Argentina's early contributions to the understanding of frontotemporal lobar degeneration

Cortex. 2011 May;47(5):621-7. doi: 10.1016/j.cortex.2010.05.006. Epub 2010 Jun 1.


Over a 100 years have passed since Pick's description of what is now termed frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). FTLD is a topic of intense current research interest yet some relevant contributions by non-English speaking authors have received little attention, which makes the history of FTLD research incomplete. In the hopes of filling some of the gaps in the history of FTLD research, the present article introduces fundamental work carried out in Argentina during the first half of the 20th century by Christfried Jakob and Braulio A. Moyano. Jakob's neurophilosophy, as well as his empirical descriptions on dementia and theoretic insights into the role of the frontal lobes are highlighted. Moyano's works on frontotemporal dementia (FTD), specifically concerning language deficits and the concept of focal pathology in Alzheimer disease presenting with progressive aphasia are introduced. These early contributions are examined in the light of the current knowledge on FTLD, highlighting some of the authors' early original contributions, as well as their misconceptions. These authors remain largely unknown despite the fact that their contributions were fundamental in kindling interest in behavioral neurology in Latin America, which continues to this day.

Publication types

  • Biography
  • Historical Article
  • Portrait
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Argentina
  • Frontal Lobe / pathology
  • Frontal Lobe / physiology
  • Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration / history*
  • Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration / pathology
  • Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration / psychology
  • Germany
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Neural Pathways
  • Neurology / history*
  • Pick Disease of the Brain / history
  • Pick Disease of the Brain / pathology

Personal name as subject

  • Jakob Christfried