It has been suggested that the trigemino-thalamic and trigemino-parabrachial projection neurons in the medullary dorsal horn (MDH) are highly implicated in the sensory-discriminative and emotional/affective aspects of orofacial pain, respectively. In previous studies, some neurons were reported to send projections to both the thalamus and parabrachial nucleus by way of collaterals in the MDH. However, little is known about the chemoarchitecture of this group of neurons. Thus, in the present study, we determined whether the neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptor, which is crucial for primary orofacial pain signaling, was expressed in MDH neurons co-innervating the thalamus and parabrachial nucleus. Vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) mRNA, a biomarker for the subgroup of glutamatergic neurons closely related to pain sensation, was assessed in trigemino-parabrachial projection neurons in the MDH. After stereotactic injection of fluorogold (FG) and cholera toxin subunit B (CTB) into the ventral posteromedial thalamic nucleus (VPM) and parabrachial nucleus (PBN), respectively, triple labeling with fluorescence dyes for FG, CTB and NK-1 receptor (NK-1R) revealed that approximately 76% of the total FG/CTB dually labeled neurons were detected as NK-1R-immunopositive, and more than 94% of the triple-labeled neurons were distributed in lamina I. In addition, by FG retrograde tract-tracing combined with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) for VGLUT2 mRNA, 54, 48 and 70% of FG-labeled neurons in laminae I, II and III, respectively, of the MDH co-expressed FG and VGLUT2 mRNA. Thus, most of the MDH neurons co-innervating the thalamus and PBN were glutamatergic. Most MDH neurons providing the collateral axons to both the thalamus and parabrachial nucleus in rats were NK-1R-immunopositive and expressed VGLUT2 mRNA. NK-1R and VGLUT2 in MDH neurons may be involved in both sensory-discriminative and emotional/affective aspects of orofacial pain processing.