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A cerebellar substrate for cognition evolved multiple times independently in mammals

Smaers, JB; Turner, AH; Gomez-Robles, A; Sherwood, CC; (2018) A cerebellar substrate for cognition evolved multiple times independently in mammals. eLIFE , 7 , Article e35696. 10.7554/eLife.35696. Green open access

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Abstract

Given that complex behavior evolved multiple times independently in different lineages, a crucial question is whether these independent evolutionary events coincided with modifications to common neural systems. To test this question in mammals, we investigate the lateral cerebellum, a neurobiological system that is novel to mammals, and is associated with higher cognitive functions. We map the evolutionary diversification of the mammalian cerebellum and find that relative volumetric changes of the lateral cerebellar hemispheres (independent of cerebellar size) are correlated with measures of domain-general cognition in primates, and are characterized by a combination of parallel and convergent shifts towards similar levels of expansion in distantly related mammalian lineages. Results suggest that multiple independent evolutionary occurrences of increased behavioral complexity in mammals may at least partly be explained by selection on a common neural system, the cerebellum, which may have been subject to multiple independent neurodevelopmental remodeling events during mammalian evolution.

Type: Article
Title: A cerebellar substrate for cognition evolved multiple times independently in mammals
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.7554/eLife.35696
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.35696
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © Smaers et al. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10053015
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