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Sample records for additional somatosensory contact

  1. Microglia contact induces synapse formation in developing somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Miyamoto, Akiko; Wake, Hiroaki; Ishikawa, Ayako Wendy; Eto, Kei; Shibata, Keisuke; Murakoshi, Hideji; Koizumi, Schuichi; Moorhouse, Andrew J.; Yoshimura, Yumiko; Nabekura, Junichi

    2016-01-01

    Microglia are the immune cells of the central nervous system that play important roles in brain pathologies. Microglia also help shape neuronal circuits during development, via phagocytosing weak synapses and regulating neurogenesis. Using in vivo multiphoton imaging of layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons in the developing somatosensory cortex, we demonstrate here that microglial contact with dendrites directly induces filopodia formation. This filopodia formation occurs only around postnatal day 8–10, a period of intense synaptogenesis and when microglia have an activated phenotype. Filopodia formation is preceded by contact-induced Ca2+ transients and actin accumulation. Inhibition of microglia by genetic ablation decreases subsequent spine density, functional excitatory synapses and reduces the relative connectivity from layer 4 neurons. Our data provide the direct demonstration of microglial-induced spine formation and provide further insights into immune system regulation of neuronal circuit development, with potential implications for developmental disorders of immune and brain dysfunction. PMID:27558646

  2. [Allergic contact dermatitis as a consequence of additional occupations].

    PubMed

    Paravina, M; Stanojević, M; Spalević, Lj; Jovanović, D

    1994-01-01

    During discovering etiology of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) anamnesis is of great importance (date of life, profession of a patients, activities besides the profession, habits, hobbies). Many people have additional professions, habits, hobbies). Many people have additional professions, either as hobbies or as financial reasons. They can show senzibilization to substances they come to contact with. The aim of this work is to point to this possibility of generating ACD. Five petients suffering from ACD were presented. All of them were tested by standard series and by substances thej came to contact with, while going in for additional occupations. 1. A metalsmith, going in for beekeeping, had positive tests to propolis and balsam of Peru. 2. A construction worker growing fruit, hat positive tests to TMT and fingicid melpreks. 3. Stics weaver, engaging in constructions work, had positive tests to potassium bichromate. 4. Retired professor in matematics, engaged in constructions works, had positive tests to potassium bichromate, too. 5. A law student, going in for photography, had positive tests to colour film developer. The nature of allergens, length of exposure, possibilites for elimination of allergens, means of protection etc have been discussed. It was conslused that a detail examination of patients was necessary for proving causes of ACD.

  3. Hydrophobins as aqueous lubricant additive for a soft sliding contact.

    PubMed

    Lee, Seunghwan; Røn, Troels; Pakkanen, Kirsi I; Linder, Markus

    2015-01-01

    Two type II fungal hydrophobins, HFBI and FpHYD5, have been studied as aqueous lubricant additive at a nonpolar, compliant sliding contact (self-mated poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) contact) at two different concentrations, 0.1 mg/mL and 1.0 mg/mL. The two hydrophobins are featured as non-glycosylated (HFBI, m.w. ca. 7 kDa) vs glycosylated (FpHYD5, m.w. ca. 10 kDa) proteins. Far UV CD spectra of the two hydrophobins were very similar, suggesting overall structural similarity, but showed a noticeable difference according to the concentration. This is proposed to be related to the formation of multimers at 1.0 mg/mL. Despite 10-fold difference in the bulk concentration, the adsorbed masses of the hydrophobins onto PDMS surface obtained from the two solutions (0.1 and 1.0 mg/mL) were nearly identical, suggesting that a monolayer of the hydrophobins are formed from 0.1 mg/mL solution. PDMS-PDMS sliding interface was effectively lubricated by the hydrophobin solutions, and showed a reduction in the coefficient of friction by as much as ca. two orders of magnitude. Higher concentration solution (1.0 mg/mL) provided a superior lubrication, particularly in low-speed regime, where boundary lubrication characteristic is dominant via 'self-healing' mechanism. FpHYD5 revealed a better lubrication than HFBI presumably due to the presence of glycans and improved hydration of the sliding interface. Two type II hydrophobins function more favorably compared to a synthetic amphiphilic copolymer, PEO-PPO-PEO, with a similar molecular weight. This is ascribed to higher amount of adsorption of the hydrophobins to hydrophobic surfaces from aqueous solution.

  4. Discriminability of Single and Multichannel Intracortical Microstimulation within Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Overstreet, Cynthia K; Hellman, Randall B; Ponce Wong, Ruben D; Santos, Veronica J; Helms Tillery, Stephen I

    2016-01-01

    The addition of tactile and proprioceptive feedback to neuroprosthetic limbs is expected to significantly improve the control of these devices. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) of somatosensory cortex is a promising method of delivering this sensory feedback. To date, the main focus of somatosensory ICMS studies has been to deliver discriminable signals, corresponding to varying intensity, to a single location in cortex. However, multiple independent and simultaneous streams of sensory information will need to be encoded by ICMS to provide functionally relevant feedback for a neuroprosthetic limb (e.g., encoding contact events and pressure on multiple digits). In this study, we evaluated the ability of an awake, behaving non-human primate (Macaca mulatta) to discriminate ICMS stimuli delivered on multiple electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex. We delivered serial stimulation on single electrodes to evaluate the discriminability of sensations corresponding to ICMS of distinct cortical locations. Additionally, we delivered trains of multichannel stimulation, derived from a tactile sensor, synchronously across multiple electrodes. Our results indicate that discrimination of multiple ICMS stimuli is a challenging task, but that discriminable sensory percepts can be elicited by both single and multichannel ICMS on electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex.

  5. Discriminability of Single and Multichannel Intracortical Microstimulation within Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Overstreet, Cynthia K.; Hellman, Randall B.; Ponce Wong, Ruben D.; Santos, Veronica J.; Helms Tillery, Stephen I.

    2016-01-01

    The addition of tactile and proprioceptive feedback to neuroprosthetic limbs is expected to significantly improve the control of these devices. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) of somatosensory cortex is a promising method of delivering this sensory feedback. To date, the main focus of somatosensory ICMS studies has been to deliver discriminable signals, corresponding to varying intensity, to a single location in cortex. However, multiple independent and simultaneous streams of sensory information will need to be encoded by ICMS to provide functionally relevant feedback for a neuroprosthetic limb (e.g., encoding contact events and pressure on multiple digits). In this study, we evaluated the ability of an awake, behaving non-human primate (Macaca mulatta) to discriminate ICMS stimuli delivered on multiple electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex. We delivered serial stimulation on single electrodes to evaluate the discriminability of sensations corresponding to ICMS of distinct cortical locations. Additionally, we delivered trains of multichannel stimulation, derived from a tactile sensor, synchronously across multiple electrodes. Our results indicate that discrimination of multiple ICMS stimuli is a challenging task, but that discriminable sensory percepts can be elicited by both single and multichannel ICMS on electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex. PMID:27995126

  6. Definition and computation of intermolecular contact in liquids using additively weighted Voronoi tessellation.

    PubMed

    Isele-Holder, Rolf E; Rabideau, Brooks D; Ismail, Ahmed E

    2012-05-10

    We present a definition of intermolecular surface contact by applying weighted Voronoi tessellations to configurations of various organic liquids and water obtained from molecular dynamics simulations. This definition of surface contact is used to link the COSMO-RS model and molecular dynamics simulations. We demonstrate that additively weighted tessellation is the superior tessellation type to define intermolecular surface contact. Furthermore, we fit a set of weights for the elements C, H, O, N, F, and S for this tessellation type to obtain optimal agreement between the models. We use these radii to successfully predict contact statistics for compounds that were excluded from the fit and mixtures. The observed agreement between contact statistics from COSMO-RS and molecular dynamics simulations confirms the capability of the presented method to describe intermolecular contact. Furthermore, we observe that increasing polarity of the surfaces of the examined molecules leads to weaker agreement in the contact statistics. This is especially pronounced for pure water.

  7. Hypergravity exposure decreases gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity in axon terminals contacting pyramidal cells in the rat somatosensory cortex: a quantitative immunocytochemical image analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    D'Amelio, F.; Wu, L. C.; Fox, R. A.; Daunton, N. G.; Corcoran, M. L.; Polyakov, I.

    1998-01-01

    Quantitative evaluation of gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity (GABA-IR) in the hindlimb representation of the rat somatosensory cortex after 14 days of exposure to hypergravity (hyper-G) was conducted by using computer-assisted image processing. The area of GABA-IR axosomatic terminals apposed to pyramidal cells of cortical layer V was reduced in rats exposed to hyper-G compared with control rats, which were exposed either to rotation alone or to vivarium conditions. Based on previous immunocytochemical and behavioral studies, we suggest that this reduction is due to changes in sensory feedback information from muscle receptors. Consequently, priorities for muscle recruitment are altered at the cortical level, and a new pattern of muscle activity is thus generated. It is proposed that the reduction observed in GABA-IR of the terminal area around pyramidal neurons is the immunocytochemical expression of changes in the activity of GABAergic cells that participate in reprogramming motor outputs to achieve effective movement control in response to alterations in the afferent information.

  8. Novel composite plastics containing silver(I) acylpyrazolonato additives display potent antimicrobial activity by contact.

    PubMed

    Marchetti, Fabio; Palmucci, Jessica; Pettinari, Claudio; Pettinari, Riccardo; Condello, Francesca; Ferraro, Stefano; Marangoni, Mirko; Crispini, Alessandra; Scuri, Stefania; Grappasonni, Iolanda; Cocchioni, Mario; Nabissi, Massimo; Chierotti, Michele R; Gobetto, Roberto

    2015-01-07

    New silver(I) acylpyrazolonato derivatives displaying a mononuclear, polynuclear, or ionic nature, as a function of the ancillary azole ligands used in the synthesis, have been fully characterized by thermal analysis, solution NMR spectroscopy, solid-state IR and NMR spectroscopies, and X-ray diffraction techniques. These derivatives have been embedded in polyethylene (PE) matrix, and the antimicrobial activity of the composite materials has been tested against three bacterial strains (E. coli, P. aeruginosa, and S. aureus): Most of the composites show antimicrobial action comparable to PE embedded with AgNO3 . Tests by contact and release tests for specific migration of silver from PE composites clearly indicate that, at least in the case of the PE, for composites containing polynuclear silver(I) additives, the antimicrobial action is exerted by contact, without release of silver ions. Moreover, PE composites can be re-used several times, displaying the same antimicrobial activity. Membrane permeabilization studies and induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation tests confirm the disorganization of bacterial cell membranes. The cytotoxic effect, evaluated in CD34(+) cells by MTT (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazole-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazoliumbromide) and CFU (colony forming units) assays, indicates that the PE composites do not induce cytotoxicity in human cells. Studies of ecotoxicity, based on the test of Daphnia magna, confirm tolerability of the PE composites by higher organisms and exclude the release of Ag(+) ions in sufficient amounts to affect water environment.

  9. Tuning the Receding Contact Angle on Hydrogels by Addition of Particles.

    PubMed

    Boulogne, François; Ingremeau, François; Limat, Laurent; Stone, Howard A

    2016-06-07

    Control of the swelling, chemical functionalization, and adhesivity of hydrogels are finding new applications in a wide range of material systems. We investigate experimentally the effect of adsorbed particles on hydrogels on the depinning of contact lines. In our experiments, a water drop containing polystyrene microspheres is deposited on a swelling hydrogel, which leads to the drop absorption and particle deposition. Two regimes are observed: a decreasing drop height with a pinned contact line followed by a receding contact line. We show that increasing the particles concentration increases the duration of the first regime and significantly decreases the total absorption time. The adsorbed particles increase the pinning force at the contact line. Finally, we develop a method to measure the receding contact angle with the consideration of the hydrogel swelling.

  10. Locomotor adaptation and aftereffects in patients with reduced somatosensory input due to peripheral neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Bunday, Karen L; Bronstein, Adolfo M

    2009-12-01

    We studied 12 peripheral neuropathy patients (PNP) and 13 age-matched controls with the "broken escalator" paradigm to see how somatosensory loss affects gait adaptation and the release and recovery ("braking") of the forward trunk overshoot observed during this locomotor aftereffect. Trunk displacement, foot contact signals, and leg electromyograms (EMGs) were recorded while subjects walked onto a stationary sled (BEFORE trials), onto the moving sled (MOVING or adaptation trials), and again onto the stationary sled (AFTER trials). PNP were unsteady during the MOVING trials, but this progressively improved, indicating some adaptation. During the after trials, 77% of control subjects displayed a trunk overshoot aftereffect but over half of the PNP (58%) did not. The PNP without a trunk aftereffect adapted to the MOVING trials by increasing distance traveled; subsequently this was expressed as increased distance traveled during the aftereffect rather than as a trunk overshoot. This clear separation in consequent aftereffects was not seen in the normal controls suggesting that, as a result of somatosensory loss, some PNP use distinctive strategies to negotiate the moving sled, in turn resulting in a distinct aftereffects. In addition, PNP displayed earlier than normal anticipatory leg EMG activity during the first after trial. Although proprioceptive inputs are not critical for the emergence or termination of the aftereffect, somatosensory loss induces profound changes in motor adaptation and anticipation. Our study has found individual differences in adaptive motor performance, indicative that PNP adopt different feed-forward gait compensatory strategies in response to peripheral sensory loss.

  11. [Antibacterial effect of food additives and detergents against histamine-producing bacteria on food contact material surfaces].

    PubMed

    Kamii, Eri; Terada, Gaku; Akiyama, Junki; Isshiki, Kenji

    2011-01-01

    We investigated the antibacterial activity of food additives and detergents against histamine-producing bacteria on food contact material surfaces. Based on minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) testing with Morganella morganii NBRC3848, Raoultella planticola NBRC3317 and Enterobacter aerogenes NCTC10006, we screened nine food additives and four detergents with relatively high inhibitory potency. We prepared food contact material surfaces contaminated with histamine-producing bacteria, and dipped them into fourteen agents (100 µg/mL). Sodium hypochlorite, benzalkonium chloride, benzethonium chloride, n-hexadecyltrimethylammonium chloride and 1-n-hexadecylpyridinium chloride showed antibacterial activity against histamine-producing bacteria. We prepared low concentrations of the five agents (10 and 50 µg/mL) and tested them in the same way. Sodium hypochlorite showed high antibacterial activity at 10 µg/mL, and the other four showed activity at 50 µg/mL. So, washing the material surface with these reagents might be effective to prevent histamine food poisoning owing to bacterial contamination of food contact surfaces.

  12. Additional Evaluation of the Point-of-Contact Circulating Cathodic Antigen Assay for Schistosoma mansoni Infection.

    PubMed

    Mwinzi, Pauline N M; Kittur, Nupur; Ochola, Elizabeth; Cooper, Philip J; Campbell, Carl H; King, Charles H; Colley, Daniel G

    2015-01-01

    Studies of the urine-based point-of-contact cathodic circulating antigen test (POC-CCA) in Schistosoma mansoni-endemic settings in Africa indicate it has good sensitivity in detecting infections, but in areas of low prevalence, the POC-CCA can be positive for persons who are egg-negative by Kato-Katz stool assays. We examined the POC-CCA assay for: (a) batch-to-batch stability; (b) intra-reader and inter-reader variability; (c) day-to-day variability compared to Kato-Katz stool assays, and (d) to see if praziquantel (PZQ) treatment converted Kato-Katz-negative/POC-CCA positive individuals to POC-CCA negativity. We found essentially no batch-to-batch variation, negligible intra-reader variability (2%), and substantial agreement for inter-reader reliability. Some day-to-day variation was observed over 5 days of urine collection, but less than the variation in Kato-Katz stool assays over 3 days. To evaluate the effect of treatment on Kato-Katz(-)/POC-CCA(+) children, 149 children in an area of 10-15% prevalence who were Kato-Katz(-) based on 3 stool samples but POC-CCA(+) were enrolled. Seven days after treatment (PZQ 40 mg/kg) samples were again collected and tested. Almost half (47%) POC-CCA positive children turned negative. Those still POC-CCA positive received a second treatment, and 34% of them turned POC-CCA negative upon this second treatment. Most who remained POC-CCA positive shifted each time to a "lesser" POC-CCA "level of positivity." The data suggest that most Kato-Katz-negative/POC-CCA positive individuals harbor low-intensity infections, and each treatment kills all or some of their adult worms. The data also suggest that when evaluated by a more sensitive assay, the effective cure rates for PZQ are significantly less than those inferred from fecal testing. These findings have public health significance for the mapping and monitoring of Schistosoma infections and in planning the transition from schistosomiasis morbidity control to elimination of

  13. Additional Evaluation of the Point-of-Contact Circulating Cathodic Antigen Assay for Schistosoma mansoni Infection

    PubMed Central

    Mwinzi, Pauline N. M.; Kittur, Nupur; Ochola, Elizabeth; Cooper, Philip J.; Campbell, Carl H.; King, Charles H.; Colley, Daniel G.

    2015-01-01

    Studies of the urine-based point-of-contact cathodic circulating antigen test (POC-CCA) in Schistosoma mansoni-endemic settings in Africa indicate it has good sensitivity in detecting infections, but in areas of low prevalence, the POC-CCA can be positive for persons who are egg-negative by Kato-Katz stool assays. We examined the POC-CCA assay for: (a) batch-to-batch stability; (b) intra-reader and inter-reader variability; (c) day-to-day variability compared to Kato-Katz stool assays, and (d) to see if praziquantel (PZQ) treatment converted Kato-Katz-negative/POC-CCA positive individuals to POC-CCA negativity. We found essentially no batch-to-batch variation, negligible intra-reader variability (2%), and substantial agreement for inter-reader reliability. Some day-to-day variation was observed over 5 days of urine collection, but less than the variation in Kato-Katz stool assays over 3 days. To evaluate the effect of treatment on Kato-Katz(−)/POC-CCA(+) children, 149 children in an area of 10–15% prevalence who were Kato-Katz(−) based on 3 stool samples but POC-CCA(+) were enrolled. Seven days after treatment (PZQ 40 mg/kg) samples were again collected and tested. Almost half (47%) POC-CCA positive children turned negative. Those still POC-CCA positive received a second treatment, and 34% of them turned POC-CCA negative upon this second treatment. Most who remained POC-CCA positive shifted each time to a “lesser” POC-CCA “level of positivity.” The data suggest that most Kato-Katz-negative/POC-CCA positive individuals harbor low-intensity infections, and each treatment kills all or some of their adult worms. The data also suggest that when evaluated by a more sensitive assay, the effective cure rates for PZQ are significantly less than those inferred from fecal testing. These findings have public health significance for the mapping and monitoring of Schistosoma infections and in planning the transition from schistosomiasis morbidity control to

  14. Dependence of the negative BOLD response on somatosensory stimulus intensity.

    PubMed

    Klingner, Carsten M; Hasler, Caroline; Brodoehl, Stefan; Witte, Otto W

    2010-10-15

    The primary somatosensory cortex (SI) has been shown to encode the intensity of a stimulus applied to the contralateral side of the body. Recent studies have demonstrated that ipsilateral SI is also involved in the processing of somatosensory information. In this study, we investigated the dependence of the negative BOLD response in ipsilateral SI on the intensity of somatosensory stimulation. Functional MRI was performed in 12 healthy subjects during electrical median nerve stimulation at four different intensities. A monotonic relationship between stimulus intensity and the strength of the negative BOLD response in ipsilateral SI was found. Additionally, a psychophysiological experiment revealed tight coupling between the stimulus intensity applied to one hand and increased perceptual threshold of the other hand. These findings indicate a stimulus intensity-dependent inhibition of ipsilateral SI.

  15. Population coding in somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Rasmus S; Panzeri, Stefano; Diamond, Mathew E

    2002-08-01

    Computational analyses have begun to elucidate which components of somatosensory cortical population activity may encode basic stimulus features. Recent results from rat barrel cortex suggest that the essence of this code is not synergistic spike patterns, but rather the precise timing of single neuron's first post-stimulus spikes. This may form the basis for a fast, robust population code.

  16. Coupling of fingertip somatosensory information to head and body sway

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeka, J. J.; Schoner, G.; Dijkstra, T.; Ribeiro, P.; Lackner, J. R.

    1997-01-01

    Light touch contact of a fingertip with a stationary surface can provide orientation information that enhances control of upright stance. Slight changes in contact force at the fingertip provide sensory cues about the direction of body sway, allowing attenuation of sway. In the present study, we asked to which extent somatosensory cues are part of the postural control system, that is, which sensory signal supports this coupling? We investigated postural control not only when the contact surface was stationary, but also when it was moving rhythmically (from 0.1 to 0.5 Hz). In doing so, we brought somatosensory cues from the hand into conflict with other parts of the postural control system. Our focus was the temporal relationship between body sway and the contact surface. Postural sway was highly coherent with contact surface motion. Head and body sway assumed the frequency of the moving contact surface at all test frequencies. To account for these results, a simple model was formulated by approximating the postural control system as a second-order linear dynamical system. The influence of the touch stimulus was captured as the difference between the velocity of the contact surface and the velocity of body sway, multiplied by a coupling constant. Comparison of empirical results (relative phase, coherence, and gain) with model predictions supports the hypothesis of coupling between body sway and touch cues through the velocity of the somatosensory stimulus at the fingertip. One subject, who perceived movement of the touch surface, demonstrated weaker coupling than other subjects, suggesting that cognitive mechanisms introduce flexibility into the postural control scheme.

  17. Impact of contacting study authors to obtain additional data for systematic reviews: diagnostic accuracy studies for hepatic fibrosis

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Seventeen of 172 included studies in a recent systematic review of blood tests for hepatic fibrosis or cirrhosis reported diagnostic accuracy results discordant from 2 × 2 tables, and 60 studies reported inadequate data to construct 2 × 2 tables. This study explores the yield of contacting authors of diagnostic accuracy studies and impact on the systematic review findings. Methods Sixty-six corresponding authors were sent letters requesting additional information or clarification of data from 77 studies. Data received from the authors were synthesized with data included in the previous review, and diagnostic accuracy sensitivities, specificities, and positive and likelihood ratios were recalculated. Results Of the 66 authors, 68% were successfully contacted and 42% provided additional data for 29 out of 77 studies (38%). All authors who provided data at all did so by the third emailed request (ten authors provided data after one request). Authors of more recent studies were more likely to be located and provide data compared to authors of older studies. The effects of requests for additional data on the conclusions regarding the utility of blood tests to identify patients with clinically significant fibrosis or cirrhosis were generally small for ten out of 12 tests. Additional data resulted in reclassification (using median likelihood ratio estimates) from less useful to moderately useful or vice versa for the remaining two blood tests and enabled the calculation of an estimate for a third blood test for which previously the data had been insufficient to do so. We did not identify a clear pattern for the directional impact of additional data on estimates of diagnostic accuracy. Conclusions We successfully contacted and received results from 42% of authors who provided data for 38% of included studies. Contacting authors of studies evaluating the diagnostic accuracy of serum biomarkers for hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis in hepatitis C patients

  18. Layered Double Hydroxide Nanoplatelets with Excellent Tribological Properties under High Contact Pressure as Water-Based Lubricant Additives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hongdong; Liu, Yuhong; Chen, Zhe; Wu, Bibo; Xu, Sailong; Luo, Jianbin

    2016-03-01

    High efficient and sustainable utilization of water-based lubricant is essential for saving energy. In this paper, a kind of layered double hydroxide (LDH) nanoplatelets is synthesized and well dispersed in water due to the surface modification with oleylamine. The excellent tribological properties of the oleylamine-modified Ni-Al LDH (NiAl-LDH/OAm) nanoplatelets as water-based lubricant additives are evaluated by the tribological tests in an aqueous environment. The modified LDH nanoplatelets are found to not only reduce the friction but also enhance the wear resistance, compared with the water-based cutting fluid and lubricants containing other particle additives. By adding 0.5 wt% LDH nanoplatelets, under 1.5 GPa initial contact pressure, the friction coefficient, scar diameter, depth and width of the wear track dramatically decrease by 83.1%, 43.2%, 88.5% and 59.5%, respectively. It is considered that the sufficiently small size and the excellent dispersion of NiAl-LDH/OAm nanoplatelets in water are the key factors, so as to make them enter the contact area, form a lubricating film and prevent direct collision of asperity peaks. Our investigations demonstrate that the LDH nanoplatelet as a water-based lubricant additive has a great potential value in industrial application.

  19. Layered Double Hydroxide Nanoplatelets with Excellent Tribological Properties under High Contact Pressure as Water-Based Lubricant Additives

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hongdong; Liu, Yuhong; Chen, Zhe; Wu, Bibo; Xu, Sailong; Luo, Jianbin

    2016-01-01

    High efficient and sustainable utilization of water-based lubricant is essential for saving energy. In this paper, a kind of layered double hydroxide (LDH) nanoplatelets is synthesized and well dispersed in water due to the surface modification with oleylamine. The excellent tribological properties of the oleylamine-modified Ni-Al LDH (NiAl-LDH/OAm) nanoplatelets as water-based lubricant additives are evaluated by the tribological tests in an aqueous environment. The modified LDH nanoplatelets are found to not only reduce the friction but also enhance the wear resistance, compared with the water-based cutting fluid and lubricants containing other particle additives. By adding 0.5 wt% LDH nanoplatelets, under 1.5 GPa initial contact pressure, the friction coefficient, scar diameter, depth and width of the wear track dramatically decrease by 83.1%, 43.2%, 88.5% and 59.5%, respectively. It is considered that the sufficiently small size and the excellent dispersion of NiAl-LDH/OAm nanoplatelets in water are the key factors, so as to make them enter the contact area, form a lubricating film and prevent direct collision of asperity peaks. Our investigations demonstrate that the LDH nanoplatelet as a water-based lubricant additive has a great potential value in industrial application. PMID:26951794

  20. The perception of pain in others suppresses somatosensory oscillations: a magnetoencephalography study.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Yawei; Yang, Chia-Yen; Lin, Ching-Po; Lee, Po-Lei; Decety, Jean

    2008-05-01

    Accumulating evidence demonstrates that similar neural circuits are activated during the first-hand experience of pain and the observation of pain in others. However, most functional MRI studies did not detect signal change in the primary somatosensory cortex during pain empathy. To test if the perception of pain in others involves the primary somatosensory cortex, neuromagnetic oscillatory activity was recorded from the primary somatosensory cortex in 16 participants while they observed static pictures depicting body parts in painful and non-painful situations. The left median nerve was stimulated at the wrist, and the poststimulus rebounds of the approximately 10-Hz somatosensory cortical oscillations were quantified. Compared to the baseline condition, the level of the approximately 10-Hz oscillations was suppressed during both of the observational situations, indicating the activation of the primary somatosensory cortex. Importantly, watching painful compared to non-painful situations suppressed somatosensory oscillations to a significant stronger degree. In addition, the suppression caused by perceiving others in the painful relative to the non-painful situations correlated with the perspective taking subscale of the interpersonal reaction index. These results, consistent with the mirror-neuron system, demonstrate that the perception of pain in others modulates neural activity in primary somatosensory cortex and supports the idea that the perception of pain in others elicits subtle somatosensory activity that may be difficult to detect by fMRI techniques.

  1. Callosal projections in rat somatosensory cortex are altered by early removal of afferent input.

    PubMed Central

    Koralek, K A; Killackey, H P

    1990-01-01

    During the first postnatal week, the distribution of callosal projection neurons in the rat somatosensory cortex changes from a uniform to a discontinuous pattern. To determine if this change is influenced by afferent inputs to the somatosensory cortex, the effect of both early unilateral infraorbital nerve section and unilateral removal of the dorsal thalamus on the distribution of callosal projections in rat somatosensory cortex was examined. One month after either of the above manipulations at birth, the tangential distribution of callosal projections in the somatosensory cortex was examined using the combined retrograde and anterograde transport of horseradish peroxidase. Both manipulations alter the distribution of callosal projection neurons and terminations in the somatosensory cortex. After infraorbital nerve section, the distribution of callosal projections is altered in the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex. The abnormalities observed are consistent with the altered distribution of thalamocortical projections. In addition, consistent abnormalities were observed in the pattern of callosal projections of the second somatosensory area of both hemispheres. Most notably, they are absent in a portion of the region that contains the representation of the mystacial vibrissae and sinus hairs in this area. Thalamic ablation resulted in highly aberrant patterns of callosal projections in the somatosensory cortex on the operated side, where abnormal bands and clusters of callosal projections were observed in apparently random locations. These results are interpreted as evidence that both peripheral and central inputs influence the maturational changes in the distribution of callosal projection neurons. Images PMID:2304906

  2. Locomotor Adaptation and Aftereffects in Patients With Reduced Somatosensory Input Due to Peripheral Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Bunday, Karen L.

    2009-01-01

    We studied 12 peripheral neuropathy patients (PNP) and 13 age-matched controls with the “broken escalator” paradigm to see how somatosensory loss affects gait adaptation and the release and recovery (“braking”) of the forward trunk overshoot observed during this locomotor aftereffect. Trunk displacement, foot contact signals, and leg electromyograms (EMGs) were recorded while subjects walked onto a stationary sled (BEFORE trials), onto the moving sled (MOVING or adaptation trials), and again onto the stationary sled (AFTER trials). PNP were unsteady during the MOVING trials, but this progressively improved, indicating some adaptation. During the after trials, 77% of control subjects displayed a trunk overshoot aftereffect but over half of the PNP (58%) did not. The PNP without a trunk aftereffect adapted to the MOVING trials by increasing distance traveled; subsequently this was expressed as increased distance traveled during the aftereffect rather than as a trunk overshoot. This clear separation in consequent aftereffects was not seen in the normal controls suggesting that, as a result of somatosensory loss, some PNP use distinctive strategies to negotiate the moving sled, in turn resulting in a distinct aftereffects. In addition, PNP displayed earlier than normal anticipatory leg EMG activity during the first after trial. Although proprioceptive inputs are not critical for the emergence or termination of the aftereffect, somatosensory loss induces profound changes in motor adaptation and anticipation. Our study has found individual differences in adaptive motor performance, indicative that PNP adopt different feed-forward gait compensatory strategies in response to peripheral sensory loss. PMID:19741105

  3. Additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smalheer, C. V.

    1973-01-01

    The chemistry of lubricant additives is discussed to show what the additives are chemically and what functions they perform in the lubrication of various kinds of equipment. Current theories regarding the mode of action of lubricant additives are presented. The additive groups discussed include the following: (1) detergents and dispersants, (2) corrosion inhibitors, (3) antioxidants, (4) viscosity index improvers, (5) pour point depressants, and (6) antifouling agents.

  4. Influence of addition order and contact time on thorium(IV) retention by hematite in the presence of humic acids.

    PubMed

    Reiller, Pascal; Casanova, Florence; Moulin, Valérie

    2005-03-15

    The influence of addition order and contact time in the system hematite (alpha-Fe2O3)-humic acid (HA)-thorium(IV) (Th(IV)) was studied in batch experiments. Th(IV) is considered here as a chemical analogue of other actinides (IV). The sorption isotherms were acquired varying pH in the range 2-10 and HA concentration in the range 1-100 mg/L. As already observed by numerous authors, Th(IV) retention was hindered when HA and hematite were equilibrated beforehand during 24 h. As it has been observed in a previous study, this effect was drastic when the ratio between humic and surface (iron oxide) sites exceeds a critical value. However, when HA was added after a 24-h equilibration of the hematite-Th(IV) system, Th(IV) was barely desorbed from the iron oxide surface. Furthermore, no drastic effect of the ratio between humic and surface sites could be evidenced, as the increase of HA concentration only results in a slight monotonic decrease in Th(IV) retention. Increasing contact time between components of the systems only indicated slight Th(IV) retention variation. This was interpreted as a consequence of slow kinetic controls of both the Th(IV)-HA complexation and HA-hematite sorption.

  5. Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping of stroke lesions underlying somatosensory deficits

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Sarah; Kessner, Simon S.; Cheng, Bastian; Bönstrup, Marlene; Schulz, Robert; Hummel, Friedhelm C.; De Bruyn, Nele; Peeters, Andre; Van Pesch, Vincent; Duprez, Thierry; Sunaert, Stefan; Schrooten, Maarten; Feys, Hilde; Gerloff, Christian; Thomalla, Götz; Thijs, Vincent; Verheyden, Geert

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between stroke lesion location and the resulting somatosensory deficit. We studied exteroceptive and proprioceptive somatosensory symptoms and stroke lesions in 38 patients with first-ever acute stroke. The Erasmus modified Nottingham Sensory Assessment was used to clinically evaluate somatosensory functioning in the arm and hand within the first week after stroke onset. Additionally, more objective measures such as the perceptual threshold of touch and somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded. Non-parametric voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping was performed to investigate lesion contribution to different somatosensory deficits in the upper limb. Additionally, structural connectivity of brain areas that demonstrated the strongest association with somatosensory symptoms was determined, using probabilistic fiber tracking based on diffusion tensor imaging data from a healthy age-matched sample. Voxels with a significant association to somatosensory deficits were clustered in two core brain regions: the central parietal white matter, also referred to as the sensory component of the superior thalamic radiation, and the parietal operculum close to the insular cortex, representing the secondary somatosensory cortex. Our objective recordings confirmed findings from clinical assessments. Probabilistic tracking connected the first region to thalamus, internal capsule, brain stem, postcentral gyrus, cerebellum, and frontal pathways, while the second region demonstrated structural connections to thalamus, insular and primary somatosensory cortex. This study reveals that stroke lesions in the sensory fibers of the superior thalamocortical radiation and the parietal operculum are significantly associated with multiple exteroceptive and proprioceptive deficits in the arm and hand. PMID:26900565

  6. Spatial coincidence modulates interaction between visual and somatosensory evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Schürmann, Martin; Kolev, Vasil; Menzel, Kristina; Yordanova, Juliana

    2002-05-07

    The time course of interaction between concurrently applied visual and somatosensory stimulation with respect to evoked potentials (EPs) was studied. Visual stimuli, either in the left or right hemifield, and electric stimuli to the left wrist were delivered either alone or simultaneously. Visual and somatosensory EPs were summed and compared to bimodal EPs (BiEP, response to actual combination of both modalities). Temporal coincidence of stimuli lead to sub-additive or over-additive amplitudes in BiEPs in several time windows between 75 and 275 ms. Additional effects of spatial coincidence (left wrist with left hemifield) were found between 75 and 300 ms and beyond 450 ms. These interaction effects hint at a temporo-spatial pattern of multiple brain areas participating in the process of multimodal integration.

