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Anastasia Shulga, Aleksandra Zubareva, Pantelis Lioumis, Jyrki P Mäkelä
Background: In spinal paired associative stimulation (PAS), orthodromic and antidromic volleys elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) coincide at corticomotoneuronal synapses at the spinal cord. The interstimulus interval (ISI) between TMS and PNS determines whether PAS leads to motor-evoked potential (MEP) potentiation or depression. PAS applied as a long-term treatment for neurological patients might alter conduction of neural fibers over time. Moreover, measurements of motoneuron conductance for determination of ISIs may be challenging in these patients...
2016: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
Catherine Mercier, Martin Gagné, Karen T Reilly, Laurent J Bouyer
Sensorimotor integration is altered in people with chronic pain. While there is substantial evidence that pain interferes with neural activity in primary sensory and motor cortices, much less is known about its impact on integrative sensorimotor processes. Here, the short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) paradigm was used to assess sensorimotor integration in the presence and absence of experimental cutaneous heat pain applied to the hand. Ulnar nerve stimulation was combined with transcranial magnetic stimulation to condition motor evoked potentials (MEPs) in the first dorsal interosseous muscle...
2016: Brain Sciences
John Cirillo, Winston D Byblow
Paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can be used to probe inhibitory activity in primary motor cortex (M1). Recruitment of descending volleys with TMS depends on the induced current direction in M1. Anterior-posterior (AP) stimulation preferentially activates late indirect- (I-) waves that are most susceptible to paired-pulse TMS. Threshold tracking TMS can assess intracortical inhibition; however, previous studies have only used a current direction that preferentially recruits early I-waves [posterior-anterior (PA)]...
October 2016: European Journal of Neuroscience
Charles A Hass, Lindsey L Glickfeld
Optogenetic activation of axons is a powerful approach for determining the synaptic properties and impact of long-range projections both in vivo and in vitro. However, due to the difficulty of measuring activity in axons, our knowledge of the reliability of optogenetic axonal stimulation has relied on data from somatic recordings. Yet, there are many reasons why activation of axons may not be comparable to cell bodies. Thus, we developed an approach to more directly assess the fidelity of optogenetic activation of axonal projections...
August 3, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
Gabrielle Todd, Janet L Taylor, Simon C Gandevia
This article reviews the use of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) over the motor cortex to make estimates of the level of voluntary drive to muscles. The method, described in 2003 (Todd et al. J Physiol 551: 661-671, 2003), uses a TMS pulse to produce descending corticospinal volleys that synaptically activate motoneurons, resulting in a muscle twitch. Linear regression of the superimposed twitch amplitude and voluntary force (or torque) can generate an "estimated" resting twitch for muscles involved in a task...
September 1, 2016: Journal of Applied Physiology
Antonino Naro, Antonino Leo, Antonio Buda, Alfredo Manuli, Alessia Bramanti, Placido Bramanti, Rocco Salvatore Calabrò
Behavioral responsiveness and awareness levels correlate with the degree of functional connectivity within cortical-thalamocortical networks, whose breakdown accounts for chronic disorders of consciousness (DOC). Our study was aimed at assessing the role of the primary motor area (M1) and premotor-M1 circuitry dysfunction in motor output deterioration in minimally conscious state (MCS) and unresponsive wakefulness syndrome (UWS) patients. As a control group, we included a healthy subject (HC) sample in the study...
September 1, 2016: Brain Research
Kenneth C Catania
In March 1800, Alexander von Humboldt observed the extraordinary spectacle of native fisherman collecting electric eels (Electrophorus electricus) by "fishing with horses" [von Humboldt A (1807) Ann Phys 25:34-43]. The strategy was to herd horses into a pool containing electric eels, provoking the eels to attack by pressing themselves against the horses while discharging. Once the eels were exhausted, they could be safely collected. This legendary tale of South American adventures helped propel Humboldt to fame and has been recounted and illustrated in many publications, but subsequent investigators have been skeptical, and no similar eel behavior has been reported in more than 200 years...
