In decerebrate paralyzed cats, we examined the effects of two central motor commands (fictive locomotion and scratching) on the discharge of dorsal horn neurons receiving input from group III and IV tibial nerve afferents. We recorded the impulse activity of 74 dorsal horn neurons, each of which received group III input from the tibial nerve. Electrical stimulation of the mesencephalic locomotor region (MLR), which evoked fictive static contraction or fictive locomotion, inhibited the discharge of 44 of the 64 dorsal horn neurons tested. The mean depth from the dorsal surface of the spinal cord of the 44 neurons whose discharge was inhibited by MLR stimulation was 1.77 ± 0.04 mm. Fictive scratching, evoked by topical application of bicuculline to the cervical spinal cord and irritation of the ear, inhibited the discharge of 22 of the 29 dorsal horn neurons tested. Fourteen of the twenty-two neurons whose discharge was inhibited by fictive scratching were found to be inhibited by MLR stimulation as well. The mean depth from the dorsal surface of the cord of the 22 neurons whose discharge was inhibited by fictive scratching was 1.77 ± 0.06 mm. Stimulation of the MLR or the elicitation of fictive scratching had no effect on the activity of 22 dorsal horn neurons receiving input from group III and IV tibial nerve afferents. The mean depth from the dorsal surface of the cord was 1.17 ± 0.07 mm, a value that was significantly (P < 0.05) less than that for the neurons whose discharge was inhibited by either MLR stimulation or fictive scratching. We conclude that centrally evoked motor commands can inhibit the discharge of dorsal horn neurons receiving thin fiber input from the periphery.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||American Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology|
|Issue number||2 48-2|
|State||Published - 2000|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physiology (medical)