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Keywords:

  • ascending projection;
  • extrastriate cortex;
  • lateral geniculate nucleus;
  • monkey;
  • posterior thalamus

Abstract

In order to determine the relationship of superior colliculus inputs to thalamic neurons projecting to the middle temporal visual area (MT), injections of wheat germ agglutinin conjugated with horseradish peroxidase were placed in the superior colliculus of three owl monkeys, with injections of Fast Blue in the MT. The locations of labelled terminals and neurons in the posterior thalamus were related to four architectonically distinct nuclei of the inferior pulvinar (Stepniewska & Kaas, Vis. Neurosci.14, pp.1043–1060, 1997). Fast Blue injections in the MT labelled neurons largely in the medial nucleus of the inferior pulvinar. A few labelled neurons were found in the adjoining central medial nucleus of the inferior pulvinar, as well as in the lateral pulvinar and the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus. Superior colliculus inputs were most dense in the posterior and medial nuclei of the inferior pulvinar. There were sparser inputs to the central lateral nucleus of the inferior pulvinar, locations in the lateral and medial pulvinar, and the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus. The results indicate that the medial nucleus of the inferior pulvinar, the major projection zone to the MT, does not receive a significant input from the superior colliculus.