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NESC 3227 Lecture Notes - Olfactory Bulb, Commissurotomy, Amobarbital

Course Code
NESC 3227
Kim Good

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January 10th, 2013
1:06 PM
Laterality/Cerebral Asymmetry
Often used interchangeably, but really not the same
Cerebral asymmetry has to do more with structure than function
While laterality has more to do with functional differences
Body and brain have two halves
When we're talking about structure, we mean anatomical construction
o There's a fair bit of symmetry from right to left
Functional refers to behaviour
Why study laterality?
Does brain structure dictate body structure? Or vice versa?
If you look at the brain
Left and right hemispheres appear anatomically as mirror images of each other
All the primary sensory areas in the brain tend to be fairly symmetrical across hemispheres
As you move up to areas of more complex controls, functionality and structure both begin to differ
between hemispheres
o Such as language being processed mainly in left hemisphere, and music and spatial stuff in
right hemisphere
Structural brain asymmetries; what do we measure?
Firs t thing you can look at are changes in size or shape (Gross anatomy changes)
Or you can look more finely at the cells that make up these hemispheres to see if there's any
o You can do this post mortem
o Or you can use neuroimaging techniques, although this doesn't really hit the cellular level
How to measure?
o By volume or weight are acceptable ways
Gross asymmetries in brain structure
Right frontal lobe extends more anteriorly
But the left occipital lobe extends farther posteriorly
*but it's not clear if there's more brain volume on one side, or if this is just spatial displacement
What does this asymmetry mean?
Has it been linked to any functional changes?
Gross cerebral asymmetries
Lateral fissure has a steeper slope on the right side
The planum temporale is larger on the left
The heschl's gyri is larger on the right size
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