Difference between Telencephalon and Diencephalon

During the 3rd week of human embryogenesis, a neural tube is formed from the ectoderm. The tube develops into three vesicles, which later form the prosencephalon (forebrain), mesencephalon (midbrain) and the rhombencephalon (hindbrain). Here, the prosencephalon gradually separates into the diencephalon and telencephalon.

Telencephalon

The uppermost region of the human brain is the cerebrum or telencephalon. It develops prenatally from the prosencephalon or forebrain. Typically the dorsal telencephalon develops into the cerebral cortex and the ventral telencephalon generates the basal ganglia. The dorsal part forms lateral telencephalic vesicles divided by a midline, which later develop into the right and left cerebral hemispheres.

The telencephalon has many subdivisions and it forms the largest part of the brain. It controls almost all voluntary movements in the body. Also, it is responsible for olfaction, language, speech, sensory processing, learning and memory.

Diencephalon

Diencephalon or interbrain is situated between the telencephalon and the embryonic mesencephalon (midbrain). It consists of the thalamus, subthalamus, epithalamus and hypothalamus. The hypothalamus also includes the posterior pituitary. The nerves responsible for vision are found attached to the diencephalon. The hypothalamus controls the centre for hearing and eye movement. Also, the thalamus acts as a relay centre for motor and sensory impulses between the cerebrum, medulla and spinal cord.

Difference between Telencephalon and Diencephalon

Telencephalon

Diencephalon

Position

It is the uppermost region of the human brain.

It is found between the midbrain and telencephalon.

Constituents

It contains two cerebral hemispheres along with subcortical structures like the olfactory bulb, basal ganglia, and hippocampus.

It consists of the thalamus, subthalamus, epithalamus and hypothalamus.

Functions

It is responsible for olfaction, language, speech, sensory processing, learning and memory.

It is responsible for vision, homeostasis (hypothalamus) and other sensory recognitions.

Also Read: Difference between Cerebellum and Cerebrum

Frequently Asked Questions on Difference between Telencephalon and Diencephalon

What is a pineal body?

It is a small endocrine gland that produces melatonin. Melatonin modulates the sleep pattern. This gland is located in the epithalamus region.

What are the functions of the hypothalamus?

It controls hunger, parenting behaviour, body temperature, sleep, fatigue, thirst and circadian rhythms. Thus, it is the major part of the brain that helps in maintaining homeostasis. It also plays a role in releasing vital hormones.

What is a limbic system?

The limbic system includes a set of brain structures that are found on the sides of the thalamus. The two major structures are the amygdala and the hippocampus. The whole system is responsible for a variety of functions including behaviour, emotion, olfaction, long-term memory, spatial perception, etc.

Explore more: Hypothalamus

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