The brain of the horse: weight and cephalization quotients

Bruno Cozzi, Michele Povinelli, Cristina Ballarin, Alberto Granato

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivistapeer review

16 Citazioni (Scopus)


The horse is a common domestic animal whose anatomy has been studied since the XVI century. However, a modern neuroanatomy of this species does not exist and most of the data utilized in textbooks and reviews derive from single specimens or relatively old literature. Here, we report information on the brain of Equus caballus obtained by sampling 131 horses, including brain weight (as a whole and subdivided into its constituents), encephalization quotient (EQ), and cerebellar quotient (CQ), and comparisons with what is known about other relevant species. The mean weight of the fresh brains in our experimental series was 598.63 g (SEM ± 7.65), with a mean body weight of 514.12 kg (SEM ± 15.42). The EQ was 0.78 and the CQ was 0.841. The data we obtained indicate that the horse possesses a large, convoluted brain, with a weight similar to that of other hoofed species of like mass. However, the shape of the brain, the noteworthy folding of the neocortex, and the peculiar longitudinal distribution of the gyri suggest an evolutionary specificity at least partially separate from that of the Cetartiodactyla (even-toed mammals and cetaceans) with whom Perissodactyla (odd-toed mammals) are often grouped. © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)9-16
Numero di pagine8
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2014


  • Brain
  • Horse


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