Citation Dudchenko P, Wood ER & Eichenbaum H (2000) Neurotoxic Hippocampal Lesions Have No Effect on Odor Span and Little Effect on Odor Recognition Memory But Produce Significant Impairments on Spatial Span, Recognition, and Alternation. Journal of Neuroscience, 20 (8), pp. 2964-2977. http://www.jneurosci.org/content/20/8/2964.abstract
Abstract Recent work has shown that lesions of the hippocampus in monkeys cause deficits in the capacity to remember increasing numbers of objects, colors, and spatial locations (Beason-Heldet al., 1999). However, others have observed that hippocampectomized monkeys can show intact memory for a list of objects or locations (Murray and Mishkin, 1998). We wished to explore the effects of hippocampal damage on the capacity of memory in the rodent and, to do so, developed novel "span" tasks in which a variable number of odors or locations had to be remembered. In the odor span task (experiment 1), rats were trained on a nonmatching to sample task in which increasing numbers of odors had to be remembered. Half of the trained rats received ibotenic acid lesions of the hippocampus. Postoperatively, hippocampectomized animals did not differ from control animals even when required to remember up to 24 odors. However, when tested on delayed retention of a list of 12 odors, rats with hippocampal lesions were impaired at a long delay. Also, these rats were impaired on a subsequent test of delayed spatial alternation. In a spatial span task (experiment 2), naive rats were trained on a nonmatching to sample task in which a variable number of locations had to be remembered. After this, half of the animals received ibotenic acid lesions. Postoperatively, hippocampectomized animals performed above chance levels when required to remember a single cup location, but were unable to remember more. Subsequent testing on another spatial delayed alternation task suggested that hippocampectomized rats could recognize, but could not inhibit their approach to previously visited locations.