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Morris L. J. Crawford, Ronald S. Harwerth; Ocular Dominance Column Width and Contrast Sensitivity in Monkeys Reared with Strabismus or Anisometropia. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2004;45(9):3036-3042. doi: 10.1167/iovs.04-0029.
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purpose. To study the relationship between the width of ocular dominance columns in primary visual cortex and spatial contrast sensitivity functions in monkeys with strabismus or anisometropia during infancy.
methods. Adult monkeys having had monocular visual abnormalities induced in infancy were tested behaviorally for spatial contrast sensitivity and then subjected to functional enucleation of one eye to reveal the ocular dominance columns (ODCs) of the primary visual cortex by cytochrome oxidase (CO) staining. The relative widths of the left and right eyes’ ODCs were measured and related to the contrast sensitivity functions.
results. The relative widths of the ODCs having input from eyes with strabismic or anisometropic amblyopia were reduced in proportion to the age of onset and the duration of the early visual abnormality. The relative losses in contrast sensitivity were in ordinal agreement with the losses in relative width of the ODCs.
conclusions. Amblyopia induced by the early monocular abnormalities of strabismus or anisometropia is proportional to the loss in cortical afference as reflected in the reduction in width of the respective ODCs in the primary visual cortex.
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