  7. Spatial frames of reference and somatosensory processing: a neuropsychological perspective.

    PubMed Central

    Vallar, G

    1997-01-01

    In patients with lesions in the right hemisphere, frequently involving the posterior parietal regions, left-sided somatosensory (and visual and motor) deficits not only reflect a disorder of primary sensory processes, but also have a higher-order component related to a defective spatial representation of the body. This additional factor, related to right brain damage, is clinically relevant: contralesional hemianaesthesia (and hemianopia and hemiplegia) is more frequent in right brain-damaged patients than in patients with damage to the left side of the brain. Three main lines of investigation suggest the existence of this higher-order pathological factor. (i) Right brain-damaged patients with left hemineglect may show physiological evidence of preserved processing of somatosensory stimuli, of which they are not aware. Similar results have been obtained in the visual domain. (ii) Direction-specific vestibular, visual optokinetic and somatosensory or proprioceptive stimulations may displace spatial frames of reference in right brain-damaged patients with left hemineglect, reducing or increasing the extent of the patients' ipsilesional rightward directional error, and bring about similar directional effects in normal subjects. These stimulations, which may improve or worsen a number of manifestations of the neglect syndrome (such as extrapersonal and personal hemineglect), have similar effects on the severity of left somatosensory deficits (defective detection of tactile stimuli, position sense disorders). However, visuospatial hemineglect and the somatosensory deficits improved by these stimulations are independent, albeit related, disorders. (iii) The severity of left somatosensory deficits is affected by the spatial position of body segments, with reference to the midsagittal plane of the trunk. A general implication of these observations is that spatial (non-somatotopic) levels of representation contribute to corporeal awareness. The neural basis of these spatial

  8. Normalization in human somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Brouwer, Gijs Joost; Arnedo, Vanessa; Offen, Shani; Heeger, David J; Grant, Arthur C

    2015-11-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to measure activity in human somatosensory cortex and to test for cross-digit suppression. Subjects received stimulation (vibration of varying amplitudes) to the right thumb (target) with or without concurrent stimulation of the right middle finger (mask). Subjects were less sensitive to target stimulation (psychophysical detection thresholds were higher) when target and mask digits were stimulated concurrently compared with when the target was stimulated in isolation. fMRI voxels in a region of the left postcentral gyrus each responded when either digit was stimulated. A regression model (called a forward model) was used to separate the fMRI measurements from these voxels into two hypothetical channels, each of which responded selectively to only one of the two digits. For the channel tuned to the target digit, responses in the left postcentral gyrus increased with target stimulus amplitude but were suppressed by concurrent stimulation to the mask digit, evident as a shift in the gain of the response functions. For the channel tuned to the mask digit, a constant baseline response was evoked for all target amplitudes when the mask was absent and responses decreased with increasing target amplitude when the mask was concurrently presented. A computational model based on divisive normalization provided a good fit to the measurements for both mask-absent and target + mask stimulation. We conclude that the normalization model can explain cross-digit suppression in human somatosensory cortex, supporting the hypothesis that normalization is a canonical neural computation.

  9. Ionic liquids based on phosphonium cations as neat lubricants or lubricant additives for a steel/steel contact.

    PubMed

    Otero, Inés; López, Enriqueta R; Reichelt, Manuela; Villanueva, María; Salgado, Josefa; Fernández, Josefa

    2014-08-13

    After doing several miscibility essays with eight ionic liquids (ILs) and four base oils, the ILs tri(butyl)ethylphosphonium diethylphosphate [P4,4,4,2][C2C2PO4] and trihexyl(tetradecyl)phosphonium tris(pentafluoroethyl)trifluorophosphate [P6,6,6,14][(C2F5)3PF3] were selected to be studied as lubricant additives. The neat IL [P4,4,4,2][C2C2PO4], the base oils, and several blends were characterized in terms of density, viscosity, and thermal stability. The tribological performance of the miscible base oil/IL blends (1 wt %) and the neat [P4,4,4,2][C2C2PO4] were evaluated for the lubrication of an AISI 420 steel-100Cr6 steel contact pair. The friction coefficients and wear volumes obtained are also compared with those corresponding to the pure base oils and their mixtures with conventional additive zinc dialkyldithiophosphate (ZDDP). As neat lubricants, [P4,4,4,2][C2C2PO4] showed the best antifriction ability, whereas in terms of wear, better results were obtained with [P6,6,6,14][(C2F5)3PF3]. However, higher improvements in both friction and wear were found for blends containing [P4,4,4,2][C2C2PO4]. XPS analyses of the worn surfaces lubricated with these mixtures indicated the presence of phosphorus in the tribofilm formed on the wear track. However, this compound was slightly detected on tribosamples lubricated with blends containing [P6,6,6,14][(C2F5)3PF3].

  10. Illusory and veridical mapping of tactile objects in the primary somatosensory and posterior parietal cortex.

    PubMed

    Bufalari, Ilaria; Di Russo, Francesco; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2014-07-01

    While several behavioral and neuroscience studies have explored visual, auditory, and cross-modal illusions, information about the phenomenology and neural correlates of somatosensory illusions is meager. By combining psychophysics and somatosensory evoked potentials, we explored in healthy humans the neural correlates of 2 compelling tactuo-proprioceptive illusions, namely Aristotle (1 object touching the contact area between 2 crossed fingers is perceived as 2 lateral objects) and Reverse illusions (2 lateral objects are perceived as 1 between crossed-fingers object). These illusions likely occur because of the tactuo-proprioceptive conflict induced by fingers being crossed in a non-natural posture. We found that different regions in the somatosensory stream exhibit different proneness to the illusions. Early electroencephalographic somatosensory activity (at 20 ms) originating in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) reflects the phenomenal rather than the physical properties of the stimuli. Notably, later activity (around 200 ms) originating in the posterior parietal cortex is higher when subjects resist the illusions. Thus, while S1 activity is related to illusory perception, PPC acts as a conflict resolver that recodes tactile events from somatotopic to spatiotopic frames of reference and ultimately enables veridical perception.

  11. Somatosensory disturbance by methylmercury exposure.

    PubMed

    Takaoka, Shigeru; Kawakami, Yoshinobu; Fujino, Tadashi; Oh-ishi, Fumihiro; Motokura, Fukuo; Kumagai, Yoshio; Miyaoka, Tetsu

    2008-05-01

    Minamata disease is methylmercury poisoning from consuming fish and shellfish contaminated by industrial waste. The polluted seafood was widely consumed in the area around Minamata, but many individuals were never examined for or classified as having Minamata disease. Following the determination of the Supreme Court of Japan in October 2004 that the Japanese Government was responsible for spreading Minamata disease, over 13,000 residents came forward to be examined for Minamata disease. We studied 197 residents from the Minamata area who had a history of fish consumption during the polluted period to determine the importance of sensory symptoms and findings in making a diagnosis of Minamata disease. We divided the exposed subjects into non-complicated (E) and complicated (E+N) groups based on the absence or presence of other neurological or neurologically related disorders and compared them to residents in control area (C) after matching for age and sex. We quantitatively measured four somatosensory modalities (minimal tactile sense by Semmes-Weinstein monofilaments, vibration sense, position sense, and two-point discrimination) and did psychophysical tests of fine-surface-texture discrimination. Subjective complaints were higher in groups E and E+N than C. Over 90% of E+N and E subjects displayed a sensory disturbance on conventional neurological examination and 28% had visual constriction. About 50% of the E and E +N groups had upper and lower extremity ataxia and about 70% had truncal ataxia. The prevalence of these neurological findings was significantly higher in exposed subjects than controls. All sensory modalities were impaired in the E and E+N groups. All four quantitatively measured sensory modalities were correlated. The prevalence of complaints, neurological findings, and sensory impairment was similar or a little worse in group E+N than in group E. We conclude that sensory symptoms and findings are important in making the diagnosis of Minamata disease

  12. The structure of somatosensory information for human postural control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeka, J. J.; Ribeiro, P.; Oie, K.; Lackner, J. R.

    1998-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to determine the properties of the somatosensory stimulus that alter its temporal coupling to body sway. Six standing subjects were tested while touching a metal plate positioned either directly in front of or lateral to the subject. In each condition, the plate moved 4 mm at 0.2 Hz in either the medial-lateral (ML) or anterior-posterior direction (AP). The results showed that coupling between body sway and touch plate movement was strongest when the touch plate moved in a direction along the longitudinal axis of the arm. Coupling strength was weaker when the touch plate moved perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the arm. The results consistently show that a radial expansion stimulus was more effective than a lamellar-type stimulus at the fingertip. Moreover, somatosensory information from a surface is interpreted in terms of the orientation of the contact limb and the potential degrees of freedom available through its movement.

  13. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors are colocalized and coregulated with whisker barrels in rat somatosensory cortex

    SciTech Connect

    Vos, P.; Kaufmann, D.; Hand, P.J.; Wolfe, B.B. )

    1990-07-01

    Autoradiography has been used to visualize independently the subtypes of beta-adrenergic receptors in rat somatosensory cortex. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors, but not beta 1-adrenergic receptors colocalize with whisker barrels in this tissue. Thus, each whisker sends a specific multisynaptic pathway to the somatosensory cortex that can be histochemically visualized and only one subtype of beta-adrenergic receptor is specifically associated with this cortical representation. Additionally, neonatal lesion of any or all of the whisker follicles results in loss of the corresponding barrel(s) as shown by histochemical markers. This loss is paralleled by a similar loss in the organization of beta 2-adrenergic receptors in the somatosensory cortex. Other results indicate that these beta 2-adrenergic receptors are not involved in moment-to-moment signal transmission in this pathway and, additionally, are not involved in a gross way in the development of whisker-barrel array.

  14. Prioritized Contact Transport Stream

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, Walter Lee, Jr. (Inventor)

    2015-01-01

    A detection process, contact recognition process, classification process, and identification process are applied to raw sensor data to produce an identified contact record set containing one or more identified contact records. A prioritization process is applied to the identified contact record set to assign a contact priority to each contact record in the identified contact record set. Data are removed from the contact records in the identified contact record set based on the contact priorities assigned to those contact records. A first contact stream is produced from the resulting contact records. The first contact stream is streamed in a contact transport stream. The contact transport stream may include and stream additional contact streams. The contact transport stream may be varied dynamically over time based on parameters such as available bandwidth, contact priority, presence/absence of contacts, system state, and configuration parameters.

  15. Neurodynamics of somatosensory cortices studied by magnetoencephelography.

    PubMed

    Kishida, Kuniharu

    2013-09-01

    From the viewpoint of statistical inverse problems, identification of transfer functions in feedback models is applied for neurodynamics of somatosensory cortices, and brain communication among active regions can be expressed in terms of transfer functions. However, brain activities have been investigated mainly by averaged waveforms in the conventional magnetoencephalography analysis, and thus brain communication among active regions has not yet been identified. It is shown that brain communication among two more than three brain regions is determined, when fluctuations related to concatenate averaged waveforms can be obtained by using a suitable blind source separation method. In blind identification of feedback model, some transfer functions or their impulse responses between output variables of current dipoles corresponding to active regions are identified from reconstructed time series data of fluctuations by the method of inverse problem. Neurodynamics of somatosensory cortices in 5 Hz median nerve stimuli can be shown by cerebral communication among active regions of somatosensory cortices in terms of impulse responses of feedback model.

  16. Sustained attention to spontaneous thumb sensations activates brain somatosensory and other proprioceptive areas.

    PubMed

    Bauer, Clemens C C; Díaz, José-Luis; Concha, Luis; Barrios, Fernando A

    2014-06-01

    The present experiment was designed to test if sustained attention directed to the spontaneous sensations of the right or left thumb in the absence of any external stimuli is able to activate corresponding somatosensory brain areas. After verifying in 34 healthy volunteers that external touch stimuli to either thumb effectively activate brain contralateral somatosensory areas, and after subtracting attention mechanisms employed in both touch and spontaneous-sensation conditions, fMRI evidence was obtained that the primary somatosensory cortex (specifically left BA 3a/3b) becomes active when an individual is required to attend to the spontaneous sensations of either thumb in the absence of external stimuli. In addition, the left superior parietal cortex, anterior cingulate gyrus, insula, motor and premotor cortex, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, Broca's area, and occipital cortices were activated. Moreover, attention to spontaneous-sensations revealed an increased connectivity between BA 3a/3b, superior frontal gyrus (BA 9) and anterior cingulate cortex (BA 32), probably allowing top-down activations of primary somatosensory cortex. We conclude that specific primary somatosensory areas in conjunction with other left parieto-frontal areas are involved in processing proprioceptive and interoceptive bodily information that underlies own body-representations and that these networks and cognitive functions can be modulated by top-down attentional processes.

  17. Intraoperative intrinsic optical imaging of human somatosensory cortex during neurosurgical operations.

    PubMed

    Sato, Katsushige; Nariai, Tadashi; Momose-Sato, Yoko; Kamino, Kohtaro

    2017-07-01

    Intrinsic optical imaging as developed by Grinvald et al. is a powerful technique for monitoring neural function in the in vivo central nervous system. The advent of this dye-free imaging has also enabled us to monitor human brain function during neurosurgical operations. We briefly describe our own experience in functional mapping of the human somatosensory cortex, carried out using intraoperative optical imaging. The maps obtained demonstrate new additional evidence of a hierarchy for sensory response patterns in the human primary somatosensory cortex.

  18. Somatosensory Neurotoxicity: Agents and Assessment Methodology

    EPA Science Inventory

    The somatosensory system is comprised of a variety of sensory receptors located in the skin, muscle tendons, and visceral organs that are innervated by myelinated and nonmyelinated axons of the peripheral nervous system. These peripheral sensory nerve fibers in turn communicate s...

  19. Recurrent neural processing and somatosensory awareness.

    PubMed

    Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Spitzer, Bernhard; Blankenburg, Felix

    2012-01-18

    The neural mechanisms of stimulus detection, despite extensive research, remain elusive. The recurrent processing hypothesis, a prominent theoretical account of perceptual awareness, states that, although stimuli might in principle evoke feedforward activity propagating through the visual cortex, stimuli that become consciously detected are further processed in feedforward-feedback loops established between cortical areas. To test this theory in the tactile modality, we applied dynamic causal modeling to electroencephalography (EEG) data acquired from humans in a somatosensory detection task. In the analysis of stimulation-induced event-related potentials (ERPs), we focused on model-based evidence for feedforward, feedback, and recurrent processing between primary and secondary somatosensory cortices. Bayesian model comparison revealed that, although early EEG components were well explained by both the feedforward and the recurrent models, the recurrent model outperformed the other models when later EEG segments were analyzed. Within the recurrent model, stimulus detection was characterized by a relatively early strength increase of the feedforward connection from primary to secondary somatosensory cortex (>80 ms). At longer latencies (>140 ms), also the feedback connection showed a detection-related strength increase. The modeling results on relative evidence between recurrent and feedforward model comparison support the hypothesis that the ERP responses from sensory areas arising after aware stimulus detection can be explained by increased recurrent processing within the somatosensory network in the later stages of stimulus processing.

  20. Application of contact glow discharge electrolysis method for degradation of batik dye waste Remazol Red by the addition of Fe2+ ion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saksono, Nelson; Puspita, Indah; Sukreni, Tulus

    2017-03-01

    Contact Glow Discharge Electrolysis (CGDE) has been shown to degrade much weight organic compounds such as dyes because the production of hydroxil radical (•OH) is excess. This research aims to degrade batik dye waste Remazol Red, using CGDE method with the addition of Fe2+ ion. The addition of iron salt compounds has proven to increase process efficiency. Dye degradation is known by measure its absorbances with Spectrophotometer UV-Vis. The result of study showed that percentage degradation was 99.92% in 20 minutes which obtained by using Na2SO4 0.01 M, with addition FeSO4 0,1 gram, applied voltage 860 volt, and 1 wolfram anode 5 mm depth.

  1. Establishment of a reference collection of additives and an analytical handbook of reference data to support enforcement of EU regulations on food contact plastics.

    PubMed

    van Lierop, B; Castle, L; Feigenbaum, A; Ehlert, K; Boenke, A

    1998-10-01

    A collection has been made of additives that are required as analytical standards for enforcement of European Union legislation on food contact plastics. The 100 additives have been characterized by mass spectrometry, infra-red spectroscopy and proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy to provide reference spectra. Gas chromatographic retention times have been recorded to facilitate identification by retention index. This information has been further supplemented by physico-chemical data. Finally, chromatographic methods have been used to indicate the presence of any impurities in the commercial chemicals. Samples of the reference substances are available on request and the collection of spectra and other information will be made available in printed format and on-line through the Internet. This paper gives an overview of the work done to establish the reference collection and the spectral atlas, which together will assist enforcement laboratories in the characterization of plastics and the selection of analytical methods for additives that may migrate.

  2. Look but don't touch: Visual cues to surface structure drive somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Hua-Chun; Welchman, Andrew E.; Chang, Dorita H.F.; Di Luca, Massimiliano

    2016-01-01

    When planning interactions with nearby objects, our brain uses visual information to estimate shape, material composition, and surface structure before we come into contact with them. Here we analyse brain activations elicited by different types of visual appearance, measuring fMRI responses to objects that are glossy, matte, rough, or textured. In addition to activation in visual areas, we found that fMRI responses are evoked in the secondary somatosensory area (S2) when looking at glossy and rough surfaces. This activity could be reliably discriminated on the basis of tactile-related visual properties (gloss, rough, and matte), but importantly, other visual properties (i.e., coloured texture) did not substantially change fMRI activity. The activity could not be solely due to tactile imagination, as asking explicitly to imagine such surface properties did not lead to the same results. These findings suggest that visual cues to an object's surface properties evoke activity in neural circuits associated with tactile stimulation. This activation may reflect the a-priori probability of the physics of the interaction (i.e., the expectation of upcoming friction) that can be used to plan finger placement and grasp force. PMID:26778128

  3. A Role for K2P Channels in the Operation of Somatosensory Nociceptors.

    PubMed

    Plant, Leigh D

    2012-01-01

    The ability to sense mechanical, thermal, and chemical stimuli is critical to normal physiology and the perception of pain. Contact with noxious stimuli triggers a complex series of events that initiate innate protective mechanisms designed to minimize or avoid injury. Extreme temperatures, mechanical stress, and chemical irritants are detected by specific ion channels and receptors clustered on the terminals of nociceptive sensory nerve fibers and transduced into electrical information. Propagation of these signals, from distant sites in the body to the spinal cord and the higher processing centers of the brain, is also orchestrated by distinct groups of ion channels. Since their identification in 1995, evidence has emerged to support roles for K2P channels at each step along this pathway, as receptors for physiological and noxious stimuli, and as determinants of nociceptor excitability and conductivity. In addition, the many subtypes of K2P channels expressed in somatosensory neurons are also implicated in mediating the effects of volatile, general anesthetics on the central and peripheral nervous systems. Here, I offer a critical review of the existing data supporting these attributes of K2P channel function and discuss how diverse regulatory mechanisms that control the activity of K2P channels act to govern the operation of nociceptors.

  4. A Role for K2P Channels in the Operation of Somatosensory Nociceptors

    PubMed Central

    Plant, Leigh D.

    2012-01-01

    The ability to sense mechanical, thermal, and chemical stimuli is critical to normal physiology and the perception of pain. Contact with noxious stimuli triggers a complex series of events that initiate innate protective mechanisms designed to minimize or avoid injury. Extreme temperatures, mechanical stress, and chemical irritants are detected by specific ion channels and receptors clustered on the terminals of nociceptive sensory nerve fibers and transduced into electrical information. Propagation of these signals, from distant sites in the body to the spinal cord and the higher processing centers of the brain, is also orchestrated by distinct groups of ion channels. Since their identification in 1995, evidence has emerged to support roles for K2P channels at each step along this pathway, as receptors for physiological and noxious stimuli, and as determinants of nociceptor excitability and conductivity. In addition, the many subtypes of K2P channels expressed in somatosensory neurons are also implicated in mediating the effects of volatile, general anesthetics on the central and peripheral nervous systems. Here, I offer a critical review of the existing data supporting these attributes of K2P channel function and discuss how diverse regulatory mechanisms that control the activity of K2P channels act to govern the operation of nociceptors. PMID:22403526

  5. Position and velocity coupling of postural sway to somatosensory drive.

    PubMed

    Jeka, J; Oie, K; Schöner, G; Dijkstra, T; Henson, E

    1998-04-01

    Light touch contact of a fingertip to a stationary surface provides orientation information that enhances control of upright stance. Slight changes in contact force at the fingertip lead to sensory cues about the direction of body sway, allowing attenuation of sway. In the present study, the coupling of postural sway to a moving contact surface was investigated in detail. Head, center of mass, and center of pressure displacement were measured as the contact surface moved rhythmically at 0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.6, and 0.8 Hz. Stimulus amplitude decreased with frequency to maintain peak velocity constant across frequency. Head and body sway were highly coherent with contact surface motion at all frequencies except 0.8 Hz, where a drop-off in coherence was observed. Mean frequency of head and body sway matched the driving frequency somatosensory system.

  6. Brain micromotion around implants in the rodent somatosensory cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilletti, Aaron; Muthuswamy, Jit

    2006-09-01

    The magnitude of brain tissue micromotion relative to stationary brain implants and its impact on the viability and function of the surrounding brain tissue due to mechanical stresses is poorly understood. The central goal of this study is to characterize surface micromotion in the somatosensory cortex against stationary cylindrical implants. We used a differential variable reluctance transducer (DVRT) in adult rats (n = 6) to monitor micromotion normal to the somatosensory cortex surface. Experiments were performed both in the presence and in the absence of dura mater and displacement measurements were made at three different locations within craniotomies of two different sizes. In anesthetized rats, pulsatile surface micromotion was observed to be in the order of 10-30 µm due to pressure changes during respiration and 2-4 µm due to vascular pulsatility. Brain displacement values due to respiration were significantly lower in the presence of the dura compared to those without the dura. In addition, large inward displacements of brain tissue between 10-60 µm were observed in n = 3 animals immediately following the administration of anesthesia. Such significant micromotion can impact a wide variety of acute and chronic procedures involving any brain implants, precise neurosurgery or imaging and therefore has to be factored in the design of such procedures.

  7. Decoding Visual Object Categories in Early Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Fraser W.; Goodale, Melvyn A.

    2015-01-01

    Neurons, even in the earliest sensory areas of cortex, are subject to a great deal of contextual influence from both within and across modality connections. In the present work, we investigated whether the earliest regions of somatosensory cortex (S1 and S2) would contain content-specific information about visual object categories. We reasoned that this might be possible due to the associations formed through experience that link different sensory aspects of a given object. Participants were presented with visual images of different object categories in 2 fMRI experiments. Multivariate pattern analysis revealed reliable decoding of familiar visual object category in bilateral S1 (i.e., postcentral gyri) and right S2. We further show that this decoding is observed for familiar but not unfamiliar visual objects in S1. In addition, whole-brain searchlight decoding analyses revealed several areas in the parietal lobe that could mediate the observed context effects between vision and somatosensation. These results demonstrate that even the first cortical stages of somatosensory processing carry information about the category of visually presented familiar objects. PMID:24122136

  8. Individual differences in cortical connections of somatosensory cortex are associated with parental rearing style in prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster).

    PubMed

    Seelke, Adele M H; Perkeybile, Allison M; Grunewald, Rebecca; Bales, Karen L; Krubitzer, Leah A

    2016-02-15

    Early-life sensory experiences have a profound effect on brain organization, connectivity, and subsequent behavior. In most mammals, the earliest sensory inputs are delivered to the developing brain through tactile contact with the parents, especially the mother. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are monogamous and, like humans, are biparental. Within the normal prairie vole population, both the type and the amount of interactions, particularly tactile contact, that parents have with their offspring vary. The question is whether these early and pervasive differences in tactile stimulation and social experience between parent and offspring are manifest in differences in cortical organization and connectivity. To address this question, we examined the cortical and callosal connections of the primary somatosensory area (S1) in high-contact (HC) and low-contact (LC) offspring using neuroanatomical tracing techniques. Injection sites within S1 were matched so that direct comparisons between these two groups could be made. We observed several important differences between these groups. The first was that HC offspring had a greater density of intrinsic connections within S1 compared with LC offspring. Additionally, HC offspring had a more restricted pattern of ipsilateral connections, whereas LC offspring had dense connections with areas of parietal and frontal cortex that were more widespread. Finally, LC offspring had a broader distribution of callosal connections than HC offspring and a significantly higher percentage of labeled callosal neurons. This study is the first to examine individual differences in cortical connections and suggests that individual differences in cortical connections may be related to natural differences in parental rearing styles associated with tactile contact.

  9. Neuronal activity in somatosensory cortex related to tactile exploration.

    PubMed

    Fortier-Poisson, Pascal; Smith, Allan M

    2016-01-01

    The very light contact forces (∼0.60 N) applied by the fingertips during tactile exploration reveal a clearly optimized sensorimotor strategy. To investigate the cortical mechanisms involved with this behavior, we recorded 230 neurons in the somatosensory cortex (S1), as two monkeys scanned different surfaces with the fingertips in search of a tactile target without visual feedback. During the exploration, the monkeys, like humans, carefully controlled the finger forces. High-friction surfaces offering greater tangential shear force resistance to the skin were associated with decreased normal contact forces. The activity of one group of neurons was modulated with either the normal or tangential force, with little or no influence from the orthogonal force component. A second group responded to kinetic friction or the ratio of tangential to normal forces rather than responding to a specific parameter, such as force magnitude or direction. A third group of S1 neurons appeared to respond to particular vectors of normal and tangential force on the skin. Although 45 neurons correlated with scanning speed, 32 were also modulated by finger forces, suggesting that forces on the finger should be considered as the primary parameter encoding the skin compliance and that finger speed is a secondary parameter that co-varies with finger forces. Neurons (102) were also tested with different textures, and the activity of 62 of these increased or decreased in relation to the surface friction.

  10. Neuronal activity in somatosensory cortex related to tactile exploration

    PubMed Central

    Fortier-Poisson, Pascal

    2015-01-01

    The very light contact forces (∼0.60 N) applied by the fingertips during tactile exploration reveal a clearly optimized sensorimotor strategy. To investigate the cortical mechanisms involved with this behavior, we recorded 230 neurons in the somatosensory cortex (S1), as two monkeys scanned different surfaces with the fingertips in search of a tactile target without visual feedback. During the exploration, the monkeys, like humans, carefully controlled the finger forces. High-friction surfaces offering greater tangential shear force resistance to the skin were associated with decreased normal contact forces. The activity of one group of neurons was modulated with either the normal or tangential force, with little or no influence from the orthogonal force component. A second group responded to kinetic friction or the ratio of tangential to normal forces rather than responding to a specific parameter, such as force magnitude or direction. A third group of S1 neurons appeared to respond to particular vectors of normal and tangential force on the skin. Although 45 neurons correlated with scanning speed, 32 were also modulated by finger forces, suggesting that forces on the finger should be considered as the primary parameter encoding the skin compliance and that finger speed is a secondary parameter that co-varies with finger forces. Neurons (102) were also tested with different textures, and the activity of 62 of these increased or decreased in relation to the surface friction. PMID:26467519

  11. Effect of non-solvent additives on the morphology, pore structure, and direct contact membrane distillation performance of PVDF-CTFE hydrophobic membranes.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Libing; Wu, Zhenjun; Zhang, Yong; Wei, Yuansong; Wang, Jun

    2016-07-01

    Four common types of additives for polymer membrane preparation including organic macromolecule and micromolecule additives, inorganic salts and acids, and the strong non-solvent H2O were used to prepare poly (vinylidene fluoride-co-chlorotrifluoroethylene) (PVDF-CTFE) hydrophobic flat-sheet membranes. Membrane properties including morphology, porosity, hydrophobicity, pore size and pore distribution were investigated, and the permeability was evaluated via direct contact membrane distillation (DCMD) of 3.5g/L NaCl solution in a DCMD configuration. Both inorganic and organic micromolecule additives were found to slightly influence membrane hydrophobicity. Polyethylene glycol (PEG), organic acids, LiCl, MgCl2, and LiCl/H2O mixtures were proved to be effective additives to PVDF-CTFE membranes due to their pore-controlling effects and the capacity to improve the properties and performance of the resultant membranes. The occurrence of a pre-gelation process showed that when organic and inorganic micromolecules were added to PVDF-CTFE solution, the resultant membranes presented a high interconnectivity structure. The membrane prepared with dibutyl phthalate (DBP) showed a nonporous surface and symmetrical cross-section. When H2O and LiCl/H2O mixtures were also used as additives, they were beneficial for solid-liquid demixing, especially when LiCl/H2O mixed additives were used. The membrane prepared with 5% LiCl+2% H2O achieved a flux of 24.53kg/(m(2)·hr) with 99.98% salt rejection. This study is expected to offer a reference not only for PVDF-CTFE membrane preparation but also for other polymer membranes.

  12. Contralateral somatosensory neglect in unrestrained rats after lesion of the parietal cortex of the left hemisphere.

    PubMed

    Holm, S; Mogensen, J

    1993-01-01

    Three groups of rats were studied: a sham operated control group and two groups in which the parietal "association" cortex had been ablated in the left and right hemispheres respectively. Twenty-four hours and 8 days postoperatively the animals were subjected to a test in which their responsiveness to lateralized somatosensory stimuli was measured while the rats were left unrestrained. Additionally, an activity cage locomotion test followed immediately upon both tests of somatosensory responsiveness. Twenty-four hours postoperatively the animals in which the parietal cortex of the left hemisphere had been ablated demonstrated a significant contralateral neglect of somatosensory stimuli while the group in which the right parietal cortex had been ablated only exhibited a non-significant tendency to a contralateral neglect. While the activity cage test did not reveal an overall difference in the activity level of the three groups the latency to initiate locomotion in the activity cage was found to be significantly decreased in both ablated groups. Eight days postoperatively both ablated groups appeared fully recovered. It is concluded that ablations of the parietal "association" cortex of the rat are associated with a syndrome of contralateral somatosensory neglect that can even be demonstrated if the animals are left unrestrained during testing.

  13. Children with Autism Show Reduced Somatosensory Response: An MEG Study

    PubMed Central

    Marco, Elysa J.; Khatibi, Kasra; Hill, Susanna S.; Siegel, Bryna; Arroyo, Monica S.; Dowling, Anne F.; Neuhaus, John M.; Sherr, Elliott H.; Hinkley, Leighton N. B.; Nagarajan, Srikantan S.

    2012-01-01

    Lay Abstract Autism spectrum disorders are reported to affect nearly one out of every one hundred children, with over 90% of these children showing behavioral disturbances related to the processing of basic sensory information. Behavioral sensitivity to light touch, such as profound discomfort with clothing tags and physical contact, is a ubiquitous finding in children on the autism spectrum. In this study, we investigate the strength and timing of brain activity in response to simple, light taps to the fingertip. Our results suggest that children with autism show a diminished early response in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1). This finding is most evident in the left hemisphere. In exploratory analysis, we also show that tactile sensory behavior, as measured by the Sensory Profile, may be a better predictor of the intensity and timing of brain activity related to touch than a clinical autism diagnosis. We report that children with atypical tactile behavior have significantly lower amplitude somatosensory cortical responses in both hemispheres. Thus sensory behavioral phenotype appears to be a more powerful strategy for investigating neural activity in this cohort. This study provides evidence for atypical brain activity during sensory processing in autistic children and suggests that our sensory behavior based methodology may be an important approach to investigating brain activity in people with autism and neurodevelopmental disorders. Scientific Abstract The neural underpinnings of sensory processing differences in autism remain poorly understood. This prospective magnetoencephalography (MEG) study investigates whether children with autism show atypical cortical activity in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in comparison to matched controls. Tactile stimuli were clearly detectable, painless taps applied to the distal phalanx of the second (D2) and third (D3) fingers of the right and left hands. Three tactile paradigms were administered: an oddball

  14. Behavioral detection of passive whisker stimuli requires somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Miyashita, Toshio; Feldman, Daniel E

    2013-07-01

    Rodent whisker sensation occurs both actively, as whiskers move rhythmically across objects, and in a passive mode in which externally applied deflections are sensed by static, non-moving whiskers. Passive whisker stimuli are robustly encoded in the somatosensory (S1) cortex, and provide a potentially powerful means of studying cortical processing. However, whether S1 contributes to passive sensation is debated. We developed 2 new behavioral tasks to assay passive whisker sensation in freely moving rats: Detection of unilateral whisker deflections and discrimination of right versus left whisker deflections. Stimuli were simple, simultaneous multi-whisker deflections. Local muscimol inactivation of S1 reversibly and robustly abolished sensory performance on these tasks. Thus, S1 is required for the detection and discrimination of simple stimuli by passive whiskers, in addition to its known role in active whisker sensation.

