The mouse posterior parietal cortex: Anatomy and functions

Neurosci Res. 2019 Mar;140:14-22. doi: 10.1016/j.neures.2018.10.008. Epub 2018 Nov 20.


In recent years, the number of studies on decision-making in mice has increased dramatically. Many of these studies focus on the posterior parietal cortex (PPC), an area that has been implicated in sensory and multisensory processing, navigation, motion planning, and decision-making. In this review we summarize recent anatomical and functional studies of mouse PPC. First, we make a note of the existing variability in the nomenclature and its anatomical localization. Based on the commonalities across different studies we then describe the connectivity of PPC and discuss its place within several functional brain networks. In view of the examined connectivity, we go on to discuss the role of PPC for the encoding of single-modality and multimodal stimuli as well as its role in navigation. Finally, we summarize the literature on the choice-related activity: we discuss the variety of behavioral protocols and sensory modalities used in these studies, and we note that the response properties of PPC and its causal involvement in decision-making may depend substantially on these conditions. We conclude that, although more research should be devoted to creating a more complete and consistent image of the mouse PPC, this area should rightfully be considered a convenient model system for a circuit-level understanding of the mammalian parietal cortex.

Keywords: Decision-making; Mouse; Navigation; PPC; PTLp; Parietal cortex; Sensory cortex.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Decision Making / physiology
  • Mice
  • Parietal Lobe / anatomy & histology*
  • Parietal Lobe / physiology*
  • Visual Perception / physiology