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Identity of famous 19th-century brain found

Posted on Wednesday, 30 January, 2013 | Comment icon 4 comments | News tip by: Still Waters

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The owner of a brain used in an important medical discovery has been found after more than 150 years.

The story begins with an anonymous patient who was unable to speak and was admitted to the Bicetre Hospital outside Paris in 1840. His condition deteriorated over the next 20 years, but before his death he met with famous physician Paul Broca who took an interest in his case. After the man died, Broca performed an autopsy and found a lesion in one part of the brain, a discovery that would lead him to conclude that this was the part of the brain responsible for speech.

For years the identity of the mysterious patient whose brain lead to this breakthrough has remained a mystery, but now scientists have finally been able to put a name to the brain - Monsieur Louis Leborgne, a craftsman from France who had battled epilepsy his entire life.

"After doing a detailed examination, Broca concluded that Tan's aphasia was caused by damage to this region, and that the particular brain region controlled speech."

  View: Full article |  Source: Discovery News

  Discuss: View comments (4)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by schizoidwoman on 29 January, 2013, 20:52
Absolutely fascinating; thanks, SW!
Comment icon #2 Posted by Hilander on 29 January, 2013, 21:42
Its funny how they blamed madness for everything back then.
Comment icon #3 Posted by wimfloppp on 30 January, 2013, 13:29
very cleververy clever
Comment icon #4 Posted by pallidin on 30 January, 2013, 19:19
Or "possession"

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