Intraperitoneal transplants of taste buds in the newt


  • Supported by grants from National Institutes of Health, American Cancer Society and the Dysautonomia Foundation.


Autografts of tongue onto the liver contained taste buds without nerves for up to 30 days. However, these denervated taste buds were generally smaller than normal and distorted in structure. Nerve fibers invaded the graft from the liver and after 30 days normal appearing taste buds were found only in implants of tongue which contained extensive nerve fibers. Thus it appears that certain visceral nerves can maintain and possibly induce taste bud formation in implants of tongue. This is interpreted as additional evidence for the trophic influence of nerves upon taste buds. Moreover, this ability to maintain taste buds is not restricted to gustatory nerves in the newt.