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Difference Between Sulcus and Fissure | Sulcus vs Fissure

Each cerebral hemisphere consists of four lobes. They are frontal lobe, parietal lobe, temporal lobe, and occipital lobe. The central fissure, Sylvian fissure, and the parieto-occipital Sylvian fissure are the three fissures that separate above mentioned four lobes.

What are the Similarities Between Sulcus and Fissure?

  • Sulcus and fissure are two types of grooves present on the surface of the brain.
  • Both grooves divide the cerebral cortex into different sections.
  • Moreover, they are responsible for the convoluted nature of the cerebral cortex.
  • Besides, both are made up of grey matter.
  • Also, they aid the compact packing of the large cerebral cortex inside the skull.

What is the Difference Between Sulcus and Fissure?

Sulcus and fissure are two grooves present on the brain surface. A sulcus is a less deep groove that provides a convoluted nature while fissure is a long narrow split that separates larger portions of the brain into lobes. Therefore, we can consider this as the key difference between sulcus and fissure. Furthermore, another difference between sulcus and fissure is that the sulci give rise to gyri while fissures give rise to lobes. Furthermore, sulci are lesser deep grooves while fissures are the deepest grooves in the cerebral cortex. Thus, this is an important structural difference between sulcus and fissure.

Moreover, a functional difference between sulcus and fissure is that the sulci increase the surface area of the brain while fissures divide the brain into functional lobes. Examples for sulci are superior frontal and inferior frontal sulci, superior and inferior temporal sulci, and central sulcus. Examples for fissures are longitudinal fissure, central fissure, Sylvian fissure, and parieto-occipital Sylvian fissure.

Difference Between Sulcus and Fissure | Sulcus vs Fissure

Summary – Sulcus vs Fissure

The brain is the main unit of the central nervous system. Sulcus and fissure are two grooves present on the brain cerebral cortex. Sulci are lesser deep grooves, but fissures are the deepest grooves present in the brain. The key difference between sulcus and fissure lies in their function. Sulci produce gyri whilst fissures separate the brain into functional lobes. Furthermore, sulci increase the surface area of the brain. Moreover, gyri are composed of cell bodies, dendrites, axons, etc. The four functional lobes in each cerebral hemisphere produced by fissures are frontal lobe, parietal lobe, temporal lobe, and occipital lobe.

Reference:

1. “Cerebral Fissure.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., Available here.
2. Manickam, Appukutty. “Cerebral Sulci and Fissures | Radiology Reference Article.” Radiopaedia Blog RSS, Available here.

Image Courtesy:

1. “LobesCaptsLateral” By Sebastian023 (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Blausen 0103 Brain Sensory&Motor” By Blausen.com staff (2014). “Medical gallery of Blausen Medical 2014”. WikiJournal of Medicine 1 (2). DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.010. ISSN 2002-4436. – Own work (CC BY 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia