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Sensorimotor transformation in cat nociceptive withdrawal reflex system

Levinsson, Anders LU ; Garwicz, Martin LU and Schouenborg, Jens LU (1999) In European Journal of Neuroscience 11(12). p.4327-4332
Abstract
The withdrawal reflex system of higher vertebrates has been extensively used as a model for spinal sensorimotor integration, nociceptive processing and plasticity. In the rat, the nociceptive withdrawal reflex system appears to have a modular organization. Each reflex module controls a single muscle or a few synergistic muscles, and its cutaneous receptive field corresponds to the skin area withdrawn upon contraction of the effector muscle(s) when the limb is in the standing position. This organization principle is at odds with the 'flexion reflex' concept postulated from cat studies. To assess the generality of the modular organization principle we have therefore re-examined the cutaneous input to the withdrawal reflex system of the cat.... (More)
The withdrawal reflex system of higher vertebrates has been extensively used as a model for spinal sensorimotor integration, nociceptive processing and plasticity. In the rat, the nociceptive withdrawal reflex system appears to have a modular organization. Each reflex module controls a single muscle or a few synergistic muscles, and its cutaneous receptive field corresponds to the skin area withdrawn upon contraction of the effector muscle(s) when the limb is in the standing position. This organization principle is at odds with the 'flexion reflex' concept postulated from cat studies. To assess the generality of the modular organization principle we have therefore re-examined the cutaneous input to the withdrawal reflex system of the cat. The cutaneous receptive fields of hindlimb and forelimb muscles were mapped using calibrated noxious pinch stimulation and electromyographic recording technique in barbiturate anaesthetized animals. The investigated muscles had specific cutaneous receptive fields that appeared to correspond to the area of the skin withdrawn upon contraction of the muscle when the limb is in the standing position. The spatial organization of receptive fields in the cat was similar to that in the rat. However, differences in gain properties of reflexes to some anatomically equivalent muscles in the two species were observed, possibly reflecting adaptations to the biomechanics characteristic of the digitigrade and plantigrade stance in cats and rats, respectively. Implications of the findings for the generality of the modular organization of the withdrawal reflex system and for its adaptive properties are discussed. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
motor control, pain, receptive field, somatosensory, spinal cord
in
European Journal of Neuroscience
volume
11
issue
12
pages
4327 - 4332
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • pmid:10594658
  • scopus:0033452113
ISSN
1460-9568
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
806f49c4-dab7-4934-96db-9728d636afa0 (old id 1115307)
alternative location
http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/bsc/ejn/1999/00000011/00000012/art00861
date added to LUP
2008-07-07 17:00:16
date last changed
2017-07-09 03:34:17
@article{806f49c4-dab7-4934-96db-9728d636afa0,
  abstract     = {The withdrawal reflex system of higher vertebrates has been extensively used as a model for spinal sensorimotor integration, nociceptive processing and plasticity. In the rat, the nociceptive withdrawal reflex system appears to have a modular organization. Each reflex module controls a single muscle or a few synergistic muscles, and its cutaneous receptive field corresponds to the skin area withdrawn upon contraction of the effector muscle(s) when the limb is in the standing position. This organization principle is at odds with the 'flexion reflex' concept postulated from cat studies. To assess the generality of the modular organization principle we have therefore re-examined the cutaneous input to the withdrawal reflex system of the cat. The cutaneous receptive fields of hindlimb and forelimb muscles were mapped using calibrated noxious pinch stimulation and electromyographic recording technique in barbiturate anaesthetized animals. The investigated muscles had specific cutaneous receptive fields that appeared to correspond to the area of the skin withdrawn upon contraction of the muscle when the limb is in the standing position. The spatial organization of receptive fields in the cat was similar to that in the rat. However, differences in gain properties of reflexes to some anatomically equivalent muscles in the two species were observed, possibly reflecting adaptations to the biomechanics characteristic of the digitigrade and plantigrade stance in cats and rats, respectively. Implications of the findings for the generality of the modular organization of the withdrawal reflex system and for its adaptive properties are discussed.},
  author       = {Levinsson, Anders and Garwicz, Martin and Schouenborg, Jens},
  issn         = {1460-9568},
  keyword      = {motor control,pain,receptive field,somatosensory,spinal cord},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {12},
  pages        = {4327--4332},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {European Journal of Neuroscience},
  title        = {Sensorimotor transformation in cat nociceptive withdrawal reflex system},
  volume       = {11},
  year         = {1999},
}