Cerebral cortex

Definition: The outer layer of the brain, composed of neurons and glia organized into vertically superimposed cortical layers, as well as cortical regions and lobes (frontal, temporal, parietal, occipital) defined over the surface. The largest part of the cortex is the ‘isocortex’, with 6 layers, while the allocortex (e.g., the hippocampal gyrus) has only 3 layers. The mature adult cerebral cortex is strongly folded, resulting in sulci (grooves) and gyri (ridges), which often serve as reference points to define cortical regions and demarcate the four lobes. One of the most widely used mapping of the human cerebral cortex is according to the Brodmann’s Areas based on surface anatomy as well as cytoarchitectonics.Definition: The outer layer of the brain, composed of neurons and glia organized into vertically superimposed cortical layers, as well as cortical regions and lobes (frontal, temporal, parietal, occipital) defined over the surface. The largest part of the cortex is the ‘isocortex’, with 6 layers, while the allocortex (e.g., the hippocampal gyrus) has only 3 layers. The mature adult cerebral cortex is strongly folded, resulting in sulci (grooves) and gyri (ridges), which often serve as reference points to define cortical regions and demarcate the four lobes. One of the most widely used mapping of the human cerebral cortex is according to the Brodmann’s Areas based on surface anatomy as well as cytoarchitectonics.

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References: National Cancer Institute. National Cancer Institute Thesaurus, 2017. Documentation page available on http://nciterms.nci.nih.gov.

Related terms: Neocortex, Cortex, Cerebrum, Gray matter  

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