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McGill University
PSYC 211
Yogita Chudasama

PSYC 211 Structure and 0rganisation of the Human Brain Dr. Yogita Chudasama Stewart Biology, Room N8/4 Anatomical directions ! Neuraxis An imaginary line that runs along the length of the CNS ! Anterior (rostral) Front end or toward the head ! Posterior (caudal) Tail end ! Dorsal ‘(back’) surface Top of the head and towards the back ! Ventral (‘belly’) surface Front surface that faces the ground ! Lateral Toward the side ! Medial Toward the middle 1 “Geography” of the brain Transverse plane Medial (toward midline) Lateral (away from midline) Sagittal plane Horizontal plane Medial (toward (away from midline)midline) More useful terms ! Contralateral Structures on opposite side of the body (e.g. left cerebral cortex controls movement of the contralateral hand means that it controls movement of the RIGHT hand. ! Ipsilateral Structures on same side of body (e.g. olfactory bulb sends axons to the ipsilateral hemishere means that the left olfactory bulb sends axon to the left hemisphere and the right olfactory bulb sends its axons to the right hemipshere. 2 The Meninges ! The brain is encased in a bony skull and floats in a pool of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). ! The brain is chemically guarded by the blood-brain barrier. ! The brain receives a large supply of blood because it is unable to store it’s own fuel. !  The meninges are the tough, protective connective tissues that surround the brain. a)  The dura mater is a outer thick, tough but unstretchable tissue. b)  The arachnoid membrane is the middle soft, spongy layer. It has a weblike appearance. c)  The third layer that sits closest to the brain in the pia mater which comprises blood vessels. !  The arachnoid space between is filled with CSF. The Ventricular System of the Brain !  The ventricles are interconnected hollow spaces filed with CSF. !  The lateral ventricles (comprise the first and second ventricle) are the largest. !  The cerebral aqueduct is a long, tube like structure that connects the third ventricle to the fourth ventricle. !  The CSF is produced continuously by the choroid plexus. !  The CSF is replaced every three hours (the half-life). !  CSF leaves the fourth ventricle and flows through the subarachnoid space where it is reabsorbed into the blood supply. 3 Anatomical Divisions of the Brain Early development of brain Different swellings of the neural tube represent different phases of embryological development. Telencephalon Mesecephalon Metencephalon Diencephalon Myelencephalon 5 major divisions of the adult brain Cerebral cortex Tectum Cerebellum Basal ganglia Tegmentum Pons Limbic system Medulla Oblongata Thalamus Hypothalamus (Forebrain) (Midbrain) (Hindbrain) The Forebrain: Cerebral Cortex The cerebral cortex is highly convoluted with sulci (small grooves), fissures (large or major grooves) and gyri (ridges between sulci or fissures). The convolutions increase the surface area of the cortex. The cerebral cortex consists mainly of glial cells, axons, dendrites and a high concentration of cell bodies. It is referred to as gray matter. The white matter (beneath the gray matter) consists of a large concentration of myelinated interconnecting axons. 4 Different views of the Cerebral Cortex The central sulcus provides a good landmark fissure separates separating the rostral and caudal the two divisions of the hemispheres cerebral hemisphere The lateral fissure separates frontal from the temporal lobe The two hemispheres are connected by a band of axons called the Corpus Callosum The primary sensory areas of the Cerebral Cortex The primary visual cortex receives visual information, the primary auditory cortex receives auditory information, the insular cortex receives gustatory information and the somatosensory cortex receives information about the body senses Different regions of the somatosensory cortex receive information from different parts of the body (e.g. feet, hands, fingers). 5 Cytoarchitectonic analysis (Cellular organisation of the cortex) !  The cortex contains up to six cell layers (laminae) Association !  Cell structure and organisation varies between laminae ! 
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