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Fed Proc. 1987 Jan;46(1):17-23.

Central representation of visceral function.


Recent studies of the visceral sensory system, using both electrophysiological and neuroanatomical methods, indicate that there is representation of multiple visceral modalities at all levels of the central nervous system. In the nucleus of the solitary tract gustatory afferents are represented rostrally, and general visceral afferents caudally. At the pontine relay, the parabrachial nucleus, the gustatory afferents are represented medially, and the general visceral afferents laterally. Although the evidence for anatomical separation of visceral projections is incomplete for the hypothalamus and amygdala, the visceral sensory thalamus and cortex are viscerotopically organized. The results indicate that the ascending visceral sensory system is viscerotopically organized at all levels of the brain, and that this information is important for the integration of autonomic responses at all levels of the neuroaxis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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