While Nansen was away on his arctic explorations -Santiago Ramón y Cajal proved beyond doubt that the nerves ended freely. This was confirmed during the 1950s when electron microscopy showed that there was a gap between the terminal -branches of adjoining nerve cells, the cornerstone of the now–established Neuron Doctrine. In a review of the literature published in 1998 Nansen, together with -Wilhelm His Sr. and August Forel, were acknowledged as the forefathers of the doctrine.
Neuroscience has now developed into a field of scientific excellence in Norway, but Nansen’s achievements as a neuro—scientist are no longer common knowledge. To remedy this is the aim of this special volume which includes facsimiles of his thesis and the German synopsis of it, as well as essays recounting his time at the Bergen Museum and his place in the history of the neuron.
Ortwin Bock, Karen B. Helle