News FocusChimpanzee Research Today

The Inner Workings of the Chimpanzee Brain

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Science  02 Apr 2010:
Vol. 328, Issue 5974, pp. 40-41
DOI: 10.1126/science.328.5974.40

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Using a noninvasive magnetic resonance imaging scanner, investigators have launched a pathbreaking journey through the chimpanzee brain to probe everything from cognition to disease. A key question they want to address is whether white matter declines with age in chimps, as it appears to do in humans. They also want to use these data to tackle a more fundamental problem: The components of the chimp brain remain hazy, so they want to construct an atlas of all its white matter pathways, which can then be compared with human pathways to help clarify what makes our brains tick.