Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 153, Issue 4, pp 543–549 | Cite as

Functional organization of lemniscal and nonlemniscal auditory thalamus



Thalamic nuclei of the mammalian auditory system exhibit remarkable parallelism in their anatomical pathways and the patterns of synaptic signalling. This has led to the theory that lemniscal, or core thalamocortical projection, carries tonotopically organized and auditory specific information whereas the nonlemniscal thalamocortical pathway forms part of an integrative system that plays an important role in polysensory integration, temporal pattern recognition, and certain forms of learning. Recent experimental evidence derived from molecular, cellular and behavioural studies indeed supports the conjecture that lemniscal and nonlemniscal pathways are involved in distinctive auditory functions.


Auditory Thalamocortical pathways Lemniscal projections Nonlemniscal projections Review 


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© Springer-Verlag 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Clinical Neurosciences and Neuroscience Research GroupUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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