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Book Reviews
November 1998

The Central Nervous System, Structure and Function, Second Edition

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by Per Brodal, MD, PhD, 675 pp, with illus, $49.95, New York, NY, Oxford University Press Inc, 1998.

Arch Neurol. 1998;55(11):1485-1486. doi:

This second edition is authored by the son of Alf Brodal, who wrote the Norwegian forerunner of this book several years ago. Per Brodal is a physician and a professor of anatomy at the University of Oslo in Norway with expertise in experimental neuroanatomy.

This book is divided into 6 major sections. The first section is titled "Main Features of Structure and Function," which is subdivided into 5 chapters. Brodal covers the whole spectrum of neuroanatomy starting from the microscopic structure of a neuron to macroscopic parts of major central nervous system regions including their interconnections. In chapter 4, he manages to review embryonic neurostructural development to the fully matured central nervous system in a concise and easy-to-understand manner. The importance of programmed cell death and nerve growth factors for proper development of the nervous system is clearly explained. The formidable task of synthesizing the overall view of neuroanatomy is done in an easy-to-follow style and sets the stage for more detailed discussions in other sections. The second section is titled "Sensory Systems," and the third section deals with motor systems.

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