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Wernicke's area

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Approximate location of Wernicke's area highlighted in gray

Wernicke's area is a part of the human brain that forms part of the cortex, on the left posterior section of the superior temporal gyrus, posterior to the primary auditory cortex, on the temporo-parietal junction (part of the brain where the temporal lobe and parietal lobe meet).

It can also be described as the posterior part of Brodmann area 22.

It is usually located in the left hemisphere, as the majority of people have brain areas specialized for language skills located on the left.

It is named after Karl Wernicke, a German neurologist and psychiatrist who in 1874 discovered that damage to this area could cause a type of aphasia (now called Wernicke's aphasia or receptive aphasia), which results in an impairment of language comprehension, and speech that has a natural-sounding rhythm but a jumbled syntax without recognisable meaning (a condition sometimes called fluent or jargon aphasia).

Wernicke's work initiated the study of this brain area and its role in language. It is particularly known to be involved in the understanding and comprehension of spoken language.

This area is also one of the affected in schizophrenia.

It is connected to Broca's area by a neural pathway called the arcuate fasciculus.

See also

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.

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