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Medical Term:

taste bud


one of a number of flask-shaped cell nests located in the epithelium of vallate, fungiform, and foliate papillae of the tongue and also in the soft palate, epiglottis, and posterior wall of the pharynx; it consists of sustentacular, gustatory, and basal cells between which the intragemmal sensory nerve fibers terminate. There are five basic types of taste, each exemplified by the substance(s) in parenthesis after their types: bitter (quinine), salty (NaCl), sour (HCl), sweet (sugars and artificial sweeteners), and umami (glutamic acid).

Synonym(s): caliculus gustatorius, gustatory bud, organ of taste, Schwalbe corpuscle, taste bulb, taste corpuscle

© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.