Cerebellar networks with the cerebral cortex and basal ganglia

Trends Cogn Sci. 2013 May;17(5):241-54. doi: 10.1016/j.tics.2013.03.003. Epub 2013 Apr 9.


The dominant view of cerebellar function has been that it is exclusively concerned with motor control and coordination. Recent findings from neuroanatomical, behavioral, and imaging studies have profoundly changed this view. Neuroanatomical studies using virus transneuronal tracers have demonstrated that cerebellar output reaches vast areas of the neocortex, including regions of prefrontal and posterior parietal cortex. Furthermore, it has recently become clear that the cerebellum is reciprocally connected with the basal ganglia, which suggests that the two subcortical structures are part of a densely interconnected network. Taken together, these findings elucidate the neuroanatomical substrate for cerebellar involvement in non-motor functions mediated by the prefrontal and posterior parietal cortex, as well as in processes traditionally associated with the basal ganglia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Basal Ganglia / physiology*
  • Cerebral Cortex / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Neural Pathways / physiology*