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Anterior corticospinal tract

Anterior corticospinal tract
File:Spinal cord tracts - English.svg
Anterior corticospinal tract seen in red at bottom center in figure (text tag found at upper-left).
Decussation of pyramids. Scheme showing passage of various fasciculi from medulla spinalis to medulla oblongata. a. Pons. b. Medulla oblongata. c. Decussation of the pyramids. d. Section of cervical part of medulla spinalis. 1. Anterior cerebrospinal fasciculus (in red). 2. Lateral cerebrospinal fasciculus (in red). 3. Sensory tract (fasciculi gracilis et cuneatus) (in blue). 3’. Gracile and cuneate nuclei. 4. Antero-lateral proper fasciculus (in dotted line). 5. Pyramid. 6. Lemniscus. 7. Medial longitudinal fasciculus. 8. Ventral spinocerebellar fasciculus (in blue). 9. Dorsal spinocerebellar fasciculus (in yellow).
Latin tractus corticospinalis anterior, fasciculus cerebrospinalis anterior
Gray's p.759
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Anatomical terminology

The anterior corticospinal tract (also called the ventral corticospinal tract, medial corticospinal tract, direct pyramidal tract, or anterior cerebrospinal fasciculus) is a small bundle of descending fibers that connect the cerebral cortex to the spinal cord. It is usually small, varying inversely in size with the lateral corticospinal tract, which is the main part of the corticospinal tract.

It lies close to the anterior median fissure, and is present only in the upper part of the medulla spinalis; gradually diminishing in size as it descends, it ends about the middle of the thoracic region.

It consists of descending fibers that arise from cells in the motor area of the ipsilateral cerebral hemisphere, and that, as they run downward in the medulla spinalis, cross in succession through the anterior white commissure to the opposite side, where they end, either directly or indirectly, by arborizing around the motor neurons in the anterior column.

A few of its fibers pass to the lateral column of the same side and to the gray matter at the base of the posterior column.[citation needed]

They conduct voluntary motor impulses from the precentral gyrus to the motor centers of the cord.

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This article incorporates text in the public domain from the 20th edition of Gray's Anatomy (1918)

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