AskDefine | Define cortex

Dictionary Definition



1 the layer of unmyelinated neurons (the gray matter) forming the cortex of the cerebrum [syn: cerebral cortex, cerebral mantle, pallium]
2 the tissue forming the outer layer of an organ or structure in plant or animal [ant: medulla] [also: cortices (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. In the context of "countable|anatomy": The outer layer of an internal organ or body structure, such as the kidney or the brain.
  2. In the context of "uncountable|botany": The tissue of a stem or root that lies inward from the epidermis, but exterior to the vascular tissue.

Derived terms


outer layer of an internal organ or body structure
tissue of a stem or root

Extensive Definition

Cortex (Latin: "bark", "rind", "shell" or "husk") may mean:..
In anatomy:
  • Cortex (anatomy), the outermost or superficial layer of an organ, and especially in the brain:
    • the Cerebral cortex (usually just cortex), the outer layer of the vertebrate cerebrum, part of which is the forebrain
      • the Motor cortex, the regions of the cerebral cortex involved in voluntary motor functions
      • the Prefrontal cortex, the anterior part of the frontal lobes of the brain
      • the Visual cortex, regions of the cerebral cortex involved in visual functions.
    • the Cerebellar cortex, the outer layer of the vertebrate cerebellum
  • as well as in other organs:
In other sciences:
  • Cortex (botany), the outer portion of the stem or root of a plant
  • Cortex (archaeology), the outer layer of rock formed on the exterior of raw materials by chemical and mechanical weathering processes.
  • The cellular cortex is the region proximal to the cell surface, that is directly underneath the cell membrane
In video games: Other uses:

See also

  • The explosive cord is spelled Cordtex
cortex in Danish: Kortex
cortex in German: Cortex
cortex in Hebrew: קורטקס
cortex in Dutch: Cortex
cortex in Japanese: 大脳皮質
cortex in Norwegian: Cortex
cortex in Portuguese: Córtex

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

armature, armor, armor plate, bark, body armor, border, buckler, bulletproof vest, chain armor, chain mail, chitin, circumference, coat of mail, cork, covering, crust, elytron, envelope, epicarp, epidermis, episperm, exterior, external, facade, face, facet, fringe, front, habergeon, harness, hauberk, integument, lineaments, lorica, lorication, mail, needles, outer face, outer layer, outer side, outer skin, outline, outside, panoply, peel, peeling, pericarp, periphery, phellum, plate, plate armor, protective covering, rind, scute, scutum, shell, shield, skin, spines, suit of armor, superficies, superstratum, surface, test, testa, thick skin, top
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