Identification of the central vestibular projections in man: a positron emission tomography activation study

Exp Brain Res. 1994;99(1):164-9. doi: 10.1007/BF00241421.


The cerebral representation of space depends on the integration of many different sensory inputs. The vestibular system provides one such input and its dysfunction can cause profound spatial disorientation. Using positron emission tomography (PET), we measured regional cerebral perfusion with various vestibular stimulations to map central vestibular projections and to investigate the cerebral basis of spatial disorientation. We showed that the temporoparietal cortex, the insula, the putamen, and the anterior cingulate cortex are the cerebral projections of the vestibular system in man and that the spatial disorientation caused by unilateral vestibular stimulation is associated with their asymmetric activation.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brain Mapping
  • Cerebrovascular Circulation / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Orientation / physiology
  • Sensation Disorders / physiopathology
  • Space Perception / physiology
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed
  • Vestibule, Labyrinth / physiology*
  • Visual Pathways / physiology*