Almost all areas of the neocortex are connected with the claustrum, a nucleus located between the neocortex and the striatum, yet the functions of corticoclaustral and claustrocortical connections remain largely obscure. As major efforts to model the neocortex are currently underway, it has become increasingly important to incorporate the corticoclaustral system into theories of cortical function. This Mini-Symposium was motivated by a series of recent studies which have sparked new hypotheses regarding the function of claustral circuits. Anatomical, ultrastructural, and functional studies indicate that the claustrum is most highly interconnected with prefrontal cortex, suggesting important roles in higher cognitive processing, and that the organization of the corticoclaustral system is distinct from the driver/modulator framework often used to describe the corticothalamic system. Recent findings supporting roles in detecting novel sensory stimuli, directing attention and setting behavioral states, were the subject of the Mini-Symposium at the 2017 Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting.
New Breakthroughs in Understanding the Role of Functional Interactions Between the Neocortex and the Claustrum
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