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In
anatomy Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science which deals with the structural organization of living things. It ...

anatomy
, the palatine bones () are two
irregular bone The irregular bones are bones which, from their peculiar form, cannot be grouped as long, short, flat or sesamoid bones. Irregular bones serve various purposes in the body, such as protection of nervous tissue (such as the vertebrae In the ve ...
s of the
facial skeleton The facial skeleton comprises the ''facial bones'' that may attach to build a portion of the skull The skull is a bone A bone is a Stiffness, rigid tissue (anatomy), tissue that constitutes part of the skeleton in most vertebrate animals. ...
in many animal species, located above the
uvula The palatine uvula, usually referred to as simply the uvula, is a conic projection from the back edge of the middle of the soft palate The soft palate (also known as the velum, palatal velum, or muscular palate) is, in mammal Mammals (from ...
in the
throat In vertebrate anatomy, the throat is the front part of the neck, internally positioned in front of the vertebra, vertebrae. It contains the Human pharynx, pharynx and larynx. An important section of it is the epiglottis, separating the esophagus f ...

throat
. Together with the
maxillae
maxillae
, they comprise the
hard palate The hard palate is a thin horizontal bony plate made up of two bones of the facial skeleton The facial skeleton comprises the ''facial bones'' that may attach to build a portion of the skull The skull is a bone A bone is a Stiffness, ri ...
. (''Palate'' is derived from the Latin ''palatum''.)


Structure

The palatine bones are situated at the back of the
nasal cavity The nasal cavity is a large, air-filled space above and behind the nose A nose is a protuberance in vertebrates that houses the nostrils, or nares, which receive and expel air for Respiration (physiology), respiration alongside the mouth. Beh ...

nasal cavity
between the
maxilla The maxilla (plural: ''maxillae'' ) in vertebrates is the upper fixed (not fixed in Neopterygii) bone of the jaw formed from the fusion of two maxillary bones. In humans, the upper jaw includes the hard palate in the front of the mouth. The tw ...

maxilla
and the pterygoid process of the sphenoid bone. They contribute to the walls of three cavities: the floor and lateral walls of the nasal cavity, the roof of the mouth, and the floor of the orbits. They help to form the
pterygopalatine
pterygopalatine
and
pterygoid fossa The pterygoid fossa is an anatomical Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, ch ...

pterygoid fossa
e, and the
inferior orbital fissure The lateral wall and the floor of the orbit In physics, an orbit is the gravitationally curved trajectory of an physical body, object, such as the trajectory of a planet around a star or a natural satellite around a planet. Normally, orbit r ...
s. Each palatine bone somewhat resembles the letter L, and consists of a horizontal plate, a perpendicular plate, and three projecting processes — the
pyramidal process The pyramidal process of the palatine bone projects backward and lateralward from the junction of the horizontal and vertical parts, and is received into the angular interval between the lower extremities of the pterygoid plates. On its posterior s ...
, which is directed backward and lateral from the junction of the two parts, and the orbital and sphenoidal processes, which surmount the vertical part, and are separated by a deep notch, the sphenopalatine notch. The two plates form the posterior part of the hard palate and the floor of the nasal cavity; anteriorly, they join with the maxillae. The two horizontal plates articulate with each other at the posterior part of the median palatine suture and more anteriorly with the maxillae at the transverse palatine suture. The human palatine articulates with six bones: the ,
ethmoid The ethmoid bone (; from Greek ''ethmos'', "sieve") is an unpaired bone in the human skull, skull that separates the nasal cavity from the brain. It is located at the roof of the human nose, nose, between the two Orbit (anatomy), orbits. The cubic ...

ethmoid
,
maxilla The maxilla (plural: ''maxillae'' ) in vertebrates is the upper fixed (not fixed in Neopterygii) bone of the jaw formed from the fusion of two maxillary bones. In humans, the upper jaw includes the hard palate in the front of the mouth. The tw ...

maxilla
,
inferior nasal concha The inferior nasal concha (inferior turbinated bone or inferior turbinal/turbinate) is one of the three paired nasal concha In anatomy Anatomy (Greek ''anatomē'', 'dissection') is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the struc ...
,
vomer The vomer () is one of the unpaired facial bones The facial skeleton comprises the ''facial bones'' that may attach to build a portion of the skull The skull is a bone A bone is a Stiffness, rigid tissue (anatomy), tissue that constitute ...

vomer
and opposite palatine. There are two important foramina in the palatine bones that transmit nerves and blood vessels to this region: the greater and lesser palatine. The larger
greater palatine foramen At either posterior angle of the hard palate The hard palate is a thin horizontal bony plate made up of two bones of the facial skeleton The facial skeleton comprises the ''facial bones'' that may attach to build a portion of the skull The s ...

greater palatine foramen
is located in the posterolateral region of each of the palatine bones, usually at the apex of the maxillary third molar. The greater palatine foramen transmits the greater palatine nerve and blood vessels. A smaller opening nearby, the lesser palatine foramen, transmits the lesser palatine nerve and blood vessels to the soft palate and tonsils. Both foramina are openings of the pterygopalatine canal that carries the descending palatine nerves and blood vessels from the pterygopalatine fossa to the palate.


