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Title: "A Great Reinforcing Organ": the Cerebellum According to Silas Weir Mitchell
Authors: Triarhou, Lazaros C
Manto, Mario
Type: Article
Subjects: FRASCATI::Medical and Health sciences::Basic medicine::Neurosciences (including: Psychophysiology)
FRASCATI::Natural sciences::Biological sciences
Keywords: American Physiological Society
Cerebellar physiology
History of neurology
Silas Weir Mitchell (1829–1914)
Subjects MESH: Animals
Guinea Pigs
History, 19th Century
History, 20th Century
Issue Date: Apr-2022
Source: Cerebellum (London, England)
Volume: 21
Issue: 2
First Page: 167
Last Page: 171
Abstract: This Cerebellar Classic highlights a work by the physician and novelist, Silas Weir Mitchell (1829-1914), a pupil of Claude Bernard and a founding father of American neurology. Published in the aftermath of the American Civil War, the article reported observations on cerebellar physiology based on ablation and tissue freezing experiments in pigeons, rabbits, and guinea pigs. Mitchell communicated his results before the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, and proposed a general theory of the cerebellum as an augmenting and reinforcing organ to the cerebrospinal motor system. After reviewing and contrasting previous theories of Flourens and Bouillaud, Mitchell formulated his own theory, which was in line with the views of Rolando and Luys. The theory emphasized the necessity, initially suggested by Brown-Séquard, of distinguishing between phenomena due to loss of function and those due to irritation as a central principle that should guide any physiological research.
ISSN: 1473-4230
Electronic ISSN: 1473-4230
Other Identifiers: 10.1007/s12311-021-01318-8
Appears in Collections:Department of Educational & Social Policy

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