Our understanding of the functional organization and plasticity of the adult sensory cortex has been transformed in the last 25 years. The view that cortical functional representations of the sensory surface in adult animals are xed, especially for the primary sensory cortices, has been replaced by the view that they are dynamic and continuously modied by the animal’s experience. Such “experience-dependent”
plasticity in adult cortical functional representations has been demonstrated in a range of mammalian species across many primary cortices and has been implicated in a range of fundamental processes including rehabilitation following peripheral sensory loss or damage, recoveries from central nervous system damage, improvements in sensory-motor skills with practice, and learning and memory, thus underscoring its importance to an organism’s survival. For recent reviews on adult cortical plasticity see References 1,2.