Cerebrum Function And Structure

Cerebrum Function And Structure

The cerebrum consists of the two cerebral hemispheres and the cortex (with all its substructures: the paleocortex and the neocortex). Of all the central nervous system structures, the cerebral hemispheres have the biggest volume. They are united through the cerebral commissures and contain the fist two lateral ventricles.

Each cerebral hemispheres contains four lobes: the frontal lobe (which is responsible for all the voluntary and the involuntary movements), the parietal lobe (where all the information is processed), the temporal lobe (responsible for the smell and hearing senses) and the occipital lobe (where the visual information are projected).

The cerebrum also contain two other structures:

  1. The basal ganglia, that is a group of nuclei associated with the voluntary motor control, some emotions, the voluntary eye movement, the tendency of developing routine behaviors and so on;
  2. The limbic system, that is placed right under the hemispheres. The limbic system comprises the olfactory bulbs, the amigdala, and fornix, the hippocampus and the mamillary body asides some secondary smaller structures. Although there are neuroscientists telling that the human brain doesn’t actually needs no more the limbic system, most of the medical society agree on the fact that that this structure is responsible for most of the emotions and the formation of memories.

The functions of the cerebrum are divided into 5 bigger categories:

  1. The motor role. Basically, the frontal lobe receives information from the parietal lobe and rapidly initiate the requested movements. The motor actions start in the primary motor cortex, that is connected through the axons to the brainstem and spinal cord;
  2. Sensorial processing: the parietal lobe receives most of the information from inside and outside the body. This explains why we can determine the exact position of a certain object, why we can sense certain smells or why we involuntarily maintain the body in equilibrium;
  3. The ability of processing the smells. For this role, the olfactory bulb (which is connected directly to the olfactory cortex) is responsible.
  4. The capability of learning new things and memorizing them for the long run. This capability is associated with the temporal lobe, but also with the hippocampus (which is part of the limbic system);
  5. Understanding a language.

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