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Topographically Organized Climbing Fibre Sprouting in the Adult Rat Cerebellum


P. Strata, as above


Adaptive recovery following brain injury requires the topography of projection maps to be restored. In the adult mammalian brain, the regeneration of severed axons does not normally occur and repair mainly relies on collateral reinnervation from uninjured neurons. Although reinnervation can be target specific at the single cell level, it is not known if the new connections are organized correctly. The normal olivocerebellar projection has a precise topography in which subnuclei of the inferior olive terminate as climbing fibres on chemically defined bands of cerebellar Purkinje cells. This precision has been exploited to determine the topography of climbing fibre sprouting following an inferior olive lesion in the adult rat. Collateral reinnervation was found to respect the boundaries between the Purkinje cell compartments. Thus, topographical cues are available in the adult during post-lesion plasticity to guide the restoration of the olivocerebellar projection map.