Human Brain More Similar To Monkeys' Than Previously Believed

Monkeys are known for their comparatively developed learning ability and complex behavior that put them as the closest living human relatives in evolutionary lineage. A new research conducted by Dr. Neubert and his colleagues at Oxford, UK reveals more similarities in the organization of regions of brain that control language and other complex thought process and also the differences that make our brain work differently than other Primates.

It has previously been believed that the neural apparatus in humans was completely different than that of primates and was not inherited by humans from monkeys but rather some other ancestor but this research reveals something different.

By using MRI, Dr. Neubert and colleagues compared the ventrolateral frontal cortex connectivity and architecture in 25 people and 25 macaques. Surprising similarities were found in the connectivity of these parts in the both species which is contrary to previous held belief and proves that Evolution gifted humans with the same neural apparatus that was already present in monkeys.

Despite those similarities, there were many differences that explain our distinct behaviors.The ventrolateral cortical in both species connects differently to the areas of the brain concerned with hearing that exactly explains why humans respond efficiently to stimulus using auditory circuits of brains while monkeys respond poorly.Another important difference was the absence of lateral frontal pole,an area present in ventrolateral frontal cortex,in monkeys,this part is present in human brain which is why we are equipped with strategic thinking,decision making and multitasking abilities.

The most interesting conclusion this research draws is the presence of similarities found in ventrolateral  frontal cortex in humans and monkeys are thought to play role in many psychiatric disorders like Attention Deficient Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), obsessive compulsive disorder, substance abuse including alcoholism etc.

Although this research has shown a lot, it is only an initiative of unfolding the similarities and differences between humans and other primates, that will lead to better understanding of how evolution caused our brain to become the most developed and complex in function than that of our ancestors.

[Source: Eurelalert | Image:]

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