Habituation and dishabituation are two forms of experience-dependent plasticity. Habituation consists in the reduction of responsiveness to a reiterated irrelevant stimulus, whereas dishabituation is the recovery of the response to the habituated stimulus when a new one is presented. Studying the ontogeny of these processes can shed light on early organism’s plasticity and propensity to learn. In the experiments, chicks (Gallus gallus) within a running-wheel ran toward an artificial companion placed at a distance. Stop of running was the dependent variable. In Experiment 1, three groups of chicks were administered two sequences of five 250ms-bursts of white-noise, presented one hour apart, in two consecutive days at different ages (1-2-day old, 2-3-day old, or 3-4-day old). In Experiment 2, 1-day old and 3-day old chicks underwent ten 1sec-predator’s call to test for habituation, one 1sec-burst of white-noise to test for response generalization, and five 1sec-predator’s call to assess response recovery and then dishabituation. Experiment 1 showed that short-and long-term habituation appear soon after hatching. However, 1-day old chicks habituated more than 3-day old ones, indicating a greater amount of learning. Experiment 2 extended the results of Experiment 1, and demonstrated that in chicks, after hatching, the facilitating mechanisms of dishabituation appears as early as habituation.

Rapid plasticity attenuation after birth revealed by habituation in chicks

Andrea DIssegna;Cinzia Chiandetti
2018

Abstract

Habituation and dishabituation are two forms of experience-dependent plasticity. Habituation consists in the reduction of responsiveness to a reiterated irrelevant stimulus, whereas dishabituation is the recovery of the response to the habituated stimulus when a new one is presented. Studying the ontogeny of these processes can shed light on early organism’s plasticity and propensity to learn. In the experiments, chicks (Gallus gallus) within a running-wheel ran toward an artificial companion placed at a distance. Stop of running was the dependent variable. In Experiment 1, three groups of chicks were administered two sequences of five 250ms-bursts of white-noise, presented one hour apart, in two consecutive days at different ages (1-2-day old, 2-3-day old, or 3-4-day old). In Experiment 2, 1-day old and 3-day old chicks underwent ten 1sec-predator’s call to test for habituation, one 1sec-burst of white-noise to test for response generalization, and five 1sec-predator’s call to assess response recovery and then dishabituation. Experiment 1 showed that short-and long-term habituation appear soon after hatching. However, 1-day old chicks habituated more than 3-day old ones, indicating a greater amount of learning. Experiment 2 extended the results of Experiment 1, and demonstrated that in chicks, after hatching, the facilitating mechanisms of dishabituation appears as early as habituation.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2931170
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