 24 h with 48 h groups showed an increase in shaft synaptic density over time in the W-trained groups, and an increased density of both shaft and spine synapses with time in methylanthranilate-trained (MeA-trained) chicks. These results demonstrate that the dorsolateral hippocampus of the chick shows synaptic changes at both 24 and 48 h after training and implicates this region in the long-term memory process. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Unal B, Bradley PM, Sahin B, Canan S, Aslan H, Kaplan S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Developmental Brain Research

Year: 2002

Volume: 136

Issue: 2

Pages: 135-144

ISSN (print): 0165-3806

ISSN (electronic): 1872-6755

Publisher: Elsevier BV


DOI: 10.1016/S0165-3806(02)00357-7


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