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Spinal control of motor outputs by intrinsic and externally induced electric field potentials

Journal article
Authors Elzbieta Jankowska
Published in Journal of Neurophysiology
Volume 118
Issue 2
Pages 1221-1234
ISSN 0022-3077
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology
Pages 1221-1234
Language en
Keywords spinal cord, electric fields, direct current, motor control, rat, direct-current stimulation, noninvasive brain-stimulation, locomotor-activated neurons, current-density, cord-injury, commissural, interneurons, excitatory transmission, presynaptic inhibition, synaptic, plasticity, supraspinal control, Neurosciences & Neurology, Physiology
Subject categories Neuroscience


Despite numerous studies on spinal neuronal systems, several issues regarding their role in motor behavior remain unresolved. One of these issues is how electric fields associated with the activity of spinal neurons influence the operation of spinal neuronal networks and how effects of these field potentials are combined with other means of modulating neuronal activity. Another closely related issue is how external electric field potentials affect spinal neurons and how they can be used for therapeutic purposes such as pain relief or recovery of motor functions by transspinal direct current stimulation. Nevertheless, progress in our understanding of the spinal effects of electric fields and their mechanisms has been made over the last years, and the aim of the present review is to summarize the recent findings in this field.

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