Roger Wolcott Sperry (1913–1994)
Roger Wolcott Sperry studied the function of the nervous system in the US during the twentieth century. He studied split-brain patterns in cats and humans that result from separating the two hemispheres of the brain by cutting the corpus callosum, the bridge between the two hemispheres of the brain. He found that separating the corpus callosum the two hemispheres of the brain could not communicate and they performed functions as if the other hemisphere did not exist. Sperry studied optic nerve regeneration through which he developed the chemoaffinity hypothesis. The chemoaffinity hypothesis stated that axons, the long fiber-like process of neurons, connect to their target cells through special chemical markers. This challenged the previously accepted resonance principle of neuronal connection. Sperry shared the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with David Hubel and Torsten Wiesel.