Neural prosthetics aim to restore function to sensory deficits. In the same sense that cochlear implants can restore auditory function, visual neural prosthetics aim to restore visual function. A strain of rats with retinal degeneration are subjects of great interest when exploring the effect of a visual neural prosthetics on visual perception. In this study we explore the rat response to a visual stimulus in normal vision rats through behavior conditioning in the development of a training protocol that will be used to assess visual perception in retinal degenerative rats. We found that autoshaping was a successful method in training rats to form an association between lever presses and food delivery.
We also found that light discrimination under a two-lever, one-wall paradigm resulted in strong subject response to introducing light dependent food enforcer delivery. Further exploration of visual perception in rats under this paradigm was unable to be performed.
Bacala, Patricia, "Assessing Visual Perception Using Behaviour Conditioning in the Rat Model" (2014). Rose-Hulman Undergraduate Research Publications. 19.