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Arch Ital Biol. 1989 Mar;127(2):99-108.

On the nature of the afferent fibers of oculomotor nerve.

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Istituto di Fisiologia Umana, Università Cattolica S. Cuore di Roma, Italy.


The oculogyric nerves contain afferent fibers originating from the ophthalmic territory, the somata of which are located in the ipsilateral semilunar ganglion. These primary sensory neurons project to the Subnucleus Gelatinosus of the Nucleus Caudalis Trigemini, where they make presynaptic contact with the central endings of the primary trigeminal afferents running in the fifth cranial nerve. After complete section of the trigeminal root, the antidromic volleys elicited in the trunk of the third cranial nerve by stimulating SG of NCT consisted of two waves belonging to the A delta and C groups. The area of both components of the antidromic volleys decreased both after bradykinin and hystamine injection into the corresponding cutaneous region and after thermic stimulation of the ipsilateral trigeminal ophthalmic territory. The reduction of such potentials can be explained in terms of collision between the antidromic volleys and those elicited orthodromically by chemical and thermic stimulation. Also, capsaicin applied on the nerve induced an immediate increase, followed by a long lasting decrease, of orthodromic evoked response area. These findings bring further support to the nociceptive nature of the afferent fibers running into the oculomotor nerve.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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