  15. Epidural motor cortex stimulation suppresses somatosensory evoked potentials in the primary somatosensory cortex of the rat.

    PubMed

    Chiou, Ruei-Jen; Lee, Hsiao-Yun; Chang, Chen-Wei; Lin, Kuan-Hung; Kuo, Chung-Chih

    2012-06-29

    Motor cortex stimulation (MCS) is a promising clinical procedure to help alleviate chronic pain. Animal models demonstrated that MCS is effective in lessening nocifensive behaviors. The present study explored the effects of MCS on cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) recorded at the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) of the rat. SEPs were evoked by electrical stimulation applied to the contralateral forepaws. Effects of different intensities, frequencies, and durations of MCS were tested. MCS at ≥2V suppressed SEPs of the ipsilateral SI. Suppression lasted 120 min at an intensity of 5 V. The optimal frequency was 50 Hz, and the duration was 30s. In contrast, MCS did not affect SEPs recorded on the contralateral SI. Cortical stimulation out of the motor cortex did not induce a decrease in the ipsilateral SEPs. We also investigated involvement of the endogenous opioid system in this inhibition of SEPs induced by MCS. The opioid antagonist, naloxone (0.5 mg/kg), was administered 30 min before MCS. Application of naloxone completely prevented the inhibitory effect of MCS on ipsilateral SEPs. These results demonstrate that MCS blocked the transmission of somatosensory information to the primary somatosensory cortex, and this interference was mediated by the endogenous opioid system. This inhibitory effect on sensory transmission induced by MCS may reflect its antinociceptive effect.

  16. Coding perceptual discrimination in the somatosensory thalamus

    PubMed Central

    Camarillo, Liliana; Luna, Rogelio; Nácher, Verónica; Romo, Ranulfo

    2012-01-01

    The sensory thalamus is classically viewed as a relay station of sensory information to cortex, but recent studies suggest that it is sensitive to cognitive demands. There are, however, few experiments designed to test whether this is so. We addressed this problem by analyzing the responses of single neurons recorded in the somatosensory thalamus while trained monkeys reported a decision based on the comparison of two mechanical vibration frequencies applied sequentially to one fingertip. In this task, monkeys must hold the first stimulus frequency (f1) in working memory and compare it to the current sensory stimulus (f2) and must postpone the decision report until a cue triggers the decision motor report, i.e., whether f2 > f1 or f2 < f1. We found that thalamic somatosensory neurons encoded the stimulus frequency either in their periodicity and firing-rate responses, but only during the stimulus periods and not during the working memory and decision components of this task. Furthermore, correlation analysis between behavior and stimulus coding showed that only the firing rate modulations accounted for the overall psychophysical performance. However, these responses did not predict the animal’s decision reports on individual trials. Moreover, the sensitivity to changes in stimulus frequency was similar when the monkeys performed the vibrotactile discrimination task and when they were not required to report discrimination. These results suggest that the somatosensory thalamus behaves as a relay station of sensory information to the cortex and that it is insensitive to the cognitive demands of the task used here. PMID:23213243

  17. Differences in somatosensory processing due to dominant hemispheric motor impairment in cerebral palsy

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Although cerebral palsy (CP) is usually defined as a group of permanent motor disorders due to non-progressive disturbances in the developing fetal or infant brain, recent research has shown that CP individuals are also characterized by altered somatosensory perception, increased pain and abnormal activation of cortical somatosensory areas. The present study was aimed to examine hemispheric differences on somatosensory brain processing in individuals with bilateral CP and lateralized motor impairments compared with healthy controls. Nine CP individuals with left-dominant motor impairments (LMI) (age range 5–28 yrs), nine CP individuals with right-dominant motor impairments (RMI) (age range 7–29 yrs), and 12 healthy controls (age range 5–30 yrs) participated in the study. Proprioception, touch and pain thresholds, as well as somatosensory evoked potentials (SEP) elicited by tactile stimulation of right and left lips and thumbs were compared. Results Pain sensitivity was higher, and lip stimulation elicited greater beta power and more symmetrical SEP amplitudes in individuals with CP than in healthy controls. In addition, although there was no significant differences between individuals with RMI and LMI on pain or touch sensitivity, lip and thumb stimulation elicited smaller beta power and more symmetrical SEP amplitudes in individuals with LMI than with RMI. Conclusions Our data revealed that brain processing of somatosensory stimulation was abnormal in CP individuals. Moreover, this processing was different depending if they presented right- or left-dominant motor impairments, suggesting that different mechanisms of sensorimotor reorganization should be involved in CP depending on dominant side of motor impairment. PMID:24410983

  18. Neural coupling between homologous muscles during bimanual tasks: effects of visual and somatosensory feedback.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Hoi B; Lee, Sang Wook; Harris-Love, Michelle L; Lum, Peter S

    2017-02-01

    While the effects of sensory feedback on bimanual tasks have been studied extensively at two ends of the motor control hierarchy, the cortical and behavioral levels, much less is known about how it affects the intermediate levels, including neural control of homologous muscle groups. We investigated the effects of somatosensory input on the neural coupling between homologous arm muscles during bimanual tasks. Twelve subjects performed symmetric elbow flexion/extension tasks under different types of sensory feedback. The first two types involve visual feedback, with one imposing stricter force symmetry than the other. The third incorporated somatosensory feedback via a balancing apparatus that forced the two limbs to produce equal force levels. Although the force error did not differ between feedback conditions, the somatosensory feedback significantly increased temporal coupling of bilateral force production, indicated by a high correlation between left/right force profiles (P < 0.001). More importantly, intermuscular coherence between biceps brachii muscles was significantly higher with somatosensory feedback than others (P = 0.001). Coherence values also significantly differed between tasks (flexion/extension). Notably, whereas feedback type mainly modulated coherence in the α- and γ-bands, task type only affected β-band coherence. Similar feedback effects were observed for triceps brachii muscles, but there was also a strong phase effect on the coherence values (P < 0.001) that could have diluted feedback effects. These results suggest that somatosensory feedback can significantly increase neural coupling between homologous muscles. Additionally, the between-task difference in β-band coherence may reflect different neural control strategies for the elbow flexor and extensor muscles.

  19. Subthalamic nucleus stimulation and somatosensory temporal discrimination in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Conte, Antonella; Modugno, Nicola; Lena, Francesco; Dispenza, Sabrina; Gandolfi, Barbara; Iezzi, Ennio; Fabbrini, Giovanni; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2010-09-01

    Whereas numerous studies document the effects of dopamine medication and deep brain stimulation on motor function in patients with Parkinson's disease, few have investigated deep brain stimulation-induced changes in sensory functions. In this study of 13 patients with Parkinson's disease, we tested the effects of deep brain stimulation on the somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold. To investigate whether deep brain stimulation and dopaminergic medication induce similar changes in somatosensory discrimination, somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values were acquired under four experimental conditions: (i) medication ON/deep brain stimulation on; (ii) medication ON/deep brain stimulation off; (iii) medication OFF/deep brain stimulation on; and (iv) medication OFF/deep brain stimulation off. Patients also underwent clinical and neuropsychological evaluations during each experimental session. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values obtained in patients were compared with 13 age-matched healthy subjects. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values were significantly higher in patients than in healthy subjects. In patients, somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values were significantly lower when patients were studied in medication ON than in medication OFF conditions. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values differed significantly between deep brain stimulation on and deep brain stimulation off conditions only when the patients were studied in the medication ON condition and were higher in the deep brain stimulation on/medication ON than in the deep brain stimulation off/medication ON condition. Dopamine but not subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation restores the altered somatosensory temporal discrimination in patients with Parkinson's disease. Deep brain stimulation degrades somatosensory temporal discrimination by modifying central somatosensory processing whereas dopamine restores the

  20. Visual Responses of Neurons in Somatosensory Cortex of Hamsters with Experimentally Induced Retinal Projections to Somatosensory Thalamus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metin, Christine; Frost, Douglas O.

    1989-01-01

    These experiments investigate the capacity of thalamic and cortical structures in a sensory system to process information of a modality normally associated with another system. Retinal ganglion cells in newborn Syrian hamsters were made to project permanently to the main thalamic somatosensory (ventrobasal) nucleus. When the animals were adults, single unit recordings were made in the somatosensory cortices, the principal targets of the ventrobasal nucleus. The somatosensory neurons responded to visual stimulation of distinct receptive fields, and their response properties resembled, in several characteristic features, those of normal visual cortical neurons. In the visual cortex of normal animals and the somatosensory cortex of operated animals, the same functional categories of neurons occurred in similar proportions, and the neurons' selectivity for the orientation or direction of movement of visual stimuli was comparable. These results suggest that thalamic nuclei or cortical areas at corresponding levels in the visual and somatosensory pathways perform similar transformations on their inputs.

  1. Early determination of somatosensory cortex in the human brain.

    PubMed

    Juenger, Hendrik; de Haan, Bianca; Krägeloh-Mann, Ingeborg; Staudt, Martin; Karnath, Hans-Otto

    2011-08-01

    The developing brain possesses a high potential for neuroplasticity. Yet, this remarkable potential of (re-)organization is not a general principle. It seems to vary among different functional systems. Here, we show that distinct brain structures involved in somatosensory processing are already prenatally determined so that a pre- or perinatally acquired (congenital) brain damage of such structures results in a persistent somatosensory deficit. Eleven patients with hemiparesis due to congenital cortico-subcortical unilateral stroke who showed versus not showed a somatosensory deficit were contrasted with magnetic resonance imaging lesion-behavior mapping. The brain areas which were typically damaged in patients with a somatosensory deficit but typically spared in patients without a somatosensory deficit were located in the primary and secondary somatosensory cortex (S1, S2) as well as the inferior parietal cortex directly neighboring S1 and S2. The results argue for an early functional determination of primary and secondary somatosensory cortex, without substantial capacities for (re-)organization. They demonstrate that cortical damage of these areas cannot be compensated by shifting the functional representation to undamaged parts of the cortex.

  2. Somatosensory Substrates of Flight Control in Bats

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Kara L.; Chadha, Mohit; deSouza, Laura A.; Sterbing-D’Angelo, Susanne J.; Moss, Cynthia F.; Lumpkin, Ellen A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Flight maneuvers require rapid sensory integration to generate adaptive motor output. Bats achieve remarkable agility with modified forelimbs that serve as airfoils while retaining capacity for object manipulation. Wing sensory inputs provide behaviorally relevant information to guide flight; however, components of wing sensory-motor circuits have not been analyzed. Here, we elucidate the organization of wing innervation in an insectivore, the big brown bat, Eptesicus fuscus. We demonstrate that wing sensory innervation differs from other vertebrate forelimbs, revealing a peripheral basis for the atypical topographic organization reported for bat somatosensory nuclei. Furthermore, the wing is innervated by an unusual complement of sensory neurons poised to report airflow and touch. Finally, we report that cortical neurons encode tactile and airflow inputs with sparse activity patterns. Together, our findings identify neural substrates of somatosensation in the bat wing and imply that evolutionary pressures giving rise to mammalian flight led to unusual sensorimotor projections. PMID:25937277

  3. Primary somatosensory cortex hand representation dynamically modulated by motor output.

    PubMed

    McGeoch, Paul D; Brang, David; Huang, Mingxiong; Ramachandran, V S

    2015-02-01

    The brain's primary motor and primary somatosensory cortices are generally viewed as functionally distinct entities. Here we show by means of magnetoencephalography with a phantom-limb patient, that movement of the phantom hand leads to a change in the response of the primary somatosensory cortex to tactile stimulation. This change correlates with the described conscious perception and suggests a greater degree of functional unification between the primary motor and somatosensory cortices than is currently realized. We suggest that this may reflect the evolution of this part of the human brain, which is thought to have occurred from an undifferentiated sensorimotor cortex.

  4. Contact dermatitis

    MedlinePlus

    Dermatitis - contact; Allergic dermatitis; Dermatitis - allergic; Irritant contact dermatitis; Skin rash - contact dermatitis ... There are 2 types of contact dermatitis. Irritant dermatitis: This ... can be by contact with acids, alkaline materials such as soaps ...

  5. Combined dermal exposure to permethrin and cis-urocanic acid suppresses the contact hypersensitivity response in C57BL/6N mice in an additive manner.

    PubMed

    Prater, M R; Blaylock, B L; Holladay, S D

    2005-01-14

    Cutaneous exposure to the pyrethroid insecticide permethrin significantly suppresses contact hypersensitivity (CH) response to oxazolone in C57BL/6N mice. Additionally, cis-urocanic acid (cUCA), an endogenous cutaneous chromophore isomerized to its active form following exposure to ultraviolet radiation, modulates cell-mediated cutaneous immune responses. This study describes cutaneous immune alterations following combined topical permethrin and intradermal cUCA exposure. Female C57BL/6N mice were administered 5, 50 or 100 microg cUCA daily for 5 consecutive days. CH was then evaluated by the mouse ear swelling test (MEST) response to oxazolone. Decreased responses of 52.3%, 76.3% and 76.3%, respectively, as compared to controls were observed. Then, mice were co-exposed to 5 microg cUCA daily for 5 days and 1.5, 5, 15, or 25 microL permethrin, on either day 1, 3 or 5 of the cUCA treatment to evaluate combined immunomodulatory effects of the two chemicals, or cUCA daily for 5 days followed by permethrin on day 3, 5, or 7 after the last cUCA injection to demonstrate prolonged immunosuppressive effects. Two days after final treatment, mice were sensitized with oxazolone and MEST was performed. Mice receiving five cUCA injections and permethrin topically on cUCA injection day 1 showed up to 93.3% suppression of MEST compared to vehicle control. CH was suppressed by 87.5%, 86.6% and 74.2% in mice treated with 25 muL permethrin on days 3, 5 and 7 after cUCA, respectively, compared to vehicle control. Taken together, these data indicate co-exposure to cUCA and permethrin profoundly suppresses cell-mediated cutaneous immunity.

  6. Effects of age on negative BOLD signal changes in the primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Gröschel, Sonja; Sohns, Jan Martin; Schmidt-Samoa, Carsten; Baudewig, Jürgen; Becker, Lars; Dechent, Peter; Kastrup, Andreas

    2013-05-01

    In addition to a contralateral activation of the primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, peripheral sensory stimulation has been shown to elicit responses in the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI). In particular, evidence is accumulating that processes of interhemispheric inhibition as depicted by negative blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signal changes are part of somatosensory processes. The aim of the study was to analyze age-related differences in patterns of cerebral activation in the somatosensory system in general and processes of interhemispheric inhibition in particular. For this, a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study was performed including 14 younger (mean age 23.3±0.9years) and 13 healthy older participants (mean age 73.2±8.3years). All subjects were scanned during peripheral electrical median nerve stimulation (40Hz) to obtain BOLD responses in the somatosensory system. Moreover, the individual current perception threshold (CPT) as a quantitative measure of sensory function was determined in a separate psychophysical testing. Significant increases in BOLD signal across the entire group could be measured within the contralateral SI, in the bilateral secondary somatosensory cortex (SII), the contralateral supplementary motor area and the insula. Negative BOLD signal changes were delineated in ipsilateral SI/MI as well as in the ipsilateral thalamus and basal ganglia. After comparing the two groups, only the cortical deactivation in ipsilateral SI in the early stimulation phase as well as the activation in contralateral SI and SII in the late stimulation block remained as statistically significant differences between the two groups. The psychophysical experiments yielded a significant age-dependent effect of CPT change with less difference in the older group which is in line with the significantly smaller alterations in maximal BOLD signal change in the contra- and ipsilateral SI found between the two groups

  7. Gamma oscillations in the somatosensory cortex of newborn rats.

    PubMed

    Gerasimova, E V; Zakharov, A V; Lebedeva, Yu A; Inacio, A R; Minlebaev, M G; Sitdikova, G F; Khazipov, R N

    2014-01-01

    Here we addressed a question of whether gamma oscillations previously described in the whisker-related barrel cortex are a universal pattern of activity in the somatosensory cortex of newborn rats. Intracortical recording of local field potentials and action potentials in neurons using multisite silicon electrodes in 2-7-day-old rats showed that mechanical stimulation of single fingers or specific areas on the plantar or back side of the foot evoked early gamma oscillations followed by spindle-burst oscillations in the corresponding regions of the somatosensory cortex. Early gamma oscillations had maximum amplitude in layer IV of the somatosensory cortex and effectively synchronized action potentials in layer IV neurons. It was concluded that early gamma oscillations evoked by activation of the topographic sensory input are a universal activity pattern of the entire somatosensory cortex of newborn rats.

  8. Inhibitory modulation of cat somatosensory cortex: a pharmacological study.

    PubMed

    Brailowsky, S; Knight, R T

    1984-11-26

    In anesthetized preparations, GABA and taurine produced rapid, reversible inhibition of the negative component (N20) of the primary somatosensory evoked potential (SEP) without effect on the earlier positivity (P11). This effect was also produced by low doses of 4-aminopyridine. Neither bicuculline or picrotoxin antagonized these drug effects. A predominance of type B GABA receptors in the superficial layers of the somatosensory cortex is proposed.

  9. Dynamical activities of primary somatosensory cortices studied by magnetoencephalography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kishida, Kuniharu

    2009-11-01

    A blind identification method of transfer functions in feedback systems is introduced for examination of dynamical activities of cortices by magnetoencephalography study. Somatosensory activities are examined in 5 Hz periodical median nerve stimulus. In the present paper, we will try two careful preprocessing procedures for the identification method to obtain impulse responses between primary somatosensory cortices. Time series data of the somatosensory evoked field are obtained by using a blind source separation of the T/k type (fractional) decorrelation method. Time series data of current dipoles of primary somatosensory cortices are transformed from the time series data of the somatosensory evoked field by the inverse problem. Fluctuations of current dipoles of them are obtained after elimination of deterministic periodical evoked waveforms. An identification method based on feedback system theory is used for estimation of transfer functions in a feedback model from obtained fluctuations of currents dipoles of primary somatosensory cortices. Dynamical activities between them are presented by Bode diagrams of transfer functions and their impulse responses: the time delay of about 30 ms via corpus callosum is found in the impulse response of identified transfer function.

  10. Beyond the Peak - Tactile Temporal Discrimination Does Not Correlate with Individual Peak Frequencies in Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Baumgarten, Thomas J; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    The human sensory systems constantly receive input from different stimuli. Whether these stimuli are integrated into a coherent percept or segregated and perceived as separate events, is critically determined by the temporal distance of the stimuli. This temporal distance has prompted the concept of temporal integration windows or perceptual cycles. Although this concept has gained considerable support, the neuronal correlates are still discussed. Studies suggested that neuronal oscillations might provide a neuronal basis for such perceptual cycles, i.e., the cycle lengths of alpha oscillations in visual cortex and beta oscillations in somatosensory cortex might determine the length of perceptual cycles. Specifically, recent studies reported that the peak frequency (the frequency with the highest spectral power) of alpha oscillations in visual cortex correlates with subjects' ability to discriminate two visual stimuli. In the present study, we investigated whether peak frequencies in somatosensory cortex might serve as the correlate of perceptual cycles in tactile discrimination. Despite several different approaches, we were unable to find a significant correlation between individual peak frequencies in the alpha- and beta-band and individual discrimination abilities. In addition, analysis of Bayes factor provided evidence that peak frequencies and discrimination thresholds are unrelated. The results suggest that perceptual cycles in the somatosensory domain are not necessarily to be found in the peak frequency, but in other frequencies. We argue that studies based solely on analysis of peak frequencies might thus miss relevant information.

  11. Effect of muscle contraction strength on gating of somatosensory magnetic fields.

    PubMed

    Sugawara, Kazuhiro; Onishi, Hideaki; Yamashiro, Koya; Kotan, Shinichi; Kojima, Sho; Miyaguchi, Shota; Tsubaki, Atsuhiro; Kirimoto, Hikari; Tamaki, Hiroyuki; Shirozu, Hiroshi; Kameyama, Shigeki

    2016-11-01

    Afferent somatosensory information is modulated before the afferent input arrives at the primary somatosensory cortex during voluntary movement. The aim of the present study was to clarify the effect of muscular contraction strength on somatosensory evoked fields (SEFs) during voluntary movement. In addition, we examined the differences in gating between innervated and non-innervated muscle during contraction. We investigated the changes in gating effect by muscular contraction strength and innervated and non-innervated muscles in human using 306-channel magnetoencephalography. SEFs were recorded following the right median nerve stimulation in a resting condition and during isometric muscular contractions from 10 % electromyographic activity (EMG), 20 and 30 % EMG of the right extensor indicis muscle and abductor pollicis brevis muscle. Our results showed that the equivalent current dipole (ECD) strength for P35m decreased with increasing strength of muscular contraction of the right abductor pollicis brevis muscle. However, changes were observed only at 30 % EMG contraction level of the right extensor indicis muscle, which was not innervated by the median nerve. There were no significant changes in the peak latencies and ECD locations of each component in all conditions. The ECD strength did not differ significantly for N20m and P60m regardless of the strength of muscular contraction and innervation. Therefore, we suggest that the gating of SEF waveforms following peripheral nerve stimulation was affected by the strength of muscular contraction and innervation of the contracting muscle.

  12. Skill-Specific Changes in Somatosensory Nogo Potentials in Baseball Players.

    PubMed

    Yamashiro, Koya; Sato, Daisuke; Onishi, Hideaki; Sugawara, Kazuhiro; Nakazawa, Sho; Shimojo, Hirofumi; Akatsuka, Kosuke; Nakata, Hiroki; Maruyama, Atsuo

    2015-01-01

    Athletic training is known to induce neuroplastic alterations in specific somatosensory circuits, which are reflected by changes in somatosensory evoked potentials and event-related potentials. The aim of this study was to clarify whether specific athletic training also affects somatosensory Nogo potentials related to the inhibition of movements. The Nogo potentials were recorded at nine cortical electrode positions (Fz, Cz, Pz, F3, F4, C3, C4, P3 and P4) in 12 baseball players (baseball group) and in 12 athletes in sports, such as track and field events and swimming, that do not require response inhibition, such as batting for training or performance (sports group). The Nogo potentials and Go/Nogo reaction times (Go/Nogo RTs) were measured under a somatosensory Go/Nogo paradigm in which subjects were instructed to rapidly push a button in response to stimulus presentation. The Nogo potentials were obtained by subtracting the Go trial from the Nogo trial. The peak Nogo-N2 was significantly shorter in the baseball group than that in the sports group. In addition, the amplitude of Nogo-N2 in the frontal area was significantly larger in the baseball group than that in the sports group. There was a significant positive correlation between the latency of Nogo-N2 and Go/Nogo RT. Moreover, there were significant correlations between the Go/Nogo RT and both the amplitude of Nogo-N2 and Nogo-P3 (i.e., amplitude of the Nogo-potentials increases with shorter RT). Specific athletic training regimens may induce neuroplastic alterations in sensorimotor inhibitory processes.

  13. Skill-Specific Changes in Somatosensory Nogo Potentials in Baseball Players

    PubMed Central

    Yamashiro, Koya; Sato, Daisuke; Onishi, Hideaki; Sugawara, Kazuhiro; Nakazawa, Sho; Shimojo, Hirofumi; Akatsuka, Kosuke; Nakata, Hiroki; Maruyama, Atsuo

    2015-01-01

    Athletic training is known to induce neuroplastic alterations in specific somatosensory circuits, which are reflected by changes in somatosensory evoked potentials and event-related potentials. The aim of this study was to clarify whether specific athletic training also affects somatosensory Nogo potentials related to the inhibition of movements. The Nogo potentials were recorded at nine cortical electrode positions (Fz, Cz, Pz, F3, F4, C3, C4, P3 and P4) in 12 baseball players (baseball group) and in 12 athletes in sports, such as track and field events and swimming, that do not require response inhibition, such as batting for training or performance (sports group). The Nogo potentials and Go/Nogo reaction times (Go/Nogo RTs) were measured under a somatosensory Go/Nogo paradigm in which subjects were instructed to rapidly push a button in response to stimulus presentation. The Nogo potentials were obtained by subtracting the Go trial from the Nogo trial. The peak Nogo-N2 was significantly shorter in the baseball group than that in the sports group. In addition, the amplitude of Nogo-N2 in the frontal area was significantly larger in the baseball group than that in the sports group. There was a significant positive correlation between the latency of Nogo-N2 and Go/Nogo RT. Moreover, there were significant correlations between the Go/Nogo RT and both the amplitude of Nogo-N2 and Nogo-P3 (i.e., amplitude of the Nogo-potentials increases with shorter RT). Specific athletic training regimens may induce neuroplastic alterations in sensorimotor inhibitory processes. PMID:26600391

  14. Molecular and cellular limits to somatosensory specificity

    PubMed Central

    Belmonte, Carlos; Viana, Félix

    2008-01-01

    Animals detect environmental changes through sensory neural mechanisms that enable them to differentiate the quality, intensity and temporal characteristics of stimuli. The 'doctrine of specific nervous energies' postulates that the different sensory modalities experienced by humans result of the activation of specific nervous pathways. Identification of functional classes of sensory receptors provided scientific support to the concept that somatosensory modalities (touch, pain, temperature, kinesthesis) are subserved by separate populations of sensory receptor neurons specialized in detecting innocuous and injurious stimuli of different quality (mechanical forces, temperature, chemical compounds). The identification of receptor proteins activated by different physicochemical stimuli, in particular ion channels of the Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) superfamily, has put forward the concept that specificity of peripheral sensory receptor neurons is determined by their expression of a particular "molecular sensor" that confers to each functional type its selectivity to respond with a discharge of nerve impulses to stimuli of a given quality. Nonetheless, recent experimental data suggest that the various molecular sensors proposed as specific transducer molecules for stimuli of different quality are not as neatly associated with the distinct functional types of sensory receptors as originally proposed. First, many ion channel molecules initially associated to the transduction of only one particular form of energy are also activated by stimuli of different quality, implying a limited degree of specificity in their transducing capacities. Second, molecular sensors associated with a stimulus quality and hence to a sensory receptor type and ultimately to a sensory modality may be concomitantly expressed in sensory receptor neurons functionally defined as specific for another stimulus quality. Finally, activation of voltage gated channels involved primarily in nerve

  15. Aristotle's illusion reveals interdigit functional somatosensory alterations in focal hand dystonia.

    PubMed

    Tinazzi, Michele; Marotta, Angela; Fasano, Alfonso; Bove, Francesco; Bentivoglio, Anna Rita; Squintani, Giovanna; Pozzer, Lara; Fiorio, Mirta

    2013-03-01

    In focal hand dystonia, the cortical somatosensory representation of the fingers is abnormal, with overlapping receptive fields and reduced interdigit separation. These abnormalities are associated with deficits in sensory perception, as previously demonstrated by applying tactile stimuli to one finger at a time. What is still unknown is whether the sensory deficits can be observed when tactile perception involves more than one finger. To address this issue, we applied 'Aristotle's illusion' to 15 patients with focal hand dystonia, 15 patients with dystonia not affecting the hand (blepharospasm and cervical dystonia) and 15 healthy control subjects. In this illusion, one object touching the contact point of two crossed fingertips is perceived as two objects by a blindfolded subject. The same object placed between two parallel fingertips is correctly perceived as one. The illusory doubling sensation is because of the fact that the contact point between the crossed fingers consists of non-adjacent and functionally unrelated skin regions, which usually send sensory signals to separate spots in the somatosensory cortex. In our study, participants were touched by one sphere between the second-third digits, the second-fourth digits and the fourth-fifth digits of both hands, either in crossed or in parallel position, and had to refer whether they felt one or two stimuli. The percentage of 'two stimuli' responses was an index of the illusory doubling. Both healthy control subjects and dystonic patients presented Aristotle's illusion when the fingers were crossed. However, patients with focal hand dystonia presented a significant reduction of the illusion when the sphere was placed between the crossed fourth and fifth digits of the affected hand. This reduction correlated with the severity of motor disease at the fingers. Similar findings were not observed in non-hand dystonia and control groups. The reduction of Aristotle's illusion in non-affected fingers and its

  16. Shared somatosensory and motor functions in musicians

    PubMed Central

    Hosoda, Moe; Furuya, Shinichi

    2016-01-01

    Skilled individuals are characterized by fine-tuned perceptual and motor functions. Here, we tested the idea that the sensory and motor functions of highly-trained individuals are coupled. We assessed the relationships among multifaceted somatosensory and motor functions of expert pianists. The results demonstrated a positive covariation between the acuity of weight discrimination and the precision of force control during piano keystrokes among the pianists but not among the non-musicians. However, neither the age of starting musical training nor the total amount of life-long piano practice was correlated with these sensory-motor functions in the pianists. Furthermore, a difference between the pianists and non-musicians was absent for the weight discrimination acuity but present for precise force control during keystrokes. The results suggest that individuals with innately superior sensory function had finer motor control only in a case of having undergone musical training. Intriguingly, the tactile spatial acuity of the fingertip was superior in the pianists compared with the non-musicians but was not correlated with any functions representing fine motor control among the pianists. The findings implicate the presence of two distinct mechanisms of sensorimotor learning elicited by musical training, which occur either independently in individual sensorimotor modalities or through interacting between modalities. PMID:27886250

  17. Frequency Specific Modulation of Human Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Feurra, Matteo; Paulus, Walter; Walsh, Vincent; Kanai, Ryota

    2011-01-01

    Oscillatory neuronal activities are commonly observed in response to sensory stimulation. However, their functional roles are still the subject of debate. One-way to probe the roles of oscillatory neural activities is to deliver alternating current to the cortex at biologically relevant frequencies and examine whether such stimulation influences perception and cognition. In this study, we tested whether transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) over the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) could elicit tactile sensations in humans in a frequency-dependent manner. We tested the effectiveness of tACS over SI at frequency bands ranging from 2 to 70 Hz. Our results show that stimulation in alpha (10–14 Hz) and high gamma (52–70 Hz) frequency range produces a tactile sensation in the contralateral hand. A weaker effect was also observed for beta (16–20 Hz) stimulation. These findings highlight the frequency dependency of effective tACS over SI with the effective frequencies corresponding to those observed in previous electroencephalography/magnetoencephalography studies of tactile perception. Our present study suggests that tACS could be used as a powerful online stimulation technique to reveal the causal roles of oscillatory brain activities. PMID:21713181

  18. Functional Plasticity in Somatosensory Cortex Supports Motor Learning by Observing.

    PubMed

    McGregor, Heather R; Cashaback, Joshua G A; Gribble, Paul L

    2016-04-04

    An influential idea in neuroscience is that the sensory-motor system is activated when observing the actions of others [1, 2]. This idea has recently been extended to motor learning, in which observation results in sensory-motor plasticity and behavioral changes in both motor and somatosensory domains [3-9]. However, it is unclear how the brain maps visual information onto motor circuits for learning. Here we test the idea that the somatosensory system, and specifically primary somatosensory cortex (S1), plays a role in motor learning by observing. In experiment 1, we applied stimulation to the median nerve to occupy the somatosensory system with unrelated inputs while participants observed a tutor learning to reach in a force field. Stimulation disrupted motor learning by observing in a limb-specific manner. Stimulation delivered to the right arm (the same arm used by the tutor) disrupted learning, whereas left arm stimulation did not. This is consistent with the idea that a somatosensory representation of the observed effector must be available during observation for learning to occur. In experiment 2, we assessed S1 cortical processing before and after observation by measuring somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) associated with median nerve stimulation. SEP amplitudes increased only for participants who observed learning. Moreover, SEPs increased more for participants who exhibited greater motor learning following observation. Taken together, these findings support the idea that motor learning by observing relies on functional plasticity in S1. We propose that visual signals about the movements of others are mapped onto motor circuits for learning via the somatosensory system.

  19. THE INFLUENCE OF VIBRISSAL SOMATOSENSORY PROCESSING IN RAT SUPERIOR COLLICULUS ON PREY CAPTURE

    PubMed Central

    FAVARO, P. D. N.; GOUVÊA, T. S.; DE OLIVEIRA, S. R.; VAUTRELLE, N.; REDGRAVE, P.; COMOLI, E.

