Brain Behavior and Evolution Journal Impact Factor & Information

Publisher: Karger

Journal description

Brain, Behavior and Evolutioní is a journal with a loyal following, high standards, and a unique identity as the main outlet for the continuing scientific discourse on the structure, function and evolution of the nervous system. Our goal for the Journal is to embrace the whole universe of disciplines from neuroscience to behavioral ecology that contribute to understanding nervous system evolution, and to encourage the application of cutting-edge techniques from all of them to advance this understanding. The journal publishes comparative neurobiological studies that focus on the morphology, physiology, and histochemistry of various neural structures, as well as aspects of psychology, ecology, and ethology in both vertebrates and invertebrates as they relate to nervous system structure, function, and evolution. In addition to original research reports, the journal contains review and theory papers. One issue each year is devoted to the proceedings of the annual Karger Workshop. This issue includes a series of related review papers on a current topic in the area of comparative neurobiology and the evolution of the brain and behavior.

Current impact factor: 2.01

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 2.013
2013 Impact Factor 4.288
2012 Impact Factor 2.885
2011 Impact Factor 2.215
2010 Impact Factor 1.968
2009 Impact Factor 2.733
2008 Impact Factor 2.714
2007 Impact Factor 1.453
2006 Impact Factor 2.195
2005 Impact Factor 1.986
2004 Impact Factor 1.954
2003 Impact Factor 1.543
2002 Impact Factor 1.618
2001 Impact Factor 1.635
2000 Impact Factor 1.381
1999 Impact Factor 1.65
1998 Impact Factor 1.559
1997 Impact Factor 1.786
1996 Impact Factor 1.49
1995 Impact Factor 1.577
1994 Impact Factor 1.417
1993 Impact Factor 1.959
1992 Impact Factor 1.549

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 2.42
Cited half-life >10.0
Immediacy index 0.49
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.75
Website Brain, Behavior and Evolution website
Other titles Brain, behavior and evolution (Online)
ISSN 1421-9743
OCLC 44640054
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details


