Ascending and descending projections of the lateral vestibular nucleus in the frog Rana esculenta

Clara Matesz, Akos Kulik, Timea Bácskai

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The lectin Phaseolus vulgaris leucoagglutinin was injected into the frog lateral vestibular nucleus (LVN) to study its antero- and retrograde projections. The following new observations were made. 1) In the diencephalon, vestibular efferents innervate the thalamus in a manner similar to that of mammalian species. The projections show a preference for the anterior, central, and ventromedial thalamic nuclei. 2) In the mesencephalon, vestibular fibers terminate in the tegmental nuclei and the nucleus of medial longitudinal fascicle. 3) In the rhombencephalon, commissural and internuclear projections interconnect the vestibular nuclei. Some of the termination areas in the reticular formation can be homologized with the mammalian inferior olive and the nucleus prepositus hypoglossi. Another part of the vestibuloreticular projection may transmit vestibular impulses toward the vegetative centers of the brainstem. A relatively weak projection is detected in the spinal nucleus of the trigeminal nerve, dorsal column nuclei, and nucleus of the solitary tract. 4) In the spinal cord, vestibular terminals are most numerous in the ipsilateral ventral horn and in the triangular area of the dorsal horn. 5) The coincidence of retrogradely labeled cells with vestibular receptive areas suggests reciprocal interconnections between these structures and the LVN. 6) In seven places, the LVN projections overlap the receptive areas of proprioceptive fibers, suggesting a convergence of sensory modalities involved in the sense of balance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-128
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Comparative Neurology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 5 2002



  • Brainstem
  • Phaseolus vulgaris leucoagglutinin labeling
  • Vestibular system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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