Frequency representation in auditory cortex of the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus jacchus)

J Comp Neurol. 1986 Oct 8;252(2):175-85. doi: 10.1002/cne.902520204.


The location and characteristics of the primary auditory cortex of the common marmoset, Callithrix jacchus jacchus, were determined in five anesthetized male adult animals by mapping the responses of cortical units and unit clusters to pure tone stimuli presented to the contralateral ear. The primary auditory cortex lies largely ventral to the lateral sulcus, the only major fissure on the lateral cortex of this smooth-brained primate, but in some animals it may extend significantly down the ventral bank of this sulcus. Responses are distributed such that low best frequencies are found rostroventrally whereas high best frequencies occur caudally. The disposition of frequency-band contours is fan-shaped, with contours separating low-frequency octaves nearly parallel to the lateral sulcus and high-frequency (greater than 8 kHz) contours perpendicular to that sulcus. Best frequencies range from 0.6 to 30 kHz across the primary field, but there is a disproportionate representation of the three octaves between 2 and 16 kHz. The most sensitive thresholds (as low as -2 dB SPL) are found between 7 and 9 kHz. The primary auditory cortex is similar in cytoarchitecture to that reported for the cat, showing a blurring of lamination in the middle layers (II-IV) and a preponderance of small cells in these merged layers, giving a highly granular appearance. The accessibility of the cochlear representation on the gyral surface makes the marmoset an attractive animal for studies of primate auditory cortex.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Auditory Cortex / anatomy & histology
  • Auditory Cortex / physiology*
  • Auditory Threshold
  • Brain Mapping
  • Callithrix
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory
  • Male
  • Pitch Perception / physiology*