Citation, DOI & article data
The claustrum (plural: claustra) is a vertical curved sheet of subcortical grey matter oriented sagittally between the white matter tracts of the external capsule and extreme capsule. It is lateral to the putamen and medial to the insular cortex. It is not part of the basal ganglia.
The claustrum has been hypothesized to play a central role in the generation of consciousness 3, which would explain why it has white matter projections from all areas of the cortex. Due to its diminutive size there has been a paucity of experimental evidence. However a case report utilizing electrode stimulation 4 and a pharmaceutical study 5 both support this hypothesis.
- 1. Standring S (editor). Gray's Anatomy (39th edition). Churchill Livingstone. (2011) ISBN:0443066841. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Ross LMMP. Atlas of anatomy. George Thieme Verlag. (2007) ISBN:3131421215. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 3. Crick FC, Koch C. What is the function of the claustrum?. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences. 360 (1458): 1271-9. doi:10.1098/rstb.2005.1661 - Pubmed
- 4. Koubeissi MZ, Bartolomei F, Beltagy A, Picard F. Electrical stimulation of a small brain area reversibly disrupts consciousness. Epilepsy & behavior : E&B. 37: 32-5. doi:10.1016/j.yebeh.2014.05.027 - Pubmed
- 5. Stiefel KM, Merrifield A, Holcombe AO. The claustrum's proposed role in consciousness is supported by the effect and target localization of Salvia divinorum. Frontiers in integrative neuroscience. 8: 20. doi:10.3389/fnint.2014.00020 - Pubmed