Primary sensory areas

Primary sensory areas

The primary sensory areas are the main cerebral areas that receive sensory information from thalamic nerve projections.

Though some areas of the human brain that receive primary sensory information remain poorly defined, each of the five sensory modalities has been recognized to relate to specific groups of brain cells that begin to categorize and integrate sensory information.

* Somatosensory system: The primary somatosensory cortex (SI) is across the central sulcus and behind the primary motor cortex configured to generally correspond with the arrangement of nearby motor cells related to specific body parts. The area includes gray matter along the central gyrus and its extension into the postcentral gyrus.

* Taste: The "primary gustatory area" is near the face representation within the postcentral gyrus. It starts at about the most lateral point on the gyrus and continues into the insular cortex where the postcentral gyrus folds over the "operculum" (Latin: "eyelid" or "lid") of the gyrus at the lateral sulcus.

* Olfaction: Olfactory cortex located in the uncus which is found along the ventral surface of the temporal lobe. Olfaction is the only sensory system that is not routed through the thalamus.

* Vision: The visual area known as V1, striate cortex, or (primary visual cortex, Brodmann area 17) is located on the calcarine sulcus deep within the inside folds of the occipital lobe.

* Hearing: The primary auditory cortex is located on the transverse gyri that lie on the back of the superior temporal convolution of the temporal lobes.

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