Fibers

Immediately underneath the cerebral cortex lies a complex array of neural fibers involved in conveying information to and from other cortical and subcortical sites. There are three main types of fiber. The association fibers transmit nerve impulses between gyri in the same hemisphere. They can be relatively short, such as those connecting adjacent gyri, or long, connecting gyri in different lobes. Any one gyrus both projects to and receives input from a number of other cortical regions. Commissural fibers connect the gyri in one cerebral hemisphere to the corresponding gyri in the contralateral hemisphere. The majority of the commissural fibers are contained within the corpus callosum. However, the temporal lobes utilize both the corpus callosum and the anterior commissure for connecting fibers. The third class are the projection fibers, which provide connections between the cortex and subcortical sites such as the basal ganglia, thalamus, brain stem, and spinal cord. The projection fibers from the cerebral cortex initially form a spreading fan shape known as the corona radiata. At a deeper level, the corona radiata coalesces into a compact fiber bundle, the internal capsule. The ascending fibers enter the corona radiata after going through the internal capsule.

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