June 21, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Aaron Z Bailey, Michael J Asmussen, Aimee J Nelson
Short-latency afferent inhibition (SAI) is characterized by the suppression of the transcranial magnetic stimulation motor evoked potential (MEP) by the cortical arrival of a somatosensory afferent volley. It remains unknown whether the magnitude of SAI reflects changes in the sensory afferent volley, similar to that observed for somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs). The present study investigated stimulus-response relationships between sensory nerve action potentials (SNAPs), SAI, and SEPs and their interrelatedness...
August 1, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
J Meléndez-Gallardo, A Eblen-Zajjur
Most of the endogenous pain modulation (EPM) involves the spinal dorsal horn (SDH). EPM including diffuse noxious inhibitory controls have been extensively described in oligoneuronal electrophysiological recordings but less attention had been paid to responses of the SDH neuronal population to heterotopic noxious stimulation (HNS). Spinal somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEP) offer the possibility to evaluate the neuronal network behavior, reflecting the incoming afferent volleys along the entry root, SDH interneuron activities and the primary afferent depolarization...
September 2016: Neurological Sciences
Achilleas Koutsou, Jacob Kanev, Maria Economidou, Chris Christodoulou
The operational mode of a neuron (i.e., whether a neuron is an integrator or a coincidence detector) is in part determined by the degree of synchrony in the firing of its pre-synaptic neural population. More specifically, it is determined by the degree of synchrony that causes the neuron to fire. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the input and the operational mode. We compare the response-relevant input synchrony, which measures the operational mode and can be determined using a membrane potential slope-based measure [7], with the spike time distance of the spike trains driving the neuron, which measures spike train synchrony and can be determined using the multivariate SPIKE-distance metric [10]...
June 1, 2016: Mathematical Biosciences and Engineering: MBE
Timothée Masquelier, Geoffrey Portelli, Pierre Kornprobst
It is now reasonably well established that microsaccades (MS) enhance visual perception, although the underlying neuronal mechanisms are unclear. Here, using numerical simulations, we show that MSs enable efficient synchrony-based coding among the primate retinal ganglion cells (RGC). First, using a jerking contrast edge as stimulus, we demonstrate a qualitative change in the RGC responses: synchronous firing, with a precision in the 10 ms range, only occurs at high speed and high contrast. MSs appear to be sufficiently fast to be able reach the synchronous regime...
2016: Scientific Reports
Bruno Benedetti, Ariane Benedetti, Bernhard E Flucher
The auxiliary voltage-gated calcium channel subunit β4 supports targeting of calcium channels to the cell membrane, modulates ionic currents and promotes synaptic release in the central nervous system. β4 is abundant in cerebellum and its loss causes ataxia. However, the type of calcium channels and cerebellar functions affected by the loss of β4 are currently unknown. We therefore studied the structure and function of Purkinje cells in acute cerebellar slices of the β4 (-/-) ataxic (lethargic) mouse, finding that loss of β4 affected Purkinje cell input, morphology and pacemaker activity...
June 2016: European Journal of Neuroscience
Francesco Dose, Giuliano Taccola
OBJECTIVES: Explore the primary characteristics of afferent noisy stimuli, which optimally activate locomotor patterns at low intensity. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Intracellular and extracellular electrophysiological traces were derived from single motoneurons and from ventral roots, respectively. From these recordings, we obtained noisy stimulating protocols, delivered to a dorsal root (DR) of an isolated neonatal rat spinal cord, while recording fictive locomotion (FL) from ventral roots...
August 2016: Neuromodulation: Journal of the International Neuromodulation Society
Sho Kohyama, Akihiro Kanamori, Toshikazu Tanaka, Yuki Hara, Masashi Yamazaki
BACKGROUND: The carpal scaphoid is the most commonly fractured carpal bone in young adults after a fall on an outstretched arm that results in acute dorsal flexion of the wrist. However, stress fractures of the scaphoid are relatively rare. To the best of our knowledge, we describe the first case in the literature of carpal scaphoid stress fracture in a tennis player. CASE PRESENTATION: An 18-year-old Japanese man who was an elite junior tennis player was referred to our hospital after radiography and computed tomography revealed a carpal scaphoid fracture...
