Nerve endings of the wrist joint: A preliminary report of the dorsal radiocarpal ligament

Yu Te Lin, Richard A. Berger, Evelyn J. Berger, Kazunari Tomita, Jean Y. Jew, Chao Yang, Kai Nan An

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


As part of an investigation of the articular nerve ending populations in the wrist joint capsule associated with the anterior and posterior interosseous nerves, this study addresses the nerve ending population in the dorsal radiocarpal ligament. The ligaments were harvested from four wrists of two fresh cadavers within 12 h of death. Tissues were fixed, cryostat sectioned, and processed for fluorescence immunohistochemistry using antibody to protein gene product 9.5 (PGP 9.5), a general or pan neuronal marker, and a secondary antibody conjugated to a fluorescent tag (Alexa Fluor 488). The sections were evaluated with a confocal laser microscope and an image analyzer. Labeled nerve endings were mapped, measured, and categorized. Type I (Ruffini-like ending), Type III (Golgi-like tendon organ) and Type IV (noncorpuscular) nerve endings could be identified in all four DRC ligaments, with Types I and IV dominating. These receptors were distributed primarily over the superficial two thirds of the ligament (>80%), and near the bony attachments (>70%). The dorsal radiocarpal ligament has a rich sensory innervation from the posterior interosseous nerve terminating in nerve endings located in the superficial two-thirds of the ligaments, primarily near bony attachment sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1225-1230
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2006


  • Fluorescent immunohistochemistry
  • Ligament
  • Mechanoreceptor
  • Nerve ending
  • Wrist

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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