AskDefine | Define hindbrain

Dictionary Definition

hindbrain n : the posterior portion of the brain including cerebellum and brainstem [syn: rhombencephalon]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. The posterior part of the brain, comprising the cerebellum, pons and medulla


Extensive Definition

The rhombencephalon (or hindbrain) is a developmental categorization of portions of the central nervous system in vertebrates.
The rhombencephalon can be subdivided in a variable number of transversal swellings called rhombomeres. In the human embryo we can distinguish eight rhombomeres, from caudal to rostral: Rh7-Rh1 and the isthmus (the most rostral rhombomere).
A rare disease of the rhomencephalon, "rhombencephalosynapsis" is characterized by a missing vermis resulting in a fused cerebellum. Patients generally present with cerebellar ataxia.


Rhombomeres Rh7-Rh4 form the myelencephalon.
The myelencephalon forms the medulla oblongata in the adult brain; it contains:


Rhombomeres Rh3-Rh1 form the metencephalon.
The metencephalon is composed of the pons and the cerebellum; it contains:

Additional images

’ incubation, viewed from the dorsal aspect. X 30.
hindbrain in German: Rhombencephalon
hindbrain in Spanish: Rombencéfalo
hindbrain in Italian: Rombencefalo
hindbrain in Dutch: Rhombencephalon
hindbrain in Russian: Задний мозг
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