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Citations needed[edit]

This article is outgrowing its citations. Citations in an article on detailed functional anatomy need to be closely associated with particular sections. A recent update offers a reliable citation in "Principals of Neuroscience" but we can't easily correlate which sections are supported by that text. The information on learned fear conditioning seems to correlate with citations provided, but those too need to be directly associated with the citation. If we have several paragraphs of theory and two or three citations at the bottom, it is difficult to check facts. Other sections did not associate readily with any citation in a reliable source. One citation pointed to speculative literature from advocates of neurolinguistic programming. That is not peer-reviewed literature and does not meet a standard of reliability for a science article. A primary reference for assertions offered in such an article would be more appropriate for encyclopedic content. MoniqueRN 05:28, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

agreed. i would suggest that the most egregiously uncited material be removed immediately. sallison 19:25, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
Based on my best judgement of what was most egregious, I've done that. I also made several other changes to resolve singular/plural conflicts, to add a citation, to better conform content to citations, to make content more readable and to temper subjective analysis of laboratory findings. Explanations follow.
There might be a publication style here to govern descriptions of bilateral anatomy. If there is a particular style, content should conform to style. The scope of my edits today did not involve a broad survey of style beyond this page. The language of structural anatomy, with a tendency toward singular description of bilateral features, might only be partially instructive. In exposition of anatomical functions, each of two bilateral features may be equally involved. See Lung. "The lung is..." "The lungs are involved..." "The lungs flank..." An established nuance might elude my comprehension, but I suspect a systematic stylistic problem I'm not prepared to address beyond this page.
The singular/plural problem becomes more complex as we describe dissection. We dissect an individual amygdala. We describe its parts as elements of a single amygdala. Nuclei within the dissected amygdala can be singular, as is the central nucleus, or plural, as are the lateral nuclei.
In the introduction, I removed a sentence that said five psychological conditions are "suspected of being linked" to these groups of nuclei. Suspicion of links is not strong content for an intro. No basis for the suspicions was available in citations. I removed references to sexual dimorphism, to association with aggression and to post-castration shrinkage. Only castration effects were supported by citation. Those were in rats, not in humans. The passages did not inform a general understanding of the subject as would be appropriate for an introductory paragraph.
The mention of "links" to fear and pleasure was vague and didn't accurately describe whatever dualism might be exposed by procedures that explore aversive and appetitive reactions. The leap from aversion and appetition in pure research to subjective descriptions of various emotions in clinical psychology is rhetorically narrow but scientifically vast. For the sake of accuracy, anatomy articles sometimes include big words. I would introduce error if referred to a tempting but overly general duality of "positive and negative emotions." Procedural associations with rewards and punishments in associative-learning research don't neatly expose the full scope of emotional discourse. Physiology associated with particular emotions is explored elsewhere in this collection, so we don't need to reach beyond what can be said with confidence about this anatomical feature.
The distinction between emotions and emotional reactions is also problematic when we attempt to describe neuroanatomical functions. We will find robust debate among researchers and clinicians about distinctions between feelings, emotions and emotional reactions. Citing the scope of that debate is beyond what I can contribute today. Deferring to the in-house definition, emotions are a language. The language represents feelings, which are perceptions of physiological responses to internal and external events. Expressions of that language are emotional reactions. Emotion is an impulse that arises from a perception or that causes a perception. The amygdala are involved in mediating responses to the impulse. The distinction might be narrow and many qualified scholars might debate the concepts. The best citation available on the page refers only once to a form of emotion, that being emotional learning, which is a reaction, not the primary action of the impulse. The anatomical scope of internal and external emotional discourse extends beyond these particular clusters of neurons that, along with other anatomical features, mediate that discourse. Thus, I changed the intro to mention a "role in the processing and memory of emotional reactions."
EDIT:Reviewing the emotions article, it is evident the concept of emotion as language has been dropped. The language construct might have heuristic value, but is probably less than definitive. All the same, the distinction between emotion as impulse and emotional reaction to the impulse seems solid, based on availalable texts.MoniqueRN 18:10, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
The final section still contains material not directly associated with citations, but it is generally consistent with some research, at least to my knowledge. It needs to be refined. Other content related to reinforcement might be redeemed with reliable citations of consensus findings. MoniqueRN 03:25, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

the assertion above that amygdala's role in the brain is thoroughly understood is greatly overstated. furthermore, that which is presented here is definitely not consensus material. sallison 19:35, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
It seems a bit fishy to me. Sources? Sayeth 19:15, 24 February 2006 (UTC)

Regarding the relationship between castration and amygdala size I found this Pub Med article. I could not find anything about a link between amygdala size and aggressive behaviour. Renaissance Healer

Way to screw up the formatting, Neil. For someone with such a profound understanding of the 'magical' brain it seems odd that basic HTML formatting is beyond you.

