Caudate nucleus

Last revised by Dr Ayla Al Kabbani on 13 Dec 2019

Caudate nuclei are paired nuclei which along with the globus pallidus and putamen are referred to as the corpus striatum, and collectively make up the basal ganglia. The caudate nuclei have both motor and behavioral functions, in particular maintaining body and limb posture, as well as controlling approach-attachment behaviors, respectively 3

The caudate nucleus is located lateral to the lateral ventricles, with the head lateral to the frontal horn, and body lateral to the body of the lateral ventricle. The tail of the caudate nucleus terminates immediately above the temporal horn of the ventricle. It is bound laterally by the anterior crus of the internal capsule.

The head of the caudate nucleus is supplied by the recurrent artery of Heubner, a small branch for the A1 (or sometimes the A2) segment of the anterior cerebral artery.

Related pathology

See also

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: human brain - lateral view
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  • Figure 2: brainstem nuclei and their connections
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  • Figure 3: coronal brain through 3rd ventricle
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  • Figure 4: basal ganglia location
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  • Figure 5: brainstem - dorsal
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  • Figure 6: basal ganglia (illustration)
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  • Figure 7: organisational structure of basal ganglia
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