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Vestibular inputs to premotor interneurons in the feline C1-C2 spinal cord

Anker, Adam Robert (2005) Vestibular inputs to premotor interneurons in the feline C1-C2 spinal cord. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The resting length of respiratory muscles must be altered during changes in posture in order to maintain stable ventilation. Prior studies showed that although the vestibular system contributes to these adjustments in respiratory muscle activity, the medullary respiratory groups receive little vestibular input. Additionally, previous transneuronal tracing studies and physiological experiments demonstrated that propriospinal interneurons in the C1-C2 spinal cord send projections to the diaphragm motor pool. The present study tested the hypothesis that C1-C2 interneurons mediate vestibular influences on diaphragm activity. Recordings were made from 145 C1-C2 neurons that could be antidromically activated from the C5-C6 ventral horn, 60 of which had spontaneous activity, during stimulation of vestibular receptors using electric current pulses or whole-body rotations in vertical planes. The firing of 19 of 31 spontaneously active neurons was modulated by vertical vestibular stimulation; the response vector orientations of most of these cells were closer to the pitch plane than the roll plane, and their response gains remained relatively constant across stimulus frequencies. Virtually all spontaneously active neurons responded robustly to electrical vestibular stimulation, and their response latencies were typically shorter than those for diaphragm motoneurons. Nonetheless, respiratory muscle responses to vestibular stimulation were still present after inactivation of the C1-C2 cord using large injections of either muscimol or ibotenic acid. These data suggest that C1-C2 propriospinal interneurons contribute to producing posturally-related responses of respiratory muscles, although additional pathways are also involved in generating these responses.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Anker, Adam
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairYates, Billbyates@pitt.eduBYATES
Committee MemberSved, Alansved@bns.pitt.eduSVED
Committee MemberStricker, Edwardstricker@bns.pitt.eduEDSTRICK
Date: 7 June 2005
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 11 April 2005
Approval Date: 7 June 2005
Submission Date: 21 April 2005
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Neuroscience
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: interneurons; respiratory control; vestibular system
Other ID:, etd-04212005-122009
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:40
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:41


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