What does anyone think of this? It seems to be too much a self-reference. haz (user talk) 13:59, 24 June 2006

- I removed the clicking section because it's clearly a biased advertisement. Just don't even tolerate this kind of stuff in the future. - Khol

- Amygdala stimulation is fine, yes- but this "clicking" technique is clearly a fallicy. When it links to a myspace page Clicking at Myspace that reeks of unprofessionalism and silliness- claiming that using the power of your brain to perform "Cloud Busting - Make clouds dissipate with thought." and to take advantage of "Synchronisation - When coincidences aren't coincidence, and you actually realise that with a feeling.", it's clearly something that doesn't deserve any kind of actual status as a legimate anything. Yes, it can be reported with a neutral point of view that some people advocate this kind of stuff but the section that existed before-hand implied that this self-proclaimed magic was true. I mean, let's face it- this is wacko stuff and has no place on wikipedia if it's going to have any kind of standing as a reputable source of real. - Khol

Electrical stimulation of animal amygdala in research does not produce results that support claims of self-control through self-stimulation of particular neuroatomical regions. There is no peer-reviewed evidence that techniques suggested in books promoted by this author have any more than a placebo effect.
There is no more place in this neuroanatomy article for a lone idiosyncratic view of how a person can control their neurobiological functions than there is a place in an article about Napoleon for information about someone who self-published a book claiming to speak for the ghost of Napoleon. Links promoting this author's speculative self-help books do not belong in this article because they are not relevant to the topic of this article. This author's self-published books probably don't meet standards of notability for an encyclopedic article of any sort.MoniqueRN 04:11, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
I added a number of sources, but couldn't figure out how to cite textbooks with footnotes. Also, the Memory modulation section should be cleaned up. Michelleem 21:30, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Should this article disambiguate from the Amygdala spiking neural network?

Problems with article?[edit]

Hi everyone, I was requested to come over to this article and have a look in regards to some sort of commotion? I gave it (and the talk page) a quick skim and the article seems reasonable in its current form; except that I would recommend putting the majority of the article in the singular form, i.e. amygdala is the most common usage. From the talk page, I would skip any reference to the clicking stuff; there is no clicking in the brain (except for clicking in the ear), there are only voltage potentials and current; or more specifically, electrons, nuclei, and photons interacting electromagnetically. Also, I would suggest to add more sources to the "memory section" and furthermore to add more historical neuroscience researchers to this article, e.g. who made the first connection between the fear state of mind and amygdala activity. Adios: --Sadi Carnot 14:16, 6 July 2006 (UTC)


Could the pronunciation be put at the top of the page please?--Lionheart Omega 21:28, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

Pronciation guides are in dictionaries not encyclopedias. See:
Look up amygdala in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

. Thanks:--Sadi Carnot 13:04, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Well, my anonymous friend, I searched around a bit; I found a Neil Slade Interview, and he has a 1998 book selling at Amazon called: The Frontal Lobe Supercharge, which has a decent sales rank of 213,000 on 08/09/06. This book seems to cater to the spiritual or new-age type of crowd. The book and website seems to be about how to stimulate your amygdala by some kind of meditation technique, being similar to how reading a book or playing video games stimulates the amygdala. That’s great that he has his theory and he is actively striving to educate a certain type of crowd with his ideas, but he seems to be clogging up the talk:amygdala page with all his “clicking theory” stuff, which is a drain on everyone who just wants straight textbook knowledge on the topic of the “amygdala”.
For example, there’s no mention of “clicking” or “spade” in either Haines’ 1997 Fundamental Neuroscience or in Siegel’s 2006 Basic Neurochemistry. If you or someone else tried to start a Niel Slade wiki-article it would probably end up at the Wikipedia:articles for deletion section. I would suggest that Neil Slade as well as other’s on this talk page get themselves a Wikipedia account and a userpage so that they can converse properly on talkpages. Adios:--Sadi Carnot 13:39, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

talk page management[edit]

