What is Substantia Nigra
The substantia nigra is a region of the brain which contains neurons that produce the neurotransmitter dopamine. It is black in appearance, giving rise to the name ("substantia nigra" is Latin for "black substance".)
Substantia Nigra Function
Neurons in the substantia nigra travel to brain areas which are important for motor control as well as to the frontal lobes, which are important for attention and executive function. Parkinson's disease is a disorder that involves progressive death of neurons in the substantia nigra, leading to motor and cognitive symptoms.
by Catherine E. Myers. Copyright © 2006 Memory Loss and the Brain - Artwork copyright © 2000 Ann L. Myers