Human Anatomy and Physiology
What is role for the cerebellum?
Difference between sheep's cerebellum and human cerebellum?
Asked in Health, Head, Ears, and Nose, Brain
What differences did you note in the structures of the sheep cerebellum and the human cerebellum?
Asked in Animal Life, Neuroscience, Brain
Which part of the brain has an essential role in coordinating balance and movement?
Asked in Human Anatomy and Physiology
What does the cerebellum do?
The cerebellum is the portion of the brain that controls coordination, balance, voluntary motor movements, sense of position of the different parts of your body, equilibrium, and muscle tone. It also plays an important role in memory. The cerebellum modulates voluntary movement commands so that the movements become progressively more accurate, smoother, and require less conscious effort to perform. For example, when learning to ride a bike you have to consciously balance, coordinate your arms and legs, and direct yourself using your eyes. As you practice, and the cerebellum becomes more accustomed to the demands of the task, you can eventually do the task without thinking. We know that the cerebellum does this (modulating, rather than initiating movements) because patients with damage to the cerebellum have coordination problems, but can still move. There is increasing evidence that the cerebellum is important for other, non-motor, tasks including tasks that require forward-planning. It is becoming more evident that the cerebellum has a wider-reaching role in fine-tuning a variety of neural signals. The cerebellum is responsible for procedural memory- the type of memory that stores previously learned skills. New research suggests that the cerebellum also plays a broader role in association with all types of memory with initial memory being formed in the cerebellum and then traveling outwards to other parts of the brain.