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Solitary tract

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Brain: Solitary tract
Transverse section of medulla oblongata below the middle of the olive. (Fasciculus solitarius labeled at upper right.)
The formatio reticularis of the medulla oblongata, shown by a transverse section passing through the middle of the olive. (#15 is fasciculus solitarius)
Latin tractus solitarius medullae oblongatae
Gray's subject #187 785
Part of
BrainInfo/UW hier-782
MeSH [1]

The solitary tract (Latin: tractus solitarius) is a compact fiber bundle that extends longitudinally through the posterolateral region of the medulla. The solitary tract is surrounded by the nucleus of the solitary tract, and descends to the upper cervical segments of the spinal cord.


The solitary tract is made up of primary sensory fibers and descending fibers of the vagus, glossopharyngeal, and facial nerves.


The solitary tract conveys afferent information from stretch receptors and chemoreceptors in the walls of the cardiovascular, respiratory, and intestinal tracts. Taste buds in the mucosa of the tongue can also generate impulses in the rostral regions of the solitary tract. The efferent fibers are distributed to the solitary tract nucleus.


There are numerous synonyms for the solitary tract:

  • round fasciculus (Latin: fasciculus rotundus)
  • solitary fasciculus (Latin: fasciculus solitarius)
  • solitary bundle (Latin: funiculus solitarius)
  • Gierke respiratory bundle
  • Krause respiratory bundle


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