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J Comp Neurol. 1996 Jan 8;364(2):340-62.

Ventral striatopallidothalamic projection: IV. Relative involvements of neurochemically distinct subterritories in the ventral pallidum and adjacent parts of the rostroventral forebrain.

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1
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, St. Louis University School of Medicine, Missouri 63104, USA.

Abstract

Retrograde and anterograde tract-tracing studies were carried out to determine whether the capacity of the nucleus accumbens to influence the thalamic mediodorsal nucleus via ventral striatopallidothalamic connections disproportionately favors the shell over the core subterritory. After injections of Fluoro-Gold into the mediodorsal thalamic nucleus, retrogradely labeled neurons were detected in sections also processed for calbindin-D 28-kD and neurotensin immunoreactivities to facilitate identification of subterritories in the ventral pallidum. Fluoro-Gold-labeled cells were counted in series of sections cut through the ventral pallidum, rostral globus pallidus, nucleus of the vertical limb of the diagonal band, preoptic region, lateral hypothalamus, and the sublenticular gray region, including parts of the extended amygdala. Data were expressed as cells/unit area and as percentages of all labeled forebrain cells. Mediodorsal nucleus-projecting rostroventral forebrain neurons were most numerous in the ventromedial part of the subcommissural ventral pallidum and pallidal parts of the olfactory tubercle. Few were observed in the dorsolateral part of the subcommissural ventral pallidum. In addition, following injections into the ventral pallidum, anterogradely transported biotinylated dextran amine was evaluated in sections processed for calbindin or tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactivities. Injection into the ventromedial part of the subcommissural ventral pallidum resulted in robust anterograde labeling of the medial segment of the mediodorsal nucleus and ventral tegmental area and weak labeling of the substantia nigra and subthalamic nucleus. Conversely, after injection into the dorsolateral part of the subcommissural ventral pallidum, anterograde labeling was weak in the mediodorsal nucleus and ventral tegmental area, but robust in the substantia nigra and subthalamic nucleus. The results are consistent with a predominant accumbens shell influence on the mediodorsal nucleus and with cortico-ventral striatopallidal-thalamocortical pathways that begin and end in different parts of the frontal lobe.

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