Table of Contents
International Journal of Brain Science
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 424718, 7 pages
Research Article

The Morphogenic Mapping of the Brain and the Design of the Nervous System

1Synthetic Life Lab, New York, NY 10023, USA
2Department of Geology and Geography, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA 01075, USA

Received 24 May 2013; Revised 12 August 2013; Accepted 19 August 2013; Published 2 January 2014

Academic Editor: Hisao Nishijo

Copyright © 2014 Peter Sheesley et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper reports the discovery of a geometrical algorithm that provides a coherent step by step mechanical account of the structure of the nervous system, including the vertebrate brain, the spinal cord, the vertebral column, and the spinal nerves. The morphology of these organs and the observed steps of neural development are well described, consequent of centuries of study. But morphogenesis, the origin and cause of these forms, has not been studied since the last half of the nineteenth century. Neurology does not teach how the brain gained its shape, nor have any causative theories of brain formation been published in recent times. This paper proposes a hypothetical construction based on the discovery of a simple algorithm which generates topologically the form of the brain, the spinal cord, and the vertebral column by the deformation of a gridded segmented sphere by the inversion of its surface. The hypothetical model is in close analogy with nature: the blastula is a segmented gridded sphere which results from the subdivision of the egg. The first step of embryogenesis is gastrulation, where blastula is pressed to enter its own interior, pulling the surface inside out, forming the embryo.