The cortical, thalamic, and amygdaloid connections of the rodent temporal cortices were investigated by using the anterograde transport of iontophoretically injected biocytin. Injections into area Te1 labeled axons and terminals in the ventral regions of the dorsal and ventral subnuclei of the medial geniculate complex, area Te3, the rostrodorsal part of area Te2, and the ventrocaudal caudate putamen. No amygdaloid labeling was observed. Thalamic projections from Te2 targeted the lateral posterior nucleus, the dorsal part of the dorsal subnucleus of the medial geniculate complex, and the peripeduncular nucleus. Corticocortical projections mainly terminated in the dorsal perirhinal cortex, but moderately dense projections were observed in medial and lateral peristriate cortex, and only light projections were observed to Te1 and Te3. Projections to these isocortical regions terminated in layers I and VI. Amygdaloid projections targeted the ventromedial subdivision of the lateral nucleus and the adjacent part of the anterior basolateral nucleus. Area Te3 was observed to project to the ventrolateral parts of the dorsal and ventral subnuclei of the medial geniculate complex, the dorsal perirhinal cortex, rostral Te2, and Te1. In the amygdala, labeled fibers and terminals were concentrated in the dorsolateral subdivision of the lateral nucleus. These data confirm that areas Te1 and Te3 are hierarchically organized cortical areas connected with auditory relay nuclei in the thalamus. Area Te2, in contrast, appears to be weakly connected with Te1 and Te3 but is heavily connected with the peristriate cortex and tectorecipient thalamic nuclei. Te2 appears to be a visually related cortical area. The data also indicate that projections from Te2 and Te3 target different subregions of the lateral nucleus and that Te2, but not Te3, projects to the basolateral nucleus.
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