Cranial Nerve IX

The glossopharyngeal nerve participates in motor, sensory, and autonomic functions. Motor fibers of CN IX arise from the nucleus ambiguus in the medulla and innervate the stylopharyngeus muscle of the pharynx. Sensory fibers from the tongue, nasopharynx, and middle and outer ear travel to the spinal trigeminal nucleus, and taste fibers from the posterior one-third of the tongue terminate in the solitary tract. Finally, there is parasympathetic innervation of the parotid gland that originates from the inferior salivatory nucleus.

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