The development of laterality in the forebrain projections of midline thalamic cell groups in the rat

M. Takada, Gordon Fishell, Z. K. Li, Derek Van der Kooy, T. Hattori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Bilateral forebrain (caudoputamen, nucleus accumbens and frontal cortical areas) injections of two different fluorescent retrograde tracers demonstrated that labeled cells situated in the midline nuclei of the thalamus and midbrain each project only unilaterally to the forebrain, regardless of the laterality of their perikarya. Thus, these intermingling midline perikarya send their axons primarily ipsilaterally and to a lesser degree contralaterally, but never bilaterally to the forebrain. At embryonic day 19, these midline nuclei exist as two bilaterally situated, independent structures, each projecting only ipsilaterally to the forebrain. By postnatal day 2, these perikarya fuse into a single mass on the midline. Upon fusion, many of the perikarya of the two developing subnuclei cross the midline, intermingle with each other, and thus some neurons come to have contralateral forebrain projections. These observations suggest that neurons are able to maintain their axonal projections while migrating short distances.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-282
Number of pages8
JournalDevelopmental Brain Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987



  • Cell migration
  • Development
  • Forebrain
  • Laterality
  • Midline thalamic nucleus
  • Rat
  • Retrograde double labeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Developmental Biology

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