parasympathetic nervous systemmedical dictionary

<anatomy, neurology> One of the two divisions of the vertebrate autonomic nervous sytem.

Parasympathetic nerves emerge cranially as pre ganglionic fibres from oculomotor, facial, glossopharyngeal and vagus and from the sacral region of the spinal cord.

most neurones are cholinergic and responses are mediated by muscarinic receptors. The parasympathetic system innervates, for example: salivary glands, thoracic and abdominal viscera, bladder and genitalia.

Compare:. Sympathetic nervous system.

This entry appears with permission from the Dictionary of Cell and Molecular Biology

(11 Mar 2008)