Geniculate Ganglion: The sensory ganglion of the facial (7th cranial) nerve. The geniculate ganglion cells send central processes to the brain stem and peripheral processes to the taste buds in the anterior tongue, the soft palate, and the skin of the external auditory meatus and the mastoid process.Tongue: A muscular organ in the mouth that is covered with pink tissue called mucosa, tiny bumps called papillae, and thousands of taste buds. The tongue is anchored to the mouth and is vital for chewing, swallowing, and for speech.Facial Nerve: The 7th cranial nerve. The facial nerve has two parts, the larger motor root which may be called the facial nerve proper, and the smaller intermediate or sensory root. Together they provide efferent innervation to the muscles of facial expression and to the lacrimal and SALIVARY GLANDS, and convey afferent information for TASTE from the anterior two-thirds of the TONGUE and for TOUCH from the EXTERNAL EAR.Taste Buds: Small sensory organs which contain gustatory receptor cells, basal cells, and supporting cells. Taste buds in humans are found in the epithelia of the tongue, palate, and pharynx. They are innervated by the CHORDA TYMPANI NERVE (a branch of the facial nerve) and the GLOSSOPHARYNGEAL NERVE.Chorda Tympani Nerve: A branch of the facial (7th cranial) nerve which passes through the middle ear and continues through the petrotympanic fissure. The chorda tympani nerve carries taste sensation from the anterior two-thirds of the tongue and conveys parasympathetic efferents to the salivary glands.Herpes Zoster Oticus: A syndrome characterized by facial palsy in association with a herpetic eruption of the external auditory meatus. This may occasionally be associated with tinnitus, vertigo, deafness, severe otalgia, and inflammation of the pinna. The condition is caused by reactivation of a latent HERPESVIRUS 3, HUMAN infection which causes inflammation of the facial and vestibular nerves, and may occasionally involve additional cranial nerves. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p757)Stomatognathic System: The mouth, teeth, jaws, pharynx, and related structures as they relate to mastication, deglutition, and speech.Facial Nerve Diseases: Diseases of the facial nerve or nuclei. Pontine disorders may affect the facial nuclei or nerve fascicle. The nerve may be involved intracranially, along its course through the petrous portion of the temporal bone, or along its extracranial course. Clinical manifestations include facial muscle weakness, loss of taste from the anterior tongue, hyperacusis, and decreased lacrimation.Taste: The ability to detect chemicals through gustatory receptors in the mouth, including those on the TONGUE; the PALATE; the PHARYNX; and the EPIGLOTTIS.Cranial Nerve Neoplasms: Benign and malignant neoplasms that arise from one or more of the twelve cranial nerves.Facial Paralysis: Severe or complete loss of facial muscle motor function. This condition may result from central or peripheral lesions. Damage to CNS motor pathways from the cerebral cortex to the facial nuclei in the pons leads to facial weakness that generally spares the forehead muscles. FACIAL NERVE DISEASES generally results in generalized hemifacial weakness. NEUROMUSCULAR JUNCTION DISEASES and MUSCULAR DISEASES may also cause facial paralysis or paresis.Ganglia: Clusters of multipolar neurons surrounded by a capsule of loosely organized CONNECTIVE TISSUE located outside the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.Retinal Ganglion Cells: Neurons of the innermost layer of the retina, the internal plexiform layer. They are of variable sizes and shapes, and their axons project via the OPTIC NERVE to the brain. A small subset of these cells act as photoreceptors with projections to the SUPRACHIASMATIC NUCLEUS, the center for regulating CIRCADIAN RHYTHM.Ganglia, Spinal: Sensory ganglia located on the dorsal spinal roots within the vertebral column. The spinal ganglion cells are pseudounipolar. The single primary branch bifurcates sending a peripheral process to carry sensory information from the periphery and a central branch which relays that information to the spinal cord or brain.Basal Ganglia: Large subcortical nuclear masses derived from the telencephalon and located in the basal regions of the cerebral hemispheres.