Master of Science
David F. Sherry
Scott A. MacDougall-Shackleton
The hippocampus is known to participate in a variety of cognitive functions in humans, non-human primates, rodents, and birds. A great deal of previous research on the avian hippocampus has examined its role in spatial memory. A question regarding avian hippocampal function that remains unanswered is, what is its role in encoding, retention, and retrieval of spatial information? To answer this question I, 1) describe spatial and non-spatial versions of a touchscreen task and my attempts to determine if the spatial version of the task is hippocampus dependent, and 2) describe the development of an implantable cryoloop which can be used to reversibly deactivate the avian hippocampus. I found that cryoloops are a successful technique for use in birds, and results suggest the task will be appropriate for the research question. This work lays the groundwork for future studies in studying hippocampus’s function and the avian brain.
Brodbeck, Madeleine IR, "Development of new methods to investigate the role of the avian hippocampus in memory formation in brown-headed cowbirds" (2017). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 4838.