Plate 10.179 Tongue: Vallate papilla
Ronald A. Bergman, Ph.D., Adel K. Afifi, M.D., Paul M. Heidger,
Peer Review Status: Externally Peer Reviewed
Human, Zenker's fluid, phosphotungstic acid hematoxylin stain, 26 x.
Vallate papillae line the V-shaped boundary between the anterior two thirds and posterior one third of the tongue. They are shaped like an inverted cone.
Stratified squamous epithelium: Covers the tongue surface and dips into the trenches between papillae.
Trench: A moat or groove that surrounds each vallate papilla.
Tastebuds: The organs of taste. Oval structures located in the lateral wall of vallate papillae and less frequently in the outer wall of the trench.
Nerve fibers: Myelinated nerve fibers, 1 to 6 µm in diameter, branch profusely within the papillae, lose their myelin, penetrate the basement membrane and form a plexus around the receptor cells of taste buds.
Serous glands of von Ebner: Limited to the posterior part of the tongue in the neighborhood of the vallate papillae. Ducts open into the circumvallate groove surrounding the vallate papillae.
Connective tissue: Forms the core of the papillae and supports the underlying glands. This connective tissue is rich in collagenous and elastic fibers.
von Ebner, 1842-1925, was a Viennese histologist.
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