Introduction: brain is the most complex organ discovered up to date, due to the organization and interconnection of its individual neurons. Objective: to analyze theoretical and experimental elements stated in the medical literature reviewed about cerebral plasticity mechanisms. Methods: a descriptive study was carried out based on a bibliographic review. From the theoretical point of view historical-logical, analysis-synthesis and inductive-deductive methods were applied, which allowed the analysis of the main theories generated by different experimental studies. Development: it has been demonstrated the existence of diverse mechanisms that allocate the neuronal rearrangement and replacement of cerebral functions, in response to diverse pathological events or as a result of learning and memory process. Conclusions: both animal testing and studies carried out in human being using modern non-invasive techniques support the ideas of neuronal plasticity.