SevenTime <<<<snipped comments already deleted by someone who blanked the entire talk page after filling it up with a defense of ideas expressed in his vanity-press publications; see page history for details [1] Comments by others remain. Intent is that if the person doesn't want his comments here and wants to archive them, fine, but others are participating in a lengthy intermittant discussion during several months and their comments should not be deleted by one who is unhappy that the article does not include references to his self-published original research. SevenTime 08:55, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

Lizard Brain Redirect[edit]

Just wondering why Lizard brain redirects here? Thanks. Searles2sels (PJ) 23:04, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Just so. But this being the case, shouldn't there be some discussion of the evolution of the brain and how the amygdala fits in? -Alcmaeonid (talk) 16:11, 18 December 2007 (UTC)

I followed the redirect, but there's still no mention in this article. (talk) 11:15, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

I've changed it to a redirect to Triune brain -- it should be possible to see the reason for the redirect by looking at that article. There is enough known about the reptilian brain to justify a freestanding article about it, but until one is created, this is probably the best redirect. Looie496 (talk) 19:06, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

New section I've added[edit]

I renamed the "Disorder" section to "Neuropsychological correlates of amygdala activity" and included a lot of research about the amygdala in primates and in humans (with appropriate citations).[2] I'd like to keep all of this research in the article, as I think it is very relevant, but my passage is what I'd mostly call "groundwork" and I'd like to make additions and improvements to it over time. Suggestions are welcomed. --Ubiq 10:10, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

I would like to submit a complete re-write of the Amygdala article[edit]

Hi- I have worked on the amygdala for two decades and feel the article in its current form does not do justice to the field. As I understand it, the wiki culutre is more about small changes to what exists rather that major re-writes. I tried doing small edits but stopped in frustration. For this reasion, I would like to do a complete re-write of the text to improve the coverage and expand the citations. I have sent sereral colleagues who work on various aspects of the amaygdala my version of an amygdala wiki article and we have been assembling a bibliography to go with it that reflects the current and historical state of the field. Please advise me on whether I should go forward or leave this as it is. Ledouxje (talk) 22:33, 29 April 2008 (UTC)Joseph LeDoux

One side of me would really hate to see the Neuropsychological correlates section go, especially considering I created most of it. But if you really think that the article could benefit from a complete rewrite, then by all means, be bold. --Ubiq (talk) 23:00, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
A complete rewrite (leaving in any good bits) seems like a great idea if you've got the time! ferguskane (talk) 22:38, 22 June 2008 (UTC)


This has gotta be the part of the brain where the soul peeks out. There should be a section about those interesting disorders you can get where, like, if the amygdala tightens up, everything feels insignificant, like people feel like theyre not the people you know, and if it widens you get a 'religious experience' where everything's oversignificant.. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:42, 10 May 2008 (UTC)

Sexual Orientation[edit]

I'd suggest taking this out until someone has actually read the paper (which is not out yet?). A BBC link just does not cut it, especially considering their abysmal science reporting. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ferguskane (talkcontribs) 22:34, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

Part of basal ganglia?[edit]

The latest edit said the amygdala is part of the basal ganglia. I never heard this before. Anyone else skeptical? --1000Faces (talk) 21:35, 12 July 2008 (UTC)

I totally agree that this may appear surprising but, in addition to the ref cited in the main page of the article, see:
  • Encylopedia Britannica: "Phylogenetically, the amygdala is the oldest of the basal ganglia and is often referred to as the archistriatum; the globus pallidus is known as the paleostriatum, and the caudate nucleus..."
  • The Washington University Neuroscience Tutorial: "The basal ganglia are a collection of nuclei deep to the white matter of cerebral cortex. The name includes: caudate, putamen, nucleus accumbens, globus pallidus, substantia nigra, subthalamic nucleus, and historically the claustrum and the amygdala."
  • Neuroscience Online, Univ of Texas: "Historically, the amygdaloid complex and the claustrum were considered parts of the basal ganglia. However, modern usage usually restricts the term to those structures that cause the motor impairments characteristic of the extrapyramidal syndrome (caudate nucleus, putamen, globus pallidus, subthalamic nucleus, and substantia nigra)."
The fact is that the amygdala (and the claustrum) have been separated from the other basal ganglia nuclei based on their functional role. Some authors even refuse the mere idea of a unitary amygdala [3] and have proposed to distinguish between the different nuclei of the amygdaloid complex, with some of them associated with the basal ganglia (central amygdala, see also [4]) and others with some other brain systems (e.g., olfactory). To my understanding, anatomically and, as a matter of fact, developmentally speaking, the centromedial amygdala may thus be considered as a part of the basal ganglia. I made it clearer in the main text, Anyone with a better advice on this issue is welcome to correct or complement this. knd (talk) 20:56, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

