rubrospinal decussation


[dee-kuh-sey-shuhn, dek-uh-]
Decussation (or decussatio) is used in biological contexts to describe a crossing.

Examples include:

  • In the brain, where nerve fibers cross from one lateral part to the other.
  • In phyllotaxis when an opposite pattern of leaves has successive leaf pairs that are perpendicular, it is called decussate.
  • In tooth enamel, where bundles of rods (rods are the basic structural unit of enamel) cross each other as they travel from the enamel-dentine junction to the outer enamel surface (or near to it).

In the brain

Examples in the brain include:

Here, a decussation refers to the crossing of millions of axons. To achieve this, there needs to be a tight control in order to have as few errors as possible. The advantage of having such a complicated system may be to compensate for the 180 degree inversion in visual perception through the eye. In addition, it may provide a more robust structure.


See also

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