Asymmetries

Brain asymmetries have always been a hot topic in neurosciences. Differences are often so subtle, and there are still many disagreements on this issue. If this topic is difficult to investigate in living species, when analyzing fossil taxa doubts are much more than certainties. In a recent paper Balzeau and colleagues quantify the hemispheric fronto-occipital projection in modern humans, African apes, and fossil hominids, analyzing fluctuating asymmetry, directional asymmetry, and antisymmetry. Differences between groups in distribution and variation are small, and generally related to the degree of asymmetry, not to the presence or combination of characters. It seems that differences between modern humans and apes (and fossil hominids) are a question of grade. Once more, it seems that on this issue the information available from the general endocranial morphology is necessary, but very limited.

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1 Response to “Asymmetries”


  1. 1 emilianobruner May 17, 2012 at 08:44

    There is a second paper here, published just after this one, on brain asymmetries and the human genus:

    Balzeau A., Holloway R.L. and Grimaud-Hervé D. 2012.Variations and asymmetries in regional brain surface in the genus Homo J. Hum. Evol.

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0047248412000553


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