Snapshot of Inside the Brain infographic

Neurons by numbers infographic

The vital stats of brains and brain imaging

Download our infographic, which originally appeared in ‘Big Picture: Inside the Brain’ in 2013. Topics include:

  • average human brain volume
  • brain size and mass of different organisms
  • number of synapses in the human neocortex
  • equivalent radiation doses
  • number of neurons in the human brain
  • speed of nerve transmission
  • number of MRI units per 1,000 people

Note that since this infographic was created, the figures for the number of MRI units per 1,000 people have changed. Between 2013 and 2017 the number of MRI scanners has really increased in some countries, while in others it’s stayed virtually the same:

  • Japan: 51.7
  • USA: 38.1
  • UK: 7.2
  • Mexico: 2.3

And because this infographic was made in 2013, some of its hyperlinked references no longer work. So, we’ve listed below working references for all of the information cited.

Lead image:

‘Big Picture: Inside the Brain’ (2013) CC BY


Downloadable resources

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Inside the Brain’ in January 2013 and reviewed and updated in November 2017.

Cell biology, Neuroscience, Biotechnology and engineering
Inside the Brain
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development