    2011-01-01

    The lateral part of intermediate layer of superior colliculus (SCl) is a critical substrate for successful predation by rats. Hunting-evoked expression of the activity marker Fos is concentrated in SCl while prey capture in rats with NMDA lesions in SCl is impaired. Particularly affected are rapid orienting and stereotyped sequences of actions associated with predation of fast moving prey. Such deficits are consistent with the view that the deep layers of SC are important for sensory guidance of movement. Although much of the relevant evidence involves visual control of movement, less is known about movement guidance by somatosensory input from vibrissae. Indeed, our impression is that prey contact with whiskers is a likely stimulus to trigger predation. Moreover, SCl receives whisker and orofacial somatosensory information directly from trigeminal complex, and indirectly from zona incerta, parvicelular reticular formation and somatosensory barrel cortex. To better understand sensory guidance of predation by vibrissal information we investigated prey capture by rats after whisker removal and the role of superior colliculus (SC) by comparing Fos expression after hunting with and without whiskers. Rats were allowed to hunt cockroaches, after which their whiskers were removed. Two days later they were allowed to hunt cockroaches again. Without whiskers the rats were less able to retain the cockroaches after capture and less able to pursue them in the event of the cockroach escaping. The predatory behaviour of rats with re-grown whiskers returned to normal. In parallel, Fos expression in SCl induced by predation was significantly reduced in whiskerless animals. We conclude that whiskers contribute to the efficiency of rat prey capture and that the loss of vibrissal input to SCl, as reflected by reduced Fos expression, could play a critical role in predatory deficits of whiskerless rats. PMID:21163336

  20. Functional deficits in carpal tunnel syndrome reflect reorganization of primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Maeda, Yumi; Kettner, Norman; Holden, Jameson; Lee, Jeungchan; Kim, Jieun; Cina, Stephen; Malatesta, Cristina; Gerber, Jessica; McManus, Claire; Im, Jaehyun; Libby, Alexandra; Mezzacappa, Pia; Morse, Leslie R; Park, Kyungmo; Audette, Joseph; Tommerdahl, Mark; Napadow, Vitaly

    2014-06-01

    Carpal tunnel syndrome, a median nerve entrapment neuropathy, is characterized by sensorimotor deficits. Recent reports have shown that this syndrome is also characterized by functional and structural neuroplasticity in the primary somatosensory cortex of the brain. However, the linkage between this neuroplasticity and the functional deficits in carpal tunnel syndrome is unknown. Sixty-three subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome aged 20-60 years and 28 age- and sex-matched healthy control subjects were evaluated with event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging at 3 T while vibrotactile stimulation was delivered to median nerve innervated (second and third) and ulnar nerve innervated (fifth) digits. For each subject, the interdigit cortical separation distance for each digit's contralateral primary somatosensory cortex representation was assessed. We also evaluated fine motor skill performance using a previously validated psychomotor performance test (maximum voluntary contraction and visuomotor pinch/release testing) and tactile discrimination capacity using a four-finger forced choice response test. These biobehavioural and clinical metrics were evaluated and correlated with the second/third interdigit cortical separation distance. Compared with healthy control subjects, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated reduced second/third interdigit cortical separation distance (P < 0.05) in contralateral primary somatosensory cortex, corroborating our previous preliminary multi-modal neuroimaging findings. For psychomotor performance testing, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated reduced maximum voluntary contraction pinch strength (P < 0.01) and a reduced number of pinch/release cycles per second (P < 0.05). Additionally, for four-finger forced-choice testing, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated greater response time (P < 0.05), and reduced sensory discrimination accuracy (P < 0.001) for median nerve, but not ulnar nerve

  1. Functional deficits in carpal tunnel syndrome reflect reorganization of primary somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Kettner, Norman; Holden, Jameson; Lee, Jeungchan; Kim, Jieun; Cina, Stephen; Malatesta, Cristina; Gerber, Jessica; McManus, Claire; Im, Jaehyun; Libby, Alexandra; Mezzacappa, Pia; Morse, Leslie R.; Park, Kyungmo; Audette, Joseph; Tommerdahl, Mark; Napadow, Vitaly

    2014-01-01

    Carpal tunnel syndrome, a median nerve entrapment neuropathy, is characterized by sensorimotor deficits. Recent reports have shown that this syndrome is also characterized by functional and structural neuroplasticity in the primary somatosensory cortex of the brain. However, the linkage between this neuroplasticity and the functional deficits in carpal tunnel syndrome is unknown. Sixty-three subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome aged 20–60 years and 28 age- and sex-matched healthy control subjects were evaluated with event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging at 3 T while vibrotactile stimulation was delivered to median nerve innervated (second and third) and ulnar nerve innervated (fifth) digits. For each subject, the interdigit cortical separation distance for each digit’s contralateral primary somatosensory cortex representation was assessed. We also evaluated fine motor skill performance using a previously validated psychomotor performance test (maximum voluntary contraction and visuomotor pinch/release testing) and tactile discrimination capacity using a four-finger forced choice response test. These biobehavioural and clinical metrics were evaluated and correlated with the second/third interdigit cortical separation distance. Compared with healthy control subjects, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated reduced second/third interdigit cortical separation distance (P < 0.05) in contralateral primary somatosensory cortex, corroborating our previous preliminary multi-modal neuroimaging findings. For psychomotor performance testing, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated reduced maximum voluntary contraction pinch strength (P < 0.01) and a reduced number of pinch/release cycles per second (P < 0.05). Additionally, for four-finger forced-choice testing, subjects with carpal tunnel syndrome demonstrated greater response time (P < 0.05), and reduced sensory discrimination accuracy (P < 0.001) for median nerve, but not ulnar nerve

  2. Composition, diffusion, and antifungal activity of black mustard (Brassica nigra) essential oil when applied by direct addition or vapor phase contact.

    PubMed

    Mejía-Garibay, Beatriz; Palou, Enrique; López-Malo, Aurelio

    2015-04-01

    In this study, we characterized the essential oil (EO) of black mustard (Brassica nigra) and quantified its antimicrobial activity, when applied by direct contact into the liquid medium or by exposure in the vapor phase (in laboratory media or in a bread-type product), against the growth of Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus ochraceus, or Penicillium citrinum. Allyl-isothiocyanate (AITC) was identified as the major component of B. nigra EO with a concentration of 378.35 mg/ml. When B. nigra EO was applied by direct contact into the liquid medium, it inhibited the growth of A. ochraceus and P. citrinum when the concentration was 2 μl/ml of liquid medium (MIC), while for A. niger, a MIC of B. nigra EO was 4 μl/ml of liquid medium. Exposure of molds to B. nigra EO in vapor phase showed that 41.1 μl of B. nigra EO per liter of air delayed the growth of P. citrinum and A. niger by 10 days, while A. ochraceus growth was delayed for 20 days. Exposure to concentrations ≥ 47 μl of B. nigra EO per liter of air (MIC) inhibited the growth of tested molds by 30 days, and they were not able to recover after further incubation into an environment free of EO (fungicidal effect). Adsorbed AITC was quantified by exposing potato dextrose agar to B. nigra EO in a vapor phase, exhibiting that AITC was retained at least 5 days when testing EO at its MIC or with higher concentrations. Mustard EO MIC was also effective against the evaluated molds inhibiting their growth for 30 days in a bread-type product when exposed to EO by vapor contact, demonstrating its antifungal activity.

  3. Impairing somatosensory working memory using rTMS.

    PubMed

    Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Spitzer, Bernhard; Goltz, Dominique; Blankenburg, Felix

    2011-09-01

    Numerous studies in animals and humans have related central aspects of somatosensory working memory function to neural activity in the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). However, as previous studies have almost exclusively used correlational analyses, the question whether sustained neural activity in the IFG is causally involved in successful maintenance of somatosensory information remains unanswered. We used an online repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) protocol to disrupt neuronal activity in the IFG while participants were maintaining tactile information throughout the delay for later comparison against a probe stimulus. rTMS impaired participants' performance in the working memory task, but not in a physically matched perceptual control task. Targeting the IFG in either hemisphere led to comparable working memory impairment. Our results show that the neural activity in the IFG plays a causal role in successful maintenance of somatosensory information.

  4. Auditory, Somatosensory, and Multisensory Insular Cortex in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Rodgers, Krista M.; Benison, Alexander M.; Klein, Andrea

    2008-01-01

    Compared with other areas of the forebrain, the function of insular cortex is poorly understood. This study examined the unisensory and multisensory function of the rat insula using high-resolution, whole-hemisphere, epipial evoked potential mapping. We found the posterior insula to contain distinct auditory and somatotopically organized somatosensory fields with an interposed and overlapping region capable of integrating these sensory modalities. Unisensory and multisensory responses were uninfluenced by complete lesioning of primary and secondary auditory and somatosensory cortices, suggesting a high degree of parallel afferent input from the thalamus. In light of the established connections of the posterior insula with the amygdala, we propose that integration of auditory and somatosensory modalities reported here may play a role in auditory fear conditioning. PMID:18424777

  5. Auditory-Somatosensory Temporal Sensitivity Improves When the Somatosensory Event Is Caused by Voluntary Body Movement

    PubMed Central

    Kitagawa, Norimichi; Kato, Masaharu; Kashino, Makio

    2016-01-01

    When we actively interact with the environment, it is crucial that we perceive a precise temporal relationship between our own actions and sensory effects to guide our body movements. Thus, we hypothesized that voluntary movements improve perceptual sensitivity to the temporal disparity between auditory and movement-related somatosensory events compared to when they are delivered passively to sensory receptors. In the voluntary condition, participants voluntarily tapped a button, and a noise burst was presented at various onset asynchronies relative to the button press. The participants made either “sound-first” or “touch-first” responses. We found that the performance of temporal order judgment (TOJ) in the voluntary condition (as indexed by the just noticeable difference (JND)) was significantly better (M = 42.5 ms ± 3.8 SEM) than that when their finger was passively stimulated (passive condition: M = 66.8 ms ± 6.3 SEM). We further examined whether the performance improvement with voluntary action can be attributed to the prediction of the timing of the stimulation from sensory cues (sensory-based prediction), kinesthetic cues contained in voluntary action, and/or to the prediction of stimulation timing from the efference copy of the motor command (motor-based prediction). When three noise bursts were presented before the target burst with regular intervals (predictable condition) and when the participant’s finger was moved passively to press the button (involuntary condition), the TOJ performance was not improved from that in the passive condition. These results suggest that the improvement in sensitivity to temporal disparity between somatosensory and auditory events caused by the voluntary action cannot be attributed to sensory-based prediction and kinesthetic cues. Rather, the prediction from the efference copy of the motor command would be crucial for improving the temporal sensitivity. PMID:28018189

  6. Decreased insulin-like growth factor-I and its receptor expression in the hippocampus and somatosensory cortex of the aged mouse.

    PubMed

    Lee, Choong Hyun; Ahn, Ji Hyeon; Park, Joon Ha; Yan, Bing Chun; Kim, In Hye; Lee, Dae Hwan; Cho, Jeong-Hwi; Chen, Bai Hui; Lee, Jae-Chul; Cho, Jun Hwi; Lee, Yun Lyul; Won, Moo-Ho; Kang, Il-Jun

    2014-04-01

    Insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) is a multifunctional polypeptide and has diverse effects on brain functions. In the present study, we compared IGF-I and IGF-I receptor (IGF-IR) immunoreactivity and their protein levels between the adult (postnatal month 6) and aged (postnatal month 24) mouse hippocampus and somatosensory cortex. In the adult hippocampus, IGF-I immunoreactivity was easily observed in the pyramidal cells of the stratum pyramidale in the hippocampus proper and in the granule cells of the granule cell layer of the dentate gyrus. In the adult somatosensory cortex, IGF-I immunoreactivity was easily found in the pyramidal cells of layer V. In the aged groups, IGF-I expression was dramatically decreased in the cells. Like the change of IGF-I immunoreactivity, IGF-IR immunoreactivity in the pyramidal and granule cells of the hippocampus and in the pyramidal cells of the somatosensory cortex was also markedly decreased in the aged group. In addition, both IGF-I and IGF-IR protein levels were significantly decreased in the aged hippocampus and somatosensory cortex. These results indicate that the apparent decrease of IGF-I and IGF-IR expression in the aged mouse hippocampus and somatosensory cortex may be related to age-related changes in the aged brain.

  7. Somatosensory amplification and its relationship to somatosensory, auditory, and visual evoked and event-related potentials (P300).

    PubMed

    Nakao, Mutsuhiro; Barsky, Arthur J; Nishikitani, Mariko; Yano, Eiji; Murata, Katsuyuki

    2007-03-26

    Somatosensory amplification refers to the tendency to experience benign and ambiguous somatic sensation as intense, noxious, and disturbing. The construct is helpful in assessing the perceptual style of a variety of somatizing conditions, but there is no human study clarifying the effects of neurological function on somatosensory amplification. The present study examines the relationship between somatosensory amplification and different types of evoked potentials. In 33 healthy volunteers (mean age 24 years, 18 men), latencies and amplitudes were recorded using the following parameters: short-latency somatosensory, brainstem-auditory, and visual evoked potentials (SSEP, BAEP, and VEP, respectively) and auditory event-related potentials (ERP). All subjects completed questionnaires for the Somatosensory Amplification Scale (SSAS), 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and Profile of Mood State (POMS). The SSAS scores were significantly associated with the P200 latency (p=0.020) and P300 amplitude of ERP (p=0.041), controlling for the significant effect of the TAS and POMS depression and tension-anxiety scales. The SSEP, BAEP, and VEP latencies or amplitudes were not statistically significant (all p>0.05). When the subjects were divided into high and low SSAS groups based on the median of the SSAS scores, the P300 amplitude of ERP significantly discriminated the two groups (p=0.023) by multiple logistic regression analysis. Although the findings should be viewed as preliminary because of the small sample size, somatosensory amplification appears to reflect some aspects of long-latency cognitive processing rather than short-latency interceptive sensitivity from the viewpoint of encephalography.

  8. Somatosensory driven interpersonal synchrony during rhythmic sway.

    PubMed

    Sofianidis, George; Hatzitaki, Vassilia; Grouios, George; Johannsen, Leif; Wing, Alan

    2012-06-01

    Spontaneous synchrony emerges between individuals performing together rhythmic activities while communicating by means of sensory feedback. In this study, we examined the nature of interpersonal synchrony mediated by light fingertip contact when individuals sway rhythmically in the sagittal plane. The effect of traditional dance expertise on interpersonal synchrony was investigated. Sixty participants (30 dancers, 30 novices) formed three types of couples (10 expert couples, 10 novice couples, 10 mixed couples) and performed a rhythmical sway task (40s) that was either self or metronome paced (frequency: 0.25Hz). Cross spectral analysis of the center of pressure (CoP) displacement signals revealed that during self-paced sway fingertip contact evoked a decrease of the dominant sway frequency difference between partners, an increase in the coherence between the sway signals and a concentration of relative phase angles towards the in-phase (0°-20°) region. In metronome paced sway however, only expert dancers were able to benefit from haptic contact to further improve interpersonal synchrony. These findings suggest that haptic contact can stabilize the spontaneous coordination dynamics of two persons performing rhythmic sway together. The strength of the emerged synchrony depends on the individuals' expertise to integrate tactile and auditory information about sway.

  9. Neuronal activity controls the development of interneurons in the somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Babij, Rachel

    2017-01-01

    BACKGROUND Neuronal activity in cortical areas regulates neurodevelopment by interacting with defined genetic programs to shape the mature central nervous system. Electrical activity is conveyed to sensory cortical areas via intracortical and thalamocortical neurons, and includes oscillatory patterns that have been measured across cortical regions. OBJECTIVE In this work, we review the most recent findings about how electrical activity shapes the developmental assembly of functional circuitry in the somatosensory cortex, with an emphasis on interneuron maturation and integration. We include studies on the effect of various neurotransmitters and on the influence of thalamocortical afferent activity on circuit development. We additionally reviewed studies describing network activity patterns. METHODS We conducted an extensive literature search using both the PubMed and Google Scholar search engines. The following keywords were used in various iterations: “interneuron”, “somatosensory”, “development”, “activity”, “network patterns”, “thalamocortical”, “NMDA receptor”, “plasticity”. We additionally selected papers known to us from past reading, and those recommended to us by reviewers and members of our lab. RESULTS We reviewed a total of 132 articles that focused on the role of activity in interneuronal migration, maturation, and circuit development, as well as the source of electrical inputs and patterns of cortical activity in the somatosensory cortex. 79 of these papers included in this timely review were written between 2007 and 2016. CONCLUSIONS Neuronal activity shapes the developmental assembly of functional circuitry in the somatosensory cortical interneurons. This activity impacts nearly every aspect of development and acquisition of mature neuronal characteristics, and may contribute to changing phenotypes, altered transmitter expression, and plasticity in the adult. Progressively changing oscillatory network patterns

  10. Fingertip contact influences human postural control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeka, J. J.; Lackner, J. R.

    1994-01-01

    Touch and pressure stimulation of the body surface can strongly influence apparent body orientation, as well as the maintenance of upright posture during quiet stance. In the present study, we investigated the relationship between postural sway and contact forces at the fingertip while subjects touched a rigid metal bar. Subjects were tested in the tandem Romberg stance with eyes open or closed under three conditions of fingertip contact: no contact, touch contact (< 0.98 N of force), and force contact (as much force as desired). Touch contact was as effective as force contact or sight of the surroundings in reducing postural sway when compared to the no contact, eyes closed condition. Body sway and fingertip forces were essentially in phase with force contact, suggesting that fingertip contact forces are physically counteracting body sway. Time delays between body sway and fingertip forces were much larger with light touch contact, suggesting that the fingertip is providing information that allows anticipatory innervation of musculature to reduce body sway. The results are related to observations on precision grip as well as the somatosensory, proprioceptive, and motor mechanisms involved in the reduction of body sway.

  11. Bilateral representations of touch in the primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Tamè, Luigi; Braun, Christoph; Holmes, Nicholas P; Farnè, Alessandro; Pavani, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    According to current textbook knowledge, the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) supports unilateral tactile representations, whereas structures beyond SI, in particular the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII), support bilateral tactile representations. However, dexterous and well-coordinated bimanual motor tasks require early integration of bilateral tactile information. Sequential processing, first of unilateral and subsequently of bilateral sensory information, might not be sufficient to accomplish these tasks. This view of sequential processing in the somatosensory system might therefore be questioned, at least for demanding bimanual tasks. Evidence from the last 15 years is forcing a revision of this textbook notion. Studies in animals and humans indicate that SI is more than a simple relay for unilateral sensory information and, together with SII, contributes to the integration of somatosensory inputs from both sides of the body. Here, we review a series of recent works from our own and other laboratories in favour of interactions between tactile stimuli on the two sides of the body at early stages of processing. We focus on tactile processing, although a similar logic may also apply to other aspects of somatosensation. We begin by describing the basic anatomy and physiology of interhemispheric transfer, drawing on neurophysiological studies in animals and behavioural studies in humans that showed tactile interactions between body sides, both in healthy and in brain-damaged individuals. Then we describe the neural substrates of bilateral interactions in somatosensation as revealed by neurophysiological work in animals and neuroimaging studies in humans (i.e., functional magnetic resonance imaging, magnetoencephalography, and transcranial magnetic stimulation). Finally, we conclude with considerations on the dilemma of how efficiently integrating bilateral sensory information at early processing stages can coexist with more lateralized representations of

  12. Modulation of somatosensory evoked magnetic fields by intensity of interfering stimuli in human somatosensory cortex: an MEG study.

    PubMed

    Lim, Manyoel; Kim, June Sic; Chung, Chun Kee

    2012-07-02

    Somatosensory evoked responses are known to be modulated by previous interfering stimuli. Here, we first investigated the modulatory effects of interfering stimuli with different intensities on somatosensory evoked magnetic field in human primary (S1) and secondary (S2) somatosensory cortices. In the control condition of the study, test stimulus, set to strong intensity, was delivered to the left median nerve. Interfering stimuli with three different levels of intensity from weak (WI) through moderate (MI) and finally to strong (SI) were interspersed to the left median nerve between the test stimuli in each interfering condition. The cortical responses to the test stimulus were modeled with equivalent current dipoles in the contralateral S1 and bilateral S2 cortices from 17 subjects. The amplitude of the N20m deflection from the S1 was not changed by any interfering stimuli, whereas the amplitude of later P35m deflection was reduced by MI stimulus. The amplitude of P60m deflection was reduced by MI and SI stimuli. The extent of amplitude reduction of the bilateral S2 response was markedly increased as intensity of interfering stimuli increased from weak to moderate, but further reduction by the SI stimuli compared to MI stimuli was not observed. Those results indicated that somatosensory cortical activation in the S1 (P35m and P60m) and S2 were modulated by intensity of interfering stimuli. Our findings of a greater gating effect on the bilateral S2 compared to the contralateral S1 indicate that S2 may play an important role in temporal integration of different intensity levels of somatosensory inputs.

  13. Contact Dermatitis

    MedlinePlus

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  14. Military veterans with mental health problems: a protocol for a systematic review to identify whether they have an additional risk of contact with criminal justice systems compared with other veterans groups

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There is concern that some veterans of armed forces, in particular those with mental health, drug or alcohol problems, experience difficulty returning to a civilian way of life and may subsequently come into contact with criminal justice services and imprisonment. The aim of this review is to examine whether military veterans with mental health problems, including substance use, have an additional risk of contact with criminal justice systems when compared with veterans who do not have such problems. The review will also seek to identify veterans’ views and experiences on their contact with criminal justice services, what contributed to or influenced their contact and whether there are any differences, including international and temporal, in incidence, contact type, veteran type, their presenting health needs and reported experiences. Methods/design In this review we will adopt a methodological model similar to that previously used by other researchers when reviewing intervention studies. The model, which we will use as a framework for conducting a review of observational and qualitative studies, consists of two parallel synthesis stages within the review process; one for quantitative research and the other for qualitative research. The third stage involves a cross study synthesis, enabling a deeper understanding of the results of the quantitative synthesis. A range of electronic databases, including MEDLINE, PsychINFO, CINAHL, will be systematically searched, from 1939 to present day, using a broad range of search terms that cover four key concepts: mental health, military veterans, substance misuse, and criminal justice. Studies will be screened against topic specific inclusion/exclusion criteria and then against a smaller subset of design specific inclusion/exclusion criteria. Data will be extracted for those studies that meet the inclusion criteria, and all eligible studies will be critically appraised. Included studies, both quantitative and

  15. Cervicogenic somatosensory tinnitus: An indication for manual therapy? Part 1: Theoretical concept.

    PubMed

    Oostendorp, Rob A B; Bakker, Iem; Elvers, Hans; Mikolajewska, Emilia; Michiels, Sarah; De Hertogh, Willem; Samwel, Han

    2016-06-01

    Tinnitus can be evoked or modulated by input from the somatosensory and somatomotor systems. This means that the loudness or intensity of tinnitus can be changed by sensory or motor stimuli such as muscle contractions, mechanical pressure on myofascial trigger points, transcutaneous electrical stimulation or joint movements. The neural connections and integration of the auditory and somatosensory systems of the upper cervical region and head have been confirmed by many studies. These connections can give rise to a form of tinnitus known as somatosensory tinnitus. To date only a handful of publications have focussed on (cervicogenic) somatosensory tinnitus and manual therapy. Broadening the current understanding of somatosensory tinnitus would represent a first step towards providing therapeutic approaches relevant to manual therapists. Treatment modalities involving the somatosensory systems, and particularly manual therapy, should now be re-assessed in the subgroup of patients with cervicogenic somatosensory tinnitus. The conceptual phase of this study aims to uncover underlying mechanisms linking the auditory and somatosensory systems in relation to subjective tinnitus through (i) review of the literature (part 1) and (ii) through design of a pilot study that will explore characteristics of the study population and identify relevant components and outcomes of manual therapy in patients with cervicogenic somatosensory tinnitus (part 2). This manuscript focusses the theoretical concept of (cervicogenic) somatosensory tinnitus, either with or without secondary central tinnitus or tinnitus sensitization.

  16. Telocyte's contacts.

    PubMed

    Faussone-Pellegrini, Maria-Simonetta; Gherghiceanu, Mihaela

    2016-07-01

    Telocytes (TC) are an interstitial cell type located in the connective tissue of many organs of humans and laboratory mammals. By means of homocellular contacts, TC build a scaffold whose meshes integrity and continuity are guaranteed by those contacts having a mechanical function; those contacts acting as sites of intercellular communication allow exchanging information and spreading signals. Heterocellular contacts between TC and a great variety of cell types give origin to mixed networks. TC, by means of all these types of contacts, their interaction with the extracellular matrix and their vicinity to nerve endings, are part of an integrated system playing tissue/organ-specific roles.

  17. Resting BOLD fluctuations in the primary somatosensory cortex correlate with tactile acuity.

    PubMed

    Haag, Lauren M; Heba, Stefanie; Lenz, Melanie; Glaubitz, Benjamin; Höffken, Oliver; Kalisch, Tobias; Puts, Nicholaas A; Edden, Richard A E; Tegenthoff, Martin; Dinse, Hubert; Schmidt-Wilcke, Tobias

    2015-03-01

    Sensory perception, including 2-point discrimination (2 ptD), is tightly linked to cortical processing of tactile stimuli in primary somatosensory cortices. While the role of cortical activity in response to a tactile stimulus has been widely investigated, the role of baseline cortical activity is largely unknown. Using resting state fMRI we investigated the relationship between local BOLD fluctuations in the primary somatosensory cortex (the representational field of the hand) and 2 ptD of the corresponding index finger (right and left). Cortical activity was measured using fractional amplitudes of the low frequency BOLD fluctuations (fALFF) and synchronicity using regional homogeneity (ReHo) of the S1 hand region during rest. 2 ptD correlated with higher ReHo values in the representational areas of the contralateral S1 cortex (left hand: p = .028; right hand: p = .049). 2 ptD additionally correlated with higher fALFF in the representational area of the left hand (p = .007) and showed a trend for a significant correlation in the representational area of the right hand (p = .051). Thus, higher BOLD amplitudes and synchronicity at rest, as measures of cortical activity and synchronicity, respectively, are related to better tactile discrimination abilities of the contralateral hand. Our findings extend the relationship seen between spontaneous BOLD fluctuations and sensory perception.

  18. A redefinition of somatosensory areas in the lateral sulcus of macaque monkeys.

    PubMed

    Krubitzer, L; Clarey, J; Tweedale, R; Elston, G; Calford, M

    1995-05-01

    The present investigation was designed to determine the organization of somatosensory fields in the lateral sulcus of macaque monkeys using standard microelectrode recording techniques. Our results provide evidence for two complete representations of the body surface. We term these fields the second somatosensory area (SII) and the parietal ventral area (PV) because of their similarities in position, internal organization, and relationship to anterior parietal fields, as described for SII and PV in other mammals. Areas SII and PV are mirror-symmetrical representations of the body surface, sharing a common boundary at the representations of the digits of the hand and foot, lips, and mouth. These fields are located adjacent to the face representations of anterior parietal fields (areas 3b, 1, and 2), and are bounded ventrally and caudally by other regions of cortex in which neurons are responsive to somatic or multimodal stimulation. The finding of a double representation of the body surface in the region of cortex traditionally designated as SII may explain conflicting descriptions of SII organization in macaque monkeys. In addition, the present study raises some questions regarding the designation of serial processing pathways in Old World monkeys, by suggesting that fields may have been confused in studies demonstrating such pathways. We propose that SII and PV are components of a common plan of organization, and are present in many eutherian mammals.

  19. The Cortical Signature of Central Poststroke Pain: Gray Matter Decreases in Somatosensory, Insular, and Prefrontal Cortices.

    PubMed

    Krause, T; Asseyer, S; Taskin, B; Flöel, A; Witte, A V; Mueller, K; Fiebach, J B; Villringer, K; Villringer, A; Jungehulsing, G J

    2016-01-01

    It has been proposed that cortical structural plasticity plays a crucial role in the emergence and maintenance of chronic pain. Various distinct pain syndromes have accordingly been linked to specific patterns of decreases in regional gray matter volume (GMV). However, it is not known whether central poststroke pain (CPSP) is also associated with cortical structural plasticity. To determine this, we employed T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging at 3 T and voxel-based morphometry in 45 patients suffering from chronic subcortical sensory stroke with (n = 23) and without CPSP (n = 22), and healthy matched controls (n = 31). CPSP patients showed decreases in GMV in comparison to healthy controls, involving secondary somatosensory cortex (S2), anterior as well as posterior insular cortex, ventrolateral prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortex, temporal cortex, and nucleus accumbens. Comparing CPSP patients to nonpain patients revealed a similar but more restricted pattern of atrophy comprising S2, ventrolateral prefrontal and temporal cortex. Additionally, GMV in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex negatively correlated to pain intensity ratings. This shows for the first time that CPSP is accompanied by a unique pattern of widespread structural plasticity, which involves the sensory-discriminative areas of insular/somatosensory cortex, but also expands into prefrontal cortex and ventral striatum, where emotional aspects of pain are processed.

  20. Abnormal activation of the primary somatosensory cortex in spasmodic dysphonia: an fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Simonyan, Kristina; Ludlow, Christy L

    2010-11-01

    Spasmodic dysphonia (SD) is a task-specific focal dystonia of unknown pathophysiology, characterized by involuntary spasms in the laryngeal muscles during speaking. Our aim was to identify symptom-specific functional brain activation abnormalities in adductor spasmodic dysphonia (ADSD) and abductor spasmodic dysphonia (ABSD). Both SD groups showed increased activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex, insula, and superior temporal gyrus during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks and decreased activation extent in the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during asymptomatic tasks. Increased activation intensity in SD patients was found only in the primary somatosensory cortex during symptomatic voice production, which showed a tendency for correlation with ADSD symptoms. Both SD groups had lower correlation of activation intensities between the primary motor and sensory cortices and additional correlations between the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks. Compared with ADSD patients, ABSD patients had larger activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex and ventral thalamus during symptomatic task and in the inferior temporal cortex and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic voice production. The primary somatosensory cortex shows consistent abnormalities in activation extent, intensity, correlation with other brain regions, and symptom severity in SD patients and, therefore, may be involved in the pathophysiology of SD.

  1. Diagnosis and management of somatosensory tinnitus: review article

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Tanit Ganz; Rocha, Carina Bezerra

    2011-01-01

    Tinnitus is the perception of sound in the absence of an acoustic external stimulus. It affects 10–17% of the world's population and it a complex symptom with multiple causes, which is influenced by pathways other than the auditory one. Recently, it has been observed that tinnitus may be provoked or modulated by stimulation arising from the somatosensorial system, as well as from the somatomotor and visual–motor systems. This specific subgroup – somatosensory tinnitus – is present in 65% of cases, even though it tends to be underdiagnosed. As a consequence, it is necessary to establish evaluation protocols and specific treatments focusing on both the auditory pathway and the musculoskeletal system. PMID:21808880

  2. Radial stretch reveals distinct populations of mechanosensitive mammalian somatosensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bhattacharya, Martha R. C.; Bautista, Diana M.; Wu, Karin; Haeberle, Henry; Lumpkin, Ellen A.; Julius, David

    2008-01-01

    Primary afferent somatosensory neurons mediate our sense of touch in response to changes in ambient pressure. Molecules that detect and transduce thermal stimuli have been recently identified, but mechanisms underlying mechanosensation, particularly in vertebrate organisms, remain enigmatic. Traditionally, mechanically evoked responses in somatosensory neurons have been assessed one cell at a time by recording membrane currents in response to application of focal pressure, suction, or osmotic challenge. Here, we used radial stretch in combination with live-cell calcium imaging to gain a broad overview of mechanosensitive neuronal subpopulations. We found that different stretch intensities activate distinct subsets of sensory neurons as defined by size, molecular markers, or pharmacological attributes. In all subsets, stretch-evoked responses required extracellular calcium, indicating that mechanical force triggers calcium influx. This approach extends the repertoire of stimulus paradigms that can be used to examine mechanotransduction in mammalian sensory neurons, facilitating future physiological and pharmacological studies. PMID:19060212

  3. Discrimination of Finger Area of Somatosensory Cortex by NIRS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Mingdi; Hayami, Takehito; Iramina, Keiji

    We carried out a near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) study to observe the hemodynamic responses associated with cortical activation in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) by finger electrical stimulation. We examined whether NIRS can assist in investigating the somatotopic arrangement of fingers on the SI hand area. We found that although relatively low in spatial resolution, NIRS can to some extent help to discriminate the representations of thumb and ring finger on the SI hand area.

  4. Activity of somatosensory-responsive neurons in high subdivisions of SI cortex during locomotion.

    PubMed

    Favorov, Oleg V; Nilaweera, Wijitha U; Miasnikov, Alexandre A; Beloozerova, Irina N

    2015-05-20

    Responses of neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex during movements are poorly understood, even during such simple tasks as walking on a flat surface. In this study, we analyzed spike discharges of neurons in the rostral bank of the ansate sulcus (areas 1-2) in 2 cats while the cats walked on a flat surface or on a horizontal ladder, a complex task requiring accurate stepping. All neurons (n = 82) that had receptive fields (RFs) on the contralateral forelimb exhibited frequency modulation of their activity that was phase locked to the stride cycle during simple locomotion. Neurons with proximal RFs (upper arm/shoulder) and pyramidal tract-projecting neurons (PTNs) with fast-conducting axons tended to fire at peak rates in the middle of the swing phase, whereas neurons with RFs on the distal limb (wrist/paw) and slow-conducting PTNs typically showed peak firing at the transition between swing and stance phases. Eleven of 12 neurons with tactile RFs on the volar forepaw began firing toward the end of swing, with peak activity occurring at the moment of foot contact with floor, thereby preceding the evoked sensory volley from touch receptors. Requirement to step accurately on the ladder affected 91% of the neurons, suggesting their involvement in control of accuracy of stepping. During both tasks, neurons exhibited a wide variety of spike distributions within the stride cycle, suggesting that, during either simple or ladder locomotion, they represent the cycling somatosensory events in their activity both predictively before and reflectively after these events take place.

  5. Activity of Somatosensory-Responsive Neurons in High Subdivisions of SI Cortex during Locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Favorov, Oleg V.; Nilaweera, Wijitha U.; Miasnikov, Alexandre A.

