Journal of the Indian Institute of Science

, Volume 97, Issue 4, pp 555–565 | Cite as

Reflex Circuits and Their Modulation in Motor Control: A Historical Perspective and Current View

Review Article


Sensorimotor reflexes have long been, and continue to be, an area of tremendous research in movement neuroscience. Here I aim to provide an account of some studies that have been crucial in advancing our understanding of the organization of reflex circuits, their function and their modulation during motor control. I review research ranging from early experiments in reduced animal preparations that investigated the basic building blocks of reflex circuits to more recent studies in humans that demonstrate remarkable tunability of reflexes in response to variety of contingencies related to the task, the body and the environment. By providing such an integrated account of the historical aspects and current view on reflex function, I attempt to bring out the stunning complexity of reflex machinery, as well as the incredible adaptability of this machinery despite its underlying complexity.


Reflexes Modulation Motor control 



Support from the Ramanujan Fellowship, the Health Sciences Committee and the Cognitive Science Research Initiative of the Department of Science and Technology (all of the Government of India) is deeply acknowledged.


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© Indian Institute of Science 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biological Engineering and Center for Cognitive ScienceIndian Institute of Technology GandhinagarGandhinagarIndia

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