Absence of Taste-Bud Papillae in Familial Dysautonomia

Science  26 Feb 1965:
Vol. 147, Issue 3661, pp. 1040-1041
DOI: 10.1126/science.147.3661.1040


No fungiform papillae could be found on the tongues of 30 patients with familial dysautonomia. In ten of these patients a search for vallate papillae was made, but none were found. Inspection of the tongue may thus be useful for diagnosing this rare disease, even in infants. Absence of these sensory receptors suggests that the multiple sensory deficits found in persons with familial dysautonomia may be related to defects in the peripheral receptors.