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The authors explored the possibility that there are different neural consequences, beyond the primary site of brain damage, following perirhinal cortex (PRh) lesions made in different ways. Fos expression was used as a marker for neuronal activation and compared across the forebrains of rats that underwent the different types of surgery. Electrolytic and excitotoxic PRh lesions produced dramatic increases in Fos expression in the cortex, and excitotoxic and aspiration PRh lesions increased Fos expression in the dentate gyrus. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that different lesion methods have separable effects on neural function in regions outside the lesion site that could account for inconsistencies in the literature regarding the behavioral effects of PRh lesions on tests of spatial memory.