側脳 (そくのう)

Riccardo91

Senior Member
Italian
Dear Japanese forum,

I have a difficult question about a very specific term. I've been searching for hours, to little avail.
In a cartoon, a scientist is explaining how the reward system of the brain (報酬系) works. That's what he says:

点滅しているところは中脳の一部 脳核とか側脳といって人間の欲求を制御する領域になる
The flashing point(s) is/are a part of the midbrain. They're the brain nuclei and the lateral sections, and they form the region that controls human desires.

An image of the midbrain is shown onscreen: here it is.
1.jpg

My problem is, of course, with the two technical terms.

For the first one (脳核), this dictionary says it's translated as "brain nuclei":
brain nucleiの意味・使い方 - 英和辞典 WEBLIO辞書

I think it refers to the so-called "basal ganglia" (大脳基底核). They are in the midbrain, and they do have lot to do with the reward system. So far so good, I hope.

側脳 (lateral brain? lateral encephalon?) is more troubling. Searching it on Google, nothing relevant seems to pop out. Apart from the "lateral ventricles" (側脳室), which I think are unrelated to our case.
Now please check the image: in the video, the lateral parts inside the green circles are constantly lit, while the rest of what's inside the blue circle flashes.

The whole midbrain is inside the blue circle, and I think the parts inside the green ones to be the "substantia nigra" (黒質, or 外側部), which is linked to the reward system. So I was wondering if that 側脳 could simply mean "the lateral sections of the midbrain", as in my tentative translation.

These two terms come back only another time in the movie, in the following sentence:
本来脳核と側脳が担うべき機能を大脳辺縁系の別の領域がエミュレートしていた
... which clarifies that they refer to two different things.

This has been my reasonment, but I was hoping that you could give me more insight about this. How would you interpret this sentence?

Thank you very much!
 
  • SoLaTiDoberman

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    What was the context and background of the cartoon?
    Was it a science fiction?
    They were merely faked, newly created words, weren't they?
    I don't think 側脳 instead of 側脳室 really exists, nor 脳核 instead of 大脳基底核 makes sense.
     

    Riccardo91

    Senior Member
    Italian
    Science fiction, a future world where people's lifestyle is totally controlled by the government in order to keep them healthy.
    A rebel group has found a way to control people's will by manipulating their reward system in the brain, that's why they're explaining what it is and how it works.

    I was thinking the author may have used imprecise, generic words in order to give a general idea, without being too specific (which would be unnecessary for the movie). The plot development is totally science fiction, but his scientific base seems to be plausible, or at least plausible-sounding.

    And after all 脳核 appears in a dictionary, so I think someone actually uses it.
    To me, the author took existing notions and simplified them with his own words, and I was trying to reconstruct the process.

    I may be wrong though... you are never certain with these kind of things.

    Thank you so much!
     
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