The 3-hinge gyral folding is the conjunction of gyrus crest lines from three different orientations. Previous studies have not explored the possible mechanisms of formation of such 3-hinge gyri, which are preserved across species in primate brains. We develop a biomechanical model to mimic the formation of 3-hinge patterns on a real brain and determine how special types of 3-hinge patterns form in certain areas of the model. Our computational and experimental imaging results show that most tertiary convolutions and exact locations of 3-hinge patterns after growth and folding are unpredictable, but they help explain the consistency of locations and patterns of certain 3-hinge patterns. Growing fibers within the white matter is posited as a determining factor to affect the location and shape of these 3-hinge patterns. Even if the growing fibers do not exert strong enough forces to guide gyrification directly, they still may seed a heterogeneous growth profile that leads to the formation of 3-hinge patterns in specific locations. A minor difference in initial morphology between two growing model brains can lead to distinct numbers and locations of 3-hinge patterns after folding.
Keywords: 3-hinge gyri; axon fiber density; cortical folding; differential growth.
© The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press.