Origins

Cécile and Oskar Vogt at the "Pantomikrotom" (a large microtome for sectioning whole brains) in their private institute, ca. 1905
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The "Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Hirnforschung" (KWI for Brain Research) was founded in Berlin in 1914, making it one of the oldest institutes of the "Kaiser Wilhelm Society for the Advancement of Science", itself founded in 1911. It was based on the Neurologische Zentralstation (Neurological Center), a private research institute established by Oskar Vogt in 1898 and run together with his wife Cécile Vogt, also an accomplished brain researcher [1-3] (Fig. 1).

From 1901 to 1910, Vogt's coworker at this institute was Korbinian Brodmann (Fig. 2), who in 1909 established the cytoarchitectonic classification of cortical areas (Fig. 3) still in use today (e.g., his area 17 is the primary visual cortex). Oskar Vogt's own scientific achievements also were in the field of cortical cytoarchitectonics and myeloarchitectonics.




Fig. 1: Cécile and Oskar Vogt at the "Pantomikrotom" (a large microtome for sectioning whole brains) in their private institute, ca. 1905


Fig. 2: The Vogt group ca. 1906. From left to right: Korbinian Brodmann, Cécile Vogt, Oskar Vogt, Louise Bosse, Max Borcherdt, Max Lewandowski

Fig. 3: Left: Original colour drawing by Brodmann, showing cortical areas in the European ground squirrel Spermopilus citellus [Archive of the MPI for Brain Research]. Right: Cortical areas in the human brain, from Brodmann (1909) Vergleichende Lokalisationslehre der Großhirnrinde

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