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Reciprocal connectivity between secondary auditory cortical field and amygdala in mice

Tsukano, H;Hou, X;Horie, M;Kitaura, H;Nishio, N;

Recent studies have examined the feedback pathway from the amygdala to the auditory cortex in conjunction with the feedforward pathway from the auditory cortex to the amygdala. However, these connections have not been fully characterized. Here, to visualize the comprehensive connectivity between the auditory cortex and amygdala, we injected cholera toxin subunit b (CTB), a bidirectional tracer, into multiple subfields in the mouse auditory cortex after identifying the location of these subfields using flavoprotein fluorescence imaging. After injecting CTB into the secondary auditory field (A2), we found densely innervated CTB-positive axon terminals that were mainly located in the lateral amygdala (La), and slight innervations in other divisions such as the basal amygdala. Moreover, we found a large number of retrogradely-stained CTB-positive neurons in La after injecting CTB into A2. When injecting CTB into the primary auditory cortex (A1), a small number of CTB-positive neurons and axons were visualized in the amygdala. Finally, we found a near complete absence of connections between the other auditory cortical fields and the amygdala. These data suggest that reciprocal connections between A2 and La are main conduits for communication between the auditory cortex and amygdala in mice.