The auditory response properties of single neurons in claustrum and putamen were studied in response to simple dichotic stimuli (viz. noise- and tone-bursts) in chloralose-anaesthetized cats. Neurons in claustrum were commonly weakly driven with long latency, were broadly tuned and were excited by stimulation of either ear (EE). Putamen neurons, in contrast, were securely driven with short latency, showed irregular tuning with a preference for low frequencies and were either EE or excited only by the contralateral ear (EO). The differences between claustrum and putamen responses can be related to differences in connections with the auditory cortical fields and with auditory thalamus. Some neurons were also tested for visual responsiveness: auditory and visual cells were intermingled in both nuclei and only a small percentage of cells were bimodal. In contrast to the visual and somatosensory input to claustrum, which are derived from primary cortical fields, the auditory input to claustrum is apparently derived from non-primary cortical regions, suggesting a fundamentally different role for processing of auditory information in claustrum.
- Auditory response properties