The cerebellum, which means little brain in Latin, occupies most of the posterior cranial fossa and connects with the dorsal brainstem (Kandel et al., 2000). The cerebellar cortex is one of the most foliated brain structures, which accounts for 10% of the total volume and over half of the total neurons in the central nervous system of higher vertebrates (Llinas et al., 2004). The unique position and structure of cerebellum has inspired neuroscientists over the past century to dedicate their research and imagination to uncover the function of the cerebellum. In the late 19th century, the cerebellum was suggested to be involved in controlling the spatial accuracy and temporal coordination of motor movement, based on clinical studies on cerebellar specific lesion patients. Further studies suggested that the learning and memory of motor movements may also be stored in cerebellum (for review see Dow and Moruzzi, 1958). Meanwhile, in the late 19th and early 20th century, the Italian scientist Camillo Golgi as well as his Spanish colleague and life-long competitor Santiago Ramón y Cajal (who shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine in 1906) carried out their pioneer research on the detailed cellular organization of the cerebellum (and other parts of the central nervous system). Their studies provided the initial description of the cerebellar circuit.

Additional Metadata
Keywords brains, cerebellar circuitry, cerebellum
Promotor C.I. de Zeeuw (Chris)
Publisher Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam
Sponsor Prinses Beatrix Fonds, J.E. Jurriaanse Stichting
Persistent URL
Gao, Z. (2011, June 15). Role of Calcium in Cerebellar Learning and Function. Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam. Retrieved from