Gyrification in the cerebral cortex of primates.
The degree of cortical folding in primates has been analyzed using a gyrification index (GI). Correlation analyses of the GI with body weight, brain weight and neopallial volume show that the human data fit the general trend of the nonhuman anthropoids. Bigger primate brains exhibit a higher degree of fissurization, but a taxonomic difference that is independent of brain weight between prosimians and anthropoids has also been observed. In these regressions, anthropoids differed from prosimians by having a larger increase in gyrification for every unit increase in body or brain weight or neopallial volume. A stepwise regression also shows a prosimian-anthropoid difference. The best predictor for convolutedness in anthropoids is neocortical volume, while in prosimians it is brain weight. The GI in catarrhines is correlated with total sulcal length but not number of sulci. This result suggests paleontological studies of total sulcal length can give direct information on the evolution of cortical folding in primates.