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Neuroscience. 2006 Sep 1;141(3):1107-12. Epub 2006 Jun 22.

Dendritic architecture of the von Economo neurons.

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1
Department of Biology, California Institute of Technology, M/C 216-76, 1200 East California Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA. karlikiiko@gmail.com

Abstract

The von Economo neurons are one of the few known specializations to hominoid cortical microcircuitry. Here, using a Golgi preparation of a human postmortem brain, we describe the dendritic architecture of this unique population of neurons. We have found that, in contrast to layer 5 pyramidal neurons, the von Economo neurons have sparse dendritic trees and symmetric apical and basal components. This result provides the first detailed anatomical description of a neuron type unique to great apes and humans.

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