From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Mesial aspect of a brain sectioned in the median sagittal plane. Epithalamus labeled in red, by 'habenular commissure', 'pineal body', and 'posterior commissure', with its projection anteriorly consisting stria medullaris
Latin epithalamus
MeSH D019261
NeuroNames 292
NeuroLex ID birnlex_1710
TA A14.1.08.002
FMA 62009
Anatomical terms of neuroanatomy

The epithalamus is a (dorsal) posterior segment of the diencephalon. The diencephalon is a part of the forebrain that also contains the thalamus, the hypothalamus and pituitary gland.[1] The epithalamus includes the habenula and their interconnecting fibers, the habenular commissure, the stria medullaris and the pineal gland.


The function of the epithalamus is to connect the limbic system to other parts of the brain. Some functions of its components include the secretion of melatonin and secretion of hormones from pituitary gland by the pineal gland (involved in circadian rhythms), and regulation of motor pathways and emotions.


The epithalamus comprises the habenular trigone, the pineal gland, and the habenular commissure. It is wired with the limbic system and basal ganglia.

Species that possess a photoreceptive parapineal organ show asymmetry in the epithalamus at the habenula, to the left (dorsal).[2]


  1. ^ Klein, Stephen B.; Thorne, B. Michael (Oct 3, 2006). Biological Psychology. Macmillan. p. 579. 
  2. ^ Concha, ML; Wilson, SW (2001). "Asymmetry in the epithalamus of vertebrates". J. Anat. 199 (1–2): 63–84. 

External links[edit]

See also[edit]