Pathway of the primary afferent nerve fibres serving proprioception in monkey extraocular muscles

Ophthalmic Physiol Opt. 1997 May;17(3):225-31.


Following intracranial section of either the oculomotor or ophthalmic nerve, Wallerian degeneration studies revealed 1.38-3.7% of nerve fibres in the nerves to the inferior and superior rectus muscles were of ophthalmic nerve origin; more than half of them were unmyelinated. The results of the two experiments were complementary. The proportion of fibres identified as sensory is substantially smaller than the 10%, estimated in other studies, required to serve muscle receptors. These results indicate, contrary to some reports, that a substantial majority of proprioceptive fibres are conducted from extraocular muscles to the brainstem in the motor nerves and that their somata are not housed in the trigeminal ganglion.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Denervation
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Macaca mulatta
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Nerve Degeneration
  • Neural Pathways
  • Neurons, Afferent / ultrastructure
  • Oculomotor Muscles / innervation*
  • Oculomotor Nerve / ultrastructure*
  • Proprioception / physiology*