Researchers from the “Max Planck” Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden (Germany) identified the DNA that participates in the formation of the neocortex that is responsible for thinking and language.
It turned out that the key role is played by specific human gene ARHGAP11B. Scientists injected this gene into the genome of ferrets, which caused an active growth of the neural cells, according to”MedicalXpress.”
Neocortex or new cortex is the part of the brain of mammals, which in humans is a major part of the cortex (90%), while in animals consists of a small number of neurons.
The neocortex is involved in sensory perception, the implementation of motor commands, visualization of two-dimensional and three-dimensional structures and the formation of language.
In addition, it is the most evolved part of the Central nervous system.
In a previous study, neuroscientists showed that the same procedure carried out on mice, promotes the separation of specific progenitor cells, which are referred to as basal radial glial cells.
They are involved in the development of the neocortex, but in rodents they are very small.
Scientists have found out that if ARHGAP11B Gene is injected into the brain of embryos of domestic ferrets Mustela furo black, it really will increase the volume of the neocortex.
The gene causes the neuronal progenitor cells,which produce neurons, actively divide over a longer period of time.
The increase in the volume of new crust contributed to the emergence of folds, similar to those in humans.