Recruitment of the auditory cortex in congenitally deaf cats by long-term cochlear electrostimulation

Rainer Klinke*, Andrej Kral, Silvia Heid, Jochen Tillein, Rainer Hartmann

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

153 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In congenitally deaf cats, the central auditory system is deprived of acoustic input because of degeneration of the organ of Corti before the onset of hearing. Primary auditory afferents survive and can be stimulated electrically. By means of an intracochlear implant and an accompanying sound processor, congenitally deaf kittens were exposed to sounds and conditioned to respond to tones. After months of exposure to meaningful stimuli, the cortical activity in chronically implanted cats produced field potentials of higher amplitudes, expanded in area, developed long latency responses indicative of intracortical information processing, and showed more synaptic efficacy than in naive, unstimulated deaf cats. The activity established by auditory experience resembles activity in hearing animals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1729-1733
Number of pages5
JournalScience
Volume285
Issue number5434
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 1999
Externally publishedYes

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