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Recruitment Order Of Cat Abducens Motoneurons And Internuclear Neurons.

A. Pastor, D. González-Forero
Published 2003 · Biology, Medicine

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Abducens neurons undergo a dose-dependent synaptic blockade (either disinhibition or complete blockade) when tetanus neurotoxin (TeNT) is injected into the lateral rectus muscle at either a low (0.5) or a high dose (5 ng/kg). We studied the firing pattern and recruitment order in abducens neurons both in control and after TeNT injection. The eye position threshold for recruitment of control abducens neurons was exponentially related to the eye position and velocity sensitivities. We also found a constancy of recruitment threshold for different eye movement modalities (spontaneous, optokinetic, and vestibular). Exponential relationships were found, as well, for eye velocity sensitivity during saccades and for position and velocity sensitivities during the vestibulo-ocular reflex. Likewise, inverse relationships were found between recruitment threshold or position sensitivity with the antidromic latency in control abducens neurons. These relationships, however, did not apply following TeNT treatment. Neuronal firing after TeNT appeared either disinhibited (low dose) or depressed (high dose), but the relationships between neuronal sensitivities and recruitment still applied. However, the pattern of recruitment shifted toward the treated side as more inputs were blocked by the low- and high-dose treatments, respectively. Nonetheless, although the recruitment-to-sensitivity relationships persisted under the TeNT synaptic blockade, we conclude that synaptic inputs are determinant for establishing the recruitment threshold and recruitment spacing of abducens motoneurons and internuclear neurons.
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