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Neonatal chorda tympani transection permanently disrupts fungiform taste bud and papilla structure in the rat.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Physiology & Behavior
0031-9384
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
69
Issue
4-5
Pages
439–444
Identifiers
PMID: 10913782
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The present report examined the morphology of fungiform papillae in adult rats that received bilateral chorda tympani transection at 10 days of age. Tongue tissue was examined using surface-structure analysis. Counts were made of fungiform papillae with a pore, fungiform papillae with no pore and fungiform papillae with a keratinized conical surface; a feature referred to as "filiform-like. " Neonatal chorda tympani nerve transection resulted not only in a loss of taste buds but also in a permanent loss in numbers of fungiform papillae. Compared with an average of 152 fungiform papillae in sham-operated control rats, there was an average of only 54 fungiform papillae after neonatal chorda tympani transection. Nearly 80% of these fungiform papillae in neonatal chorda tympani transected rats were filiform-like. No filiform-like papillae were noted in sham-operated rats. These results suggest that the chorda tympani nerve is necessary during an early postnatal period of development to maintain normal fungiform papillae morphology.

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