Does this mean the amygdala is considered a part of the corpus striatum? I have understood corpus striatum to include the telencephalic portions of the basal ganglia, plus internal capsule, plus the claustrum (which is sometimes considered part of the basal ganglia) so, given that some scholars no longer include the amygdala within the basal ganglia, would they also exclude it from the corpus striatum? (talk) 20:44, 5 July 2011 (UTC)Victor Broderick

No, the amygdala is never considered part of the striatum. Some old sources consider it to be part of the basal ganglia, which do include the striatum, but that is largely an antiquated classification. (The striatum is part of the basal ganglia; the basal ganglia include other brain regions in addition to the striatum.) --Tryptofish (talk) 22:08, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

Images with text.[edit]

The images are a bit fuzzy on my computer. The text (in those images that have text) is hard to read. The images associated with this article would be better done in SVG format. Is anyone able and willing to make the change? Thanks. SlowJog (talk) 16:42, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

Image size[edit]

I've replaced the coronal-brain image with a PNG version and downscaled it. The basic underlying problem here is that GIF scaling is currently completely broken on Wikipedia. I think it now looks okay at this scale but I'm not trying to force the issue, if you want to resize it, feel free. I would favor a very small version over a very large version, if it comes to that -- to make it obvious that the image needs to be clicked on in order to be viewed. (I also cropped a bit of unnecessary white space at the edges.) looie496 (talk) 17:28, 18 November 2008 (UTC)

Scholarpedia content[edit]

I just noticed the Scholarpedia uses the GFDL image here for its Amygdala article. I can't see whether the whole article was originally GFDL (I just posted to Scholarpedia talk questioning where exactly the article copyright is listed). Anyway, since the picture from Wikipedia is GFDL that makes the Scholarpedia article a derivative work, so it has to be GFDL also, and so any interesting content can be copied back here. (talk) 04:16, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

I think the "aggregation" clause of the GFDL applies here: A compilation of the Document or its derivatives with other separate and independent documents or works, in or on a volume of a storage or distribution medium, is called an "aggregate" if the copyright resulting from the compilation is not used to limit the legal rights of the compilation's users beyond what the individual works permit. When the Document is included in an aggregate, this License does not apply to the other works in the aggregate which are not themselves derivative works of the Document. It's an interesting question, though. Looie496 (talk) 16:50, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
What sucks is that Dr. LeDoux wanted to bring that article here but didn't stick around long enough to provide sources. I see they're listed at the end of that article, but not implemented in the same format as they would be here, with sources being matched to individual statements here. I wonder if it would technically be acceptable just to list them at the end like that here... --Ubiq (talk) 18:07, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
That problem would be solvable, but I don't believe 129 is right that the licensing permits the article to be imported here. If LeDoux would license it under GFDL, we would be able to make it work for Wikipedia. Looie496 (talk) 18:38, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
I do not think the work is a mere aggregate - the aggregation clause applies to works that are "separate and independent" - in this case, the copied figure has been directly incorporated into a larger work, and is visible as part of the larger work which appears as a single article. The GFDL derives from the GPL, where aggregation is understood to cover things like burning different software packages to a CDROM, or storing them on the same harddisk, ie. cases where the works are clearly separate, but for practical reasons are stored on the same media. It is not understood to cover cases where one piece of software directly incorporates code from another - if this were indeed the case, then a programmer could happily copy code from GPLed software without any regard to the licensing requirements, and just claim that it was "aggregation". MereAggregation. Having said that, it is possible that the GFDL and GPL differ in this regard, although I don't see any reason why this would be the case. (talk) 00:50, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
How about raising this question at Wikipedia talk:Copyrights? Looie496 (talk) 01:07, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

Amygdala hijacking[edit]

