Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 88, Issue 2, pp 375–388

Retrograde transport of D-[3H]-aspartate injected into the monkey amygdaloid complex

  • David G. Amaral
  • Ricardo Insausti
Regular Papers


The possibility that certain of the afferents of the primate amygdaloid complex use an excitatory amino acid transmitter was evaluated by injecting D-[3H]-aspartate into the amygdala of twoMacaca fascicularis monkeys. The distribution of D-[3H]-aspartate labeled neurons was compared with those labeled with the nonselective retrograde tracer WGA-HRP injected at the same location as the isotope. Retrogradely labeled cells of both types were observed in a variety of cortical and subcortical structures and in discrete regions within the amygdala. D-[3H]-aspartate labeled neurons were observed in layers III and V of the frontal, cingulate, insular and temporal cortices. In the hippocampal formation, heavily labeled cells were observed in the CA1 region and in the deep layers of the entorhinal cortex. Of the subcortical afferents, the claustrum and the midbrain peripeduncular nucleus contained the greatest number of D-[3H]-aspartate labeled cells. Subcortical afferents that are not thought to use excitatory amino acids, such as the cholinergic neurons of the basal nucleus of Meynert, did not retrogradely transport the isotope. Within the amygdala, the most conspicuous labeling was in the paralaminar nucleus which forms the rostral and ventral limits of the amygdala. When the D-[3H]-aspartate injection involved the basal nucleus, many labeled cells were also observed in the lateral nucleus. Retrograde transport of D-[3H]-aspartate injected into the amygdala, therefore, appears to demonstrate a subpopulation of inputs that may use an excitatory amino acid transmitter.

Key words

Excitatory amino acids Glutamate Aspartate Cortical afferents Selective retrograde transport Monkey 


36pl Area

36 (lateral portion of polar region)

36pm Area

36 (medial portion of polar region)

36r Area

36 (rostral portion)


Primary auditory field


Accessory basal nucleus of the amygdala (magnocellular portion)


Accessory basal nucleus of the amygdala (parvicellular portion)


Anterior commissure


Anterior middle temporal sulcus


Arcuate sulcus


Basal nucleus of the amygdala


Basal nucleus of Meynert


Field CA1 of the Hippocampus


Corpus callosum


Central nucleus of the amygdala


Caudate nucleus




Cingulate sulcus


Entorhinal cortex


Gustatory cortex




Intercalated nucleus of the amygdala


Agranular insular cortex


Dysgranular insular cortex


Granular insular cortex


Inferior limiting sulcus


Lateral auditory field


Lateral geniculate nucleus


Lateral nucleus of the amygdala


Lateral orbital sulcus


Medial orbital sulcus


Olfactory tubercle


Optic tract


Occipitotemporal sulcus


Periamygdaloid cortex


Posterior auditory field


Parainsular cortex


Piriform cortex


Paralaminar nucleus of the amygdala


Posterior middle temporal sulcus


Peripeduncular nucleus


Principal sulcus


Rostral auditory field


Retroinsular cortex


Rostral sulcus


Rhinal sulcus


Superior limiting sulcus


Substantia nigra


Superior temporal sulcus

TA Area

TA of Von Bonin and Bailey

TE Area

TE of Von Bonin and Bailey

TEO Area

TEO of Von Bonin and Bailey

TF Area

TF of Von Bonin and Bailey

TH Area

TH of Von Bonin and Bailey


Lateral ventricle


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • David G. Amaral
    • 1
  • Ricardo Insausti
    • 2
  1. 1.The Salk InstituteSan DiegoUSA
  2. 2.Department of AnatomyUniversity of NavarraPamplonaSpain

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