Oromotor behavior results from the complex interaction between jaw, facial, and lingual muscles. The experiments in this and subsequent papers identify the sources of multisynaptic input to the trigeminal, facial, and hypoglossal motor nuclei. In the current experiments, pseudorabies virus (PRV-Ba) was injected into the jaw-opening (anterior digastric and mylohyoid) and jaw-closing muscles (masseter, medial pterygoid, and temporalis) in bilaterally sympathectomized rats. Injection volumes ranged from 2 to 21 μl with average titers of 2.8 X 108 pfu/ml and maximum survival times of 96 h. The labeling patterns and distributions were consistent between each of the individual muscles and muscle groups. A predictable myotopic labeling pattern was produced in the trigeminal motor nucleus (Mo 5). Transneuronally labeled neurons occurred in regions known to project directly to Mo 5 moroneurons including the principal trigeminal sensory and supratrigeminal areas, Kolliker-Fuse region, nucleus subcoeruleus, and the parvicellular reticular formation. Maximum survival times revealed polysynaptic connections from the periaqueductal gray, laterodorsal and pedunculopontine tegmental areas, and the substantia nigra in the midbrain, ventromedial pontine reticular regions including the gigantocellular region and pars alpha and ventralis in the pons and medulla, and the nucleus of the solitary tract, paratrigeminal region, and paramedian field in the medulla. Thus, the results define the structure of the multisynaptic brainstem neural circuits controlling mandibular movement in the rat.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Neuroscience
- Clinical Neurology