    2015-01-01

    Responses of neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex during movements are poorly understood, even during such simple tasks as walking on a flat surface. In this study, we analyzed spike discharges of neurons in the rostral bank of the ansate sulcus (areas 1–2) in 2 cats while the cats walked on a flat surface or on a horizontal ladder, a complex task requiring accurate stepping. All neurons (n = 82) that had receptive fields (RFs) on the contralateral forelimb exhibited frequency modulation of their activity that was phase locked to the stride cycle during simple locomotion. Neurons with proximal RFs (upper arm/shoulder) and pyramidal tract-projecting neurons (PTNs) with fast-conducting axons tended to fire at peak rates in the middle of the swing phase, whereas neurons with RFs on the distal limb (wrist/paw) and slow-conducting PTNs typically showed peak firing at the transition between swing and stance phases. Eleven of 12 neurons with tactile RFs on the volar forepaw began firing toward the end of swing, with peak activity occurring at the moment of foot contact with floor, thereby preceding the evoked sensory volley from touch receptors. Requirement to step accurately on the ladder affected 91% of the neurons, suggesting their involvement in control of accuracy of stepping. During both tasks, neurons exhibited a wide variety of spike distributions within the stride cycle, suggesting that, during either simple or ladder locomotion, they represent the cycling somatosensory events in their activity both predictively before and reflectively after these events take place. PMID:25995465

  6. Are There Abnormalities in Peripheral and Central Components of Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in Non-Specific Chronic Low Back Pain?

    PubMed Central

    Puta, Christian; Franz, Marcel; Blume, Kathrin R.; Gabriel, Holger H. W.; Miltner, Wolfgang H. R.; Weiss, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Chronic low back pain (CLBP) was shown to be associated with longer reflex response latencies of trunk muscles during external upper limb perturbations. One theoretical, but rarely investigated possibility for longer reflex latencies might be related to modulated somatosensory information processing. Therefore, the present study investigated somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) to median nerve stimulation in CLBP patients and healthy controls (HC). Latencies of the peripheral N9 SEP component were used as the primary outcome. In addition, latencies and amplitudes of the central N20 SEP component, sensory thresholds, motor thresholds and nerve conduction velocity were also analyzed in CLBP patients and HC. There is a trend for the CLBP patients to exhibit longer N9 latencies at the ipsilateral Erb’s point compared to HC. This trend is substantiated by significantly longer N9 latencies in CLBP patients compared to normative data. None of the other parameters showed any significant difference between CLBP patients and HC. Overall, our data indicate small differences of the peripheral N9 SEP component; however, these differences cannot explain the reflex delay observed in CLBP patients. While it was important to rule out the contribution of early somatosensory processing and to elucidate its contribution to the delayed reflex responses in CLBP patients, further research is needed to find the primary source(s) of time-delayed reflexes in CLBP. PMID:27799904

  7. Beyond the Peak – Tactile Temporal Discrimination Does Not Correlate with Individual Peak Frequencies in Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Baumgarten, Thomas J.; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    The human sensory systems constantly receive input from different stimuli. Whether these stimuli are integrated into a coherent percept or segregated and perceived as separate events, is critically determined by the temporal distance of the stimuli. This temporal distance has prompted the concept of temporal integration windows or perceptual cycles. Although this concept has gained considerable support, the neuronal correlates are still discussed. Studies suggested that neuronal oscillations might provide a neuronal basis for such perceptual cycles, i.e., the cycle lengths of alpha oscillations in visual cortex and beta oscillations in somatosensory cortex might determine the length of perceptual cycles. Specifically, recent studies reported that the peak frequency (the frequency with the highest spectral power) of alpha oscillations in visual cortex correlates with subjects’ ability to discriminate two visual stimuli. In the present study, we investigated whether peak frequencies in somatosensory cortex might serve as the correlate of perceptual cycles in tactile discrimination. Despite several different approaches, we were unable to find a significant correlation between individual peak frequencies in the alpha- and beta-band and individual discrimination abilities. In addition, analysis of Bayes factor provided evidence that peak frequencies and discrimination thresholds are unrelated. The results suggest that perceptual cycles in the somatosensory domain are not necessarily to be found in the peak frequency, but in other frequencies. We argue that studies based solely on analysis of peak frequencies might thus miss relevant information. PMID:28382013

  8. The Tactile Window to Consciousness is Characterized by Frequency-Specific Integration and Segregation of the Primary Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Frey, Julia Natascha; Ruhnau, Philipp; Leske, Sabine; Siegel, Markus; Braun, Christoph; Weisz, Nathan

    2016-02-11

    We recently proposed that besides levels of local cortical excitability, also distinct pre-stimulus network states (windows to consciousness) determine whether a near-threshold stimulus will be consciously perceived. In the present magnetoencephalography study, we scrutinised these pre-stimulus network states with a focus on the primary somatosensory cortex. For this purpose participants performed a simple near-threshold tactile detection task. Confirming previous studies, we found reduced alpha and beta power in the somatosensory region contralateral to stimulation prior to correct stimulus detection as compared to undetected stimuli, and stronger event-related responses following successful stimulus detection. As expected, using graph theoretical measures, we also observed modulated pre-stimulus network level integration. Specifically, the right primary somatosensory cortex contralateral to stimulation showed an increased integration in the theta band, and additionally, a decreased integration in the beta band. Overall, these results underline the importance of network states for enabling conscious perception. Moreover, they indicate that also a reduction of irrelevant functional connections contributes to the window to consciousness by tuning pre-stimulus pathways of information flow.

  9. Voxel-based morphometry in opera singers: Increased gray-matter volume in right somatosensory and auditory cortices.

    PubMed

    Kleber, Boris; Veit, Ralf; Moll, Christina Valérie; Gaser, Christian; Birbaumer, Niels; Lotze, Martin

    2016-06-01

    In contrast to instrumental musicians, professional singers do not train on a specific instrument but perfect a motor system that has already been extensively trained during speech motor development. Previous functional imaging studies suggest that experience with singing is associated with enhanced somatosensory-based vocal motor control. However, experience-dependent structural plasticity in vocal musicians has rarely been studied. We investigated voxel-based morphometry (VBM) in 27 professional classical singers and compared gray matter volume in regions of the "singing-network" to an age-matched group of 28 healthy volunteers with no special singing experience. We found right hemispheric volume increases in professional singers in ventral primary somatosensory cortex (larynx S1) and adjacent rostral supramarginal gyrus (BA40), as well as in secondary somatosensory (S2) and primary auditory cortices (A1). Moreover, we found that earlier commencement with vocal training correlated with increased gray-matter volume in S1. However, in contrast to studies with instrumental musicians, this correlation only emerged in singers who began their formal training after the age of 14years, when speech motor development has reached its first plateau. Structural data thus confirm and extend previous functional reports suggesting a pivotal role of somatosensation in vocal motor control with increased experience in singing. Results furthermore indicate a sensitive period for developing additional vocal skills after speech motor coordination has matured.

  10. Touch and personality: extraversion predicts somatosensory brain response.

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Michael; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Rotte, Michael

    2012-08-01

    The Five-Factor-Model describes human personality in five core dimensions (extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness). These factors are supposed to have different neural substrates. For example, it has been suggested that behavioral differences between introverts and extraverts can be explained by the fact that introverts exhibit an inherent drive to compensate for overactive cortical activity in reticulo-thalamo-cortical pathways. The current study examined if responses in somatosensory cortices due to tactile stimulation are affected by personality traits. Based on previous studies and theoretical models we hypothesized a relationship of extraversion with somatosensory responses in primary somatosensory cortex (SI). In order to test this hypothesis we applied nonpainful tactile stimulation on the fingers of both hands of 23 healthy young participants (mean 25 years, standard deviation ± 2.8 years). Personality traits were assessed according to the Five-Factor-Model (NEO-FFI). Neuromagnetic source imaging revealed that the cortical activity (dipole strengths) for sources in SI were closely associated with the personality trait extraversion. Thus, the less extraverted the participants were, the higher was the cortical activity in SI. This relationship was in particular valid for the right hemisphere. We conclude that personality seems to depend on primary cortex activity. Furthermore, our results provide further evidence for an inter-hemispheric asymmetry of the social brain.

  11. Somatosensory-evoked potentials and MRI in tuberculous spondylodiscitis.

    PubMed

    Titlic, M; Isgum, V; Buca, A; Kolic, K; Tonkic, A; Jukic, I; Milas, I

    2007-01-01

    Early diagnosis of spondylodiscitis is a condition of efficient conservative treatment. Somatosensory-evoked potentials with clinical examination results are used in assessing the diagnosis, as well as in monitoring the course of disease and healing. MRI clearly shows the inflammatory process, healing and scars. We report a 46-year-old woman suffering from non-specific interscapular pains. The evoked somatosensory potentials of the tibial nerveshow potential conductivity being slowed down through the thoracic spine, which is clearly evident from the prolonged latency and the decreased amplitude of the evoked response. The performed thoracic spine MRI shows spondylodiscitis at the Thl0-11 level. The subject is a nurse administering BCG therapy at a urology clinic, due to the fact of which this was deemed to have been a case of tuberculous spondylodiscitis. Due to the possibility of scattering the causative agent by needle, the biopsy was given up and antituberculous therapy was administered ex juvantibus. The disease was followed up by clinical examinations, somatosensory-evoked potentials and MRI up to fully successful and final recovery from spondylodiscitis. The above examinations are of great help in diagnosing the tuberculous spondylodiscitis and monitoring the recovery (Fig. 6, Ref. 16).

  12. Representation of tactile curvature in macaque somatosensory area 2

    PubMed Central

    Connor, Charles E.; Hsiao, Steven S.

    2013-01-01

    Tactile shape information is elaborated in a cortical hierarchy spanning primary (SI) and secondary somatosensory cortex (SII). Indeed, SI neurons in areas 3b and 1 encode simple contour features such as small oriented bars and edges, whereas higher order SII neurons represent large curved contour features such as angles and arcs. However, neural coding of these contour features has not been systematically characterized in area 2, the most caudal SI subdivision in the postcentral gyrus. In the present study, we analyzed area 2 neural responses to embossed oriented bars and curved contour fragments to establish whether curvature representations are generated in the postcentral gyrus. We found that many area 2 neurons (26 of 112) exhibit clear curvature tuning, preferring contours pointing in a particular direction. Fewer area 2 neurons (15 of 112) show preferences for oriented bars. Because area 2 response patterns closely resembled SII patterns, we also compared area 2 and SII response time courses to characterize the temporal dynamics of curvature synthesis in the somatosensory system. We found that curvature representations develop and peak concurrently in area 2 and SII. These results reveal that transitions from orientation tuning to curvature selectivity in the somatosensory cortical hierarchy occur within SI rather than between SI and SII. PMID:23536717

  13. Four-dimensional maps of the human somatosensory system

    PubMed Central

    Avanzini, Pietro; Abdollahi, Rouhollah O.; Sartori, Ivana; Caruana, Fausto; Pelliccia, Veronica; Casaceli, Giuseppe; Mai, Roberto; Lo Russo, Giorgio; Rizzolatti, Giacomo; Orban, Guy A.

    2016-01-01

    A fine-grained description of the spatiotemporal dynamics of human brain activity is a major goal of neuroscientific research. Limitations in spatial and temporal resolution of available noninvasive recording and imaging techniques have hindered so far the acquisition of precise, comprehensive four-dimensional maps of human neural activity. The present study combines anatomical and functional data from intracerebral recordings of nearly 100 patients, to generate highly resolved four-dimensional maps of human cortical processing of nonpainful somatosensory stimuli. These maps indicate that the human somatosensory system devoted to the hand encompasses a widespread network covering more than 10% of the cortical surface of both hemispheres. This network includes phasic components, centered on primary somatosensory cortex and neighboring motor, premotor, and inferior parietal regions, and tonic components, centered on opercular and insular areas, and involving human parietal rostroventral area and ventral medial-superior-temporal area. The technique described opens new avenues for investigating the neural basis of all levels of cortical processing in humans. PMID:26976579

  14. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold is increased in patients with cerebellar atrophy.

    PubMed

    Manganelli, Fiore; Dubbioso, Raffaele; Pisciotta, Chiara; Antenora, Antonella; Nolano, Maria; De Michele, Giuseppe; Filla, Alessandro; Berardelli, Alfredo; Santoro, Lucio

    2013-08-01

    Processing of time in the millisecond range seems to depend on cerebellar function and it can be assessed by using the somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold testing. No studies have yet investigated this temporal discrimination task in patients with cerebellar atrophy. Eleven patients with degenerative cerebellar ataxia and 11 controls underwent somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold evaluation. The degree of cerebellar dysfunction was measured by the International Cooperative Ataxia Rating Scale. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold was higher in patients compared to controls for each stimulated site (hand, neck, and eye). Age, disease duration, and International Cooperative Ataxia Rating Scale scores were not correlated to somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold is abnormal in patients with cerebellar atrophy. These findings suggest that the cerebellum plays a role in modulating the somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold and confirm the role of cerebellum in the processing of time in the millisecond range.

  15. Spatiotemporal dynamics of bimanual integration in human somatosensory cortex and their relevance to bimanual object manipulation.

    PubMed

    Jung, Patrick; Klein, Johannes C; Wibral, Michael; Hoechstetter, Karsten; Bliem, Barbara; Lu, Ming-Kuei; Wahl, Mathias; Ziemann, Ulf

    2012-04-18

    Little is known about the spatiotemporal dynamics of cortical responses that integrate slightly asynchronous somatosensory inputs from both hands. This study aimed to clarify the timing and magnitude of interhemispheric interactions during early integration of bimanual somatosensory information in different somatosensory regions and their relevance for bimanual object manipulation and exploration. Using multi-fiber probabilistic diffusion tractography and MEG source analysis of conditioning-test (C-T) median nerve somatosensory evoked fields in healthy human subjects, we sought to extract measures of structural and effective callosal connectivity between different somatosensory cortical regions and correlated them with bimanual tactile task performance. Neuromagnetic responses were found in major somatosensory regions, i.e., primary somatosensory cortex SI, secondary somatosensory cortex SII, posterior parietal cortex, and premotor cortex. Contralateral to the test stimulus, SII activity was maximally suppressed by 51% at C-T intervals of 40 and 60 ms. This interhemispheric inhibition of the contralateral SII source activity correlated directly and topographically specifically with the fractional anisotropy of callosal fibers interconnecting SII. Thus, the putative pathway that mediated inhibitory interhemispheric interactions in SII was a transcallosal route from ipsilateral to contralateral SII. Moreover, interhemispheric inhibition of SII source activity correlated directly with bimanual tactile task performance. These findings were exclusive to SII. Our data suggest that early interhemispheric somatosensory integration primarily occurs in SII, is mediated by callosal fibers that interconnect homologous SII areas, and has behavioral importance for bimanual object manipulation and exploration.

  16. Age-dependent modulation of the somatosensory network upon eye closure.

    PubMed

    Brodoehl, Stefan; Klingner, Carsten; Witte, Otto W

    2016-02-01

    Eye closure even in complete darkness can improve somatosensory perception by switching the brain to a uni-sensory processing mode. This causes an increased information flow between the thalamus and the somatosensory cortex while decreasing modulation by the visual cortex. Previous work suggests that these modulations are age-dependent and that the benefit in somatosensory performance due to eye closing diminishes with age. The cause of this age-dependency and to what extent somatosensory processing is involved remains unclear. Therefore, we intended to characterize the underlying age-dependent modifications in the interaction and connectivity of different sensory networks caused by eye closure. We performed functional MR-imaging with tactile stimulation of the right hand under the conditions of opened and closed eyes in healthy young and elderly participants. Conditional Granger causality analysis was performed to assess the somatosensory and visual networks, including the thalamus. Independent of age, eye closure improved the information transfer from the thalamus to and within the somatosensory cortex. However, beyond that, we found an age-dependent recruitment strategy. Whereas young participants were characterized by an optimized information flow within the relays of the somatosensory network, elderly participants revealed a stronger modulatory influence of the visual network upon the somatosensory cortex. Our results demonstrate that the modulation of the somatosensory and visual networks by eye closure diminishes with age and that the dominance of the visual system is more pronounced in the aging brain.

  17. Tribological properties of novel imidazolium ionic liquids bearing benzotriazole group as the antiwear/anticorrosion additive in poly(ethylene glycol) and polyurea grease for steel/steel contacts.

    PubMed

    Cai, Meirong; Liang, Yongmin; Zhou, Feng; Liu, Weimin

    2011-12-01

    The imidazolium ionic liquids (ILs) bearing benzotriazole group were synthesized and evaluated as antiwear (AW) and anticorrosion additive in poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and polyurea grease for steel/steel contacts at room temperature and 150 °C. The physical properties of the synthetic ILs and PEG with the additive were measured. The anticorrosion property of the synthetic ILs was assessed via the accelerated corrosion test and copper strip corrosion test, which reveals the excellent anticorrosion properties in comparison with pure PEG and the selected conventional ILs having no benzotriazole group. Tribological results indicated that these ILs as the additives could effectively reduce friction and wear of sliding pairs in PEG and also in polyurea grease. The tribological properties were generally better than the normally used zincdialkyldithiophosphate-based additive package (T204) in polyurea grease. The wear mechanisms are tentatively discussed according to the morphology observation of worn surfaces of steel discs by scanning electron microscope (SEM) and the surface composition analysis by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS).

  18. Does somatosensory discrimination activate different brain areas in children with unilateral cerebral palsy compared to typically developing children? An fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Van de Winckel, Ann; Verheyden, Geert; Wenderoth, Nici; Peeters, Ron; Sunaert, Stefan; Van Hecke, Wim; De Cock, Paul; Desloovere, Kaat; Eyssen, Maria; Feys, Hilde

    2013-05-01

    Aside from motor impairment, many children with unilateral cerebral palsy (CP) experience altered tactile, proprioceptive, and kinesthetic awareness. Sensory deficits are addressed in rehabilitation programs, which include somatosensory discrimination exercises. In contrast to adult stroke patients, data on brain activation, occurring during somatosensory discrimination exercises, are lacking in CP children. Therefore, this study investigated brain activation with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during passively guided somatosensory discrimination exercises in 18 typically developing children (TD) (age, M=14 ± 1.92 years; 11 girls) and 16 CP children (age, M=15 ± 2.54 years; 8 girls). The demographic variables between both groups were not statistically different. An fMRI compatible robot guided the right index finger and performed pairs of unfamiliar geometric shapes in the air, which were judged on their equality. The control condition comprised discrimination of music fragments. Both groups exhibited significant activation (FDR, p<.05) in frontoparietal, temporal, cerebellar areas, and insula, similar to studies in adults. The frontal areas encompassed ventral premotor areas, left postcentral gyrus, and precentral gyrus; additional supplementary motor area (SMA proper) activation in TD; as well as dorsal premotor, and parietal operculum recruitment in CP. On uncorrected level, p<.001, TD children revealed more left frontal lobe, and right cerebellum activation, compared to CP children. Conversely, CP children activated the left dorsal cingulate gyrus to a greater extent than TD children. These data provide incentives to investigate the effect of somatosensory discrimination during rehabilitation in CP, on clinical outcome and brain plasticity.

  19. Effect of SiO2 addition on photocatalytic activity, water contact angle and mechanical stability of visible light activated TiO2 thin films applied on stainless steel by a sol gel method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Momeni, Mansour; Saghafian, Hasan; Golestani-Fard, Farhad; Barati, Nastaran; Khanahmadi, Amirhossein

    2017-01-01

    Nanostructured N doped TiO2/20%SiO2 thin films were developed on steel surface via sol gel method using a painting airbrush. Thin films then were calcined at various temperatures in a range of 400-600 °C. The effect of SiO2 addition on phase composition and microstructural evolution of N doped TiO2 films were studied using XRD and FESEM. Optical properties, visible light photocatalytic activity, hydrophilic behavior, and mechanical behavior of the films were also investigated by DRS, methylene blue degradation, water contact angle measurements, and nanoscratch testing. Results indicated that the band gap energy of N doped TiO2/SiO2 was increased from 2.93 to 3.09 eV. Crack formation during calcination was also significantly promoted in the composite films. All composite films demonstrated weaker visible light photocatalytic activities and lower mechanical stability in comparison with N doped TiO2 films. Moreover, the N doped TiO2/SiO2 film calcined at 600 °C showed undesirable hydrophilic behavior with a water contact angle of 57° after 31 h of visible light irradiation. Outcomes of the present study reveal some different results to previous reports on TiO2/SiO2 films. In general, we believe the differences in substrate material as well as application in visible light are the main reasons for the above mentioned contradiction.

  20. Sensorimotor and cognitive involvement of the beta-gamma oscillation in the frontal N30 component of somatosensory evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Cebolla, A M; Cheron, G

    2015-12-01

    The most consistent negative cortical component of somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs), namely the frontal N30, can be considered more multidimensional than a strict item of standard somatosensory investigation, dedicated to tracking the afferent volley from the peripheral sensory nerve potentials to the primary somatosensory cortex. In this review, we revisited its classical sensorimotor implication within the framework of the recent oscillatory model of ongoing electroencephalogram (EEG) rhythms. Recently, the N30 component was demonstrated to be related to an increase in the power of beta-gamma EEG oscillation and a phase reorganization of the ongoing EEG oscillations (phase locking) in this frequency band. Thanks to high density EEG recordings and the inverse modeling method (swLORETA), it was shown that different overlapping areas of the motor and premotor cortex are specifically involved in generating the N30 in the form of a beta gamma oscillatory phase locking and power increase. This oscillatory approach has allowed a re-investigation of the movement gating behavior of the N30. It was demonstrated that the concomitant execution of finger movements by a stimulated hand impinges the temporal concentration of the ongoing beta/gamma EEG oscillations and abolished the N30 component. It was hypothesized that the involvement of neuronal populations in both the sensorimotor cortex and other related areas were unable to respond to the phasic sensory activation so could not phase-lock their oscillatory signals to the external sensory input during the movement. In this case, the actual movement has primacy over the artificial somatosensory input. The contribution of the ongoing oscillatory activity in the N30 emergence calls for a reappraisal of fundamental and clinical interpretations of the frontal N30 component. An absent or reduced amplitude of the N30 can now be viewed not only as a deficit in the activation of the somatosensory synaptic network in response

  1. Overview of existing European food consumption databases: critical aspects in relation to their use for the assessment of dietary exposure to additives, flavourings and residues of food contact materials.

    PubMed

    Le Donne, Cinzia; Piccinelli, Raffaela; Sette, Stefania; Leclercq, Catherine

    2011-03-01

    A critical analysis of existing food consumption databases was performed with particular regard for their current and potential use for the assessment of dietary exposure to additives, flavourings and residues of food contact materials. Within the European Food Consumption Validation project (EFCOVAL), a questionnaire on critical aspects of such datasets was developed and administered to researchers responsible for the collection/analysis of national food consumption data in European countries. Information collected was complemented through a review of the literature and of grey publications in order to provide an inventory of the main food consumption surveys performed in Europe from 1994 to 2007, for a total of 23 countries and 37 surveys. It appeared that existing European food consumption surveys have as a main objective the assessment of nutrient intake in the population. On the other hand, most of the databases were shown to be used also for the purpose of dietary exposure assessment.

  2. Adaptation to Coriolis force perturbation of movement trajectory; role of proprioceptive and cutaneous somatosensory feedback

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lackner, James R.; DiZio, Paul

    2002-01-01

    Subjects exposed to constant velocity rotation in a large fully-enclosed room that rotates initially make large reaching errors in pointing to targets. The paths and endpoints of their reaches are deviated in the direction of the transient lateral Coriolis forces generated by the forward velocity of their reaches. With additional reaches, subjects soon reach in straighter paths and become more accurate at landing on target even in the absence of visual feedback about their movements. Two factors contribute to this adaptation: first, muscle spindle and golgi tendon organ feedback interpreted in relation to efferent commands provide information about movement trajectory, and second, somatosensory stimulation of the fingertip at the completion of a reach provides information about the location of the fingertip relative to the torso.

  3. Predictability of Painful Stimulation Modulates the Somatosensory-Evoked Potential in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Schaap, Manon W. H.; van Oostrom, Hugo; Doornenbal, Arie; Baars, Annemarie M.; Arndt, Saskia S.; Hellebrekers, Ludo J.

    2013-01-01

    Somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) are used in humans and animals to increase knowledge about nociception and pain. Since the SEP in humans increases when noxious stimuli are administered unpredictably, predictability potentially influences the SEP in animals as well. To assess the effect of predictability on the SEP in animals, classical fear conditioning was applied to compare SEPs between rats receiving SEP-evoking electrical stimuli either predictably or unpredictably. As in humans, the rat’s SEP increased when SEP-evoking stimuli were administered unpredictably. These data support the hypothesis that the predictability of noxious stimuli plays a distinctive role in the processing of these stimuli in animals. The influence of predictability should be considered when studying nociception and pain in animals. Additionally, this finding suggests that animals confronted with (un)predictable noxious stimuli can be used to investigate the mechanisms underlying the influence of predictability on central processing of noxious stimuli. PMID:23613862

  4. The Role of Attention in Somatosensory Processing: A Multi-trait, Multi-method Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Puts, Nicolaas A. J.; Mahone, E. Mark; Edden, Richard A. E.; Tommerdahl, Mark; Mostofsky, Stewart H.

    2016-01-01

    Sensory processing abnormalities in autism have largely been described by parent report. This study used a multi-method (parent-report and measurement), multi-trait (tactile sensitivity and attention) design to evaluate somatosensory processing in ASD. Results showed multiple significant within-method (e.g., parent report of different traits)/cross-trait (e.g., attention and tactile sensitivity) correlations, suggesting that parent-reported tactile sensory dysfunction and performance-based tactile sensitivity describe different behavioral phenomena. Additionally, both parent-reported tactile functioning and performance-based tactile sensitivity measures were significantly associated with measures of attention. Findings suggest that sensory (tactile) processing abnormalities in ASD are multifaceted, and may partially reflect a more global deficit in behavioral regulation (including attention). Challenges of relying solely on parent-report to describe sensory difficulties faced by children/families with ASD are also highlighted. PMID:27448580

  5. Adaptation to Coriolis force perturbation of movement trajectory; role of proprioceptive and cutaneous somatosensory feedback.

    PubMed

    Lackner, James R; DiZio, Paul

    2002-01-01

    Subjects exposed to constant velocity rotation in a large fully-enclosed room that rotates initially make large reaching errors in pointing to targets. The paths and endpoints of their reaches are deviated in the direction of the transient lateral Coriolis forces generated by the forward velocity of their reaches. With additional reaches, subjects soon reach in straighter paths and become more accurate at landing on target even in the absence of visual feedback about their movements. Two factors contribute to this adaptation: first, muscle spindle and golgi tendon organ feedback interpreted in relation to efferent commands provide information about movement trajectory, and second, somatosensory stimulation of the fingertip at the completion of a reach provides information about the location of the fingertip relative to the torso.

  6. The modulation of somatosensory resonance by psychopathic traits and empathy

    PubMed Central

    Marcoux, Louis-Alexandre; Michon, Pierre-Emmanuel; Voisin, Julien I. A.; Lemelin, Sophie; Vachon-Presseau, Etienne; Jackson, Philip L.

    2013-01-01

    A large number of neuroimaging studies have shown neural overlaps between first-hand experiences of pain and the perception of pain in others. This shared neural representation of vicarious pain is thought to involve both affective and sensorimotor systems. A number of individual factors are thought to modulate the cerebral response to other's pain. The goal of this study was to investigate the impact of psychopathic traits on the relation between sensorimotor resonance to other's pain and self-reported empathy. Our group has previously shown that a steady-state response to non-painful stimulation is modulated by the observation of other people's bodily pain. This change in somatosensory response was interpreted as a form of somatosensory gating (SG). Here, using the same technique, SG was compared between two groups of 15 young adult males: one scoring very high on a self-reported measure of psychopathic traits [60.8 ± 4.98; Levenson's Self-Report Psychopathy Scale (LSRP)] and one scoring very low (42.7 ± 2.94). The results showed a significantly greater reduction of SG to pain observation for the high psychopathic traits group compared to the low psychopathic traits group. SG to pain observation was positively correlated with affective and interpersonal facet of psychopathy in the whole sample. The high psychopathic traits group also reported lower empathic concern (EC) scores than the low psychopathic traits group. Importantly, primary psychopathy, as assessed by the LSRP, mediated the relation between EC and SG to pain observation. Together, these results suggest that increase somatosensory resonance to other's pain is not exclusively explained by trait empathy and may be linked to other personality dimensions, such as psychopathic traits. PMID:23801950

  7. Dissociating vestibular and somatosensory contributions to spatial orientation.

    PubMed

    Alberts, Bart B G T; Selen, Luc P J; Bertolini, Giovanni; Straumann, Dominik; Medendorp, W Pieter; Tarnutzer, Alexander A

    2016-07-01

    Inferring object orientation in the surroundings heavily depends on our internal sense of direction of gravity. Previous research showed that this sense is based on the integration of multiple information sources, including visual, vestibular (otolithic), and somatosensory signals. The individual noise characteristics and contributions of these sensors can be studied using spatial orientation tasks, such as the subjective visual vertical (SVV) task. A recent study reported that patients with complete bilateral vestibular loss perform similar as healthy controls on these tasks, from which it was conjectured that the noise levels of both otoliths and body somatosensors are roll-tilt dependent. Here, we tested this hypothesis in 10 healthy human subjects by roll tilting the head relative to the body to dissociate tilt-angle dependencies of otolith and somatosensory noise. Using a psychometric approach, we measured the perceived orientation, and its variability, of a briefly flashed line relative to the gravitational vertical (SVV). Measurements were taken at multiple body-in-space orientations (-90 to 90°, steps of 30°) and head-on-body roll tilts (30° left ear down, aligned, 30° right ear down). Results showed that verticality perception is processed in a head-in-space reference frame, with a systematic SVV error that increased with larger head-in-space orientations. Variability patterns indicated a larger contribution of the otolith organs around upright and a more substantial contribution of the body somatosensors at larger body-in-space roll tilts. Simulations show that these findings are consistent with a statistical model that involves tilt-dependent noise levels of both otolith and somatosensory signals, confirming dynamic shifts in the weights of sensory inputs with tilt angle.

  8. The modulation of somatosensory resonance by psychopathic traits and empathy.

    PubMed

    Marcoux, Louis-Alexandre; Michon, Pierre-Emmanuel; Voisin, Julien I A; Lemelin, Sophie; Vachon-Presseau, Etienne; Jackson, Philip L

    2013-01-01

    A large number of neuroimaging studies have shown neural overlaps between first-hand experiences of pain and the perception of pain in others. This shared neural representation of vicarious pain is thought to involve both affective and sensorimotor systems. A number of individual factors are thought to modulate the cerebral response to other's pain. The goal of this study was to investigate the impact of psychopathic traits on the relation between sensorimotor resonance to other's pain and self-reported empathy. Our group has previously shown that a steady-state response to non-painful stimulation is modulated by the observation of other people's bodily pain. This change in somatosensory response was interpreted as a form of somatosensory gating (SG). Here, using the same technique, SG was compared between two groups of 15 young adult males: one scoring very high on a self-reported measure of psychopathic traits [60.8 ± 4.98; Levenson's Self-Report Psychopathy Scale (LSRP)] and one scoring very low (42.7 ± 2.94). The results showed a significantly greater reduction of SG to pain observation for the high psychopathic traits group compared to the low psychopathic traits group. SG to pain observation was positively correlated with affective and interpersonal facet of psychopathy in the whole sample. The high psychopathic traits group also reported lower empathic concern (EC) scores than the low psychopathic traits group. Importantly, primary psychopathy, as assessed by the LSRP, mediated the relation between EC and SG to pain observation. Together, these results suggest that increase somatosensory resonance to other's pain is not exclusively explained by trait empathy and may be linked to other personality dimensions, such as psychopathic traits.

  9. Robot-Assisted Proprioceptive Training with Added Vibro-Tactile Feedback Enhances Somatosensory and Motor Performance

    PubMed Central

    Cuppone, Anna Vera; Squeri, Valentina; Semprini, Marianna; Masia, Lorenzo; Konczak, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the trainability of the proprioceptive sense and explored the relationship between proprioception and motor learning. With vision blocked, human learners had to perform goal-directed wrist movements relying solely on proprioceptive/haptic cues to reach several haptically specified targets. One group received additional somatosensory movement error feedback in form of vibro-tactile cues applied to the skin of the forearm. We used a haptic robotic device for the wrist and implemented a 3-day training regimen that required learners to make spatially precise goal-directed wrist reaching movements without vision. We assessed whether training improved the acuity of the wrist joint position sense. In addition, we checked if sensory learning generalized to the motor domain and improved spatial precision of wrist tracking movements that were not trained. The main findings of the study are: First, proprioceptive acuity of the wrist joint position sense improved after training for the group that received the combined proprioceptive/haptic and vibro-tactile feedback (VTF). Second, training had no impact on the spatial accuracy of the untrained tracking task. However, learners who had received VTF significantly reduced their reliance on haptic guidance feedback when performing the untrained motor task. That is, concurrent VTF was highly salient movement feedback and obviated the need for haptic feedback. Third, VTF can be also provided by the limb not involved in the task. Learners who received VTF to the contralateral limb equally benefitted. In conclusion, somatosensory training can significantly enhance proprioceptive acuity within days when learning is coupled with vibro-tactile sensory cues that provide feedback about movement errors. The observable sensory improvements in proprioception facilitates motor learning and such learning may generalize to the sensorimotor control of the untrained motor tasks. The implications of these findings for

  10. Receptive Field Properties of the Macaque Second Somatosensory Cortex: Representation of Orientation on Different Finger Pads

    PubMed Central

    Fitzgerald, Paul J.; Lane, John W.; Thakur, Pramodsingh H.; Hsiao, Steven S.

