3D thinning is widely used in 3D object representation in computer vision and in trajectory planning in robotics to find the topological structure of the free space. In the present paper, we propose a 3D image thinning method by neural networks. Each voxel in the 3D image corresponds to a set of neurons, called 3D Thinron, in the network. Taking the 3D Thinron as the elementary unit, the global structure of the network is a 3D array in which each Thinron is connected with the 26 neighbors in the neighborhood 3 X 3 X 3. As to the Thinron itself, the set of neurons are organized in multiple layers. In the first layer, we have neurons for boundary analysis, connectivity analysis and connectivity verification, taking as input the voxels in the 3 X 3 X 3 neighborhood and the intermediate outputs of neighboring Thinrons. In the second layer, we have the neurons for synthetical analysis to give the intermediate output of Thinron. In the third layer, we have the decision neurons whose state determines the final output. All neurons in the Thinron are the adaline neurons of Widrow, except the connectivity analysis and verification neurons which are nonlinear neurons. With the 3D Thinron neural network, the state transition of the network will take place automatically, and the network converges to the final steady state, which gives the result medial surface of 3D objects, preserving the connectivity in the initial image. The method presented is simulated and tested for 3D images, experimental results are reported.