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Odor Identification in Rats: Behavioral and Electrophysiological Evidence of Learned Olfactory-Auditory Associations
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology. Nathan S. Kline Institute, USA; New York University School of Medicine, USA.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0856-0569
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Number of Authors: 52019 (English)In: eNeuro, ISSN 2373-2822, Vol. 6, no 4, article id 0102-19.2019Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The ability to recognize and identify a smell is highly dependent on multisensory context and expectation, for example, hearing the name of the odor source. Here, we develop a novel auditory-odor association task in rats, wherein the animal learns that a specific auditory tone, when associated with a specific odor, predicts reward (Go signal), whereas the same tone associated with a different odor, or vice versa, is not (No-Go signal). The tone occurs prior to the onset of the odor, allowing physiological analyses of sensory-evoked local field potential (LFP) activity to each stimulus in primary auditory cortex and anterior piriform cortex (aPCX). In trained animals that have acquired the task, both auditory and subsequent olfactory cues activate [3 band oscillations in both the auditory cortex and PCX, suggesting multisensory integration. Naive animals show no such multisensory responses, suggesting the response is learned. In addition to the learned multisensory evoked responses, functional connectivity between auditory cortex and PCX, as assessed with spectral coherence and phase lag index (PLI), is enhanced. Importantly, both the multi-sensory evoked responses and the functional connectivity are context-dependent. In trained animals, the same auditory stimuli presented in the home cage evoke no responses in auditory cortex or PCX, and functional connectivity between the sensory cortices is reduced. Together, the results demonstrate how learning and context shape the expression of multisensory cortical processing. Given that odor identification impairment is associated with preclinical dementia in humans, the mechanisms suggested here may help develop experimental models to assess effects of neuropathology on behavior.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 6, no 4, article id 0102-19.2019
Keywords [en]
auditory perception, electrophysiology, learning, olfaction, sensation
National Category
Neurosciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-173034DOI: 10.1523/ENEURO.0102-19.2019ISI: 000483309700016PubMedID: 31362955OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-173034DiVA, id: diva2:1356321
Available from: 2019-10-01 Created: 2019-10-01 Last updated: 2019-12-04Bibliographically approved

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