    2007-01-01

    Orientation tuning has been studied extensively in the visual system, but little is known about it in the somatosensory system. Here we investigate tuning in the second somatosensory (SII) region using a motorized stimulator that presented a small oriented bar to the 12 finger pads of digits 2–5 (D2–D5) of the macaque monkey. A subset (23%; n = 218) of the 928 SII region neurons [the same 928 neurons studied by Fitzgerald et al. (2004, 2006)] exhibited tuning, and most of these were tuned on one or two finger pads. All eight 22.5° separated orientations were represented as the preferred orientation of multiple neurons, although not necessarily in equal numbers. A measure of bandwidth indicated that tuning in the SII region is sharp and is similar to the tuning observed in visual cortical areas. In addition, two-dimensional Gaussians that were fit to the tuning curves had very high r2 values, indicating that most tuning curves are both unimodal and symmetrical with respect to their preferred orientation. Most tuned neurons had additional untuned pads, although the responsiveness of these pads tended to be less than the responsiveness of tuned pads. Neurons with multiple tuned pads tended to have similar preferred orientations on their tuned pads, which can be interpreted as evidence for integration of information across fingers or as a form of positional invariance. Finally, comparison of the tuning properties showed that there are small but significant differences between the posterior, central, and anterior fields of the SII region. PMID:16775135

  11. [Somatotopy and information processing in the somatosensory cortex].

    PubMed

    Iwamura, Yoshiaki

    2009-12-01

    The present article reviews studies on the somatotopic representation of the body in the postcentral gyrus. The review consists of 3 sections namely the early studies on the cortical localization of somatosensory in humans and animals, earlier neurophysiological studies in monkeys by recording single units, and more recent studies in human subjects. Results of the neurophysiological studies in monkeys established a hierarchical scheme of information processing and have guided the latest studies on human subjects that use various modern techniques such as neuroimaging. This review illustrates the origin of the concept of somatotopic representation of the body, its utilization in the later cortical mapping studies, and what is the reality of the concept.

  12. Solar cell with back side contacts

    SciTech Connect

    Nielson, Gregory N; Okandan, Murat; Cruz-Campa, Jose Luis; Resnick, Paul J; Wanlass, Mark Woodbury; Clews, Peggy J

    2013-12-24

    A III-V solar cell is described herein that includes all back side contacts. Additionally, the positive and negative electrical contacts contact compoud semiconductor layers of the solar cell other than the absorbing layer of the solar cell. That is, the positive and negative electrical contacts contact passivating layers of the solar cell.

  13. Somatosensory temporal discrimination in essential tremor and isolated head and voice tremors.

    PubMed

    Conte, Antonella; Ferrazzano, Gina; Manzo, Nicoletta; Leodori, Giorgio; Fabbrini, Giovanni; Fasano, Alfonso; Tinazzi, Michele; Berardelli, Alfredo

    2015-05-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold in patients with essential tremor (sporadic and familial) and to evaluate whether somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values differ depending on the body parts involved by tremor. We also investigated the somatosensory temporal discrimination in patients with isolated voice tremor. We enrolled 61 patients with tremor: 48 patients with essential tremor (31 patients with upper limb tremor alone, nine patients with head tremor alone, and eight patients with upper limb plus head tremor; 22 patients with familial vs. 26 sporadic essential tremor), 13 patients with isolated voice tremor, and 45 healthy subjects. Somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values were normal in patients with familial essential tremor, whereas they were higher in patients with sporadic essential tremor. When we classified patients according to tremor distribution, somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold values were normal in patients with upper limb tremor and abnormal only in patients with isolated head tremor. Temporal discrimination threshold values were also abnormal in patients with isolated voice tremor. Somatosensory temporal discrimination processing is normal in patients with familial as well as in patients with sporadic essential tremor involving the upper limbs. By contrast, somatosensory temporal discrimination is altered in patients with isolated head tremor and voice tremor. This study with somatosensory temporal discrimination suggests that isolated head and voice tremors might possibly be considered as separate clinical entities from essential tremor.

  14. Somatosensory Profiles but Not Numbers of Somatosensory Abnormalities of Neuropathic Pain Patients Correspond with Neuropathic Pain Grading

    PubMed Central

    Konopka, Karl-Heinz; Harbers, Marten; Houghton, Andrea; Kortekaas, Rudie; van Vliet, Andre; Timmerman, Wia; den Boer, Johan A.; Struys, Michel M. R. F.; van Wijhe, Marten

    2012-01-01

    Due to the lack of a specific diagnostic tool for neuropathic pain, a grading system to categorize pain as ‘definite’, ‘probable’, ‘possible’ and ‘unlikely’ neuropathic was proposed. Somatosensory abnormalities are common in neuropathic pain and it has been suggested that a greater number of abnormalities would be present in patients with ‘probable’ and ‘definite’ grades. To test this hypothesis, we investigated the presence of somatosensory abnormalities by means of Quantitative Sensory Testing (QST) in patients with a clinical diagnosis of neuropathic pain and correlated the number of sensory abnormalities and sensory profiles to the different grades. Of patients who were clinically diagnosed with neuropathic pain, only 60% were graded as ‘definite’ or ‘probable’, while 40% were graded as ‘possible’ or ‘unlikely’ neuropathic pain. Apparently, there is a mismatch between a clinical neuropathic pain diagnosis and neuropathic pain grading. Contrary to the expectation, patients with ‘probable’ and ‘definite’ grades did not have a greater number of abnormalities. Instead, similar numbers of somatosensory abnormalities were identified for each grade. The profiles of sensory signs in ‘definite’ and ‘probable’ neuropathic pain were not significantly different, but different from the ‘unlikely’ grade. This latter difference could be attributed to differences in the prevalence of patients with a mixture of sensory gain and loss and with sensory loss only. The grading system allows a separation of neuropathic and non-neuropathic pain based on profiles but not on the total number of sensory abnormalities. Our findings indicate that patient selection based on grading of neuropathic pain may provide advantages in selecting homogenous groups for clinical research. PMID:22927981

  15. Contact air abrasion.

    PubMed

    Porth, R

    1999-05-01

    The advantages of contact air abrasion techniques are readily apparent. The first, of course, is the greatly increased ease of use. Working with contact also tends to speed the learning curve by giving the process a more natural dental feel. In addition, as one becomes familiar with working with a dust stream, the potential for misdirecting the air flow is decreased. The future use of air abrasion for deep decay removal will make this the treatment of choice for the next millennium.

  16. Focal dystonia in musicians: linking motor symptoms to somatosensory dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Konczak, Jürgen; Abbruzzese, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    Musician's dystonia (MD) is a neurological motor disorder characterized by involuntary contractions of those muscles involved in the play of a musical instrument. It is task-specific and initially only impairs the voluntary control of highly practiced musical motor skills. MD can lead to a severe decrement in a musician's ability to perform. While the etiology and the neurological pathomechanism of the disease remain unknown, it is known that MD like others forms of focal dystonia is associated with somatosensory deficits, specifically a decreased precision of tactile and proprioceptive perception. The sensory component of the disease becomes also evident by the patients' use of "sensory tricks" such as touching dystonic muscles to alleviate motor symptoms. The central premise of this paper is that the motor symptoms of MD have a somatosensory origin and are not fully explained as a problem of motor execution. We outline how altered proprioceptive feedback ultimately leads to a loss of voluntary motor control and propose two scenarios that explain why sensory tricks are effective. They are effective, because the sensorimotor system either recruits neural resources normally involved in tactile-proprioceptive (sensory) integration, or utilizes a fully functioning motor efference copy mechanism to align experienced with expected sensory feedback. We argue that an enhanced understanding of how a primary sensory deficit interacts with mechanisms of sensorimotor integration in MD provides helpful insights for the design of more effective behavioral therapies.

  17. The human somatosensory system: from perception to decision making.

    PubMed

    Pleger, Burkhard; Villringer, Arno

    2013-04-01

    Pioneering human and animal research has yielded a better understanding of the brain networks involved in somatosensory perception and decision making. New methodical achievements in combination with computational formalization allow research questions to be addressed which increasingly reflect not only the complex sensory demands of real environments, but also the cognitive ones. Here, we review the latest research on somatosensory perception and decision making with a special focus on the recruitment of supplementary brain networks which are dependent on the situation-associated sensory and cognitive demands. We also refer to literature on sensory-motor integration processes during visual decision making to delineate the complexity and dynamics of how sensory information is relayed to the motor output system. Finally, we review the latest literature which provides novel evidence that other everyday life situations, such as semantic decision making or social interactions, appear to depend on tactile experiences; suggesting that the sense of touch, being the first sense to develop ontogenetically, may essentially support later development of other conceptual knowledge.

  18. Focal dystonia in musicians: linking motor symptoms to somatosensory dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Konczak, Jürgen; Abbruzzese, Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    Musician's dystonia (MD) is a neurological motor disorder characterized by involuntary contractions of those muscles involved in the play of a musical instrument. It is task-specific and initially only impairs the voluntary control of highly practiced musical motor skills. MD can lead to a severe decrement in a musician's ability to perform. While the etiology and the neurological pathomechanism of the disease remain unknown, it is known that MD like others forms of focal dystonia is associated with somatosensory deficits, specifically a decreased precision of tactile and proprioceptive perception. The sensory component of the disease becomes also evident by the patients' use of “sensory tricks” such as touching dystonic muscles to alleviate motor symptoms. The central premise of this paper is that the motor symptoms of MD have a somatosensory origin and are not fully explained as a problem of motor execution. We outline how altered proprioceptive feedback ultimately leads to a loss of voluntary motor control and propose two scenarios that explain why sensory tricks are effective. They are effective, because the sensorimotor system either recruits neural resources normally involved in tactile-proprioceptive (sensory) integration, or utilizes a fully functioning motor efference copy mechanism to align experienced with expected sensory feedback. We argue that an enhanced understanding of how a primary sensory deficit interacts with mechanisms of sensorimotor integration in MD provides helpful insights for the design of more effective behavioral therapies. PMID:23805090

  19. Sensory incongruence leading to hand disownership modulates somatosensory cortical processing.

    PubMed

    Otsuru, Naofumi; Hashizume, Akira; Nakamura, Daichi; Endo, Yuuki; Inui, Koji; Kakigi, Ryusuke; Yuge, Louis

    2014-09-01

    The sense of body ownership is based on integration of multimodal sensory information, including tactile sensation, proprioception, and vision. Distorted body ownership contributes to the development of chronic pain syndromes and possibly symptoms of psychiatric disease. However, the effects of disownership on cortical processing of somatosensory information are unknown. In the present study, we created a "disownership" condition in healthy individuals by manipulating the visual information indicating the location of the subject's own left hand using a mirror box and examined the influence of this disownership on cortical responses to electrical stimulation of the left index finger using magnetoencephalography (MEG). The event-related magnetic field in the right primary somatosensory cortex at approximately 50 msec (M50) after stimulus was enhanced under the disownership condition. The present results suggest that M50 reflects a cortical incongruence detection mechanism involving integration of sensory inputs from visual and proprioceptive systems. This signal may be valuable for future studies of the mechanisms underlying sense of body ownership and the role that disrupted sense of ownership has in neurological disease.

  20. Neural coding and perceptual detection in the primate somatosensory thalamus

    PubMed Central

    Vázquez, Yuriria; Zainos, Antonio; Alvarez, Manuel; Salinas, Emilio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2012-01-01

    The contribution of the sensory thalamus to perception and decision making is not well understood. We addressed this problem by recording single neurons in the ventral posterior lateral (VPL) nucleus of the somatosensory thalamus while trained monkeys judged the presence or absence of a vibrotactile stimulus of variable amplitude applied to the skin of a fingertip. We found that neurons in the VPL nucleus modulated their firing rate as a function of stimulus amplitude, and that such modulations accounted for the monkeys’ overall psychophysical performance. These neural responses did not predict the animals' decision reports in individual trials, however. Moreover, the sensitivity to changes in stimulus amplitude was similar when the monkeys’ performed the detection task and when they were not required to report stimulus detection. These results suggest that the primate somatosensory thalamus likely provides a reliable neural representation of the sensory input to the cerebral cortex, where sensory information is transformed and combined with other cognitive components associated with behavioral performance. PMID:22927423

  1. Origins of choice-related activity in mouse somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Hongdian; Kwon, Sung E.; Severson, Kyle S.; O’Connor, Daniel H.

    2015-01-01

    During perceptual decisions about faint or ambiguous sensory stimuli, even identical stimuli can produce different choices. Spike trains from sensory cortex neurons can predict trial-to-trial variability in choice. Choice-related spiking is widely studied to link cortical activity to perception, but its origins remain unclear. Using imaging and electrophysiology, we found that mouse primary somatosensory cortex neurons showed robust choice-related activity during a tactile detection task. Spike trains from primary mechanoreceptive neurons did not predict choices about identical stimuli. Spike trains from thalamic relay neurons showed highly transient, weak choice-related activity. Intracellular recordings in cortex revealed a prolonged choice-related depolarization in most neurons that was not accounted for by feedforward thalamic input. Top-down axons projecting from secondary to primary somatosensory cortex signaled choice. An intracellular measure of stimulus sensitivity determined which neurons converted choice-related depolarization into spiking. Our results reveal how choice-related spiking emerges across neural circuits and within single neurons. PMID:26642088

  2. A cognitive neuroprosthetic that uses cortical stimulation for somatosensory feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klaes, Christian; Shi, Ying; Kellis, Spencer; Minxha, Juri; Revechkis, Boris; Andersen, Richard A.

    2014-10-01

    Objective. Present day cortical brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) have made impressive advances using decoded brain signals to control extracorporeal devices. Although BMIs are used in a closed-loop fashion, sensory feedback typically is visual only. However medical case studies have shown that the loss of somesthesis in a limb greatly reduces the agility of the limb even when visual feedback is available. Approach. To overcome this limitation, this study tested a closed-loop BMI that utilizes intracortical microstimulation to provide ‘tactile’ sensation to a non-human primate. Main result. Using stimulation electrodes in Brodmann area 1 of somatosensory cortex (BA1) and recording electrodes in the anterior intraparietal area, the parietal reach region and dorsal area 5 (area 5d), it was found that this form of feedback can be used in BMI tasks. Significance. Providing somatosensory feedback has the poyential to greatly improve the performance of cognitive neuroprostheses especially for fine control and object manipulation. Adding stimulation to a BMI system could therefore improve the quality of life for severely paralyzed patients.

  3. Somatosensory eye blink reflex in peripheral facial palsy.

    PubMed

    Erkol, Gökhan; Kiziltan, Meral E; Uluduz, Derya; Uzun, Nurten

    2009-09-04

    To investigate the association between somatosensory blink reflex (SBR) and peripheral facial palsy (PFP) severity and trigeminal blink reflex (BR) changes in cases with PFP and subsequent postparalytic facial syndrome development (PFS). One hundred and twenty subjects with peripheral facial palsy and post-facial syndrome and 44 age and gender matched healthy volunteers were enrolled to this study. Blink reflexes and somatosensory blink reflex were studied in all. The association between R1 and R2 responses of the BR and SBR positivity was investigated. SBR was elicited in 36.3% of normal subjects, in 18.3% of PFP and in 65.3% of PFS patients. In the paralytic side, the frequency of SBR positivity was significantly lower in PFP group compared to controls and SBR was most frequently observed in patients with PFS. Compared to PFP and control groups, SBR positivity on the non-paralytic side significantly revealed a higher rate in PFS patients. SBR positivity of patients in whom R1 or R2 were absent, was significantly lower than those subjects with prolonged or normal R1 or R2 responses. PFP and successive PFS are good models for the sensory motor gate mechanisms and/or excitability enhancement of brainstem neurons responsible for SBR.

  4. Metaplasticity in human primary somatosensory cortex: effects on physiology and tactile perception.

    PubMed

    Jones, Christina B; Lulic, Tea; Bailey, Aaron Z; Mackenzie, Tanner N; Mi, Yi Qun; Tommerdahl, Mark; Nelson, Aimee J

    2016-05-01

    Theta-burst stimulation (TBS) over human primary motor cortex evokes plasticity and metaplasticity, the latter contributing to the homeostatic balance of excitation and inhibition. Our knowledge of TBS-induced effects on primary somatosensory cortex (SI) is limited, and it is unknown whether TBS induces metaplasticity within human SI. Sixteen right-handed participants (6 females, mean age 23 yr) received two TBS protocols [continuous TBS (cTBS) and intermittent TBS (iTBS)] delivered in six different combinations over SI in separate sessions. TBS protocols were delivered at 30 Hz and were as follows: a single cTBS protocol, a single iTBS protocol, cTBS followed by cTBS, iTBS followed by iTBS, cTBS followed by iTBS, and iTBS followed by cTBS. Measures included the amplitudes of the first and second somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) via median nerve stimulation, their paired-pulse ratio (PPR), and temporal order judgment (TOJ). Dependent measures were obtained before TBS and at 5, 25, 50, and 90 min following stimulation. Results indicate similar effects following cTBS and iTBS; increased amplitudes of the second SEP and PPR without amplitude changes to SEP 1, and impairments in TOJ. Metaplasticity was observed such that TOJ impairments following a single cTBS protocol were abolished following consecutive cTBS protocols. Additionally, consecutive iTBS protocols altered the time course of effects when compared with a single iTBS protocol. In conclusion, 30-Hz cTBS and iTBS protocols delivered in isolation induce effects consistent with a TBS-induced reduction in intracortical inhibition within SI. Furthermore, cTBS- and iTBS-induced metaplasticity appear to follow homeostatic and nonhomeostatic rules, respectively.

  5. The reactivation of somatosensory cortex and behavioral recovery after sensory loss in mature primates

    PubMed Central

    Qi, Hui-Xin; Kaas, Jon H.; Reed, Jamie L.

    2014-01-01

    In our experiments, we removed a major source of activation of somatosensory cortex in mature monkeys by unilaterally sectioning the sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level. At this level, the ascending branches of tactile afferents from the hand are cut, while other branches of these afferents remain intact to terminate on neurons in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Immediately after such a lesion, the monkeys seem relatively unimpaired in locomotion and often use the forelimb, but further inspection reveals that they prefer to use the unaffected hand in reaching for food. In addition, systematic testing indicates that they make more errors in retrieving pieces of food, and start using visual inspection of the rotated hand to confirm the success of the grasping of the food. Such difficulties are not surprising as a complete dorsal column lesion totally deactivates the contralateral hand representation in primary somatosensory cortex (area 3b). However, hand use rapidly improves over the first post-lesion weeks, and much of the hand representational territory in contralateral area 3b is reactivated by inputs from the hand in roughly a normal somatotopic pattern. Quantitative measures of single neuron response properties reveal that reactivated neurons respond to tactile stimulation on the hand with high firing rates and only slightly longer latencies. We conclude that preserved dorsal column afferents after nearly complete lesions contribute to the reactivation of cortex and the recovery of the behavior, but second-order sensory pathways in the spinal cord may also play an important role. Our microelectrode recordings indicate that these preserved first-order, and second-order pathways are initially weak and largely ineffective in activating cortex, but they are potentiated during the recovery process. Therapies that would promote this potentiation could usefully enhance recovery after spinal cord injury. PMID:24860443

  6. Realistic models of apparent dynamic changes in resting-state connectivity in somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zhaoyue; Rogers, Baxter P; Chen, Li Min; Morgan, Victoria L; Mishra, Arabinda; Wilkes, Don M; Gore, John C

    2016-11-01

    Variations over time in resting-state correlations in blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) signals from different cortical areas may indicate changes in brain functional connectivity. However, apparent variations over time may also arise from stationary signals when the sample duration is finite. Recently, a vector autoregressive (VAR) null model has been proposed to simulate real functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data, which provides a robust stationary model for identifying possible temporal dynamic changes in functional connectivity. In this work, we propose a simpler model that uses a filtered stationary dataset. The filtered stationary model generates statistically stationary time series from random data with a single prescribed correlation coefficient that is calculated as the average over the entire time series. In addition, we propose a dynamic model, which is better able to replicate real fMRI connectivity, estimated from monkey brain studies, than the two stationary models. We compare simulated results using these three models with the behavior of primary somatosensory cortex (S1) networks in anesthetized squirrel monkeys at high field (9.4 T), using a sliding window correlation analysis. We found that at short window sizes, both stationary models reproduced the distribution of correlations of real signals well, but at longer window sizes, a dynamic model reproduced the distribution of correlations of real signals better than the stationary models. While stationary models replicate several features of real data, a close representation of the behavior of resting-state data acquired from somatosensory cortex of non-human primates is obtained only when a dynamic correlation is introduced, suggesting dynamic variations in connectivity are real. Hum Brain Mapp 37:3897-3910, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Differential Effects of Aging on Fore– and Hindpaw Maps of Rat Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    David-Jürgens, Marianne; Churs, Lydia; Berkefeld, Thomas; Zepka, Roberto F.; Dinse, Hubert R.

    2008-01-01

    Getting older is associated with a decline of cognitive and sensorimotor abilities, but it remains elusive whether age-related changes are due to accumulating degenerational processes, rendering them largely irreversible, or whether they reflect plastic, adaptational and presumably compensatory changes. Using aged rats as a model we studied how aging affects neural processing in somatosensory cortex. By multi-unit recordings in the fore- and hindpaw cortical maps we compared the effects of aging on receptive field size and response latencies. While in aged animals response latencies of neurons of both cortical representations were lengthened by approximately the same amount, only RFs of hindpaw neurons showed severe expansion with only little changes of forepaw RFs. To obtain insight into parallel changes of walking behavior, we recorded footprints in young and old animals which revealed a general age-related impairment of walking. In addition we found evidence for a limb-specific deterioration of the hindlimbs that was not observed in the forelimbs. Our results show that age-related changes of somatosensory cortical neurons display a complex pattern of regional specificity and parameter-dependence indicating that aging acts rather selectively on cortical processing of sensory information. The fact that RFs of the fore- and hindpaws do not co-vary in aged animals argues against degenerational processes on a global scale. We therefore conclude that age-related alterations are composed of plastic-adaptive alterations in response to modified use and degenerational changes developing with age. As a consequence, age-related changes need not be irreversible but can be subject to amelioration through training and stimulation. PMID:18852896

  8. Differential effects of aging on fore- and hindpaw maps of rat somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    David-Jürgens, Marianne; Churs, Lydia; Berkefeld, Thomas; Zepka, Roberto F; Dinse, Hubert R

    2008-01-01

    Getting older is associated with a decline of cognitive and sensorimotor abilities, but it remains elusive whether age-related changes are due to accumulating degenerational processes, rendering them largely irreversible, or whether they reflect plastic, adaptational and presumably compensatory changes. Using aged rats as a model we studied how aging affects neural processing in somatosensory cortex. By multi-unit recordings in the fore- and hindpaw cortical maps we compared the effects of aging on receptive field size and response latencies. While in aged animals response latencies of neurons of both cortical representations were lengthened by approximately the same amount, only RFs of hindpaw neurons showed severe expansion with only little changes of forepaw RFs. To obtain insight into parallel changes of walking behavior, we recorded footprints in young and old animals which revealed a general age-related impairment of walking. In addition we found evidence for a limb-specific deterioration of the hindlimbs that was not observed in the forelimbs. Our results show that age-related changes of somatosensory cortical neurons display a complex pattern of regional specificity and parameter-dependence indicating that aging acts rather selectively on cortical processing of sensory information. The fact that RFs of the fore- and hindpaws do not co-vary in aged animals argues against degenerational processes on a global scale. We therefore conclude that age-related alterations are composed of plastic-adaptive alterations in response to modified use and degenerational changes developing with age. As a consequence, age-related changes need not be irreversible but can be subject to amelioration through training and stimulation.

  9. Parkinson's disease accelerates age-related decline in haptic perception by altering somatosensory integration.

    PubMed

    Konczak, Jürgen; Sciutti, Alessandra; Avanzino, Laura; Squeri, Valentina; Gori, Monica; Masia, Lorenzo; Abbruzzese, Giovanni; Sandini, Giulio

    2012-11-01

    This study investigated how Parkinson's disease alters haptic perception and the underlying mechanisms of somatosensory and sensorimotor integration. Changes in haptic sensitivity and acuity (the abilities to detect and to discriminate between haptic stimuli) due to Parkinson's disease were systematically quantified and contrasted to the performance of healthy older and young adults. Using a robotic force environment, virtual contours of various curvatures were presented. Participants explored these contours with their hands and indicated verbally whether they could detect or discriminate between two contours. To understand what aspects of sensory or sensorimotor integration are altered by ageing and disease, we manipulated the sensorimotor aspect of the task: the robot either guided the hand along the contour or the participant actively moved the hand. Active exploration relies on multimodal sensory and sensorimotor integration, while passive guidance only requires sensory integration of proprioceptive and tactile information. The main findings of the study are as follows: first, a decline in haptic precision can already be observed in adults before the age of 70 years. Parkinson's disease may lead to an additional decrease in haptic sensitivity well beyond the levels typically seen in middle-aged and older adults. Second, the haptic deficit in Parkinson's disease is general in nature. It becomes manifest as a decrease in sensitivity and acuity (i.e. a smaller perceivable range and a diminished ability to discriminate between two perceivable haptic stimuli). Third, thresholds during both active and passive exploration are elevated, but not significantly different from each other. That is, active exploration did not enhance the haptic deficit when compared to passive hand motion. This implies that Parkinson's disease affects early stages of somatosensory integration that ultimately have an impact on processes of sensorimotor integration. Our results suggest that

  10. Test-retest reliability of concurrently recorded steady-state and somatosensory evoked potentials in somatosensory sustained spatial attention.

    PubMed

    Pang, Cheuk Yee; Mueller, Matthias M

    2014-07-01

    We investigated the test-retest reliability of sustained spatial attention modulation of steady-state somatosensory evoked potentials (SSSEPs) and the N140 component of the somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs). Participants attended to one or both hands to perform a target detection task while concurrent mechanical vibrations were presented for 4500ms to both hands in two recording sessions. Results revealed that the amplitude and the attentional modulation of SSSEPs had high test-retest reliability, while the test-retest reliability for the N140 component was low. SSSEPs for stimuli with focused and divided attention had about the same amplitude. For the N140 component only the stimuli with focused attention were significantly enhanced. We found greater habituation effects for the N140 compared to SSSEP amplitudes but attentional modulation was unaffected in both signals. Given the great test-retest reliability of SSSEP amplitude modulation with attention, SSSEPs serve as an excellent tool for studying sustained spatial attention in somatosensation.

  11. Fragrance allergic contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Judy; Zug, Kathryn A

    2014-01-01

    Fragrances are a common cause of allergic contact dermatitis in Europe and in North America. They can affect individuals at any age and elicit a spectrum of reactions from contact urticaria to systemic contact dermatitis. Growing recognition of the widespread use of fragrances in modern society has fueled attempts to prevent sensitization through improved allergen identification, labeling, and consumer education. This review provides an overview and update on fragrance allergy. Part 1 discusses the epidemiology and evaluation of suspected fragrance allergy. Part 2 reviews screening methods, emerging fragrance allergens, and management of patients with fragrance contact allergy. This review concludes by examining recent legislation on fragrances and suggesting potential additions to screening series to help prevent and detect fragrance allergy.

  12. A MEG investigation of somatosensory processing in the rhesus monkey

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Tony W.; Godwin, Dwayne W.; Czoty, Paul W.; Nader, Michael A.; Kraft, Robert A.; Buchheimer, Nancy C.; Daunais, James B.

    2009-01-01

    The use of minimally and non-invasive neuroimaging methods in animal models has sharply increased over the past decade. Such studies have enhanced understanding of the neural basis of the physical signals quantified by these tools, and have addressed an assortment of fundamental and otherwise intractable questions in neurobiology. To date, these studies have almost exclusively utilized positron-emission tomography or variants of magnetic resonance based imaging. These methods provide largely indirect measures of brain activity and are strongly reliant on intact vasculature and normal blood flow, which is known to be compromised in many clinical conditions. The current study provides the first demonstration of whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG), a non-invasive and direct measure of neuronal activity, in a rhesus monkey, and in the process supplies the initial data on systems-level dynamics in somatosensory cortices. An adult rhesus monkey underwent three separate studies of tactile stimulation on the pad of the right second or fifth digit as whole-head MEG data were acquired. The neural generators of the primary neuromagnetic components were localized using an equivalent-current-dipole model. Second digit stimulation produced an initial cortical response peaking ∼16 ms after stimulus onset in the contralateral somatosensory cortices, with a later response at ∼96 ms in an overlapping or nearby neural area with a roughly orthogonal orientation. Stimulation of the fifth digit produced similar results, the main exception being a substantially weaker later response. We believe the 16ms response is likely the monkey homologue of the human M50 response, as both are the earliest cortical response and localize to the contralateral primary somatosensory area. Thus, these data suggest that mechanoreception in nonhuman primates operates substantially faster than that in adult humans. More broadly, these results demonstrate that it is feasible to use current human whole

  13. A MEG investigation of somatosensory processing in the rhesus monkey.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Tony W; Godwin, Dwayne W; Czoty, Paul W; Nader, Michael A; Kraft, Robert A; Buchheimer, Nancy C; Daunais, James B

    2009-07-15

    The use of minimally and non-invasive neuroimaging methods in animal models has sharply increased over the past decade. Such studies have enhanced understanding of the neural basis of the physical signals quantified by these tools, and have addressed an assortment of fundamental and otherwise intractable questions in neurobiology. To date, these studies have almost exclusively utilized positron-emission tomography or variants of magnetic resonance based imaging. These methods provide largely indirect measures of brain activity and are strongly reliant on intact vasculature and normal blood-flow, which is known to be compromised in many clinical conditions. The current study provides the first demonstration of whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG), a non-invasive and direct measure of neuronal activity, in a rhesus monkey, and in the process supplies the initial data on systems-level dynamics in somatosensory cortices. An adult rhesus monkey underwent three separate studies of tactile stimulation on the pad of the right second or fifth digit as whole-head MEG data were acquired. The neural generators of the primary neuromagnetic components were localized using an equivalent-current-dipole model. Second digit stimulation produced an initial cortical response peaking approximately 16 ms after stimulus onset in the contralateral somatosensory cortices, with a later response at approximately 96 ms in an overlapping or nearby neural area with a roughly orthogonal orientation. Stimulation of the fifth digit produced similar results, the main exception being a substantially weaker later response. We believe the 16 ms response is likely the monkey homologue of the human M50 response, as both are the earliest cortical response and localize to the contralateral primary somatosensory area. Thus, these data suggest that mechanoreception in nonhuman primates operates substantially faster than that in adult humans. More broadly, these results demonstrate that it is feasible to

  14. Beta rhythm modulation by speech sounds: somatotopic mapping in somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Bartoli, Eleonora; Maffongelli, Laura; Campus, Claudio; D'Ausilio, Alessandro

    2016-08-08

    During speech listening motor regions are somatotopically activated, resembling the activity that subtends actual speech production, suggesting that motor commands can be retrieved from sensory inputs. Crucially, the efficient motor control of the articulators relies on the accurate anticipation of the somatosensory reafference. Nevertheless, evidence about somatosensory activities elicited by auditory speech processing is sparse. The present work looked for specific interactions between auditory speech presentation and somatosensory cortical information processing. We used an auditory speech identification task with sounds having different place of articulation (bilabials and dentals). We tested whether coupling the auditory task with a peripheral electrical stimulation of the lips would affect the pattern of sensorimotor electroencephalographic rhythms. Peripheral electrical stimulation elicits a series of spectral perturbations of which the beta rebound reflects the return-to-baseline stage of somatosensory processing. We show a left-lateralized and selective reduction in the beta rebound following lip somatosensory stimulation when listening to speech sounds produced with the lips (i.e. bilabials). Thus, the somatosensory processing could not return to baseline due to the recruitment of the same neural resources by speech stimuli. Our results are a clear demonstration that heard speech sounds are somatotopically mapped onto somatosensory cortices, according to place of articulation.

  15. Neuromagnetic correlates of adaptive plasticity across the hand-face border in human primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Muret, Dollyane; Daligault, Sébastien; Dinse, Hubert R; Delpuech, Claude; Mattout, Jérémie; Reilly, Karen T; Farnè, Alessandro

    2016-04-01

    It is well established that permanent or transient reduction of somatosensory inputs, following hand deafferentation or anesthesia, induces plastic changes across the hand-face border, supposedly responsible for some altered perceptual phenomena such as tactile sensations being referred from the face to the phantom hand. It is also known that transient increase of hand somatosensory inputs, via repetitive somatosensory stimulation (RSS) at a fingertip, induces local somatosensory discriminative improvement accompanied by cortical representational changes in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). We recently demonstrated that RSS at the tip of the right index finger induces similar training-independent perceptual learning across the hand-face border, improving somatosensory perception at the lips (Muret D, Dinse HR, Macchione S, Urquizar C, Farnè A, Reilly KT.Curr Biol24: R736-R737, 2014). Whether neural plastic changes across the hand-face border accompany such remote and adaptive perceptual plasticity remains unknown. Here we used magnetoencephalography to investigate the electrophysiological correlates underlying RSS-induced behavioral changes across the hand-face border. The results highlight significant changes in dipole location after RSS both for the stimulated finger and for the lips. These findings reveal plastic changes that cross the hand-face border after an increase, instead of a decrease, in somatosensory inputs.

