Olfactory System

Fibers from the olfactory bulb terminate in the corticomedial nucleus of the amygdala as well as the entorhinal (Brodmann area 28) cortex of the temporal lobe, comprising the primary olfactory cortex. The information is then relayed to additional areas of the limbic system such as the hypothalamus, which is important for controlling appetite, digestion, and feeding behaviors, and to the mediodorsal nucleus of the thalamus. From the thalamus, the olfactory information is sent to the orbitofrontal cortex (the olfactory association area), which also receives input from other cortical areas such as the somatosensory and visual association areas and insula and limbic system. Although there is segregation of sensory function throughout the cerebral cortex, these systems act in concert to mediate our conscious perception of the surrounding environment.

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