Experimental Brain Research

, Volume 56, Issue 2, pp 308–322 | Cite as

Integration in descending motor pathways controlling the forelimb in the cat

12. Interneurones which may mediate descending feed-forward inhibition and feed-back inhibition from the forelimb to C3-C4 propriospinal neurones
  • B. Alstermark
  • A. Lundberg
  • S. Sasaki
Article

Summary

Extra- and intracellular recording was made from cells in the C3-C4 segments with the aim of finding interneurones of previously described inhibitory pathways to the C3-C4 propriospinal neurones, which may mediate descending feed-forward inhibition and feed-back inhibition from the forelimb, respectively. The lateral interneurones were found in the lateral part of lamina VII interspersed among the C3-C4 PNs and like them they receive convergent monosynaptic EPSPs and disynaptic IPSPs from the cortico-, rubro-, tecto- and reticulospinal tracts. Disynaptic IPSPs, but only rarely monosynaptic EPSPs, are evoked in them from forelimb nerves. The lateral interneurones do not project to the lateral reticular nucleus (LRN). The medial interneurones were found medially in laminae V and VI in a region where volleys in forelimb nerves evoke extracellular monosynaptic focal potentials (Rosén 1969). There is somatotopic organization of the projection from the forelimb to this region. Many neurones are strongly monosynaptically excited from group I muscle or/and cutaneous forelimb afferents. In addition, late discharges are evoked in many cells from cutaneous afferents and high threshold muscle afferents. Corticospinal volleys evoked monosynapic excitation in the great majority of these cells and usually also late EPSPs or IPSPs. Typically, rubrospinal and tectospinal volleys evoked neither monosynaptic excitation nor late effects as those elicited from corticospinal fibres. In some of the interneurones, IPSPs were evoked from forelimb nerves. About 20% of the medial “interneurones” have an ascending projection to the caudal brain stem. Threshold mapping for antidromic stimulation revealed termination in the main cuneate nucleus, the external cuneate nucleus and/or the LRN and also a branch projecting to more rostral levels in the brain. A few of the neurones in the medial region are PNs projecting to the forelimb segments. It is postulated that interneurones both of the lateral and medial type are inhibitory and project to the C3-C4 PNs. It is further postulated that the former are intercalated in the descending feed-forward inhibitory pathway to the C3-C4 PNs and the latter in the feed-back inhibitory pathway from the forelimb to these PNs. The role of feed-forward and feed-back inhibition of transmission from the brain to forelimb motoneurones via the C3-C4 PNs is discussed.

Key words

Descending pathways Forelimb afferents C3-C4 inhibition C3-C4 propriospinal neurones 

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References

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. Alstermark
    • 1
  • A. Lundberg
    • 1
  • S. Sasaki
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhysiologyUniversity of GöteborgGöteborgSweden

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