Vision is required for the formation of binocular neurons prior to the classical critical period [article]

Liming Tan, Dario L. Ringach, S. Lawrence Zipursky, Joshua T. Trachtenberg
2021 bioRxiv   pre-print
Depth perception emerges from the development of binocular neurons in primary visual cortex. Vision is required for these neurons to acquire their mature responses to visual stimuli. A prevalent view is that vision does not influence binocular circuitry until the onset of the critical period, about a week after eye opening, and that this relies on inhibition. Here, we show that vision is required to form binocular neurons and to improve binocular tuning and matching from eye opening until
more » ... al period closure. Inhibition is not required for this process, but rather antagonizes it. Vision improves the tuning properties of binocular neurons by strengthening and sharpening ipsilateral eye cortical responses. This progressively changes the population of neurons in the binocular pool and this plasticity is sensitive to interocular differences prior to the critical period. Thus, vision guides binocular plasticity from eye opening and prior to the classically defined critical period.
doi:10.1101/2021.06.15.448591 fatcat:lq2n5q2cyzfspckfpyg522exfi