Corpus callosum

The corpus callosum connects the left and right hemisphere of the brain and ensures that information can travel between both hemispheres.

To give an idea of how much information is exchanged, there are about 200 million nerve endings (axons) that each have a connection with brain cells lying on either side of the brainbar.

The brainbar is tougher and more rigid in structure than the rest of the brain and is therefore also called the callous body of the brain.
It is shaped like a wide arch.


Absence of the corpus callosum caused by abnormalities in fetal development

During pregnancy, from ten weeks onwards, the brainbar will be constructed that continues to develop until about the seventh month of pregnancy.


The arch (corpus callosum) grows from front to back. A lot can go wrong during the development of the corpus callosum.

Sometimes the corpus callosum fails to develop. This might not be immediately apparent in children. An MRI scan or ultrasound can verify whether the corpus callosum is missing.

  • Corpus callosum agenesis = absence of the arch
  • Corpus callosum dysgenesis = incomplete predisposition of the arch


At times the corpus callosum is missing without manifesting related side effects. It is common that other physical disorders are evident in the eyes, the face, or the formation of the spine - spina bifida.


Causes of deformities in the physical development

  • Genetic damage / an extra chromosome or the absence of part of a chromosome. A clinical geneticist can provide additional information,
  • A cyst, fat accumulation, or clot from a bleeding hinders growth,
  • Fetal alcohol syndrome / FASD caused by alcohol consumption during pregnancy,
  • Metabolic diseases,
  • For many disorders in the development of the corpus, the causes are still unknown.


Possible consequences

  • Developmental delay,
  • Epilepsy,
  • Hormonal deficits,
  • Acoustic aphasia (or auditory aphasia) due to damage to the corpus callosum. People who suffer from this are unable to process verbal language. They are not deaf,
  • Not every child with a missing corpus callosum will experience related side effects.