Brain Pictures in Color

Probably the best way to use this web page is to print it out so that you can use the captions as you view the pictures.

Some basic navigation and anatomy
Some Basic Anatomy

    Of the brain's many structures, surely the most familiar to the ordinary person are the two dominating cerebral hemispheres. At the lower left, the left hemisphere is portrayed in a lateral view, as though the left skull had been removed, exposing the outer surface. As the diagram shows, anatomists distinguish four major lobes within each hemisphere, the frontal, parietal, occipital, and temporal. Nerve cells are most densely packed and interconnected in the outermost 3 millimeters of the cerebral hemispheres as it follows their many convoluted folds.

    Below on the right, the brain is shown in a medial view, as though a knife had separated the two hemispheres and exposed the surface along the midline from front to back. This view reveals additional structures lying within and below the cerebral hemispheres . . . . The corpus callosum is a dense band of fibers that connects the two hemispheres, while directly above it is an area of cortex known as the cingulate gyrus. The thalamus serves as a sort of relay station for sensory information going into the cortex. just below the thalamus is a major structure of the midbrain, the superior colliculus which plays a role in eye movements and visual attention. Finally, the cerebellum takes part in the coordination of muscles and the control of balance and is also involved in some cognitive functions.

The big picture

A big picture indicating placement and a smaller picture showing a mammal brain divided into hind-, mid-, and forebrain

    BRAIN AND SPINAL CORD of human beings and other mammals can be subdivided into smaller regions according to gross appearance, embryology or cellular organization. At the top a human brain has been drawn so that its internal structures are visible through "transparent" outer layers of the cerebrum. At the bottom a generalized mammalian brain is shown in a highly schematic view . . . . Corresponding structures in the realistic and schematic models are the same color. The most general way of dividing the brain is into hindbrain, midbrain and forebrain. The hindbrain includes the cerebellum. The midbrain includes the two elevations known as the inferior and superior colliculi. The forebrain is more complex. Its outer part is the cerebral hemisphere, the surface of which is the convoluted sheet of the cerebral cortex, which incorporates the hippocampus, the neocortex, and the olfactory fields. Within the hemisphere are the amygdala and corpus striatum; the latter includes the globus pallidus and the striatum, which includes the caudate nucleus and putamen. The rest of the forebrain is the diencephalon: the upper two-thirds comprise the thalamus (which has numerous subdivisions) and the lower third the hypothalamus (which connects to the pituitary complex).

Language areas

Language areas according to Geschwind

    Geschwind proposed this anatomical model showing the successive participation of several brain areas as a person speaks a written word.

The limbic system
Basic structures of the limbic system

    The limbic system is a group of structures in the interior of the brain. Here you see them as if you could look through a transparent exterior of the brain.

The visual pathways

The visual pathways divided by hemispheres

    Only the temporal part of the left visual field is connected to the right superior colliculus. Thus, an infant with its right eye patched will respond only to events in the left temporal field.

Brodmann areas

The Brodmann areas in color with emphasis on functions

    Distribution of functional zones in relation to Brodmann's map of the human brain. The boundaries are not intended to be precise. Much of this information is based on experimental evidence obtained from laboratory animals and needs to be confirmed in the human brain. AA = auditory association codex; AG = angular gyrus; A1 = primary auditory cortex; CG = cingulate cortex; INS = insula; IPL inferior parietal lobule; IT = inferior temporal gyrus; MA = motor association cortex; MPO = Medial parietooccipital area; MT = middle temporal gyrus: M1 = primary motor area; OF = Orbitofrontal region; PC = prefrontal cortex; PH = parahippocampal region; PO = parolfactory area; PS = peristriate cortex; RS = retrosplenial area; SA = somatosensory aasseciation cortex; SG = supramarginal gyrus: SPL = superior parietal lobule; ST = superior temporal gyrus; S1 = primary somatosensory area; TP = temporopolar cortex; VA = visual association cortex: V1 = primary visual cortex.