The cerebellum is crucial for smooth and well-timed execution of movements. It performs its function by combining information carried by two pathways: the mossy fibers, indirectly projecting to the cerebellar Purkinje cells through the numerous cerebellar granule cells, and the climbing fibers. The inferior olive provides all climbing fibers to the Purkinje cells in the cerebellar cortex and has a strong impact on cerebellar output. As a consequence, the processing of signals by the inferior olivary neurons is critical for cerebellar function. The following chapter introduces the inferior olive in detail, from development to function and pathology.

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