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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Neuroanat. | doi: 10.3389/fnana.2019.00079

The Anatomy of a Brown Bear’s Brain: a Cross-sectional Study Using Magnetic Resonance Imaging

  • 1Institute of Environmental Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Wroclaw, Poland
  • 2Institute of Nature Conservation (PAN), Poland
  • 3Department of Biology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Zagreb, Poland
  • 4Department of Pathology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Poland
  • 5Center for Experimental Diagnostics and Innovative Biomedical Technologies, Wrocław University of Environmental and Life Sciences, Poland
  • 6Department of General Radiology, Interventional Radiology and Neuroradiology, Faculty of Postgradualte Medical Training, Wrocław Medical University, Poland

In this study we aimed to provide a neuroanatomy atlas derived from cross-sectional and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the encephalon of the brown bear (Ursus arctos). A postmortem brain analysis using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI – 1,5T; a high-resolution submillimeter three-dimensional T1-3D FFE) and cross-sectional macroscopic anatomy methods revealed major embryological and anatomical subdivisions of the encephalon, including the ventricular system. Most of the internal structures were comparably identifiable in both methods. The tractus olfactorius medialis, corpus subthalamicum, brachium colliculi rostralis, fasciculus longitudinalis medialis, nuclei vestibulares, velum medullare rostrale, nucleus fastigii, fasciculi cuneatus et gracilis were identified entirely by cross-sectional macroscopic analysis. However, the glandula pinealis, lemniscus lateralis and nuclei rhaphe were visualized only with MRI. Gross neuroanatomic analysis provided information about sulci and gyri of the cerebral hemispheres, components of the vermis and cerebellar hemispheres, and relative size and morphology of constituents of the rhinencephalon and cerebellum. Similarities and discrepancies in identification of structures provided by both methods, as well as hallmarks of the structures facilitating identification using these methods are discussed. Finally, we compare the brown bear encephalon with other carnivores and discuss most of the identified structures compared to those of the domestic dog, the domestic cat, Ursidae and Mustelidae families and Pinnipedia clade.

Keywords: Comparative Neuroanatomy, brain imaging (MRI), Ursids, Brown bear (Ursus arctos), Carnivora

Received: 29 Nov 2018; Accepted: 18 Jul 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Sienkiewicz, Sergiel, Huber, Maślak, Wrzosek, Podgórski, Reljić and Paśko. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Łukasz Paśko, Institute of Environmental Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Wroclaw, Wroclaw, Poland, lukasz.pasko@uwr.edu.pl