The Journal Of Comparative Neurology
The connections of the lateral hypothalamic area juxtadorsomedial region (LHAjd) were investigated in a series of pathway-tracing experiments involving iontophoretic co-injection of the tracers Phaseolus vulgaris-leucoagglutinin (PHA-L; for outputs) and cholera toxin B subunit (CTB; for inputs). Results revealed that the LHAjd has connections with some 318 distinct gray matter regions encompassing all four subsystems-motor, sensory, cognitive, and behavioral state-included in a basic structure-function network model of the nervous system. Integration of these subsystems is necessary for the coordination and control of emotion and behavior, and in that regard the connections of the LHAjd indicate that it may have a prominent role. Furthermore, the LHAjd connections, together with the connections of other LHA differentiations studied similarly to date, indicate a distinct topographic organization that suggests each LHA differentiation has specifically differing degrees of involvement in the control of multiple behaviors. For the LHAjd, its involvement to a high degree in the control of defensive behavior, and to a lesser degree in the control of other behaviors, including ingestive and reproductive, is suggested. Moreover, the connections of the LHAjd suggest that its possible role in the control of these behaviors may be very broad in scope because they involve the somatic, neuroendocrine, and autonomic divisions of the nervous system. In addition, we suggest that connections between LHA differentiations may provide, at the level of the hypothalamus, a neuronal substrate for the coordinated control of multiple themes in the behavioral repertoire.