Lab 9 - Descending Pathways to the Spinal Cord

The Tectospinal Pathway

Figure 1 is a transverse cut through the rostral medulla. The tectospinal tract fibers (crossed) continue to be located along the midline, anterior to the medial longitudinal fasciculus.

Figure 2 is a transverse cut through the caudal medulla. The tectospinal tract has been shifted anteriorly and laterally by the fibers of the pyramidal decussation.

Figure 3 is a transverse cut through the cervical spinal cord. Except for the rubrospinal pathway, all of the other non-corticospinal tracts are located in the anterior funiculus - DO NOT WORRY ABOUT WHERE EXACTLY IN THE ANTERIOR FUNICULUS. But do know at which spinal levels they occur. The majority of the tectospinal tract fibers terminate in the upper cervical segments. These fibers are believed to play a role in the execution of certain spinal reflexes (e.g., head turning) to visual and auditory stimuli.