The amygdaloid body of two carnivore species: The feliform banded mongoose and the caniform domestic ferret

Sashrika Pillay, Adhil Bhagwandin, Mads F. Bertelsen, Nina Patzke, Gerhard Engler, Andreas K. Engel, Paul R. Manger*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The current study provides an analysis of the cytoarchitecture, myeloarchitecture, and chemoarchitecture of the amygdaloid body of the banded mongoose (Mungos mungo) and domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo). Using architectural and immunohistochemical stains, we observe that the organization of the nuclear and cortical portions of the amygdaloid complex is very similar in both species. The one major difference is the presence of a cortex-amygdala transition zone observed in the domestic ferret that is absent in the banded mongoose. In addition, the chemoarchitecture is, for the most part, quite similar in the two species, but several variances, such as differing densities of neurons expressing the calcium-binding proteins in specific nuclei are noted. Despite this, certain aspects of the chemoarchitecture, such as the cholinergic innervation of the magnocellular division of the basal nuclear cluster and the presence of doublecortin expressing neurons in the shell division of the accessory basal nuclear cluster, appear to be consistent features of the Eutherian mammal amygdala. The domestic ferret presented with an overall lower myelin density throughout the amygdaloid body than the banded mongoose, a feature that may reflect artificial selection in the process of domestication for increased juvenile-like behavior in the adult domestic ferret, such as a muted fear response. The shared, but temporally distant, ancestry of the banded mongoose and domestic ferret allows us to generate observations relevant to understanding the relative influence that phylogenetic constraints, adaptive evolutionary plasticity, and the domestication process may play in the organization and chemoarchitecture of the amygdaloid body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-51
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Comparative Neurology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Carnivora
  • RRID: AB_10000323
  • RRID: AB_10000340
  • RRID: AB_10000343
  • RRID: AB_2079751
  • RRID: AB_2187552
  • RRID: AB_91545
  • RRID: AB_AB2088494
  • RRUD: AB_509997
  • amygdala
  • chemoarchitecture
  • cytoarchitecture
  • myeloarchitecture
  • social behavior


Dive into the research topics of 'The amygdaloid body of two carnivore species: The feliform banded mongoose and the caniform domestic ferret'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this