Definition: a small parasympathetic ganglion lying in the orbit between the optic nerve and the lateral rectus muscle; it receives presynaptic fibers from the Edinger-Westphal nucleus by way of the oculomotor nerve (cranial nerve III); the postsynaptic parasympathetic neurons that comprise the ciliary ganglion give rise to fibers that innervate the ciliary muscle and the sphincter of the iris (sphincter pupillae muscle).
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