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Ann Anat. 1996 Dec;178(6):553-8.

Anatomy of the circle of Willis in three cases of human fetal synophthalmic holoprosencephaly.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy II, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany.


In three human fetuses with synophthalmic holoprosencephaly (8, 14, 23 weeks post conceptionem) the circle of Willis was studied using serial histological sections and computer aided three dimensional reconstruction methods. This structure was abnormal in all cases. In two cases the anterior communicating arteries were absent. In all cases the anterior cerebral arteries could not be found. One case showed an incomplete circle with no posterior communicating artery. The results indicate that the malformation of the circle of Willis reflects the malformation of the brain.

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