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Primate comparative neuroscience using magnetic resonance imaging: promises and challenges

Mars, Rogier; Neubert, Franz-Xaver; Verhagen, Lennart; Sallet, Jérôme; Miller, Karla; Dunbar, Robin; Barton, Robert

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Rogier Mars

Franz-Xaver Neubert

Lennart Verhagen

Jérôme Sallet

Karla Miller

Robin Dunbar


Primate comparative anatomy is an established field that has made rich and substantial contributions to neuroscience. However, the labor-intensive techniques employed mean that most comparisons are often based on a small number of species, which limits the conclusions that can be drawn. In this review we explore how new developments in magnetic resonance imaging have the potential to apply comparative neuroscience to a much wider range of species, allowing it to realize an even greater potential. We discuss (1) new advances in the types of data that can be acquired, (2) novel methods for extracting meaningful measures from such data that can be compared between species, and (3) methods to analyse these measures within a phylogenetic framework. Together these developments will allow researchers to characterize the relationship between different brains, the ecological niche they occupy, and the behavior they produce in more detail than ever before.


Mars, R., Neubert, F., Verhagen, L., Sallet, J., Miller, K., Dunbar, R., & Barton, R. (2014). Primate comparative neuroscience using magnetic resonance imaging: promises and challenges. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 8, Article 298.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Oct 6, 2014
Deposit Date Nov 10, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 12, 2014
Journal Frontiers in Neuroscience
Print ISSN 1662-4548
Electronic ISSN 1662-453X
Publisher Frontiers Media
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Article Number 298
Keywords Neuroecology, MRI, Diffusion MRI, Connectivity, Phylogenetics.


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Copyright Statement
© 2014 Mars, Neubert, Verhagen, Sallet, Miller, Dunbar and Barton. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

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