  16. Beta rhythm modulation by speech sounds: somatotopic mapping in somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Bartoli, Eleonora; Maffongelli, Laura; Campus, Claudio; D’Ausilio, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    During speech listening motor regions are somatotopically activated, resembling the activity that subtends actual speech production, suggesting that motor commands can be retrieved from sensory inputs. Crucially, the efficient motor control of the articulators relies on the accurate anticipation of the somatosensory reafference. Nevertheless, evidence about somatosensory activities elicited by auditory speech processing is sparse. The present work looked for specific interactions between auditory speech presentation and somatosensory cortical information processing. We used an auditory speech identification task with sounds having different place of articulation (bilabials and dentals). We tested whether coupling the auditory task with a peripheral electrical stimulation of the lips would affect the pattern of sensorimotor electroencephalographic rhythms. Peripheral electrical stimulation elicits a series of spectral perturbations of which the beta rebound reflects the return-to-baseline stage of somatosensory processing. We show a left-lateralized and selective reduction in the beta rebound following lip somatosensory stimulation when listening to speech sounds produced with the lips (i.e. bilabials). Thus, the somatosensory processing could not return to baseline due to the recruitment of the same neural resources by speech stimuli. Our results are a clear demonstration that heard speech sounds are somatotopically mapped onto somatosensory cortices, according to place of articulation. PMID:27499204

  17. Neuromagnetic correlates of adaptive plasticity across the hand-face border in human primary somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Daligault, Sébastien; Dinse, Hubert R.; Delpuech, Claude; Mattout, Jérémie; Reilly, Karen T.; Farnè, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    It is well established that permanent or transient reduction of somatosensory inputs, following hand deafferentation or anesthesia, induces plastic changes across the hand-face border, supposedly responsible for some altered perceptual phenomena such as tactile sensations being referred from the face to the phantom hand. It is also known that transient increase of hand somatosensory inputs, via repetitive somatosensory stimulation (RSS) at a fingertip, induces local somatosensory discriminative improvement accompanied by cortical representational changes in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). We recently demonstrated that RSS at the tip of the right index finger induces similar training-independent perceptual learning across the hand-face border, improving somatosensory perception at the lips (Muret D, Dinse HR, Macchione S, Urquizar C, Farnè A, Reilly KT. Curr Biol 24: R736–R737, 2014). Whether neural plastic changes across the hand-face border accompany such remote and adaptive perceptual plasticity remains unknown. Here we used magnetoencephalography to investigate the electrophysiological correlates underlying RSS-induced behavioral changes across the hand-face border. The results highlight significant changes in dipole location after RSS both for the stimulated finger and for the lips. These findings reveal plastic changes that cross the hand-face border after an increase, instead of a decrease, in somatosensory inputs. PMID:26888099

  18. Augmented Pain Processing in Primary and Secondary Somatosensory Cortex in Fibromyalgia: A Magnetoencephalography Study Using Intra-Epidermal Electrical Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Manyoel; Roosink, Meyke; Kim, June Sic; Kim, Hye Won; Lee, Eun Bong; Son, Kyeong Min; Kim, Hyun Ah; Chung, Chun Kee

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate augmented pain processing in the cortical somatosensory system in patients with fibromyalgia (FM). Cortical evoked responses were recorded in FM (n = 19) and healthy subjects (n = 21) using magnetoencephalography after noxious intra-epidermal electrical stimulation (IES) of the hand dorsum (pain rating 6 on a numeric rating scale, perceptually-equivalent). In addition, healthy subjects were stimulated using the amplitude corresponding to the average stimulus intensity rated 6 in patients with FM (intensity-equivalent). Quantitative sensory testing was performed on the hand dorsum or thenar muscle (neutral site) and over the trapezius muscle (tender point), using IES (thresholds, ratings, temporal summation of pain, stimulus-response curve) and mechanical stimuli (threshold, ratings). Increased amplitude of cortical responses was found in patients with FM as compared to healthy subjects. These included the contralateral primary (S1) and bilateral secondary somatosensory cortices (S2) in response to intensity-equivalent stimuli and the contralateral S1 and S2 in response to perceptually-equivalent stimuli. The amplitude of the contralateral S2 response in patients with FM was positively correlated with average pain intensity over the last week. Quantitative sensory testing results showed that patients with FM were more sensitive to painful IES as well as to mechanical stimulation, regardless of whether the stimulation site was the hand or the trapezius muscle. Interestingly, the slope of the stimulus-response relationship as well as temporal summation of pain in response to IES was not different between groups. Together, these results suggest that the observed pain augmentation in response to IES in patients with FM could be due to sensitization or disinhibition of the cortical somatosensory system. Since the S2 has been shown to play a role in higher-order functions, further studies are needed to clarify the role of augmented

  19. A cognitive neuroprosthetic that uses cortical stimulation for somatosensory feedback

    PubMed Central

    Klaes, Christian; Shi, Ying; Kellis, Spencer; Minxha, Juri; Revechkis, Boris; Andersen, Richard A.

    2015-01-01

    Present day cortical brain machine interfaces (BMI) have made impressive advances using decoded brain signals to control extracorporeal devices. Although BMIs are used in a closed-loop fashion, sensory feedback typically is visual only. However medical case studies have shown that the loss of somesthesis in a limb greatly reduces the agility of the limb even when visual feedback is available (for review see Robles-De-La-Torre, 2006). To overcome this limitation, this study tested a closed-loop BMI that utilizes intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) to provide ‘tactile’ sensation to a non-human primate (NHP). Using stimulation electrodes in Brodmann area 1 of somatosensory cortex (BA1) and recording electrodes in the anterior intraparietal area (AIP), the parietal reach region (PRR) and dorsal area 5 (area 5d), it was found that this form of feedback can be used in BMI tasks. PMID:25242377

  20. Decoding stimulus features in primate somatosensory cortex during perceptual categorization

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez, Manuel; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2015-01-01

    Neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) respond as functions of frequency or amplitude of a vibrotactile stimulus. However, whether S1 neurons encode both frequency and amplitude of the vibrotactile stimulus or whether each sensory feature is encoded by separate populations of S1 neurons is not known, To further address these questions, we recorded S1 neurons while trained monkeys categorized only one sensory feature of the vibrotactile stimulus: frequency, amplitude, or duration. The results suggest a hierarchical encoding scheme in S1: from neurons that encode all sensory features of the vibrotactile stimulus to neurons that encode only one sensory feature. We hypothesize that the dynamic representation of each sensory feature in S1 might serve for further downstream processing that leads to the monkey’s psychophysical behavior observed in these tasks. PMID:25825711

  1. Listening to another sense: somatosensory integration in the auditory system.

    PubMed

    Wu, Calvin; Stefanescu, Roxana A; Martel, David T; Shore, Susan E

    2015-07-01

    Conventionally, sensory systems are viewed as separate entities, each with its own physiological process serving a different purpose. However, many functions require integrative inputs from multiple sensory systems and sensory intersection and convergence occur throughout the central nervous system. The neural processes for hearing perception undergo significant modulation by the two other major sensory systems, vision and somatosensation. This synthesis occurs at every level of the ascending auditory pathway: the cochlear nucleus, inferior colliculus, medial geniculate body and the auditory cortex. In this review, we explore the process of multisensory integration from (1) anatomical (inputs and connections), (2) physiological (cellular responses), (3) functional and (4) pathological aspects. We focus on the convergence between auditory and somatosensory inputs in each ascending auditory station. This review highlights the intricacy of sensory processing and offers a multisensory perspective regarding the understanding of sensory disorders.

  2. Automatic Parametrization of Somatosensory Evoked Potentials With Chirp Modeling.

    PubMed

    Vayrynen, Eero; Noponen, Kai; Vipin, Ashwati; Thow, X Y; Al-Nashash, Hasan; Kortelainen, Jukka; All, Angelo

    2016-09-01

    In this paper, an approach using polynomial phase chirp signals to model somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) is proposed. SEP waveforms are assumed as impulses undergoing group velocity dispersion while propagating along a multipath neural connection. Mathematical analysis of pulse dispersion resulting in chirp signals is performed. An automatic parameterization of SEPs is proposed using chirp models. A Particle Swarm Optimization algorithm is used to optimize the model parameters. Features describing the latencies and amplitudes of SEPs are automatically derived. A rat model is then used to evaluate the automatic parameterization of SEPs in two experimental cases, i.e., anesthesia level and spinal cord injury (SCI). Experimental results show that chirp-based model parameters and the derived SEP features are significant in describing both anesthesia level and SCI changes. The proposed automatic optimization based approach for extracting chirp parameters offers potential for detailed SEP analysis in future studies. The method implementation in Matlab technical computing language is provided online.

  3. Motor and somatosensory conversion disorder: a functional unawareness syndrome?

    PubMed

    Perez, David L; Barsky, Arthur J; Daffner, Kirk; Silbersweig, David A

    2012-01-01

    Although conversion disorder is closely connected to the origins of neurology and psychiatry, it remains poorly understood. In this article, the authors discuss neural and clinical parallels between lesional unawareness disorders and unilateral motor and somatosensory conversion disorder, emphasizing functional neuroimaging/disease correlates. Authors suggest that a functional-unawareness neurobiological framework, mediated by right hemisphere-lateralized, large-scale brain network dysfunction, may play a significant role in the neurobiology of conversion disorder. The perigenual anterior cingulate and the posterior parietal cortices are detailed as important in disease pathophysiology. Further investigations will refine the functional-unawareness concept, clarify the role of affective circuits, and delineate the process through which functional neurologic symptoms emerge.

  4. Contact hysteroscopy.

    PubMed

    Baggish, M S; Barbot, J

    1983-06-01

    In 1907 innovations in optics and illumination made by Maximilian Nitze were applied to hysteroscopy by Charles David, who wrote a treatise of hysteroscopy. David improved illumination by placing an electric incandescent bulb at the intrauterine end of his endoscope and also sealed the distal end of the tube with a piece of glass. The history of the contact endoscope that the authors personally used is connected to the invention by Vulmiere (1952) of a revolutionary illumination process in endoscopy--the "cold light" process. The components of cold light consist of a powerful external light source that is transmitted via a special optical guide into the endometrial cavity. The 1st application of his principle (1963) was an optical trochar contained in a metallic sheath. This simple endoscope was perfected, and in 1973 Barbot and Parent, in France, began to use it to examine the uterine cavity. Discussion focuses on methods, instrumentation, method for examination (grasping the instrument, setup, light source, anesthesia, dilatation, technique, and normal endometrium); cervical neoplasia; nonneoplastic lesions of the endometrium (endometrial polyp, submucous myoma, endometrial hyperplasia); intrauterine device localization; neoplastic lesions of the endometrium; precursors (adenocarcinoma); hysteroscopy in pregnancy (embryoscopy, hydatidiform mole, postpartum hemorrhage, incomplete abortion, spontaneous abortion, induced abortions, and amnioscopy); and examinations of children and infants. The contact endoscope must make light contact with the structure to be viewed. The principles of contact endoscopy depend on an interpretation of color, contour, vascular pattern, and a sense of touch. These are computed together and a diagnosis is made on the basis of previously learned clinical pathologic correlations. The contact endoscope is composed of 3 parts: an optical guide; a cylindric chamber that collects and traps ambient light; and a magnifying eyepiece. The phase of

  5. Early somatosensory processing in individuals at risk for developing psychoses

    PubMed Central

    Hagenmuller, Florence; Heekeren, Karsten; Theodoridou, Anastasia; Walitza, Susanne; Haker, Helene; Rössler, Wulf; Kawohl, Wolfram

    2014-01-01

    Human cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) allow an accurate investigation of thalamocortical and early cortical processing. SEPs reveal a burst of superimposed early (N20) high-frequency oscillations around 600 Hz. Previous studies reported alterations of SEPs in patients with schizophrenia. This study addresses the question whether those alterations are also observable in populations at risk for developing schizophrenia or bipolar disorders. To our knowledge to date, this is the first study investigating SEPs in a population at risk for developing psychoses. Median nerve SEPs were investigated using multichannel EEG in individuals at risk for developing bipolar disorders (n = 25), individuals with high-risk status (n = 59) and ultra-high-risk status for schizophrenia (n = 73) and a gender and age-matched control group (n = 45). Strengths and latencies of low- and high-frequency components as estimated by dipole source analysis were compared between groups. Low- and high-frequency source activity was reduced in both groups at risk for schizophrenia, in comparison to the group at risk for bipolar disorders. HFO amplitudes were also significant reduced in subjects with high-risk status for schizophrenia compared to healthy controls. These differences were accentuated among cannabis non-users. Reduced N20 source strengths were related to higher positive symptom load. These results suggest that the risk for schizophrenia, in contrast to bipolar disorders, may involve an impairment of early cerebral somatosensory processing. Neurophysiologic alterations in schizophrenia precede the onset of initial psychotic episode and may serve as indicator of vulnerability for developing schizophrenia. PMID:25309363

  6. Atypical visual and somatosensory adaptation in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    Andrade, G N; Butler, J S; Peters, G A; Molholm, S; Foxe, J J

    2016-01-01

    Neurophysiological investigations in patients with schizophrenia consistently show early sensory processing deficits in the visual system. Importantly, comparable sensory deficits have also been established in healthy first-degree biological relatives of patients with schizophrenia and in first-episode drug-naive patients. The clear implication is that these measures are endophenotypic, related to the underlying genetic liability for schizophrenia. However, there is significant overlap between patient response distributions and those of healthy individuals without affected first-degree relatives. Here we sought to develop more sensitive measures of sensory dysfunction in this population, with an eye to establishing endophenotypic markers with better predictive capabilities. We used a sensory adaptation paradigm in which electrophysiological responses to basic visual and somatosensory stimuli presented at different rates (ranging from 250 to 2550 ms interstimulus intervals, in blocked presentations) were compared. Our main hypothesis was that adaptation would be substantially diminished in schizophrenia, and that this would be especially prevalent in the visual system. High-density event-related potential recordings showed amplitude reductions in sensory adaptation in patients with schizophrenia (N=15 Experiment 1, N=12 Experiment 2) compared with age-matched healthy controls (N=15 Experiment 1, N=12 Experiment 2), and this was seen for both sensory modalities. At the individual participant level, reduced adaptation was more robust for visual compared with somatosensory stimulation. These results point to significant impairments in short-term sensory plasticity across sensory modalities in schizophrenia. These simple-to-execute measures may prove valuable as candidate endophenotypes and will bear follow-up in future work. PMID:27163205

  7. Prestimulus oscillatory power and connectivity patterns predispose conscious somatosensory perception.

    PubMed

    Weisz, Nathan; Wühle, Anja; Monittola, Gianpiero; Demarchi, Gianpaolo; Frey, Julia; Popov, Tzvetan; Braun, Christoph

    2014-01-28

    Which aspects of our sensory environment enter conscious awareness does not only depend on physical features of the stimulus, but also critically on the so-called current brain state. Results from magnetoencephalography/EEG studies using near-threshold stimuli have consistently pointed to reduced levels of α- (8-12 Hz) power in relevant sensory areas to predict whether a stimulus will be consciously perceived or not. These findings have been mainly interpreted in strictly "local" terms of enhanced excitability of neuronal ensembles in respective cortical regions. The present study aims to introduce a framework that complements this rather local perspective, by stating that the functional connectivity architecture before stimulation will predetermine information flow. Thus, information computed at a local level will be distributed throughout a network, thereby becoming consciously accessible. Data from a previously published experiment on conscious somatosensory near-threshold perception was reanalyzed focusing on the prestimulus period. Analysis of spectral power showed reduced α-power mainly in the contralateral S2 and middle frontal gyrus to precede hits, thus overall supporting the current literature. Furthermore, differences between hits and misses were obtained on global network (graph theoretical) features in the same interval. Most importantly, in accordance with our framework, we could show that the somatosensory cortex is "more efficiently" integrated into a distributed network in the prestimulus period. This finding means that when a relevant sensory stimulus impinges upon the system, it will encounter preestablished pathways for information flow. In this sense, prestimulus functional connectivity patterns form "windows" to conscious perception.

  8. Modulation of excitability in human primary somatosensory and motor cortex by paired associative stimulation targeting the primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Kriváneková, Lucia; Lu, Ming-Kuei; Bliem, Barbara; Ziemann, Ulf

    2011-10-01

    Input from primary somatosensory cortex (S1) to primary motor cortex (M1) is important for high-level motor performance, motor skill learning and motor recovery after brain lesion. This study tested the effects of manipulating S1 excitability with paired associative transcranial stimulation (S1-PAS) on M1 excitability. Given the important role of S1 in sensorimotor integration, we hypothesized that changes in S1 excitability would be directly paralleled by changes in M1 excitability. We applied two established protocols (S1-PAS(LTP) and S1-PAS(LTD) ) to the left S1 to induce long-term potentiation (LTP)-like or long-term depression (LTD)-like plasticity. S1 excitability was assessed by the early cortical components (N20-P25) of the median nerve somatosensory-evoked potential. M1 excitability was assessed by motor-evoked potential amplitude and short-interval intracortical inhibition. Effects of S1-PAS(LTP) were compared with those of a PAS(LTP) protocol targeting the left M1 (M1-PAS(LTP) ). S1-PAS(LTP) and S1-PAS(LTD) did not result in significant modifications of S1 or M1 excitability at the group level due to substantial interindividual variability. The individual S1-PAS-induced changes in S1 and M1 excitability showed no correlation. Furthermore, the individual changes in S1 and M1 excitability induced by S1-PAS(LTP) did not correlate with changes in M1 excitability induced by M1-PAS(LTP) . This demonstrates that the effects of S1-PAS in S1 are variable across individuals and, within a given individual, unrelated to those induced by S1-PAS or M1-PAS in M1. Potentially, this extends the opportunities of therapeutic PAS applications because M1-PAS 'non-responders' may well respond to S1-PAS.

  9. Dermatomal Organization of SI Leg Representation in Humans: Revising the Somatosensory Homunculus.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Caroline; Blume, Kathrin R; Franz, Marcel; Huonker, Ralph; Carl, Maria; Preißler, Sandra; Hofmann, Gunther O; Miltner, Wolfgang H R; Weiss, Thomas

    2017-01-23

    Penfield and Rasmussen's homunculus is the valid map of the neural body representation of nearly each textbook of biology, physiology, and neuroscience. The somatosensory homunculus places the foot representation on the mesial surface of the postcentral gyrus followed by the representations of the lower leg and the thigh in superio-lateral direction. However, this strong homuncular organization contradicts the "dermatomal" organization of spinal nerves. We used somatosensory-evoked magnetic fields and source analysis to study the leg's neural representation in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). We show that the representation of the back of the thigh is located inferior to the foot's representation in SI whereas the front of the thigh is located laterally to the foot's representation. This observation indicates that the localization of the leg in SI rather follows the dermatomal organization of spinal nerves than the typical map of neighboring body parts as depicted in Penfield and Rasmussen's illustration of the somatosensory homunculus.

  10. Unanticipated Disturbance in Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in a Patient in Park-Bench Position.

    PubMed

    Babakhani, Babak; Schott, Martin; Hosseinitabatabaei, Narges; Jantzen, Jan-Peter

    2015-06-01

    Perioperative neuropathy is a known complication of malpositioning during anaesthesia. Somatosensory evoked potentials are used for detecting such a complication in selected surgeries. Most reports of intraoperative nerve injuries due to malpositioning are limited to injuries to the peripheral nervous system, and there have been no previously reported cases of somatosensory evoked potential monitoring disturbance attributable to position-related cerebral ischemia in the park-bench position. We present the case of a patient with glioblastoma in the park-bench position whose somatosensory evoked potential waveforms disappeared after head and neck repositioning. A prompt diagnosis of this complication and elimination of the underlying cause led to the return of somatosensory evoked potential waveforms, and there was no relevant neurologic deficit at the end of the surgery.

  11. Semi-intact ex vivo approach to investigate spinal somatosensory circuits

    PubMed Central

    Hachisuka, Junichi; Baumbauer, Kyle M; Omori, Yu; Snyder, Lindsey M; Koerber, H Richard; Ross, Sarah E

    2016-01-01

    The somatosensory input that gives rise to the perceptions of pain, itch, cold and heat are initially integrated in the superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Here, we describe a new approach to investigate these neural circuits in mouse. This semi-intact somatosensory preparation enables recording from spinal output neurons, while precisely controlling somatosensory input, and simultaneously manipulating specific populations of spinal interneurons. Our findings suggest that spinal interneurons show distinct temporal and spatial tuning properties. We also show that modality selectivity — mechanical, heat and cold — can be assessed in both retrogradely labeled spinoparabrachial projection neurons and genetically labeled spinal interneurons. Finally, we demonstrate that interneuron connectivity can be determined via optogenetic activation of specific interneuron subtypes. This new approach may facilitate key conceptual advances in our understanding of the spinal somatosensory circuits in health and disease. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22866.001 PMID:27991851

  12. Native Piezo2 Interactomics Identifies Pericentrin as a Novel Regulator of Piezo2 in Somatosensory Neurons.

    PubMed

    Narayanan, Pratibha; Sondermann, Julia; Rouwette, Tom; Karaca, Samir; Urlaub, Henning; Mitkovski, Mišo; Gomez-Varela, David; Schmidt, Manuela

    2016-08-05

    The ability of somatosensory neurons to perceive mechanical stimuli relies on specialized mechanotransducing proteins and their molecular environment. Only recently has the identity of a major transducer of mechanical forces in vertebrates been revealed by the discovery of Piezo2. Further work has established its pivotal role for innocuous touch in mice. Therefore, Piezo2 offers a unique platform for the molecular investigation of somatosensory mechanosensation. We performed a mass spectrometry-based interactomics screen on native Piezo2 in somatosensory neurons of mouse dorsal root ganglia (DRG). Stringent and quantitative data analysis yielded the identity of 36 novel binding partners of Piezo2. The biological significance of this data set is reflected by functional experiments demonstrating a role for Pericentrin in modulating Piezo2 activity and membrane expression in somatosensory neurons. Collectively, our findings provide a framework for understanding Piezo2 physiology and serve as a rich resource for the molecular dissection of mouse somatosensation.

  13. Somatosensory Representations Link the Perception of Emotional Expressions and Sensory Experience123

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Studies of human emotion perception have linked a distributed set of brain regions to the recognition of emotion in facial, vocal, and body expressions. In particular, lesions to somatosensory cortex in the right hemisphere have been shown to impair recognition of facial and vocal expressions of emotion. Although these findings suggest that somatosensory cortex represents body states associated with distinct emotions, such as a furrowed brow or gaping jaw, functional evidence directly linking somatosensory activity and subjective experience during emotion perception is critically lacking. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging and multivariate decoding techniques, we show that perceiving vocal and facial expressions of emotion yields hemodynamic activity in right somatosensory cortex that discriminates among emotion categories, exhibits somatotopic organization, and tracks self-reported sensory experience. The findings both support embodied accounts of emotion and provide mechanistic insight into how emotional expressions are capable of biasing subjective experience in those who perceive them. PMID:27280154

  14. Investigation of brachial plexus traction lesions by peripheral and spinal somatosensory evoked potentials.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, S J

    1979-01-01

    Peripheral, spinal and cortical somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded in 26 patients with unilateral traction injuries of the brachial plexus ganglia. Of 10 cases explored surgically the recordings correctly anticipated the major site of the lesion in eight. PMID:422958

  15. Individual differences in cortical connections of somatosensory cortex are associated with parental rearing style in prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster)

    PubMed Central

    Seelke, Adele M. H.; Perkeybile, Allison M.; Grunewald, Rebecca; Bales, Karen L.; Krubitzer, Leah A.

    2015-01-01

    Early life sensory experiences have a profound effect on brain organization, connectivity and subsequent behavior. In most mammals, the earliest sensory inputs are delivered to the developing brain through tactile contact with the parents, especially the mother. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are monogamous and, like humans, are biparental. Within the normal prairie vole population, both the type and amount of interactions, particularly tactile contact, that parents have with their offspring varies. The question is whether these early and pervasive differences in tactile stimulation and social experience between parent and offspring are manifest in differences in cortical organization and connectivity. To address this question we examined the cortical and callosal connections of the primary somatosensory area (S1) in high contact (HC) and low contact (LC) offspring using neuroanatomical tracing techniques. Injection sites within S1 were matched so that direct comparisons between these two groups could be made. We observed several important differences between these groups. The first was that HC offspring had a greater density of intrinsic connections within S1 compared to LC offspring. The HC offspring had a more restricted pattern of ipsilateral connections while LC offspring had dense connections with areas of parietal and frontal cortex that were more widespread. Finally, LC offspring had a broader distribution of callosal connections than HC offspring and a significantly higher percentage of callosal labeled neurons. To date, this is the first study that examines individual differences in cortical connections and suggests that they may be related to natural differences in parental rearing styles associated with tactile contact. PMID:26101098

  16. Types of Contact Lenses

    MedlinePlus

    ... Consumer Devices Consumer Products Contact Lenses Types of Contact Lenses Share Tweet Linkedin Pin it More sharing ... Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) Decorative (Plano) Contact Lenses Soft Contact Lenses Soft contact lenses are made of soft, ...

  17. Pre-stimulus alpha oscillations over somatosensory cortex predict tactile misperceptions.

    PubMed

    Craddock, Matt; Poliakoff, Ellen; El-Deredy, Wael; Klepousniotou, Ekaterini; Lloyd, Donna M

    2017-02-01

    Fluctuations of pre-stimulus oscillatory activity in the somatosensory alpha band (8-14Hz) observed using human EEG and MEG have been shown to influence the detection of supra- and peri-threshold somatosensory stimuli. However, some reports of touch occur even without a stimulus. We investigated the possibility that pre-stimulus alpha oscillations might also influence these false reports of touch - known as tactile misperceptions. We recorded EEG while participants performed the Somatic Signal Detection Task (SSDT), in which participants must detect brief, peri-threshold somatosensory targets. We found that pre-stimulus oscillatory power in the somatosensory alpha range exhibited a negative linear relationship with reporting of touch at electrode clusters over both contralateral and ipsilateral somatosensory regions. As pre-stimulus alpha power increased, the probability of reporting a touch declined; as it decreased, the probability of reporting a touch increased. This relationship was stronger on trials without a somatosensory stimulus than on trials with a somatosensory stimulus, although was present for both trial types. Spatio-temporal cluster-based permutation analysis also found that pre-stimulus alpha was lower on trials when touch was reported - irrespective of whether it was present - over contralateral and ipsilateral somatosensory cortices, as well as left frontocentral areas. We argue that alpha power may reflect changes in response criterion rather than sensitivity alone. Low alpha power relates to a low barrier to reporting a touch even when one is not present, while high alpha power is linked to less frequent reporting of touch overall.

  18. Subjective Somatosensory Experiences Disclosed by Focused Attention: Cortical-Hippocampal-Insular and Amygdala Contributions

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Clemens C. C.; Barrios, Fernando A.; Díaz, José-Luis

    2014-01-01

    In order to explore the neurobiological foundations of qualitative subjective experiences, the present study was designed to correlate objective third-person brain fMRI measures with subjective first-person identification and scaling of local, subtle, and specific somatosensory sensations, obtained directly after the imaging procedure. Thus, thirty-four volunteers were instructed to focus and sustain their attention to either provoked or spontaneous sensations of each thumb during the fMRI procedure. By means of a Likert scale applied immediately afterwards, the participants recalled and evaluated the intensity of their attention and identified specific somatosensory sensations (e.g. pulsation, vibration, heat). Using the subject's subjective scores as covariates to model both attention intensity and general somatosensory experiences regressors, the whole-brain random effect analyses revealed activations in the frontopolar prefrontal cortex (BA10), primary somatosensory cortex (BA1), premotor cortex (BA 6), precuneus (BA 7), temporopolar cortex (BA 38), inferior parietal lobe (BA 39), hippocampus, insula and amygdala. Furthermore, BA10 showed differential activity, with ventral BA10 correlating exclusively with attention (r(32) = 0.54, p = 0.0013) and dorsal BA10 correlating exclusively with somatosensory sensation (r(32) = 0.46, p = 0.007). All other reported brain areas showed significant positive correlations solely with subjective somatosensory experiences reports. These results provide evidence that the frontopolar prefrontal cortex has dissociable functions depending on specific cognitive demands; i.e. the dorsal portion of the frontopolar prefrontal cortex in conjunction with primary somatosensory cortex, temporopolar cortex, inferior parietal lobe, hippocampus, insula and amygdala are involved in the processing of spontaneous general subjective somatosensory experiences disclosed by focused and sustained attention. PMID:25166875

  19. Mortality salience modulates cortical responses to painful somatosensory stimulation: Evidence from slow wave and delta band activity.

    PubMed

    Valentini, Elia; Koch, Katharina; Nicolardi, Valentina; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2015-10-15

    Social psychology studies show that awareness of one's eventual death profoundly influences human cognition and behaviour by inducing defensive reactions against end-of-life-related anxiety. Much less is known about the impact of reminders of mortality on brain activity. Here we tested whether reminders of mortality can induce a modulation of the slow electroencephalographic activity triggered by somatosensory nociceptive or auditory threatening stimulation and if this modulation is related to mood and anxiety as well as personality traits. We found a specific slow wave (SW) modulation only for nociceptive stimulation and only following mortality salience induction (compared to reminders of an important failed exam). The enhancement of SW negativity at the scalp vertex was associated with increased state anxiety and negative mood, whereas higher self-esteem was associated with reduced SW amplitude. In addition, mortality salience was linked to an increased amplitude of frontal delta band, which was correlated also with increased positive mood and higher self-esteem. The results indicate that SW and delta spectral activity may represent both proximal and distal defences associated with reminders of death and that neurophysiological correlates of somatosensory representation of painful and threatening stimuli may be useful for existential neuroscience studies.

  20. Granger causal time-dependent source connectivity in the somatosensory network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Lin; Sommerlade, Linda; Coffman, Brian; Zhang, Tongsheng; Stephen, Julia M.; Li, Dichen; Wang, Jue; Grebogi, Celso; Schelter, Bjoern

    2015-05-01

    Exploration of transient Granger causal interactions in neural sources of electrophysiological activities provides deeper insights into brain information processing mechanisms. However, the underlying neural patterns are confounded by time-dependent dynamics, non-stationarity and observational noise contamination. Here we investigate transient Granger causal interactions using source time-series of somatosensory evoked magnetoencephalographic (MEG) elicited by air puff stimulation of right index finger and recorded using 306-channel MEG from 21 healthy subjects. A new time-varying connectivity approach, combining renormalised partial directed coherence with state space modelling, is employed to estimate fast changing information flow among the sources. Source analysis confirmed that somatosensory evoked MEG was mainly generated from the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI) and bilateral secondary somatosensory cortices (SII). Transient Granger causality shows a serial processing of somatosensory information, 1) from contralateral SI to contralateral SII, 2) from contralateral SI to ipsilateral SII, 3) from contralateral SII to contralateral SI, and 4) from contralateral SII to ipsilateral SII. These results are consistent with established anatomical connectivity between somatosensory regions and previous source modeling results, thereby providing empirical validation of the time-varying connectivity analysis. We argue that the suggested approach provides novel information regarding transient cortical dynamic connectivity, which previous approaches could not assess.

  1. Cortex mapping of ipsilateral somatosensory area following anatomical hemispherectomy: a MEG study.

    PubMed

    Yao, Ning; Qiao, Hui; Shu, Ning; Wang, Zide; Chen, Daxing; Wu, Liang; Deng, Xiaofeng; Xu, Yulun

    2013-04-01

    A remarkable preservation of sensorimotor function is observed in patients with refractory epilepsy who were treated by hemispherectomy. Cortical regions in the remaining hemisphere or contralateral subcortical region contribute to the residual sensorimotor function. Somatosensory evoked field (SEF) is used to investigate the residual sensory function in hemispherectomized patients. The SEFs are usually recorded with magnetoencephalography (MEG). The objective is to investigate the ipsilateral cortical regions associated with residual sensory function in hemispherectomized patients using somatosensory evoked field techniques. Six patients with anatomical hemispherectomy were included. Ipsilateral and contralateral sensory functions were assessed by physical examination. Somatosensory evoked fields to electrical stimulation of the bilateral median nerves were recorded by MEG in the hemispherectomized patients and six control subjects. The stimulus intensity was adjusted to the minimum threshold that elicited a thumb twitch. The presumed neuronal source was identified as the equivalent current dipole. Six patients demonstrated different degrees of residual sensory function. Three patients had somatosensory evoked field activation in the ipsilateral cortex upon electrical stimulation of the hemiplegic hand. In these patients the locations of the ipsilateral sensorimotor cortex activation were in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). The latency of the reliable somatosensory evoked field after stimulation of the median nerve was significantly longer for responses from the hemiplegic side compared with responses to stimulation of the median nerve from the normal side. In conclusion, ipsilateral sensory function has a time-locked relation to the cortical electromagnetic activation in the SI area of hemispherectomized patients.

  2. Static magnetic field stimulation over parietal cortex enhances somatosensory detection in humans.

    PubMed

    Carrasco-López, Carmen; Soto-León, Vanesa; Céspedes, Virginia; Profice, Paolo; Strange, Bryan A; Foffani, Guglielmo; Oliviero, Antonio

    2017-03-09

    The role of neuronal oscillations in human somatosensory perception is currently unclear. To address this, here we employ non-invasive brain stimulation to artificially modulate cortical network dynamics in the context of neurophysiological and behavioral recordings. We demonstrate that transcranial static magnetic stimulation (tSMS) over the somatosensory parietal cortex increases oscillatory power specifically in the alpha range, without significantly affecting bottom-up thalamo-cortical inputs indexed by the early cortical component of somatosensory evoked potentials. Critically, we next show that parietal tSMS enhances the detection of near-threshold somatosensory stimuli. Interestingly, this behavioral improvement reflects a decrease of habituation to somatosensation. Our data therefore provide causal evidence that somatosensory perception depends on parietal alpha activity. Artificially increasing alpha power by placing a powerful magnetic field over the parietal cortex overcomes the natural decline in detection probability of a repeated near-threshold sensory stimulus.SignificanceStatement Artificially increasing alpha power by placing a powerful magnetic field over the somatosensory cortex overcomes the natural decline in detection probability of a repeated near-threshold sensory stimulus.

