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A trans-spinal loop between neurones in the reticular formation and in the cerebellum.

Journal article
Authors Ingela Hammar
P Krutki
H Drzymala-Celichowska
Elin Nilsson
Elzbieta Jankowska
Published in The Journal of physiology
Volume 589
Issue Pt 3
Pages 653-65
ISSN 1469-7793
Publication year 2011
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Physiology
Pages 653-65
Language en
Keywords Animals, Cats, Cerebellum, physiology, Electric Stimulation, Excitatory Postsynaptic Potentials, physiology, Inhibitory Postsynaptic Potentials, physiology, Motor Neurons, physiology, Neural Pathways, physiology, Neurons, physiology, Neurons, Afferent, physiology, Quadriceps Muscle, innervation, Reticular Formation, physiology, Spinal Cord, physiology, Spinocerebellar Tracts, physiology
Subject categories Neurophysiology


Voluntary limb movements are initiated in the brain but the neurones responsible for activating the muscles (motoneurones and interneurones) are located in the spinal cord. The spinal cord also contains neurones that provide the brain, and especially the cerebellum, with continuous information on effects of the descending commands. We show that one population of such neurones provide the cerebellum with information on how likely the brain's commands (mediated by descending reticulospinal neurones) are to be executed as planned, depending on the degree of inhibition of motoneurones. They may therefore play an important role in preventing errors in activation of motoneurones and thereby help the brain to correct its signals to the spinal cord before such errors have been committed.

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