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Keywords:

  • auditory pathway;
  • ascending sensory pathway;
  • teleost;
  • carp;
  • goldfish

Abstract

Fiber connections of the presumed auditory portion of the semicircular torus or the central nucleus (TSc) as well as other central and peripheral auditory structures were studied by tract-tracing methods in carp and goldfish. Major ascending projections to the TSc originated from the descending octaval nucleus (DO) and medullary secondary octaval population (SO). Toropetal neurons of the DO were within the saccular terminal zone. A small number of toropetal DO neurons might receive inputs from other inner ear and lateral line endorgans as well. Fibers from the DO terminated in a deep zone of the TSc, while those from the SO in both deep and superficial zones. Afferents to the TSc also arose from the rhombencephalic reticular formation, anterior octaval nucleus, isthmic reticular nucleus, perilemniscular nucleus, medial pretoral nucleus, anterior tuberal nucleus, and central posterior thalamic nucleus. The TSc projected ascending fibers to the medial pretoral nucleus, anterior tuberal nucleus, central posterior thalamic nucleus, and the preglomerular complex (anterior preglomerular nucleus, the caudomedial region of lateral preglomerular nucleus, and a medial zone of medial preglomerular nucleus). These parts of preglomerular complex appear structurally continuous sharing common hodological and cytoarchitectonic features, and thus might be regarded as a single neuronal population. Abundant descending pathways were also noted in the present study. Of particular note is the medial pretoral nucleus, which received fibers from diencephalic auditory nuclei. The nucleus gave rise to indirect descending pathways to a medial zone of the cerebellar crest where dendrites of crest cells in the SO ramify. J. Comp. Neurol. 491:186–211, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.