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Cortical and subcortical connections of V1 and V2 in early postnatal macaque monkeys

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Abstract

Connections of primary (V1) and secondary (V2) visual areas were revealed in macaque monkeys ranging in age from 2 to 16 weeks by injecting small amounts of cholera toxin subunit B (CTB). Cortex was flattened and cut parallel to the surface to reveal injection sites, patterns of labeled cells, and patterns of cytochrome oxidase (CO) staining. Projections from the lateral geniculate nucleus and pulvinar to V1 were present at 4 weeks of age, as were pulvinar projections to thin and thick CO stripes in V2. Injections into V1 in 4- and 8-week-old monkeys labeled neurons in V2, V3, middle temporal area (MT), and dorsolateral area (DL)/V4. Within V1 and V2, labeled neurons were densely distributed around the injection sites, but formed patches at distances away from injection sites. Injections into V2 labeled neurons in V1, V3, DL/V4, and MT of monkeys 2-, 4-, and 8-weeks of age. Injections in thin stripes of V2 preferentially labeled neurons in other V2 thin stripes and neurons in the CO blob regions of V1. A likely thick stripe injection in V2 at 4 weeks of age labeled neurons around blobs. Most labeled neurons in V1 were in superficial cortical layers after V2 injections, and in deep layers of other areas. Although these features of adult V1 and V2 connectivity were in place as early as 2 postnatal weeks, labeled cells in V1 and V2 became more restricted to preferred CO compartments after 2 weeks of age. J. Comp. Neurol., 2012;520:544–569. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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