Pons


Names after the Latin word for "bridge" and located just below the midbrain along the brain stem, the pons acts as a communicator between the forebrain and the cerebellum. It also has primary functions associated with sleep, respiration, swallowing, bladder control, hearing, equilibrium, taste, eye movement, facial expressions, facial sensation, and posture. It also contains the area of the brain responsible for sleep paralysis, and scientists believe it could play an important part in the creation of dreams. It is easily recognizable as a broad bulge appearing near the top of the brain stem, just above the medulla. Its posterior side is distinguished by two stalk-like structures known as the cerebellar peduncles. As the pons is found in species of lamprey, it is speculated that it has been around in organisms for over 505 million years.

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