Anatomical investigation of projections to the basis pontis from posterior parietal association cortices in rhesus monkey

J Comp Neurol. 1989 Nov 1;289(1):53-73. doi: 10.1002/cne.902890105.


The projections to the basis pontis from cytoarchitectonically defined subregions of the superior (SPL) and inferior (IPL) parietal lobules were investigated in 14 rhesus monkeys by using the anterograde tracing techniques of autoradiography and horseradish peroxidase histochemistry. The results of our study confirm and complement available information regarding the parietopontine projections. The projections are found in clusters distributed in lamellae approximately concentric to the peduncle. They are directed most heavily towards the peripeduncular and lateral nuclei of the pons. There are also lesser, but nevertheless substantial projections to other nuclei including the intrapeduncular, ventral, dorsolateral, extreme dorsolateral, and dorsal nuclei. The dorsomedial, paramedian, and NRTP nuclei receive only minor projections. The SPL projections are relatively widespread with respect to the more focussed IPL projections. The IPL projections are, in general, situated more laterally and at more rostral levels of the pontine nuclei than are those of the SPL. The sulcal cortex of the SPL (area PEa) favors the dorsolateral, extreme dorsolateral, and ventral nuclei compared to the light projections to these nuclei from the convexity of the SPL. The sulcal cortex of the IPL, area POa, differs from the gyral cortex in favoring the ventral and extreme dorsolateral nuclei. The rostral IPL differs from the caudal IPL in that the intrapeduncular nucleus receives projections only from rostral regions, while the lateral nucleus receives projections preferentially from caudal regions. The pontine projections from the medial SPL, area PGm, are unique in the parietal lobe in that they include the paramedian nucleus. Projections arising from multimodal regions located caudally in the SPL (areas PEa and PGm) and IPL (areas PG and Opt) are more strongly represented and more laterally placed within the pontine nuclei than projections arising from more rostral, unimodal, posterior parietal regions. The heavy projections to the pontine nuclei from the posterior parietal cortex, and particularly from those caudal parietal regions that have prominent associative and limbic connections, seem to suggest that the corticopontocerebellar pathways permit a cerebellar contribution not only to the coordination of movement, but also to the modulation and integration of higher function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cerebellum / anatomy & histology
  • Horseradish Peroxidase
  • Macaca / anatomy & histology*
  • Macaca mulatta / anatomy & histology*
  • Neural Pathways
  • Parietal Lobe / anatomy & histology*
  • Parietal Lobe / cytology
  • Pons / anatomy & histology*
  • Pons / cytology
  • Wheat Germ Agglutinin-Horseradish Peroxidase Conjugate
  • Wheat Germ Agglutinins


  • Wheat Germ Agglutinin-Horseradish Peroxidase Conjugate
  • Wheat Germ Agglutinins
  • Horseradish Peroxidase