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Neurosci Lett. 1995 Dec 29;202(1-2):45-8.

Synaptology of prefrontal cortical projections to the basolateral amygdala: an electron microscopic study in the rat.

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Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia 29208, USA.


Prefrontal projections to the magnocellular basal amygdaloid nucleus (Bmg) of the rat were investigated using Phaseolus vulgaris leucoagglutinin (PHA-L) as an anterograde tracer. Electron microscopic examination revealed that most axon terminals in Bmg labeled by PHA-L injections into the prelimbic area contained round synaptic vesicles and made asymmetric synapses. The great majority of labeled terminals (93%) made synaptic contact with dendritic spines; a few contacts (7%) were seen with thin dendrites. These findings indicate that the main postsynaptic targets of PFC afferents to Bmg are spiny pyramidal neurons, the projection neurons of the basolateral amygdala. The morphology of the synapses suggests that they are excitatory.

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