  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • On author's server or institutional server
    • Server must be non-commercial
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to publisher version
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Comparative studies amongst extant species are one of the pillars of evolutionary neurobiology. In the 20th century, most comparative studies remained restricted to analyses of brain structure volume and surface areas, besides estimates of neuronal density largely limited to the cerebral cortex. Over the last 10 years, we have amassed data on the numbers of neurons and other cells that compose the entirety of the brain (subdivided into cerebral cortex, cerebellum, and rest of brain) of 39 mammalian species spread over 6 clades, as well as their densities. Here we provide that entire dataset in a format that is readily useful to researchers of any area of interest in the hope that it will foster the advancement of evolutionary and comparative studies well beyond the scope of neuroscience itself. We also reexamine the relationship between numbers of neurons, neuronal densities and body mass, and find that in the rest of brain, but not in the cerebral cortex or cerebellum, there is a single scaling rule that applies to average neuronal cell size, which increases with the linear dimension of the body, even though there is no single scaling rule that relates the number of neurons in the rest of brain to body mass. Thus, larger bodies do not uniformly come with more neurons - but they do fairly uniformly come with larger neurons in the rest of brain, which contains a number of structures directly connected to sources or targets in the body.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; DOI:10.1159/000437413
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    ABSTRACT: Despite centuries of interest in electric eels, few studies have investigated the mechanism of the eel's attack. Here, I review and extend recent findings that show eel electric high-voltage discharges activate prey motor neuron efferents. This mechanism allows electric eels to remotely control their targets using two different strategies. When nearby prey have been detected, eels emit a high-voltage volley that causes whole-body tetanus in the target, freezing all voluntary movement and allowing the eel to capture the prey with a suction feeding strike. When hunting for cryptic prey, eels emit doublets and triplets, inducing whole-body twitch in prey, which in turn elicits an immediate eel attack with a full volley and suction feeding strike. Thus, by using their modified muscles (electrocytes) as amplifiers of their own motor efferents, eel's motor neurons remotely activate prey motor neurons to cause movement (twitch and escape) or immobilization (tetanus) facilitating prey detection and capture, respectively. These results explain reports that human movement is 'frozen' by eel discharges and shows the mechanism to resemble a law-enforcement Taser.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; 86(1):38-47. DOI:10.1159/000435945
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    ABSTRACT: Evolution typically arrives at convergent phenotypic solutions to common challenges of natural selection. However, diverse molecular and physiological mechanisms may generate phenotypes that appear similar at the organismal level. How predictable are the molecular mechanisms of adaptation that underlie adaptive convergence? Interactions between toxic prey and their predators provide an excellent avenue to investigate the question of predictability because both taxa must adapt to the presence of defensive poisons. The evolution of resistance to tetrodotoxin (TTX), which binds to and blocks voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV1) in nerves and muscle, has been remarkably parallel across deep phylogenetic divides. In both predators and prey, representing three major vertebrate groups, TTX resistance has arisen through structural changes in NaV1 proteins. Fish, amphibians and reptiles, though they differ in the total number of NaV1 paralogs in their genomes, have each evolved common amino acid substitutions in the orthologous skeletal muscle NaV1.4. Many of these substitutions involve not only the same positions in the protein, but also the identical amino acid residues. Similarly, predictable convergence is observed across the family of sodium channel genes expressed in different tissues in puffer fish and in garter snakes. Trade-offs between the fundamental role of NaV1 proteins in selective permeability of Na+ and their ability to resist binding by TTX generate a highly constrained adaptive landscape at the level of the protein.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; 86(1):48-57. DOI:10.1159/000435905
  • Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; 86(2):77-78. DOI:10.1159/000437242
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    ABSTRACT: Apteronotus albifrons (Gymnotiformes, Apteronotidae) is well known to have a sophisticated active electrosense system and is commonly described as having poor vision or being almost blind. However, some studies on this species suggest that the visual system may have a role in sensing objects in the environment. In this study, we investigated the visual capabilities of A. albifrons by focusing on eye morphology and retinal ganglion cell distribution. The eyes were almost embedded below the body surface and pigmented dermal tissue covered the peripheral regions of the pupil, limiting the direction of incoming light. The lens was remarkably flattened compared to the almost spherical lenses of other teleosts. The layered structure of the retina was not well delineated and ganglion cells did not form a continuous sheet of cell bodies. A newly modified retinal flat-mount method was applied to reveal the ganglion cell distribution. This method involved postembedding removal of the pigment epithelium of the retina for easier visualization of ganglion cells in small and/or fragile retinal tissues. We found that ganglion cell densities were relatively high in the periphery and highest in the nasal and temporal retina, although specialization was not so high (approx. 3:1) with regard to the medionasal or mediotemporal axis. The estimated highest possible spatial resolving power was around 0.57 and 0.54 cycles/degree in the nasal and temporal retina, respectively, confirming the lower importance of the visual sense in this species. However, considering the hunting nature of A. albifrons, the relatively high acuity of the caudal visual field in combination with electrolocation may well be used to locate prey situated close to the side of the body.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; 86(2). DOI:10.1159/000438448
