Lobes of the human brain

Principal lobes of the human
The Four Lobes The brain can be divided into four sections, known as lobes.. Image by John A Beal, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport

The cerebral cortex can be divided into four sections, which are known as lobes (see image above). The frontal lobe, parietal lobe, occipital lobe, and temporal lobe have been associated with different functions ranging from reasoning to auditory perception.

  • The frontal lobe is located at the front of the brain and is associated with reasoning, motor skills, higher level cognition, and expressive language. At the back of the frontal lobe, near the central sulcus, lies the motor cortex. This area of the brain receives information from various lobes of the brain and utilizes this information to carry out body movements. Damage to the frontal lobe can lead to changes in sexual habits, socialization, and attention as well as increased risk-taking.
  • The parietal lobe is located in the middle section of the brain and is associated with processing tactile sensory information such as pressure, touch, and pain. A portion of the brain known as the somatosensory cortex is located in this lobe and is essential to the processing of the body's senses. Damage to the parietal lobe can result in problems with verbal memory, an impaired ability to control eye gaze and problems with language.
  • The temporal lobe is located on the bottom section of the brain. This lobe is also the location of the primary auditory cortex, which is important for interpreting sounds and the language we hear. The hippocampus is also located in the temporal lobe, which is why this portion of the brain is also heavily associated with the formation of memories. Damage to the temporal lobe can lead to problems with memory, speech perception, and language skills.
  • The occipital lobe is located at the back portion of the brain and is associated with interpreting visual stimuli and information. The primary visual cortex, which receives and interprets information from the retinas of the eyes, is located in the occipital lobe. Damage to this lobe can cause visual problems such as difficulty recognizing objects, an inability to identify colors, and trouble recognizing words.
The Brain Stem

The brain stem is comprised of the hindbrain and midbrain. The hindbrain contains structures including medulla, the pons and the reticular formation.

The Hindbrain

The hindbrain is the structure that connects the spinal cord to the brain.

  • The medulla is located directly above the spinal cord and controls many vital autonomic functions such as heart rate, breathing and blood pressure.
  • The pons connects the medulla to the cerebellum and helps coordinate movement on each side of the body.
  • The reticular formation is a neural network located in the medulla that helps control functions such as sleep and attention.
The Midbrain

The midbrain is the smallest region of the brain that acts as a sort of relay station for auditory and visual information.

The midbrain controls many important functions such as the visual and auditory systems as well as eye movement. Portions of the midbrain called the red nucleus and the substantia nigra are involved in the control of body movement. The darkly pigmented substantia nigra contains a large number of dopamine-producing neurons are located. The degeneration of neurons in the substantia nigra is associated with Parkinson’s disease.

The Cerebellum Image by Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, and Technology(MEXT) Integrated Database Project

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Q&A

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Where do i find a Diagram of saggittal view of human brainstem and diencephalon

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What is the size difference in sheep brainstem and human brainstem

The human brain stem is towards the backbone and downwards, because in the human body the backbone is vertical; compared to a sheep's backbone which is horizontal, and its brain is directed outwards. This would explain why the size of the brain stems are different. The bodies are formed differently and the brains are situated differently so the brain stem is sized according to the need to support the brain.

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