Effects of tegmental lesions on the isolation call of squirrel monkeys

John D. Newman, Paul D. Maclean

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The present study is concerned with identifying brain mechanisms underlying a basic mammalian vocalization known as the isolation call. The call serves to reestablish contact of separated individuals. Adult squirrel monkeys were used as experimental subjects because the isolation call in these animals has been shown to be stable, well-defined, and readily elicited under experimental conditions. Bilateral, symmetrical electrocoagulations in certain parts of the tegmentum and core gray matter of the thalamus and midbrain variously altered the character and production of isolation calls, but had no apparent effect on other vocalizations. In respective cases the changes were characterized by: (1) reduction in number of calls; (2) calls with abnormal structure; and (3) calls of infantile character. As opposed to earlier investigations on mammals, the present study has shown that damage to certain brain structures may not only affect the production of a vocalization but also its physical characteristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-330
Number of pages14
JournalBrain Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 28 1982
Externally publishedYes


  • brain
  • lesions
  • neuroethology
  • primates
  • vocalizations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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