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Sheep Brain Dissection

sheep brain dissection guide header image

The body consists of organ systems, each with specific roles for maintaining life. Each organ system consists of organs that operate together to carry out certain body functions. Organ systems do not operate independently but are coordinated for the organism to survive. The brain is part of the central nervous system, which coordinates all body activities. The brain gathers information about the internal and external environment and formulates a response for the safety and health of the organism.

Carolina’s Perfect Solution® sheep brain dissection introduces students to the anatomy of a mammalian brain, both external and internal, and encourages students to construct an explanation of the central nervous system.

Below is a brief survey of the internal and external anatomy of the sheep brain. For more detailed dissection instructions and information, check out Carolina® dissection kits.

fetal pig dissection guide header image

The body consists of organ systems, each with specific roles for maintaining life. Each organ system consists of organs that operate together to carry out certain body functions. Organ systems do not operate independently but are coordinated for the organism to survive. The brain is part of the central nervous system, which coordinates all body activities. The brain gathers information about the internal and external environment and formulates a response for the safety and health of the organism.

Carolina’s Perfect Solution® sheep brain dissection introduces students to the anatomy of a mammalian brain, both external and internal, and encourages students to construct an explanation of the central nervous system.

Below is a brief survey of the internal and external anatomy of the sheep brain. For more detailed dissection instructions and information, check out Carolina® dissection kits.

Videos

External Brain Anatomy

  1. Place the brain in the dissecting pan, dorsal surface up.
  2. Observe the dura mater, or outer meninges (if present). The remaining meninges, pia mater and arachnoid mater, form a thin covering that adheres to the surface of the cerebrum. Use forceps to gently remove these layers.
  3. Observe the external anatomy of the brain. Use figure 1 and identify:
    1. Cerebrum
    2. Cerebellum
    3. Spinal cord
    4. Medial longitudinal fissure
    5. Right and left hemispheres
  4. Examine the ventral surface of the brain. Identify the olfactory bulbs and optic nerve.
    Refer to figure 2.

  5. external sheep brain dorsal side

Internal Brain Anatomy

  1. Place the brain in the dissecting pan, dorsal surface up.
  2. Using a scalpel, cut along the medial longitudinal fissure, extending the cut down the cerebellum and spinal cord to separate the brain into 2 longitudinal halves.
  3. Observe the internal anatomy of the brain. Use figure 2 and identify:
    1. Arbor vitae—the branching white matter in the cerebellum
    2. Brain stem
    3. Ventricles—cavities in the brain
    4. Medulla
    5. Pons
    6. Pineal body
    7. Thalamus
    8. Corpus callosum

  4. Cut a cross section of the frontal lobe and identify:
    1. White matter
    2. Gray matter

interior mamal brain diagram

  1. Follow all cleanup and disposal instructions.

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