oa South African Journal of Science - Functional asymmetry in the motor system of the horse

Volume 76, Issue 12
  • ISSN : 0038-2353
  • E-ISSN: 1996-7489



The reason for the hemispheric asymmetry ofbrainfunc� tion in man is unclear. Knowledge of the extent to which the hemispheres are specialized in other species can be useful for understanding the development and importance of cerebral dominance in man. The strong preference shown by mos{ people for using one hand rather than the other in skilled tasks is the most obvious indication of hemispheric asymmetry in humans. Analogous phenomena have been used to study lateralization in animals. Here we report the observation of a strong and stable side preference, or postural correlate of handedness ('sidedness'), in the horse. It is suggested that this 'sidedness' indicates asymmetry with regard to motor function in the horse.

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