Evolutionary Developmental Biology of the Cerebral Cortex. by Novartis Foundation

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Rakic Section of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06510, USA Abstract. The more than 1000-fold increase in the cortical surface without a comparable increase in its thickness during mammalian evolution can be explained in the context of the radial unit hypothesis of cortical development. Cortical expansion results from changes in the proliferation kinetics of founder cells in the ventricular zone that increase the number of radial columnar units without signi¢cantly changing the number of neurons within each unit.

Glia 4:124^137 Caviness VS Jr, Takahashi T, Nowakowski RS 1995 Numbers, time and neocortical neuronogenesis: a general developmental and evolutionary model. Trends Neurosci 18: 379^383 Cowan WM, Fawcett JW, O'Leary DD, Stan¢eld BB 1984 Regressive events in neurogenesis. Science 225:1258^1265 Goldman-Rakic PS. Rakic P 1984 Experimental modi¢cation of gyral patterns. In: Geschwind N, Galaburda AM (eds) Cerebral dominance: the biological foundation. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, p 179^192 HYPOTHESIS OF CORTICAL EXPANSION 41 Haydar TF, Kuan C, Flavell RA, Rakic P 1999 The role of cell death in regulating the size and shape of the mammalian forebrain.

This earlier evolution may relate to the relative simplicity of the layering in the cerebellum compared to the cerebrum, although this is pure speculation. The THE CEREBELLUM 21 cerebellum is generally believed to have evolved from cells subserving the lateral line organ of ¢sh, a somatosensory array that alerts the organism to the movement of the surrounding water. The comparative anatomy of the expression of the glycolytic enzyme, aldolase C, has been used to suggest a set of steps in the evolution of the cerebellum (Lannoo et al 1991).

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