Document Detail


The subarcuate fossa and cerebellum of extant primates: comparative study of a skull-brain interface.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  3207165     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
The subarcuate fossa of the petrosal bone houses the petrosal lobule of the cerebellar paraflocculus. Although the subarcuate fossa can be extensive, little is known about its relative size and distribution in primates. Studies indicate parafloccular involvement with cerebellar areas coordinating vestibular, visual, auditory, and locomotor systems. Hypotheses have proposed a role for the paraflocculus in vestibular-oculomotor integration, caudal muscle control, autonomic function, and visual-manual predation. This study examines the morphology and relative extent of the subarcuate fossa/petrosal lobule in a range of living primates. Methods include study of postmortem specimens representing nine mammalian orders, and qualification of the volume of the subarcuate fossa and endocranial cavity in 155 dry primate crania of 36 genera. Results show that, in mammals, the size and morphology of the petrosal lobule is directly related to that of the subarcuate fossa. Craniometric analysis shows that the ratio of subarcuate fossa volume to endocranial volume is largest in lemuriforms. The largest ratio is in Microcebus and Hapalemur. Lorisids show a significant reduction in the size of the subarcuate fossa to almost 50% below the lemuriform mean. Tarsius is near the lemuriform mean. Among platyrrhines, the ratio is high, but significantly reduced compared to lemuiforms. The highest platyrrhine ratio is seen in Ateles, the lowest in Saimiri and Alouatta. Atelids are significantly elevated compared to cebids. In cercopithecids, the fossa is significantly reduced compared to platyrrhines. The trend toward reduction of the cercopithecid fossa is most pronounced in Theropithecus and least evident in Presbytis. In hominoids, the fossa is present only in Hylobates. In great apes and humans, other than Gorilla, the petromastoid canal occupies a similar location to the subarcuate fossa of other primates, but is not homologous to it. Neither the subarcuate fossa nor the petromastoid canal are present in Gorilla. A graded reduction of the subarcuate fossa/petrosal lobule is evident among primates which evolved later in time. The relative size of this cerebellar lobule within primates may reflect size-related factors and/or degree of neocortical evolution as these relate to usage of a specific sensory-mediated locomotor behavior. The subarcuate fossa may serve as an indicator to the differentiation of the petrosal lobule of the paraflocculus in fossil forms.
Authors:
P J Gannon; A R Eden; J T Laitman
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  American journal of physical anthropology     Volume:  77     ISSN:  0002-9483     ISO Abbreviation:  Am. J. Phys. Anthropol.     Publication Date:  1988 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1989-02-06     Completed Date:  1989-02-06     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0400654     Medline TA:  Am J Phys Anthropol     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  143-64     Citation Subset:  IM    
Affiliation:
Department of Otolaryngology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029.
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MeSH Terms
Descriptor/Qualifier:
Animals
Cephalometry
Cerebellum / anatomy & histology*
Humans
Petrous Bone / anatomy & histology*
Primates / anatomy & histology*
Grant Support
ID/Acronym/Agency:
NS 22685/NS/NINDS NIH HHS

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine


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