One of the least appreciated aspects of brain organization is its diversity across species. Although anatomists have been mapping out brains of non-human species since the start of the 20th century, the laborious and invasive nature of this work means that we still have very little understanding of how our human brain differs from that of other species.
This has important implications for translational neuroscience. We use so-called model species, such as mice, rats, marmosets, and macaques to inform us about aspects of our own brain. However, research on human and non-human species is often done in very different traditions by separate groups of researchers.
Animal brain versus human brain
This leads to many confusions about how the anatomy of species translates (Van Heukelum et al., 2020, TINS) and even about terminology to describe cognitive tasks used in different species (Laubach et al., 2018, eNeuro). It has been argued that this is one of the reasons why many clinical trials fail (Hay et al., 2014, Nat Biotechnol). It is also one of the main causes of different types of neuroscientists ending up in silos, without communication with researchers outside their direct discipline.