A comparison of the effects of fornix transection and sulcus principalis ablation upon spatial learning by monkeys

Behavioural Brain Research
D Gaffan, S Harrison


In each of three experiments with Cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis), there was a group of normal control animals, a group with bilateral cortical ablations in the principal sulcus, and a group with fornix transection. In Expt. 1, half of each group learned problems in which the position of a pair of visual stimuli, to the monkey's left or right, indicated which of the visual stimuli was the correct (rewarded) one. The other animals learned problems in which visual stimuli indicated, irrespective of their own spatial position, whether reward was to be found on the monkey's left or on the right. The animals with fornix transection were impaired in both tasks. The animals with sulcus principalis ablation were also impaired in both tasks. The impairment caused by fornix transection was more severe than that caused by sulcus principalis ablation. Within each of the two operated groups, the degree of impairment in the two tasks was equal, when assessed in proportion to the difficulty of each task for control animals. Expt. 2 showed that neither of the operated groups was impaired in visual discrimination learning with spatial position irrelevant. Expt. 3 tested spatial discrimination learning (acquisition and reversal of a lef...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Mental Concentration
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