The sexual behavior of male rats constitutes a natural model to study learning of motor skills at the level of the central nervous system. We previously showed that sexual behavior increases Fos expression in granule cells at lobules 6 to 9 of the vermis cerebellum. Herein, we obtained multiunit recordings of lobules 6a and 7 during the training period of naive subjects, and during consecutive ejaculations of expert males. Recordings from both lobules and the inferior olive showed that the maximum amplitude of mount, intromission, and ejaculation signals were similar, but sexual behavior during training tests produced a decrease in the amplitude for mount and intromission signals. The fastigial nucleus showed an inverse mirror-like response. Thus, the cerebellum is involved in the neural basis of sexual behavior and the learning of appropriate behavioral displays during copulation, with a wiring that involves the cerebellar cortex, inferior olive, and fastigial nucleus.
Cerebellum Motor learning Sexual behavior Vermis Deep cerebellar nuclei
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Supported by Beca Doctorado Conacyt Reg. 170665 (RGM); PIFI 3.3 CA Neurociencias UV-CA-28 (JM); Proyecto Conacyt No. 106531 (MEH); Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovacion PSI2008-01317/PSIC, Spain (MM).
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