Almond kernel

Nucleus amygdaloideum


The amygdala has a central role in triggering feelings of the type fear, fear and anger, as well as in the adjustments of blood pressure, breathing, heart rate, etc. required to put the body on alert. The nucleus also appears to be of the utmost importance for the learning and memory of highly emotive events, in conjunction with the hippocampus.

The amygdala is part of the limbic system and is located directly inside the cerebral cortex layer on the under/inside of the temporal lobe at the front of the parahippocampal winding.

The amygdala, which can be divided into several smaller nuclei sections, receives signals from and sends signals to a large number of different cortex areas, to the basal ganglia and to nuclei in the midbrain, including the hypothalamus (survival center).

The nuclear complex has extensive connections to associative areas of the visual cortex and seems to be of importance for how we interpret the facial expressions of our fellow human beings, especially with regard to mimicry that signals anger or danger.