The Italian Journal of Neurological Sciences

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 23–28 | Cite as

Action of the sympathetic system on skeletal muscle

  • Grassi C 
  • Passatore M. 


The action exerted by the sympathetic system on skeletal muscle is briefly reviewed with regard to the effects induced by the adrenergic mediator on extrafusal muscle fibre contractility and on muscle spindle receptor organs. In particular, the different responses of slow-and fast-contracting muscles to catecholamine administration and to sympathetic stimulation are reported. Also, the sympathetically-induced effects on muscle spindle afferent activity are discussed on the basis of recent anatomical and functional data suggesting the existence of a direct action exerted by noradrenergic axons on intrafusal muscle fibres. Some of the possible implications of these data are then briefly mentioned.


Sympathetic nervous system motor activity neuromuscular spindles muscle fibres 


In questo articolo si fa una breve rassegna della bibliografia riguardante l’azione che il Sistema Nervoso Simpatico esercita sulla funzione muscolare. Vengono presi in considerazione gli effetti esercitati perifericamente dalle catecolamine sulla contrattilità delle fibre muscolari scheletriche e sull’informazione proveniente dai fusi neuromuscolari. In particolare vengono riportati i dati che si riferiscono all’azione diversificata del mediatore adrenergico sulle fibre muscolari a rapida e lenta velocità di contrazione. Una maggiore attenzione viene rivolta agli effetti del simpatico sull’attività afferente dai fusi neuromuscolari alla luce dei recenti dati anatomici e funzionali che suggeriscono l’esistenza di un’azione diretta esercitata dagli assoni noradrenergici sulle fibre muscolari intrafusali. Viene discusso il possibile intervento di questo meccanismo nel controllo motorio e se ne menzionano le eventuali implicazioni.


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Copyright information

© Masson Italia Editori 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Grassi C 
    • 1
  • Passatore M. 
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Istituto di Fisiologia UmanaUniversità Cattolica S. CuoreRoma
  2. 2.Dipartimento di AnatomiaTorino
  3. 3.Fisiologia UmanaUniversità di TorinoTorino

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