The volumes of each of the four vestibular nuclei, superior, lateral, medial and descending, were measured in 80 brains from 2 species of Scandentia, 18 species of prosimians, and 26 species of anthropoids. Size indices were calculated by comparing species-specific points to the nucleus volume-body weight allometry in prosimians, where the average prosimian was set at 1.00. The indices range from 1.78 in Saimiri to 0.48 in Gorilla, and the distributions by families overlap partially or completely. The observed trend in size indices is independent of changes in the neocortex and the ventral pons; average indices are 1.35 in New World monkeys, 1.20 in Old World monkeys, 0.74 in apes, 0.82 in man. Among prosimians, Galago, Galagoides and Tarsius (leaping locomotion) show significantly higher indices than Nycticebus, Loris and Perodicticus (slow movement without leaping). The lateral vestibular nuclear indices in Pongidae and man are extremely low, about half of those of the average prosimians. Correlation coefficients of size indices between the vestibular nuclei and other motor nuclei, such as the cerebellar nuclei, ventral pons and striatum, are analysed. The ratio of the vestibular nuclear volumes to the total brain volumes and the distribution of percentages of each vestibular nuclear volume to the total complex are also obtained.

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