Projection and synaptic connectivity of trigeminal mesencephalic nucleus neurons controlling jaw reflexes

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    • Yoshida Atsushi
    • Department of Oral Anatomy and Neurobiology, Graduate School of Dentistry, Osaka University
    • Moritani Masayuki
    • Department of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Health Science, Morinomiya University of Medical Sciences
    • Nagase Yoshitaka
    • Department of Acupuncture, Takarazuka University of Medical and Health Care
    • Bae Yong Chul
    • Department of Anatomy, School of Dentistry, Kyungpook National University


<p>Neurons in the trigeminal mesencephalic nucleus (Vmes) receive deep sensation (proprioception) from jaw-closing muscle spindles and periodontal ligaments and project primarily to the jaw-closing motoneuron pool (jaw-closing nucleus) of the trigeminal motor nucleus and to the supratrigeminal nucleus. Numerous articles have described the morphology and physiology of the central projections of Vmes afferents originating from the muscle spindles and periodontal ligaments. However, no report has provided a detailed description of projection and synaptic connectivity, especially of single afferents, and their functional implications. In this review, we reanalyze data obtained by single intra-axonal recording and labeling of functionally identified Vmes muscle spindle afferents and periodontal ligament afferents and by electron microscopic observation of their projection features and synaptic organization of boutons, to compare the data for the jaw-closing nucleus and supratrigeminal nucleus. Our analysis shows that each Vmes afferent type has characteristic projection pattern and synaptic feature that may be important in jaw-reflex control.</p>


  • Journal of Oral Science

    Journal of Oral Science 59(2), 177-182, 2017

    Nihon University School of Dentistry


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