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In phylogenesis, the migration of function from subcortical centers to the cortex.
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Increase in the ratio of brain mass to body mass during the evolution of a species or other taxonomic group. Higher degrees of encephalization are generally correlated with higher degrees of intelligence.

en·ceph′a·lize v.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


The increase of brain size relative to body size, which is intimately linked with human evolution.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Brain volume of the newly-discovered species Rhynchocyon udzungwensis (Mammalia: Afrotheria: Macroscelidea): implications for encephalization in sengis.
Lee, "Ecology and energetics of encephalization in hominid evolution," Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B, vol.
Body size, body proportions and encephalization in a middle Pleistocene archaic human from Northern China.
In the first-ever comprehensive analysis of its kind, a study guided by psychologist Lori Marino used computed tomography to investigate the pattern of encephalization in some fossil cetacean species in the past 47 million years, and analyzed these data along with those for some modern species.
This led to a measure called the encephalization quotient (eQ) that permitted a comparison across species of actual, observed brain sizes versus those that would be predicted purely on the basis of body size.
This and progressively increasing brain size (encephalization) in hominids led to the present human obstetrical dilemma: larger offspring with larger brains in the presence of a narrow pelvis that favors Bipedalism.
The pattern of human evolution: studies on bipedalism, mastication and encephalization. Annu Rev Anthro.
IN BIOLOGY, SCIENTISTS SPEAK OF "ENCEPHALIZATION," the growth of relative brain size of a species as it evolves.
Complex adaptations tend to evolve gradually (Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker; and Williams), and the trend toward encephalization is no exception.
In this example of "encephalization of function" (Jackson 1925; Ferrier 1876; Karten 1991; Aboitiz 1993; Striedter 1997) motor operations are increasingly "taken over" by cortex as the size of the pyramidal tract overtakes that of the descending striatal system.