Orbital frontal cortex is where decisions are made.

What does the word orbital there mean?

I looked around in wikipedia and never find it.

  • $\begingroup$ This belongs to Stack's English section. But surely you know the term orb. As a wild guess, judging from the 'al' in front'al', or later/lateral, I would say the postfix 'al' indicates position-relatedness. $\endgroup$ – Lorenz Lo Sauer Dec 7 '13 at 17:55
  • $\begingroup$ I think it's more of a fit for here than English.SE $\endgroup$ – Rory M Dec 7 '13 at 19:25

Orbitofrontal cortex: the area of the cerebral cortex located at the base of the frontal lobes above the orbits (or eye sockets), involved especially in social and emotional behaviour.

  • $\begingroup$ Very good. But that's what orbitofrontal cortex mean. I am asking what orbito means. THe below answer seems to be better. $\endgroup$ – user4951 Dec 9 '13 at 6:30
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    $\begingroup$ I thought that part of the brain is behind the eyes rather than above the eye. $\endgroup$ – user4951 Dec 9 '13 at 6:30
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    $\begingroup$ Did you not ask what it means in the context of orbital frontal cortex? The definition I posted explains it, or does it not? the area [...] above the orbits (or eye sockets). $\endgroup$ – fsimkovic Dec 9 '13 at 9:06

The boney component of the anatomical orbitstrong text (in lay terms the eye socket) is the area bordered by the zygomatic, frontal, maxilla, sphenoid, palatine, lacrimal and ethmoid bones.

Bones of the human orbit

The use of the word orbit (red) in orbitofrontal cortex refers to the positioning of this part of the frontal cortex (green) being directly behind the orbit:

Orbitofrontal cortex location


Quick search on etymonline for Orbital:

orbital (adj.):

1540s with reference to eye sockets;

1839 with reference to heavenly bodies;

from orbit

(n.) + -al (1).

So my best guess is that it's related to eyes.

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    $\begingroup$ why -1? +1 from me. This seesm to be the one making sense. $\endgroup$ – user4951 Dec 9 '13 at 6:29
  • $\begingroup$ cheers @JimThio, thought I was doing something wrong till now :) $\endgroup$ – hello_there_andy Dec 9 '13 at 8:46

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