I've often heard this term and was disappointed not to find it on Wikipedia. Perhaps someone can expand this article with this content. Here's a link to a video explaining what it means [5]. -- œ 22:37, 12 December 2009 (UTC)

I had never seen this term -- a little research shows that Daniel Goleman originated it in his 1995 book "Emotional Intelligence", and that it has become very popular in the self-help/counseling literature, but isn't used in the scientific literature. I'm not sure it should be discussed in this article, but a separate article about it would probably be justified if somebody knew enough to write one (I definitely don't), and then it could be wikilinked from this one. Looie496 (talk) 03:42, 13 December 2009 (UTC)
I think Looie makes a good point. This seems to me more like a topic for a (linked) separate page than for a section of this one. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:13, 13 December 2009 (UTC)

Amygdalae vs. amygdala[edit]

In many places this article speaks of the "amygdalae", a usage that is rarely seen in the literature and comes across as awkward. I would like to change it to "amygdala", at least in places where there is no specific meaning that both sides of the brain are involved. Are there objections? Looie496 (talk) 16:48, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

I've noticed that too. No objection from me. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:07, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

So what is "the amygdala"? Is it either of two structures (the amygdalae), or the set of both structures together? If the latter, what do you call one of them? I find this ambiguous usage very confusing. If there are two conflicting definitions, the article should say so, not use the singular and the plural form interchangeably at random. For example, the sentence Anatomically, the amygdala and more particularly, its central and medial nuclei, have sometimes been classified as a part of the basal ganglia doesn't make sense. It should be either the amygdalae and more particularly, their central and medial nuclei, have been classified as part of the basal ganglia or the amygdala [...] has been classified as a part of the basal ganglion. -- (talk) 21:15, 31 March 2013 (UTC)

There is one amygdala on the left side of the brain, and another amygdala on the right side. They each have their own central nucleus, medial nucleus, and so on. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:20, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

Erroneous information[edit]

Hi, I removed the fact regarding schizophrenia and right amygdala volume. The citation 33 does not say that the right amygdala is larger in schizophrenia. It says "Right hippocampus and amygdala were significantly larger than the left in all groups. Mean amygdala volume in schizophrenia or all psychoses did not differ from comparison subjects."

Regards, Nardzom (talk) 09:59, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Yes, you are right. Thanks for catching that. Since an article about the amygdala doesn't need to report findings where nothing was affected in the amygdala, I have deleted the sentence entirely. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:05, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Neuro-political correlates ?[edit]

there is some interesting research suggesting correlations between political ideology and the Amygdala, would they warrant their own section? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:54, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

It would have to be more than preliminary findings, for us to include it here. We would also need sources to which to cite it. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:32, 2 May 2012 (UTC)

I Googled "lizardbrain" and this was one of the first hits[edit]

...but a ctrl-f in the article found no lizard. I know my spontaneous search shouldn't be taken as data, but could a Google Page Rank be considered a reliable source now? Google *is* the zeitgeist intelligence. (talk) 23:10, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

It's not even clear why Google would show this page for that search. Looie496 (talk) 23:48, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
I have no doubt there are sources other than Wikipedia that refer to the amygdala as the lizard brain, although I think it's more common to use the phrase to refer to either the limbic system in its entirety, or to all brain structures below the cortex. Anyway, on Wikipedia, Lizard brain is a redirect to Triune brain, which I just added to the "see also" section. Otherwise, I don't see any need to change anything here. In response to the IP's question about reliability, there's WP:GHITS. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:15, 24 January 2013 (UTC)

Vaccination and the amygdalae[edit]

I recently read a couple articles on the "influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth." Might be something to include on this page. but i didn't want to go ahead and start a new section without discussing placement and title, and that type of stuff first. articles: Hewitson, Laura, et al. "Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth and opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study". Found at: second article just mentions previous one: Turlejski, Kris. "Focus on Autism."

Looking for suggestions, thoughts.AnieHall (talk) 01:32, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for raising this in talk. What I'm thinking is that, per WP:MEDRS, we probably should not include this until it's beyond the pilot study, primary source stage. --Tryptofish (talk) 02:14, 22 February 2013 (UTC)


One study found correlation of amygdala size with altruism. [6] It would be interesting to see if this is reproduced. -- Beland (talk) 18:33, 29 August 2015 (UTC)