Hind- and mid-brains; postero-lateral view. (Pulvinar visible near top.)
MNG = Midline nuclear group
AN = Anterior nuclear group
MD = Medial dorsal nucleus
VNG = Ventral nuclear group
VA = Ventral anterior nucleus
VL = Ventral lateral nucleus
VPL = Ventral posterolateral nucleus
VPM = Ventral posteromedial nucleus
LNG = Lateral nuclear group
PUL = Pulvinar
MTh = Metathalamus
LG = Lateral geniculate nucleus
MG = Medial geniculate nucleus
|Latin||pulvinar thalami, nuclei pulvinaris|
|Anatomical terms of neuroanatomy|
The pulvinar is usually grouped as one of the lateral thalamic nuclei in rodents and carnivores, and stands as an independent complex in primates. The word is derived from the Latin pulvinus for "cushion". In Ancient Roman religion a pulvinar was an "empty throne" or cushioned couch for occupation by a deity.
By convention, it is divided into anterior, inferior, lateral, and medial subdivisions, each containing multiple nuclei.
- The lateral and inferior pulvinar have widespread connections with early visual cortical areas.
- The dorsal part of lateral pulvinar predominantly has connections with posterior parietal cortex and the dorsal stream cortical areas.
- The medial pulvinar has widespread connections with cingulate, posterior parietal, premotor and prefrontal cortical areas.
- The pulvinar also has input from the superior colliculus to inferior, lateral and medial sections, which seems to be important in the initiation and compensation of saccade, as well as the regulation of visual attention
The pulvinar varies in importance in different animals: it is virtually nonexistent in the rat, and grouped as the lateral posterior-pulvinar complex with the lateral posterior thalamic nucleus due to its small size in cats. In humans it makes up roughly 40% of the thalamus making it the largest of its nuclei.
- C. Cappe, A. Morel, P. Barone & E.M. Rouiller (2009). The thalamocortical projection systems in primate: an anatomical support for multisensory and sensorimotor interplay. Cerebral Cortex, 19(9), 2025-2037
- Berman, R., & Wurtz, R. (2011). Signals conveyed in the pulvinar pathway from superior colliculus to cortical area mt. The Journal of Neuroscience, 31(2), 373-384.
- Robinson, D., & Petersen, S. (1985). Responses of pulvinar neurons to real and self-induced stimulus movement. Brain research, 338(2), 392-394.
- Petersen, S., Robinson, D., & Morris, J. (1987). Contributions of the pulvinar to visual spatial attention. Neuropsychologia, 25(1), 97-105.
- Chalupa, L. (1991). Visual function of the pulvinar. The Neural Basis of Visual Function. CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, pp. 140-159.
- Arend, I., Rafal, R., & Ward, R. (2008). Spatial and temporal deficits are regionally dissociable in patients with pulvinar lesions. Brain, 131(8), 2140-2152.
- LaBerge, D. (1999). Attention pp. 44-98. In Cognitive science (Handbook of Perception and Cognition, Second Edition), Bly BM, Rumelhart DE. (edits). Academic Press ISBN 978-0-12-601730-4 p. 73
- Stained brain slice images which include the "pulvinar" at the BrainMaps project
- Atlas image: eye_38 at the University of Michigan Health System - "The Visual Pathway from Below"