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    ABSTRACT: In mid- to high-latitude songbirds, seasonal reproduction is stimulated by increasing day length accompanied by elevated plasma sex steroid levels, increased singing, and growth of the song control nuclei (SCN). Plasticity of the SCN and song behavior are primarily mediated by testosterone (T) and its metabolites in most species studied thus far. However, the majority of bird species are tropical and have less pronounced seasonal reproductive cycles. We have previously documented that equatorial rufous-collared sparrows (Zonotrichia capensis) exhibit seasonal neuroplasticity in the SCN. Manipulating T in these birds, however, did not alter singing behavior. In the current study, we investigated whether T mediates plasticity of the SCN in a similar manner to temperate songbirds. In the first experiment, we treated captive male birds with T or blank implants during the nonbreeding season. In a second experiment, we treated captive male birds with either blank implants, T-filled implants, T with flutamide (FLU; an androgen receptor antagonist) or T with FLU and 1,4,6-androstatriene-3,17-dione (ATD; an estrogen synthesis inhibitor) during the breeding season. In both experiments, the volumes of the brain areas high vocal center (HVC), Area X, and robust nucleus of the arcopallium (RA) were measured along with singing behavior. In summary, T stimulated growth of HVC and RA, and the combined effect of FLU and ATD reversed this effect in HVC. Area X was not affected by T treatment in either experiment. Neither T-treated birds nor controls sang in captivity during either experiment. Together, these data indicate that T mediates seasonal changes in the HVC and RA of both tropical and higher- latitude bird species even if the environmental signals differ. However, unlike most higher-latitude songbirds, we found no evidence that motivation to sing or growth of Area X are stimulated by T under captive conditions.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 09/2015; 86(2). DOI:10.1159/000437412
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    ABSTRACT: The dorsal thalamus is a region of the diencephalon that relays sensory and motor information between areas of the brain stem and the telencephalon. Although a dorsal thalamic region is recognized in all vertebrates and believed to be homologous, little is known about how the regions within it evolved and whether some or all regions within the dorsal thalamus are homologous among different vertebrate species. To characterize the gradients and patterns of neurogenesis of the avian dorsal thalamus, a single application of a low dose of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) was delivered to each chick between embryonic day (E)3 and E8 (stages 21 and 34), and chicks were followed up to E8 or E10 (stage 34 or 36). Comparisons of anti-BrdU labeling patterns across the different injection days suggest that nearly all dorsal thalamic neurons are born early in chick embryogenesis, between E3 and E8. Furthermore, neurons in the lateral, dorsal, and posterior parts of the dorsal thalamus are generally born earlier than those in the medial, ventral, and anterior parts. Analyses of the birth dates for nine regions show that the general pattern of neurogenesis in the avian dorsal thalamus resembles that of homologous regions within the rodent thalamus, with the exception of the auditory region, the nucleus ovoidalis, which is born later than the mammalian auditory medial geniculate nucleus. The similar pattern of neurogenesis in birds and mammals may represent a highly conserved developmental pattern that was present in the common ancestor of living birds and mammals, or may represent independently derived states. Additional studies in reptiles and amphibians are needed to distinguish between these evolutionary histories. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 08/2015; 86(2). DOI:10.1159/000435803
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    ABSTRACT: Mammalian tactile hairs are commonly found on specific, restricted regions of the body, but Florida manatees represent a unique exception, exhibiting follicle-sinus complexes (FSCs, also known as vibrissae or tactile hairs) on their entire body. The orders Sirenia (including manatees and dugongs) and Hyracoidea (hyraxes) are thought to have diverged approximately 60 million years ago, yet hyraxes are among the closest relatives to sirenians. We investigated the possibility that hyraxes, like manatees, are tactile specialists with vibrissae that cover the entire postfacial body. Previous studies suggested that rock hyraxes possess postfacial vibrissae in addition to pelage hair, but this observation was not verified through histological examination. Using a detailed immunohistochemical analysis, we characterized the gross morphology, innervation and mechanoreceptors present in FSCs sampled from facial and postfacial vibrissae body regions to determine that the long postfacial hairs on the hyrax body are in fact true vibrissae. The types and relative densities of mechanoreceptors associated with each FSC also appeared to be relatively consistent between facial and postfacial FSCs. The presence of vibrissae covering the hyrax body presumably facilitates navigation in the dark caves and rocky crevices of the hyrax's environment where visual cues are limited, and may alert the animal to predatory or conspecific threats approaching the body. Furthermore, the presence of vibrissae on the postfacial body in both manatees and hyraxes indicates that this distribution may represent the ancestral condition for the supraorder Paenungulata. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Brain Behavior and Evolution 05/2015; 85(3). DOI:10.1159/000381415