Environmental stimulation reduces learning deficits in experimental cretinism

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Science  13 Feb 1976:
Vol. 191, Issue 4227, pp. 578-579
DOI: 10.1126/science.943127


Behavioral deficits in adult rats exposed perinatally to thiouracil were substantially reduced or elimated by a 5-week period of "superenriched" postweaning rearing conditions before testing. This treatment resulted in remediation of hypothyroid rats' deficits in maze learning, maze retention, and resistance to extinction of bar-pressing; the facilitative effect persisted for more than 4 months. These behavioral results were consistent with neurohistological findings from studies of early thyroid deficiency and postweaning environmental stimulation in rats.