2016: Journal of Medical Case Reports
Etsuko Suzuki, Haruyuki Kamiya
Kainate-type glutamate receptors (KARs) are the third class of ionotropic glutamate receptors whose activation leads to the unique roles in regulating synaptic transmission and circuit functions. In contrast to AMPA receptors (AMPARs), little is known about the mechanism of synaptic localization of KARs. PSD-95, a major scaffold protein of the postsynaptic density, is a candidate molecule that regulates the synaptic KARs. Although PSD-95 was shown to bind directly to KARs subunits, it has not been tested whether PSD-95 regulates synaptic KARs in intact synapses...
June 2016: Neuroscience Research
Natalie Mrachacz-Kersting, Ning Jiang, Andrew James Thomas Stevenson, Imran Khan Niazi, Vladimir Kostic, Aleksandra Pavlovic, Sasa Radovanovic, Milica Djuric-Jovicic, Federica Agosta, Kim Dremstrup, Dario Farina
Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) have the potential to improve functionality in chronic stoke patients when applied over a large number of sessions. Here we evaluated the effect and the underlying mechanisms of three BCI training sessions in a double-blind sham-controlled design. The applied BCI is based on Hebbian principles of associativity that hypothesize that neural assemblies activated in a correlated manner will strengthen synaptic connections. Twenty-two chronic stroke patients were divided into two training groups...
March 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
Gabriel Gual, Azahara Fort-Vanmeerhaeghe, Daniel Romero-Rodríguez, Per A Tesch
Gual, G, Fort-Vanmeerhaeghe, A, Romero-Rodríguez, D, and Tesch, PA. Effects of in-season inertial resistance training with eccentric overload in a sports population at risk for patellar tendinopathy. J Strength Cond Res 30(7): 1834-1842, 2016-Volleyball and basketball players can be considered as a population at risk for patellar tendinopathy. Given the paradox that eccentric training elicits therapeutic benefits yet might provoke such injury, we investigated the influence of a weekly bout of inertial squat resistance exercise offering eccentric overload on lower limb muscle power and patellar tendon complaints...
July 2016: Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research
Mads Jochumsen, Nada Signal, Rasmus W Nedergaard, Denise Taylor, Heidi Haavik, Imran K Niazi
Long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP)-like plasticity are models of synaptic plasticity which have been associated with memory and learning. The induction of LTD and LTP-like plasticity, using different stimulation protocols, has been proposed as a means of addressing abnormalities in cortical excitability associated with conditions such as focal hand dystonia and stroke. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the excitability of the cortical projections to the tibialis anterior (TA) muscle could be decreased when dorsiflexion of the ankle joint was imagined and paired with peripheral electrical stimulation (ES) of the nerve supplying the antagonist soleus muscle...
2015: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
Chiun-Fan Chen, Yin-Tsong Lin, Wen-Shiang Chen, Felipe Fregni
BACKGROUND: Protocols to induce motor related neuroplasticity are usually directed to central neural structures such as the motor cortex or the spinal cord. OBJECTIVE: Herein, we aimed to evaluate the effects of peripheral nerve stimulation using a current intensity (stimulation intensity) approach to understand the contribution of the corticospinal system and total energy to electrically-induced neuroplasticity. METHODS: Electrical stimulation trains of lower intensity, interlaced with 2-s bursts of higher intensity, were applied to anesthetized rabbits...
January 2016: Brain Stimulation
Kenneth C Catania
Nature is replete with predator venoms that immobilize prey by targeting ion channels. Electric eels (Electrophorus electricus) take a different tactic to accomplish the same end. Striking eels emit electricity in volleys of 1 ms, high-voltage pulses. Each pulse is capable of activating prey motor neuron efferents, and hence muscles. In a typical attack, eel discharges cause brief, immobilizing tetanus, allowing eels to swallow small prey almost immediately. Here I show that when eels struggle with large prey or fish held precariously, they commonly curl to bring their own tail to the opposite side of prey, sandwiching it between the two poles of their powerful electric organ...
November 16, 2015: Current Biology: CB
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