Distinct Circuits for Recovery of Eye Dominance and Acuity in Murine Amblyopia

Céleste Élise Stephany, Xiaokuang Ma, Hilary M. Dorton, Jie Wu, Alexander M. Solomon, Michael G. Frantz, Shenfeng Qiu, Aaron W. McGee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Degrading vision by one eye during a developmental critical period yields enduring deficits in both eye dominance and visual acuity. A predominant model is that “reactivating” ocular dominance (OD) plasticity after the critical period is required to improve acuity in amblyopic adults. However, here we demonstrate that plasticity of eye dominance and acuity are independent and restricted by the nogo-66 receptor (ngr1) in distinct neuronal populations. Ngr1 mutant mice display greater excitatory synaptic input onto both inhibitory and excitatory neurons with restoration of normal vision. Deleting ngr1 in excitatory cortical neurons permits recovery of eye dominance but not acuity. Reciprocally, deleting ngr1 in thalamus is insufficient to rectify eye dominance but yields improvement of acuity to normal. Abolishing ngr1 expression in adult mice also promotes recovery of acuity. Together, these findings challenge the notion that mechanisms for OD plasticity contribute to the alterations in circuitry that restore acuity in amblyopia. Early visual deprivation yields enduring deficits in both eye dominance and acuity. Stephany et al. demonstrate that ngr1 limits restoration of eye dominance and acuity within distinct components of visual circuitry to reveal that recovery of these facets of vision is independent in a murine model of amblyopia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1914-1923.e5
JournalCurrent Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 18 2018


  • amblyopia
  • eye dominance
  • leucine-rich repeat
  • plasticity
  • visual acuity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


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