Rubrospinal tract

Last revised by Sachi Hapugoda on 3 Sep 2018

The rubrospinal tract contains neurons that carry signals from the corticorubral tract. The tract is thought to excite flexor muscles and inhibit extensor muscles.

Gross anatomy

Central connections

The magnocellular portion of the red nucleus gives rise to the rubrospinal tract. It decussates in the midbrain tegmentum as the ventral tegmental decussation.


The rubrospinal tract then descends down the ventrolateral brainstem through the lateral funiculus of the spinal cord. It terminates at laminae V, VI and VII at all levels of the cord.

Related pathology

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: spinal cord tracts
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