VISUAL EXPERIENCE ENHANCED FEATURE SELECTIVITY IN PRIMARY VISUAL CORTEX
The primary visual cortex (V1) is a center in the visual pathway that receives the converging information and sends diverging information to multiple visual areas. It is essential for the normal functioning of the visual system. While processing the input from the outside world, it is also continually modified by the sensory experience. This thesis is dedicated to studying the plasticity in the visual cortex that is associated with experience and brain damage recovery. In this thesis, we discovered that the visual experience induces 5 Hz oscillations that recruit inhibition in V1, sharpening the feature selectivity. We have also demonstrated that gene therapy to convert astrocytes into neurons induces neuronal circuit plasticity and functional recovery in mouse V1 following ischemia.