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Original Article

Anat Cell Biol 2020; 53(3): 325-329

Published online September 30, 2020


Copyright © Korean Association of ANATOMISTS.

Re-evaluation of the distribution of Meissner’s corpuscles in human skin

Sang Hyun Kim1 , Young Ho Lee2

1Department of Anatomy, Graduate School, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, 2Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Korea

Correspondence to:Young Ho Lee
Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 35015, Korea
E-mail: yhlee@cnu.ac.kr

Received: April 29, 2020; Revised: June 1, 2020; Accepted: June 1, 2020

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Meissner’s corpuscles are generally considered to be located in the dermal papilla of hairless skin on the fingers, toes, palms, soles, lips, eyelids, nipples, and genital organs. We used hematoxylin and eosin staining to examine the distribution of Meissner’s corpuscles in skin tissues of the fingertips, palms, lips, nipples, and labia majora and minora obtained from cadavers. Many Meissner’s corpuscles were observed in the dermal papilla of the fingertips, whereas the palms had only 20% as many. Meissner’s corpuscles were rare in the lips, nipples, and external genital organs, which have relatively high two-point discrimination. Because Meissner’s corpuscles are rapidly adapting mechanoreceptors, they may quickly detect changes in tactile sensation, including two-point discrimination, in the movable glabrous skin. In conclusion, Meissner’s corpuscles might be rare in non-movable glabrous skin compared to the fingertips and palms.

Keywords: Mechanoreceptors, Distribution, Skin, Two-point discrimination

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