Primate analogue of the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test: effects of excitotoxic lesions of the prefrontal cortex in the marmoset

Behav Neurosci. 1996 Oct;110(5):872-86. doi: 10.1037//0735-7044.110.5.872.


Using a primate analogue of the Wisconsin Card Sort Test, this study demonstrated, for the first time, that lesions of the prefrontal cortex in monkeys produce a qualitatively similar impairment in attentional set-shifting to that seen following prefrontal cortical damage in humans. Although damage to the prefrontal cortex did not disrupt the ability of marmosets, a New World monkey, to maintain an attentional set, it did disrupt their ability to shift an attentional set. It also impaired their performance on discrimination reversal, object retrieval, and spatial delayed response, consistent with the effects of prefrontal damage in Old World monkeys. Comparison of the cognitive processes underlying discrimination reversal, object retrieval, and attentional set-shifting reveals the various types of inhibitory control provided by the prefrontal cortex.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Attention / physiology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Callithrix
  • Discrimination Learning / physiology*
  • Dominance, Cerebral / physiology
  • Female
  • Mental Recall / physiology
  • Models, Neurological*
  • Neural Inhibition / physiology
  • Neuropsychological Tests*
  • Orientation / physiology
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual / physiology*
  • Prefrontal Cortex / physiology*
  • Problem Solving / physiology*
  • Quinolinic Acid
  • Reversal Learning / physiology


  • Quinolinic Acid