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Article

Activity Patterns in Neurons in the Retrosplenial Area of the Cortex in Operant Food-Procuring Behavior in Rats of Different Ages

Neuroscience and Behavioral Physiology. 2018. Vol. 48. No. 18. P. 1014-1018.
Aleksandrov Y., Gorkin A. G., Kuzina E. A., Ivlieva N. P., Solov’eva O. A.

Neuron spike activity was recorded in the retrosplenial area of the cortex during execution of acquired cyclic operant food-procuring behavior (COFPB) in adult (8–12 months) and elderly (20–27 months) LongEvans rats. As compared with adult rats, elderly animals showed a signifi cant decrease in the proportion of neurons specialized for COFPB. The normalized discharge frequency of all neurons in elderly animals during execution of basic food-procuring acts was signifi cantly greater than that in adults. Elderly rats showed signifi cantly fewer pairs of acts with signifi cant differences in discharge frequency than adults, indicating that neuron activity on execution of COFPB was more uniform. These data indicate that in old age, learning involves less “extension” of existing experience due to formation of new neuronal specializations than in earlier stages of an individual’s life and that the internal system structure of the newly formed behavior is more “homogeneous.”