By Prof. Dr. Valentino Braitenberg, Priv. Doz. Dr. Almut Schüz (auth.)
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Extra resources for Anatomy of the Cortex: Statistics and Geometry
The symmetry of the distribution has no significance . (Hellwig et al. ) 58 Chapter 10 reveal any regularity even if sophisticated statistical methods are applied to it. On the other hand, the concept of a "terminal ramification" of the axon, so dear to some neuroanatomists, is not compatible with a diffuse distribution of synapses over most of the axonal tree, such as is the case with the cortical pyramidal cells. So, either the "wiring" in the cortex is complicated beyond all expectation, or it is really quite diffuse, and essentially random, as we prefer to see it.
I ·:· ,. 4 . -. , •· ,fl • • .. •. -, "' 7- ··: •. '• .... ' .... . . ,. I. . .. ·". • : . . ~. : . 1-· ' : . ·. Density of Synapses 37 The comparison of the same region of the section in the two kinds of pictures (Fig. 18) shows that most of the light speckles in the dark field micrograph do indeed correspond to the location of synapses. Unfortunately, for reasons of wave optics, two or more synapses that lie too close together appear as one point in the dark field picture.
Schiiz and Palm 1989) 28 Chapter 4 14 x 10 4 neurons 1 mm 3 0 12 • 10 0 8 D 6 • 0 0 mouse 1 I 4 mouse 2 (]mou se 3 2 area 8 6 17 Fig. t t. Density of neurons in the three areas, averaged over all layers. The density in the occipital region is almost twice as high as in the frontal region. Si ze of the symbols: meaning as in Figs. 9 and 10. (Schuz and Palm 1989) 14 x 10 4 neu r on s / mm 2 12 10 8 6 0 mouse 1 I mouse 2 0 mou se 3 4 2 a rea 8 6 17 Fig. 12. T he num ber of ne uro ns per unit area of the cortical surface remains fa irly constant in all three areas.
Anatomy of the Cortex: Statistics and Geometry by Prof. Dr. Valentino Braitenberg, Priv. Doz. Dr. Almut Schüz (auth.)