The ovine motor cortex: A review of functional mapping and cytoarchitecture

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In recent years, sheep (Ovis aries) have emerged as a useful animal model for neurological research due to their relatively large brain and blood vessel size, their cortical architecture, and their docile temperament. However, the functional anatomy of sheep brain is not as well studied as that of non-human primates, rodents, and felines. For example, while the location of the sheep motor cortex has been known for many years, there have been few studies of the somatotopy of the motor cortex and there were a range of discrepancies across them. The motivation for this review is to provide a definitive resource for studies of the sheep motor cortex. This work critically reviews the literature examining the organization of the motor cortex in sheep, utilizing studies that have applied direct electrical stimulation and histological methods A clearer understanding of the sheep brain will facilitate and progress the use of this species as a scientific animal model for neurological research.

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