Rhinal cortex lesions and object recognition in rats

Behav Neurosci. 1994 Feb;108(1):11-8. doi: 10.1037//0735-7044.108.1.11.


Rats with bilateral lesions of lateral entorhinal cortex and perirhinal cortex were tested on a nonrecurring-items delayed nonmatching-to-sample (DNMS) task resembling the one that is commonly used to study object recognition in monkeys. The rats were tested at retention delays of 4 s, 15 s, 60 s, 120 s, and 600 s before and after surgery. After surgery, they displayed a delay-dependent deficit: They performed normally at the 4-s delay but were impaired at delays of 15 s or longer. The addition of bilateral amygdala lesions did not increase their DNMS deficits. The present finding of a severe DNMS deficit following rhinal cortex damage is consistent with the authors' previous finding that bilateral lesions of the hippocampus and amygdala cause only mild DNMS deficits in rats unless there is also damage to rhinal cortex (D.G. Mumby, E.R. Wood, & J.P.J. Pinel, 1992). These findings add to accumulating evidence that the rhinal cortex, but not the amygdala, plays a critical role in object recognition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amygdala / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Brain Mapping
  • Discrimination Learning / physiology
  • Dominance, Cerebral / physiology
  • Limbic System / physiology*
  • Male
  • Mental Recall / physiology*
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Retention, Psychology / physiology