Function

The
sphenopalatine foramen The sphenopalatine foramen is a Foramina of the skull, foramen in the skull that connects the nasal cavity with the pterygopalatine fossa. Structure The processes of the superior border of the palatine bone are separated by the ''sphenopalatine not ...
is the opening between the sphenoid bone and orbital processes of the palatine bone; it opens into the nasal cavity and gives passage to branches from the pterygopalatine ganglion and the
sphenopalatine artery The sphenopalatine artery (nasopalatine artery) is an artery An artery (plural arteries) () is a blood vessel that takes blood away from the heart to one or more parts of the body (tissues, lungs, brain etc.). Most arteries carry oxygenated blo ...
from the maxillary artery.


Other animals

In
bony fish Osteichthyes (), popularly referred to as the bony fish, is a diverse taxonomic Taxonomy (general) is the practice and science of classification of things or concepts, including the principles that underlie such classification. The term may al ...

bony fish
the palatine bone consists of the perpendicular plate only, lying on the inner edge of the maxilla. The lower surface of the bone may bear several teeth, forming a second row behind those of the maxilla; in many cases, these are actually larger than the maxillary teeth. Although a similar pattern was present in primitive
tetrapod Tetrapods (; ) are four-limbed animals constituting the superclass Tetrapoda (). It includes extant Extant is the opposite of the word extinct Extinction is the termination of a kind of organism or of a group of kinds (taxon), usually a sp ...
s, the palatine bone is reduced in most living
amphibian Amphibians are ectothermic, tetrapod vertebrates of the Class (biology), class Amphibia. All living amphibians belong to the group Lissamphibia. They inhabit a wide variety of habitats, with most species living within terrestrial animal, ter ...
s, forming, in
frog A frog is any member of a diverse and largely carnivorous A carnivore , meaning "meat Meat is animal flesh that is eaten as food. Humans have hunted and killed animals for meat since prehistoric times. The advent of civilization all ...

frog
s and
salamander Salamanders are a group of amphibian Amphibians are ectothermic, tetrapod vertebrates of the Class (biology), class Amphibia. All living amphibians belong to the group Lissamphibia. They inhabit a wide variety of habitats, with most spe ...

salamander
s, only a narrow bar between the vomer and maxilla. Early fossil
reptile Reptiles, as most commonly defined, are the animals in the class Class or The Class may refer to: Common uses not otherwise categorized * Class (biology), a taxonomic rank * Class (knowledge representation), a collection of individuals or ...

reptile
s retained the arrangement seen in more primitive vertebrates, but in
mammal Mammals (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be i ...
s, the lower surface of the palatine became folded over during evolution, forming the horizontal plate, and meeting in the midline of the mouth. This forms the rear of the
hard palate The hard palate is a thin horizontal bony plate made up of two bones of the facial skeleton The facial skeleton comprises the ''facial bones'' that may attach to build a portion of the skull The skull is a bone A bone is a Stiffness, ri ...
, separating the oral and nasal cavities, and making it easier to breathe while eating. A
parallel Parallel may refer to: Computing * Parallel algorithm In computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of information, algorithms and the architectures of its computation as well as practical techniques for their a ...
development has occurred to varying degrees in many living reptiles, reaching its greatest extent in
crocodilian Crocodilia (or Crocodylia, both ) is an order Order or ORDER or Orders may refer to: * Orderliness Orderliness is associated with other qualities such as cleanliness Cleanliness is both the abstract state of being clean and free from germs, ...
s. In
bird Birds are a group of warm-blooded vertebrate Vertebrates () comprise all species of animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular eukaryotic organisms that form the Kingdom (biology), biological kingdom Animalia. With ...

bird
s, the palatine bones remain separate, long the sides of the rear part of the upper jaw, and typically have a mobile articulation with the
cranium The skull is a bone A bone is a Stiffness, rigid tissue (anatomy), tissue that constitutes part of the vertebrate skeleton in animals. Bones protect the various organs of the body, produce red blood cell, red and white blood cells, store mi ...

cranium
. There are numerous variations amongst mammals, amphibians and other species. For example, the palatine bone in many amphibians such as the
rough-skinned newt The rough-skinned newt or roughskin newt (''Taricha granulosa'') is a North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. It can also be described as the nort ...

rough-skinned newt
manifests as a distinct V-shaped structure. In the case of cat species, the horizontal and a vertical elements join at a forty five degree angle.


Additional images

File:Orbital_bones.png, The seven bones which articulate to form the orbit. File:Gray167.png, Articulation of left palatine bone with maxilla. File:Gray187.png, Base of skull. Inferior surface. File:Gray192.png, Medial wall of left orbit. File:Gray196.png, Roof, floor, and lateral wall of left nasal cavity. File:Gray168.png, Medial aspect of left palatine bone. File:Gray169.png, Posterior aspect of left palatine bone.


See also

**
Nasopalatine nerve One branch of the pterygopalatine ganglion (trigeminal nerve, maxillary nerve, maxillary branch), longer and larger than the others, is named the nasopalatine nerve (sometimes called the long sphenopalatine nerve). It enters the nasal cavity throug ...
** Superior nasal nerve * *
Terms for anatomical location Term may refer to: *Terminology Terminology is a general word for the group of specialized words or meanings relating to a particular field, and also the study of such terms and their use. This is also known as terminology science. Terms are word ...


References


External links

{{Authority control Bones of the head and neck Irregular bones