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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

History of Neuroscience

The University of Washington has a Milestones in Neuroscience page. For some reason I've gone through and picked out years marking research on vision (I may have missed some, because I don't know quite everything; and I've inserted some links):


ca. 500 B.C. - Alcmaion of Crotona dissects sensory nerves
ca. 500 B.C. - Alcmaion of Crotona describes the optic nerve
ca. 500 B.C. - Empedocles suggests that "visual rays" cause sight
ca. 100 - Rufus of Ephesus describes and names the optic chiasm
ca. 1000 - Alhazen compares the eye to a camera-like device
1025 - Avicenna writes about vision and the eye in The Canon of Medicine
1088 - Abu Ruh writes The Light of the Eyes describing several eye operations
1550 - Bartolomeo Eustachio describes the brain origin of the optic nerves
573 - Girolamo Mercuriali writes De nervis opticis to describe optic nerve anatomy
1583 - Felix Platter states that the lens only focuses light and that the retina is where images are formed
1583 - Georg Bartisch publishes Ophthalmodouleia: das ist Augendienst with drawings of the eye.
1587 - Guilio Cesare Aranzi describes ventricles and hippocampus. He also demonstrates that the retina has a reversed image
1601 - Hieronymus Fabricius ab Aquapendente publishes Tractatus de Oculo Visusque Organo describing the correct location of the lens relative to the iris
1604 - Johannes Kepler describes inverted retinal image
1623 - Benito Daca de Valdes publishes the first book on vision testing and eyeglass-fitting
1644 - Giovanni Battista Odierna describes the microscopic appearance of the fly eye in L'Occhio della Mosca
1665 - Robert Hooke details his first microscope
1668 - l'Abbe Edme Mariotte discovers the blind spot
1709 - George Berkeley publishes New Theory of Vision
1750 - Jacques Daviel performs the first cataract extraction on a living human eye
1782 - Francesco Buzzi identifies the fovea
1784 - Benjamin Franklin mentions bifocal eyeglasses in a letter to George Whatley
1786 - Samuel Thomas Sommering describes the optic chiasm
1786 - Georg Joseph Beer founds the first eye hospital in Vienna
1798 - John Dalton, who was red-green colorblind, provides a scientific description of color blindness
1801 - Thomas Young describes astigmatism
1832 - Sir Charles Wheatstone invents the stereoscope
1838 - Eduard Zeis publishes study about dreams in people who are blind
1851 - Heinrich Muller is first to describe the colored pigments in the retina
1851 - Hermann von Helmholtz invents ophthalmoscope
1855 - Bartolomeo Panizza shows the occipital lobe is essential for vision
1862 - Hermann Snellen invents the eyechart with letters to test vision
1869 - Johann Friedrich Horner describes eye disorder (small pupil, droopy eyelid) later to be called "Horner's syndrome"
1876 - Franz Christian Boll discovers rhodopsin
1879 - Hermann Munk presents detailed anatomy of the optic chiasm
1879 - William Crookes invents the cathode ray tube [see also Karl Ferdinand Braun]
1881 - Hermann Munk reports on visual abnormalities after occipital lobe ablation in dogs
1887 - Adolf Eugen Fick makes the first contact lens out of glass for vision correction
1889 - F.C. Muller-Lyer discovers the Muller-Lyer illusion
1893 - Charles Scott Sherrington coins the term proprioceptive
1911 - Allvar Gullstrand-Nobel Prize-Optics of the eye
1916 - Shinobu Ishihara publishes a set of plates to test color vision
1921 - Hermann Rorschach develops the inkblot test
1967 - Ragnar Arthur Granit, Halden Keffer Hartline and George Wald share Nobel Prize for work on the mechanisms of vision
1981 - David Hunter Hubel and Torsten N. Wiesel-Nobel Prize-visual system

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