Natural sound is composed of various frequencies. Although the core region of the primate auditory cortex has functionally defined sound frequency preference maps, how the map is organized in the auditory areas of the belt and parabelt regions is not well known. In this study, we investigated the functional organizations of the core, belt, and parabelt regions encompassed by the lateral sulcus and the superior temporal sulcus in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus). Using optical intrinsic signal imaging, we obtained evoked responses to band-pass noise stimuli in a range of sound frequencies (0.5-16 kHz) in anesthetized adult animals and visualized the preferred sound frequency map on the cortical surface. We characterized the functionally defined organization using histologically defined brain areas in the same animals. We found tonotopic representation of a set of sound frequencies (low to high) within the primary (A1), rostral (R), and rostrotemporal (RT) areas of the core region. In the belt region, the tonotopic representation existed only in the mediolateral (ML) area. This representation was symmetric with that found in A1 along the border between areas A1 and ML. The functional structure was not very clear in the anterolateral (AL) area. Low frequencies were mainly preferred in the rostrotemplatal (RTL) area, while high frequencies were preferred in the caudolateral (CL) area. There was a portion of the parabelt region that strongly responded to higher sound frequencies (>5.8 kHz) along the border between the rostral parabelt (RPB) and caudal parabelt (CPB) regions.
Keywords: ECoG; histology; marmoset; optical imaging; sound frequency; tonotopy.