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Parahippocampal gyrus

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Parahippocampal gyrus
Human brainstem anterior view (Gyrus parahippocampalis is #7, near center right.)
Latin gyrus parahippocampalis
Gray's subject #
MeSH A08.186.211.577.710
Hippocampus (brain)
Parahippocampal gyrus labeled at bottom center.

The parahippocampal gyrus (Syn. hippocampal gyrus)[1] is a grey matter cortical region of the brain that surrounds the hippocampus. It is part of the limbic system adjacent to the hippocampal formation[2] and plays an important role in memory encoding and retrieval. Along with the perirhinal cortex it relays information between the hippocampus and the rest of the brain[3] .

It has been involved in some cases of hippocampal sclerosis.[4]

Asymmetry has been observed in schizophrenia.[5]


The anterior part of the gyrus includes the perirhinal and entorhinal cortices[citation needed].

The term parahippocampal cortex is used to refer to an area that encompasses both the posterior parahippocampal gyrus and the medial portion of the fusiform gyrus.


Scene recognition

The parahippocampal place area (PPA) is a subregion of the parahippocampal cortex that plays an important role in the encoding and recognition of scenes (rather than faces or objects). fMRI studies indicate that this region of the brain becomes highly active when human subjects view topographical scene stimuli such as images of landscapes, cityscapes, or rooms (i.e. images of "places"). The region was first described by Russell Epstein (currently at the University of Pennsylvania) and Nancy Kanwisher (currently at MIT) in 1998,[6] see also other similar reports by Geoffrey Aguirre[7][8] and Alumit Ishai.[9]

Damage to the PPA (for example, due to stroke) often leads to a syndrome in which patients cannot visually recognize scenes even though they can recognize the individual objects in the scenes (such as people, furniture, etc.). The PPA is often considered the complement of the fusiform face area (FFA), a nearby cortical region that responds strongly whenever faces are viewed, and which is believed to be important for face recognition.

Social context

Additional research has increased the probability that the right parahippocampal gyrus in particular has functions beyond the contextualizing of visual background. Tests by a California-based group led by Katherine P. Rankin indicate that the lobe may play a crucial role in identifying social context as well, including paralinguistic elements of verbal communication.[10] For example, Rankin's research suggests that the right parahippocampal gyrus enables people to detect sarcasm.

Additional images


  1. Reuter P.: Der Grobe Reuter Springer Universalworterbuch Medizin, Pharmakologie Und Zahnmedizin: Englisch-deutsch (Band 2), Birkhäuser, 2005, ISBN 3540251022, p. 648 here online
  2. Reber, A.S. & Reber, E.S. (2001). Dictionary of psychology. London:Penguin
  3. Reber, A.S. & Reber, E.S. (2001). Dictionary of psychology. London:Penguin
  4. Ferreira NF, de Oliveira V, Amaral L, Mendonça R, Lima SS (September 2003). Analysis of parahippocampal gyrus in 115 patients with hippocampal sclerosis. Arq Neuropsiquiatr 61 (3B): 707–11.
  5. McDonald B, Highley JR, Walker MA, et al. (January 2000). Anomalous asymmetry of fusiform and parahippocampal gyrus gray matter in schizophrenia: A postmortem study. Am J Psychiatry 157 (1): 40–7.
  6. A cortical representation of the local visual environment : Abstract : Nature. URL accessed on 2009-11-03.
  7. The Parahippocampus Subserves Topographical Learning in Man -- Aguirre et al. 6 (6): 823 -- Cerebral Cortex. URL accessed on 2009-11-03.
  8. Neuron - An Area within Human Ventral Cortex Sensitive to “Building” Stimuli. URL accessed on 2009-11-03.
  9. Distributed representation of objects in the human ventral visual pathway — PNAS. URL accessed on 2009-11-03.
  10. includeonly>Hurley, Dan. "Katherine P. Rankin, a Neuropsychologist, Studies Sarcasm -", The New York Times, 2008-06-03. Retrieved on 2009-11-03.

External links

Telencephalon (cerebrum, cerebral cortex, cerebral hemispheres) - edit

primary sulci/fissures: medial longitudinal, lateral, central, parietoöccipital, calcarine, cingulate

frontal lobe: precentral gyrus (primary motor cortex, 4), precentral sulcus, superior frontal gyrus (6, 8), middle frontal gyrus (46), inferior frontal gyrus (Broca's area, 44-pars opercularis, 45-pars triangularis), prefrontal cortex (orbitofrontal cortex, 9, 10, 11, 12, 47)

parietal lobe: postcentral sulcus, postcentral gyrus (1, 2, 3, 43), superior parietal lobule (5), inferior parietal lobule (39-angular gyrus, 40), precuneus (7), intraparietal sulcus

occipital lobe: primary visual cortex (17), cuneus, lingual gyrus, 18, 19 (18 and 19 span whole lobe)

temporal lobe: transverse temporal gyrus (41-42-primary auditory cortex), superior temporal gyrus (38, 22-Wernicke's area), middle temporal gyrus (21), inferior temporal gyrus (20), fusiform gyrus (36, 37)

limbic lobe/fornicate gyrus: cingulate cortex/cingulate gyrus, anterior cingulate (24, 32, 33), posterior cingulate (23, 31),
isthmus (26, 29, 30), parahippocampal gyrus (piriform cortex, 25, 27, 35), entorhinal cortex (28, 34)

subcortical/insular cortex: rhinencephalon, olfactory bulb, corpus callosum, lateral ventricles, septum pellucidum, ependyma, internal capsule, corona radiata, external capsule

hippocampal formation: dentate gyrus, hippocampus, subiculum

basal ganglia: striatum (caudate nucleus, putamen), lentiform nucleus (putamen, globus pallidus), claustrum, extreme capsule, amygdala, nucleus accumbens

Some categorizations are approximations, and some Brodmann areas span gyri.

Template:Papez circuitde:Gyrus parahippocampalis es:Circunvolución del parahipocampo nl:Parahippocampale cortex

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