, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 183-187

Cortical motor asymmetry and hominid feeding strategies

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Abstract

Homo sapiens differs from all other primates in having a cerebrum that is markedly asymmetrical for a number of functions, including motor control of the hands. The ability to coordinate the two hands while each is engaged in a different task is not highly developed in non-human primates and may have been an important behavioral distinction between early apes and hominids. These skills are necessary for tool-making, and probably arose selectively as a feeding strategy to exploit an expanding food base. It is proposed that bimanual motor asymmetry follows bipedalism but precedes tool-making as a step in the process of hominization.