Publication Date

2008

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

First Advisor

Corwin, James V.

Degree Name

Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)

Department

Department of Psychology

LCSH

Neglect (Neurology)--Treatment

Abstract

Neglect is a neuropsychological disorder characterized by the failure to report or respond to stimuli presented to the side of the body opposite a brain lesion and occurs in approximately 40% of all brain injuries. The need for effective therapies to treat neglect in humans has led to the development of a rodent model of neglect. Unilateral destruction of the medial agranular cortex (AGm), which is part of a cortical network for directed attention, produces severe multimodal neglect of visual, tactile, and auditory stimulation with deficits similar to those seen in humans. Recently amphetamines have been investigated for inducing plasticity and recovery of function following brain damage. Amphetamine treatment has been shown to produce recovery from visual, frontal, and sensorimotor cortex damage in animals and this recovery may be the result of axonal growth originating from the opposite, unlesioned hemisphere. The purpose of this study was to investigate several important variables, including whether amphetamine treatment would induce behavioral recovery from neglect produced by unilateral AGm destruction, the time frame in which amphetamine must be administered in order to be effective, the permanence of recovery following treatment, and the potential mechanisms for recovery. The results indicated that subjects injected with 2 mg/kg of d-amphetamine on days 0, 2, and 5 recovered in significantly fewer days than saline-treated controls, even when administration was delayed by 2 and 7 days. Additionally, these studies indicated that recovery persisted for at least 60 days and was not affected by the experience of testing or handling. Further findings indicate that cutting fibers crossing from the opposite, unlesioned hemisphere reinstates neglect deficits and suggest that these fibers may be responsible for recovery.

Comments

Includes bibliographical references (pages [134]-145).

Extent

xii, 145 pages

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type

Text

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