  3. Granger causal time-dependent source connectivity in the somatosensory network

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Lin; Sommerlade, Linda; Coffman, Brian; Zhang, Tongsheng; Stephen, Julia M.; Li, Dichen; Wang, Jue; Grebogi, Celso; Schelter, Bjoern

    2015-01-01

    Exploration of transient Granger causal interactions in neural sources of electrophysiological activities provides deeper insights into brain information processing mechanisms. However, the underlying neural patterns are confounded by time-dependent dynamics, non-stationarity and observational noise contamination. Here we investigate transient Granger causal interactions using source time-series of somatosensory evoked magnetoencephalographic (MEG) elicited by air puff stimulation of right index finger and recorded using 306-channel MEG from 21 healthy subjects. A new time-varying connectivity approach, combining renormalised partial directed coherence with state space modelling, is employed to estimate fast changing information flow among the sources. Source analysis confirmed that somatosensory evoked MEG was mainly generated from the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI) and bilateral secondary somatosensory cortices (SII). Transient Granger causality shows a serial processing of somatosensory information, 1) from contralateral SI to contralateral SII, 2) from contralateral SI to ipsilateral SII, 3) from contralateral SII to contralateral SI, and 4) from contralateral SII to ipsilateral SII. These results are consistent with established anatomical connectivity between somatosensory regions and previous source modeling results, thereby providing empirical validation of the time-varying connectivity analysis. We argue that the suggested approach provides novel information regarding transient cortical dynamic connectivity, which previous approaches could not assess. PMID:25997414

  4. Sensory perception changes induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation over the primary somatosensory cortex in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Palomar, Francisco J; Díaz-Corrales, Francisco; Carrillo, Fatima; Fernández-del-Olmo, Miguel; Koch, Giacomo; Mir, Pablo

    2011-09-01

    Sensory symptoms are common nonmotor manifestations of Parkinson's disease. It has been hypothesized that abnormal central processing of sensory signals occurs in Parkinson's disease and is related to dopaminergic treatment. The objective of this study was to investigate the alterations in sensory perception induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation of the primary somatosensory cortex in patients with Parkinson's disease and the modulatory effects of dopaminergic treatment. Fourteen patients with Parkinson's disease with and without dopaminergic treatment and 13 control subjects were included. Twenty milliseconds after peripheral electrical tactile stimuli in the contralateral thumb, paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation over the right primary somatosensory cortex was delivered. We evaluated the perception of peripheral electrical tactile stimuli at 2 conditioning stimulus intensities, set at 70% and 90% of the right resting motor threshold, using different interstimulus intervals. At 70% of the resting motor threshold, paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation over the right primary somatosensory cortex induced an increase in positive responses at short interstimulus intervals (1-7 ms) in controls but not in patients with dopaminergic treatment. At 90% of the resting motor threshold, controls and patients showed similar transcranial magnetic stimulation effects. Changes in peripheral electrical tactile stimuli perception after paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation over the primary somatosensory cortex are altered in patients with Parkinson's disease with dopaminergic treatment compared with controls. These findings suggest that primary somatosensory cortex excitability could be involved in changes in somatosensory integration in Parkinson's disease with dopaminergic treatment.

  5. Somatosensory assessment and conditioned pain modulation in temporomandibular disorders pain patients.

    PubMed

    Kothari, Simple Futarmal; Baad-Hansen, Lene; Oono, Yuka; Svensson, Peter

    2015-12-01

    The pathophysiology and underlying pain mechanisms of temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are poorly understood. The aims were to assess somatosensory function at the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) and to examine whether conditioned pain modulation (CPM) differs between TMD pain patients (n = 34) and healthy controls (n = 34). Quantitative sensory testing was used to assess the somatosensory function. Z-scores were calculated for patients based on reference data. Conditioned pain modulation was tested by comparing pressure pain thresholds (PPTs) before, during, and after the application of painful and nonpainful cold stimuli. Pressure pain thresholds were measured at the most painful TMJ and thenar muscle (control). Data were analyzed with analyses of variance. Most (85.3%) of the patients exhibited at least 1 or more somatosensory abnormalities at the most painful TMJ with somatosensory gain with regard to PPT and punctate mechanical pain stimuli, and somatosensory loss with regard to mechanical detection and vibration detection stimuli as the most frequent abnormalities. There was a significant CPM effect (increased PPT) at both test sites during painful cold application in healthy controls and patients (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference in the relative CPM effect during painful cold application between groups (P = 0.227). In conclusion, somatosensory abnormalities were commonly detected in TMD pain patients and CPM effects were similar in TMD pain patients and healthy controls.

  6. [Contact glass tonometer].

    PubMed

    Kanngiesser, H; Robert, Y; Dekker, P

    1996-10-01

    This paper present a tonometer incorporated in a contact lens, which allows simultaneous measurement of intraocular pressure and performance ophthalmoscopy. The tonometer can record the pulse curve continuously, which can give us an indication of any circulatory problem. The device is therefore expected to yield additional information useful for the diagnosis of early glaucoma. Te device has three force sensors built in, which allow continuous measurement of the force exerted on the eye surface by the contact lens. The force of the contact lens on the eye can be altered and makes the adjustment of different eye pressures possible. These induced changes of the eye pressure and their influence on the fundus can be checked. We have taken some measurements on enucleated human eyes to compare our device with a Statham tansducer in the vitreous. We found a good correlation. We are currently taking measurements in volunteers. The clinical relevance of these observations and measurements will be examined in a future study.

  7. Pulsed infrared light alters neural activity in rat somatosensory cortex in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Cayce, Jonathan M.; Friedman, Robert M.; Jansen, E. Duco; Mahavaden-Jansen, Anita; Roe, Anna W.

    2011-01-01

    Pulsed infrared light has shown promise as an alternative to electrical stimulation in applications where contact free or high spatial precision stimulation are desired. Infrared neural stimulation (INS) is well characterized in the peripheral nervous system; however, to date, research has been limited in the central nervous system. In this study, pulsed infrared light (λ=1.875 μm, pulse width=250 μs, radiant exposure=0.01–0.55 J/cm2, fiber size=400 μm, repetition rate=50–200 Hz) was used to stimulate the somatosensory cortex of anesthetized rats, and its efficacy was assessed using intrinsic optical imaging and electrophysiology techniques. INS was found to evoke an intrinsic response of similar magnitude to that evoked by tactile stimulation (0.3–0.4% change in intrinsic signal magnitude). A maximum deflection in the intrinsic signal was measured to range from 0.05% to 0.4% in response to INS, and the activated region of cortex measured approximately 2 mm in diameter. The intrinsic signal magnitude increased with faster laser repetition rates and increasing radiant exposures. Single unit recordings indicated a statistically significant decrease in neuronal firing that was observed at the onset of INS stimulation (0.5 s stimulus) and continued up to 1 s after stimulation onset. The pattern of neuronal firing differed from that observed during tactile stimulation, potentially due to a different spatial integration field of the pulsed infrared light compared to tactile stimulation. The results demonstrate that INS can be used safely and effectively to manipulate neuronal firing. PMID:21513806

  8. Reducing contact resistance in graphene devices through contact area patterning.

    PubMed

    Smith, Joshua T; Franklin, Aaron D; Farmer, Damon B; Dimitrakopoulos, Christos D

    2013-04-23

    Performance of graphene electronics is limited by contact resistance associated with the metal-graphene (M-G) interface, where unique transport challenges arise as carriers are injected from a 3D metal into a 2D-graphene sheet. In this work, enhanced carrier injection is experimentally achieved in graphene devices by forming cuts in the graphene within the contact regions. These cuts are oriented normal to the channel and facilitate bonding between the contact metal and carbon atoms at the graphene cut edges, reproducibly maximizing "edge-contacted" injection. Despite the reduction in M-G contact area caused by these cuts, we find that a 32% reduction in contact resistance results in Cu-contacted, two-terminal devices, while a 22% reduction is achieved for top-gated graphene transistors with Pd contacts as compared to conventionally fabricated devices. The crucial role of contact annealing to facilitate this improvement is also elucidated. This simple approach provides a reliable and reproducible means of lowering contact resistance in graphene devices to bolster performance. Importantly, this enhancement requires no additional processing steps.

  9. Contact angle and local wetting at contact line.

    PubMed

    Li, Ri; Shan, Yanguang

    2012-11-06

    This theoretical study was motivated by recent experiments and theoretical work that had suggested the dependence of the static contact angle on the local wetting at the triple-phase contact line. We revisit this topic because the static contact angle as a local wetting parameter is still not widely understood and clearly known. To further clarify the relationship of the static contact angle with wetting, two approaches are applied to derive a general equation for the static contact angle of a droplet on a composite surface composed of heterogeneous components. A global approach based on the free surface energy of a thermodynamic system containing the droplet and solid surface shows the static contact angle as a function of local surface chemistry and local wetting state at the contact line. A local approach, in which only local forces acting on the contact line are considered, results in the same equation. The fact that the local approach agrees with the global approach further demonstrates the static contact angle as a local wetting parameter. Additionally, the study also suggests that the wetting described by the Wenzel and Cassie equations is also the local wetting of the contact line rather than the global wetting of the droplet.

  10. Chain Of Test Contacts For Integrated Circuits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lieneweg, Udo

    1989-01-01

    Test structure forms chain of "cross" contacts fabricated together with large-scale integrated circuits. If necessary, number of such chains incorporated at suitable locations in integrated-circuit wafer for determination of fabrication yield of contacts. In new structure, resistances of individual contacts determined: In addition to making it possible to identify local defects, enables generation of statistical distributions of contact resistances for prediction of "parametric" contact yield of fabrication process.

  11. An Intelligent Decision System for Intraoperative Somatosensory Evoked Potential Monitoring.

    PubMed

    Fan, Bi; Li, Han-Xiong; Hu, Yong

    2016-02-01

    Somatosensory evoked potential (SEP) is a useful, noninvasive technique widely used for spinal cord monitoring during surgery. One of the main indicators of a spinal cord injury is the drop in amplitude of the SEP signal in comparison to the nominal baseline that is assumed to be constant during the surgery. However, in practice, the real-time baseline is not constant and may vary during the operation due to nonsurgical factors, such as blood pressure, anaesthesia, etc. Thus, a false warning is often generated if the nominal baseline is used for SEP monitoring. In current practice, human experts must be used to prevent this false warning. However, these well-trained human experts are expensive and may not be reliable and consistent due to various reasons like fatigue and emotion. In this paper, an intelligent decision system is proposed to improve SEP monitoring. First, the least squares support vector regression and multi-support vector regression models are trained to construct the dynamic baseline from historical data. Then a control chart is applied to detect abnormalities during surgery. The effectiveness of the intelligent decision system is evaluated by comparing its performance against the nominal baseline model by using the real experimental datasets derived from clinical conditions.

  12. [Normative aspects of somatosensory evoked P300 components].

    PubMed

    Louzã Neto, M R; Maurer, K; Neuhauser, B

    1989-06-01

    Using a somatosensory version of the oddball-paradigma the influence of age and gender on the P300-component and the comparison of the potential after stimulation of the right and left median nerve was studied in 30 healthy right handed volunteers (age: 20-35 years). Latency, amplitude, area and duration of the P300-potential were analysed. No relationship between age, gender and the P300-parameters were observed. The amplitude and the area of the potential obtained from the F3 electrode were greater after stimulation of the right median nerve compared to the potential after stimulation of the left median nerve. All other results were not significantly different. Strong positive correlations between the results after stimulation of the right and left median nerve were observed. These results showed that by a young group of volunteers age and gender did not influence the P300-component. Although the P300-Parameters had a between-subject variability, their mean remained constant over the study, their correlation coefficients were strong positive and the side of stimulation did not influence them (except for the electrode F3).

  13. Feeling Touched: Emotional Modulation of Somatosensory Potentials to Interpersonal Touch.

    PubMed

    Ravaja, N; Harjunen, V; Ahmed, I; Jacucci, G; Spapé, M M

    2017-01-12

    Although the previous studies have shown that an emotional context may alter touch processing, it is not clear how visual contextual information modulates the sensory signals, and at what levels does this modulation take place. Therefore, we investigated how a toucher's emotional expressions (anger, happiness, fear, and sadness) modulate touchee's somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) in different temporal ranges. Participants were presented with tactile stimulation appearing to originate from expressive characters in virtual reality. Touch processing was indexed using SEPs, and self-reports of touch experience were collected. Early potentials were found to be amplified after angry, happy and sad facial expressions, while late potentials were amplified after anger but attenuated after happiness. These effects were related to two stages of emotional modulation of tactile perception: anticipation and interpretation. The findings show that not only does touch affect emotion, but also emotional expressions affect touch perception. The affective modulation of touch was initially obtained as early as 25 ms after the touch onset suggesting that emotional context is integrated to the tactile sensation at a very early stage.

  14. Dodecapus: An MR-compatible system for somatosensory stimulation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Ruey-Song; Sereno, Martin I

    2007-02-01

    Somatotopic mapping of human body surface using fMRI is challenging. First, it is difficult to deliver tactile stimuli in the scanner. Second, multiple stimulators are often required to cover enough area of the complex-shaped body surface, such as the face. In this study, a computer-controlled pneumatic system was constructed to automatically deliver air puffs to 12 locations on the body surface through an MR-compatible manifold (Dodecapus) mounted on a head coil inside the scanner bore. The timing of each air-puff channel is completely programmable and this allows systematic and precise stimulation on multiple locations on the body surface during functional scans. Three two-condition block-design "Localizer" paradigms were employed to localize the cortical representations of the face, lips, and fingers, respectively. Three "Phase-encoded" paradigms were employed to map the detailed somatotopic organizations of the face, lips, and fingers following each "Localizer" paradigm. Multiple somatotopic representations of the face, lips, and fingers were localized and mapped in primary motor cortex (MI), ventral premotor cortex (PMv), polysensory zone (PZ), primary (SI) and secondary (SII) somatosensory cortex, parietal ventral area (PV) and 7b, as well as anterior and ventral intraparietal areas (AIP and VIP). The Dodecapus system is portable, easy to setup, generates no radio frequency interference, and can also be used for EEG and MEG experiments. This system could be useful for non-invasive somatotopic mapping in both basic and clinical studies.

  15. Widespread somatosensory sensitivity in naturally occurring canine model of osteoarthritis

    PubMed Central

    Knazovicky, David; Helgeson, Erika S.; Case, Beth; Gruen, Margaret E.; Maixner, William; Lascelles, B. Duncan X.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Osteoarthritis (OA)-associated pain is a leading cause of disability. Central sensitization (CS), as a result of OA, is recognized as an important facet of human patients' chronic pain and has been measured in people using quantitative sensory testing (QST) testing. The spontaneous canine OA model has been suggested as a good translational model, but CS has not been explored in this model. In this study, QST was performed on dogs with and without spontaneous hip or stifle OA to determine whether OA is associated with CS in this model. Mechanical (von Frey and blunt pressure) and thermal (hot and cold) sensory thresholds obtained in dogs with chronic OA-associated pain (n = 31) were compared with those of normal dogs (n = 23). Dogs were phenotyped and joint-pain scored, and testing was performed at the OA-affected joint, cranial tibial muscle, and dorsal metatarsal region. QST summary data were evaluated using mixed-effect models to understand the influence of OA status and covariates, and dogs with OA and control dogs were compared. The presence of OA was strongly associated with hyperalgesia across all QST modalities at the index joint, cranial tibial muscle, and metatarsal site. Mechanical QST scores were significantly moderately negatively correlated with total joint-pain scores. The spontaneous canine OA model is associated with somatosensory sensitivity, likely indicative of CS. These data further validate the canine spontaneous OA model as an appropriate model of the human OA pain condition. PMID:26901805

  16. Circadian rhythmicity of synapses in mouse somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Jasinska, Malgorzata; Grzegorczyk, Anna; Woznicka, Olga; Jasek, Ewa; Kossut, Malgorzata; Barbacka-Surowiak, Grazyna; Litwin, Jan A; Pyza, Elzbieta

    2015-10-01

    The circadian rhythmicity displayed by motor behavior of mice: activity at night and rest during the day; and the associated changes in the sensory input are reflected by cyclic synaptic plasticity in the whisker representations located in the somatosensory (barrel) cortex. It was not clear whether diurnal rhythmic changes in synapse density previously observed in the barrel cortex resulted from changes in the activity of the animals, from daily light/dark (LD) rhythm or are driven by an endogenous clock. These changes were investigated in the barrel cortex of C57BL/6 mouse strain kept under LD 12 : 12 h conditions and in constant darkness (DD). Stereological analysis of serial electron microscopic sections was used to assess numerical density of synapses. In mice kept under LD conditions, the total density of synapses and the density of excitatory synapses located on dendritic spines was higher during the light period (rest phase). In contrast, the density of inhibitory synapses located on dendritic spines increased during the dark period (activity phase). Under DD conditions, the upregulation of the inhibitory synapses during the activity phase was retained, but the cyclic changes in the density of excitatory synapses were not observed. The results show that the circadian plasticity concerns only synapses located on spines (and not those on dendritic shafts), and that excitatory and inhibitory synapses are differently regulated during the 24 h cycle: the excitatory synapses are influenced by light, whilst the inhibitory synapses are driven by the endogenous circadian clock.

  17. Subthalamic stimulation influences postmovement cortical somatosensory processing in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Devos, D; Labyt, E; Cassim, F; Bourriez, J L; Reyns, N; Touzet, G; Blond, S; Guieu, J D; Derambure, P; Destée, A; Defebvre, L

    2003-10-01

    In Parkinson's disease, poor motor performance (resulting primarily from abnormal cortical activation during movement preparation and execution) may also be due to impaired sensorimotor integration and defective cortical activity termination of the ongoing movement, thus delaying preparation of the following one. Reduced movement-related synchronization of the beta rhythm in Parkinson's disease compared to controls has been put forward as evidence for impaired postmovement cortical deactivation. We assessed the effects of subthalamic deep brain stimulation and l-dopa on beta rhythm synchronization over the premotor and primary sensorimotor cortex. Ten advanced patients performed self-paced wrist flexion in four conditions according to the presence or not of stimulation and l-dopa. Compared to without treatment, the motor score improved by approximately 60%; the beta synchronization was present over the contralateral frontocentral region and increased significantly over the contralateral central region under stimulation and under l-dopa, with a maximal effect when both treatments were associated. Our advanced patients displayed very focused and attenuated beta rhythm synchronization which, under stimulation, increased over the contralateral premotor and primary sensorimotor cortex. Stimulation and l-dopa both partly restored postmovement cortical deactivation in advanced Parkinson's disease, although the respective mechanisms probably differ. They may improve bradykinesia and cortical deactivation by reestablishing movement-related somatosensory processing at the end of the movement through the basal ganglia into the cortex.

  18. Neuronal correlates of sensory discrimination in the somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Adrián; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2000-01-01

    Monkeys are able to discriminate the difference in frequency between two periodic mechanical vibrations applied sequentially to the fingertips. It has been proposed that this ability is mediated by the periodicity of the responses in the quickly adapting (QA) neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1), instead of the average firing rates. We recorded from QA neurons of S1 while monkeys performed the vibrotactile discrimination task. We found that the periodic mechanical vibrations can be represented both in the periodicity and in the firing rate responses to varying degrees across the QA neuronal population. We then computed neurometric functions by using both the periodicity and the firing rate and sought to determine which of these two measures is associated with the psychophysical performance. We found that neurometric thresholds based on the firing rate are very similar to the animal's psychometric thresholds whereas neurometric thresholds based on periodicity are far lower than those thresholds. These results indicate that an observer could solve this task with a precision similar to that of the monkey, based only on the firing rate produced during the stimulus periods. PMID:10811922

  19. Feeling Touched: Emotional Modulation of Somatosensory Potentials to Interpersonal Touch

    PubMed Central

    Ravaja, N.; Harjunen, V.; Ahmed, I.; Jacucci, G.; Spapé, M. M.

    2017-01-01

    Although the previous studies have shown that an emotional context may alter touch processing, it is not clear how visual contextual information modulates the sensory signals, and at what levels does this modulation take place. Therefore, we investigated how a toucher’s emotional expressions (anger, happiness, fear, and sadness) modulate touchee’s somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) in different temporal ranges. Participants were presented with tactile stimulation appearing to originate from expressive characters in virtual reality. Touch processing was indexed using SEPs, and self-reports of touch experience were collected. Early potentials were found to be amplified after angry, happy and sad facial expressions, while late potentials were amplified after anger but attenuated after happiness. These effects were related to two stages of emotional modulation of tactile perception: anticipation and interpretation. The findings show that not only does touch affect emotion, but also emotional expressions affect touch perception. The affective modulation of touch was initially obtained as early as 25 ms after the touch onset suggesting that emotional context is integrated to the tactile sensation at a very early stage. PMID:28079157

  20. Morning/Evening differences in somatosensory inputs for postural control.

    PubMed

    Bougard, Clément; Davenne, Damien

    2014-01-01

    The underlying processes responsible for the differences between morning and afternoon measurements of postural control have not yet been clearly identified. This study was conducted to specify the role played by vestibular, visual, and somatosensory inputs in postural balance and their link with the diurnal fluctuations of body temperature and vigilance level. Nineteen healthy male subjects (mean age: 20.5 ± 1.3 years) participated in test sessions at 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. after a normal night's sleep. Temperature was measured before the subjects completed a sign cancellation test and a postural control evaluation with eyes both open and closed. Our results confirmed that postural control improved throughout the day according to the circadian rhythm of body temperature and sleepiness/vigilance. The path length as a function of surface ratio increased between 6:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. This is due to a decrease in the centre-of-pressure surface area, which is associated with an increase in path length. Romberg's index did not change throughout the day; however, the spectral analysis (fast Fourier transform) of the centre-of-pressure excursions (in anteroposterior and mediolateral directions) indicated that diurnal fluctuations in postural control may occur via changes in the different processes responsible for readjustment via muscle contractions.

  1. Ontogeny of somatostatin receptors in the rat somatosensory cortex

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez, B.J.; Leroux, P.; Bodenant, C.; Vaudry, H. )

    1991-03-08

    The distribution and density of SRIF receptors (SRIF-R) were studied during development in the rat somatosensory cortex by in vitro autoradiography with monoiodinated (Tyr0-DTrp8)S14. In 16-day-old fetuses (E16), intense labeling was evident in the intermediate zone of the cortex while low concentrations of SRIF-R were detected in the marginal and ventricular zones. The highest density of SRIF-R was measured in the intermediate zone at E18. At this stage, labeling was also intense in the internal part of the developing cortical plate; in contrast, the concentration of binding sites associated with the marginal and ventricular zones remained relatively low. Profound modifications in the distribution of SRIF-R appeared at birth. In particular, a transient reduction of receptor density occurred in the cortical plate. During the first postnatal week, the density of receptors measured in the intermediate zone decreased gradually; conversely, high levels of SRIF-R were observed in the developing cortical layers (II to VI). At postpartum day 13 (P13), a stage which just precedes completion of cell migration in the parietal cortex, the most intensely labeled regions were layers V-VI and future layers II-III. From P13 to adulthood, the concentrations of SRIF-R decreased in all cortical layers (I to VI) and the pattern of distribution of receptors at P21 was similar to that observed in the adults.

  2. Disproportionate Minority Contact.

    PubMed

    Fix, Rebecca L; Cyperski, Melissa A; Burkhart, Barry R

    2017-04-01

    The overrepresentation of racial/ethnic minorities within the criminal justice system relative to their population percentage, a phenomenon termed disproportionate minority contact, has been examined within general adult and adolescent offender populations; yet few studies have tested whether this phenomenon extends to juvenile sexual offenders (JSOs). In addition, few studies have examined whether offender race/ethnicity influences registration and notification requirements, which JSOs are subject to in some U.S. states. The present study assessed for disproportionate minority contact among general delinquent offenders and JSOs, meaning it aimed to test whether the criminal justice system treats those accused of sexual and non-sexual offenses differently by racial/ethnic group. Furthermore, racial/ethnic group differences in risk, legal classification, and sexual offending were examined for JSOs. Results indicated disproportionate minority contact was present among juveniles with non-sexual offenses and JSOs in Alabama. In addition, offense category and risk scores differed between African American and European American JSOs. Finally, registration classifications were predicted by offending characteristics, but not race/ethnicity. Implications and future directions regarding disproportionate minority contact among JSOs and social and legal policy affecting JSOs are discussed.

  3. Individual Differences in Reward and Somatosensory-Motor Brain Regions Correlate with Adiposity in Adolescents.

    PubMed

    Rapuano, Kristina M; Huckins, Jeremy F; Sargent, James D; Heatherton, Todd F; Kelley, William M

    2016-06-01

    The prevalence of adolescent obesity has increased dramatically over the past three decades, and research has documented that the number of television shows viewed during childhood is associated with greater risk for obesity. In particular, considerable evidence suggests that exposure to food marketing promotes eating habits that contribute to obesity. The present study examines neural responses to dynamic food commercials in overweight and healthy-weight adolescents using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Compared with non-food commercials, food commercials more strongly engaged regions involved in attention and saliency detection (occipital lobe, precuneus, superior temporal gyri, and right insula) and in processing rewards [left and right nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and left orbitofrontal cortex (OFC)]. Activity in the left OFC and right insula further correlated with subjects' percent body fat at the time of the scan. Interestingly, this reward-related activity to food commercials was accompanied by the additional recruitment of mouth-specific somatosensory-motor cortices-a finding that suggests the intriguing possibility that higher-adiposity adolescents mentally simulate eating behaviors and offers a potential neural mechanism for the formation and reinforcement of unhealthy eating habits that may hamper an individual's ability lose weight later in life.

  4. Morphometric analysis of feedforward pathways from the primary somatosensory area (S1) of rats

    PubMed Central

    de Sá, A.L.; Bahia, C.P.; Correa, V.C.; Dias, I.A.; Batista, C.; Gomes-Leal, W.; Pinho, A.L.S.; Houzel, J.C.; Picanço-Diniz, C.W.; Pereira, A.

    2016-01-01

    We used biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) to anterogradely label individual axons projecting from primary somatosensory cortex (S1) to four different cortical areas in rats. A major goal was to determine whether axon terminals in these target areas shared morphometric similarities based on the shape of individual terminal arbors and the density of two bouton types: en passant (Bp) and terminaux (Bt). Evidence from tridimensional reconstructions of isolated axon terminal fragments (n=111) did support a degree of morphological heterogeneity establishing two broad groups of axon terminals. Morphological parameters associated with the complexity of terminal arbors and the proportion of beaded Bp vs stalked Bt were found to differ significantly in these two groups following a discriminant function statistical analysis across axon fragments. Interestingly, both groups occurred in all four target areas, possibly consistent with a commonality of presynaptic processing of tactile information. These findings lay the ground for additional work aiming to investigate synaptic function at the single bouton level and see how this might be associated with emerging properties in postsynaptic targets. PMID:27191604

  5. Thalamocortical Connections Drive Intracortical Activation of Functional Columns in the Mislaminated Reeler Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Wagener, Robin J; Witte, Mirko; Guy, Julien; Mingo-Moreno, Nieves; Kügler, Sebastian; Staiger, Jochen F

    2016-02-01

    Neuronal wiring is key to proper neural information processing. Tactile information from the rodent's whiskers reaches the cortex via distinct anatomical pathways. The lemniscal pathway relays whisking and touch information from the ventral posteromedial thalamic nucleus to layer IV of the primary somatosensory "barrel" cortex. The disorganized neocortex of the reeler mouse is a model system that should severely compromise the ingrowth of thalamocortical axons (TCAs) into the cortex. Moreover, it could disrupt intracortical wiring. We found that neuronal intermingling within the reeler barrel cortex substantially exceeded previous descriptions, leading to the loss of layers. However, viral tracing revealed that TCAs still specifically targeted transgenically labeled spiny layer IV neurons. Slice electrophysiology and optogenetics proved that these connections represent functional synapses. In addition, we assessed intracortical activation via immediate-early-gene expression resulting from a behavioral exploration task. The cellular composition of activated neuronal ensembles suggests extensive similarities in intracolumnar information processing in the wild-type and reeler brains. We conclude that extensive ectopic positioning of neuronal partners can be compensated for by cell-autonomous mechanisms that allow for the establishment of proper connectivity. Thus, genetic neuronal fate seems to be of greater importance for correct cortical wiring than radial neuronal position.

  6. Optical Coherence Tomography angiography reveals laminar microvascular hemodynamics in the rat somatosensory cortex during activation.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Vivek J; Radhakrishnan, Harsha

    2014-11-15

    The BOLD (blood-oxygen-level dependent) fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) signal is shaped, in part, by changes in red blood cell (RBC) content and flow across vascular compartments over time. These complex dynamics have been challenging to characterize directly due to a lack of appropriate imaging modalities. In this study, making use of infrared light scattering from RBCs, depth-resolved Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) angiography was applied to image laminar functional hyperemia in the rat somatosensory cortex. After defining and validating depth-specific metrics for changes in RBC content and speed, laminar hemodynamic responses in microvasculature up to cortical depths of >1mm were measured during a forepaw stimulus. The results provide a comprehensive picture of when and where changes in RBC content and speed occur during and immediately following cortical activation. In summary, the earliest and largest microvascular RBC content changes occurred in the middle cortical layers, while post-stimulus undershoots were most prominent superficially. These laminar variations in positive and negative responses paralleled known distributions of excitatory and inhibitory synapses, suggesting neuronal underpinnings. Additionally, the RBC speed response consistently returned to baseline more promptly than RBC content after the stimulus across cortical layers, supporting a "flow-volume mismatch" of hemodynamic origin.

  7. Hemisection spinal cord injury in rat: The value of intraoperative somatosensory evoked potential monitoring

    PubMed Central

    Cloud, Beth A.; Ball, Bret G.; Chen, Bingkun; Knight, Andrew M.; Hakim, Jeffrey S.; Ortiz, Ana M.; Windebank, Anthony J.

    2012-01-01

    Techniques used to produce partial spinal cord injuries in animal models have the potential for creating variability in lesions. The amount of tissue affected may influence the functional outcomes assessed in the animals. The recording of somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs) may be a valuable tool for assessing the extent of lesion applied in animal models of traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). Intraoperative tibial SSEP recordings were assessed during surgically induced lateral thoracic hemisection SCI in Sprague-Dawley rats. The transmission of SSEPs, or lack thereof, was determined and compared against the integrity of the dosal funiculi on each side of the spinal cord upon histological sectioning. An association was found between the presence of an SSEP signal and presence of intact dorsal funiculus tissue. The relative risk is 4.50 (95% confidence interval: 1.83 to 11.08) for having an intact dorsal funiculus when the ipsilateral SSEP was present compared to when it was absent. Additionally, the amount of spared spinal cord tissue correlates with final functional assessments at nine weeks post injury: BBB (linear regression, R2 = 0.618, p <0.001) and treadmill test (linear regression, R2 = 0.369, p = 0.016). Therefore, we propose intraoperative SSEP monitoring as a valuable tool to assess extent of lesion and reduce variability between animals in experimental studies of SCI. PMID:22960163

  8. Human Umbilical Cord Blood Cells Restore Brain Damage Induced Changes in Rat Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Geißler, Maren; Dinse, Hubert R.; Neuhoff, Sandra; Kreikemeier, Klaus; Meier, Carola

    2011-01-01

    Intraperitoneal transplantation of human umbilical cord blood (hUCB) cells has been shown to reduce sensorimotor deficits after hypoxic ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats. However, the neuronal correlate of the functional recovery and how such a treatment enforces plastic remodelling at the level of neural processing remains elusive. Here we show by in-vivo recordings that hUCB cells have the capability of ameliorating the injury-related impairment of neural processing in primary somatosensory cortex. Intact cortical processing depends on a delicate balance of inhibitory and excitatory transmission, which is disturbed after injury. We found that the dimensions of cortical maps and receptive fields, which are significantly altered after injury, were largely restored. Additionally, the lesion induced hyperexcitability was no longer observed in hUCB treated animals as indicated by a paired-pulse behaviour resembling that observed in control animals. The beneficial effects on cortical processing were reflected in an almost complete recovery of sensorimotor behaviour. Our results demonstrate that hUCB cells reinstall the way central neurons process information by normalizing inhibitory and excitatory processes. We propose that the intermediate level of cortical processing will become relevant as a new stage to investigate efficacy and mechanisms of cell therapy in the treatment of brain injury. PMID:21673795

  9. Subplate neurons promote spindle bursts and thalamocortical patterning in the neonatal rat somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Tolner, Else A.; Sheikh, Aminah; Yukin, Alexey Y.; Kaila, Kai; Kanold, Patrick

    2012-01-01

    Patterned neuronal activity such as spindle bursts in the neonatal cortex is likely to promote the maturation of cortical synapses and neuronal circuits. Previous work on cats has shown that removal of subplate neurons, a transient neuronal population in the immature cortex, prevents the functional maturation of thalamocortical and intracortical connectivity. Here we studied the effect of subplate removal in the neonatal rat somatosensory cortex (S1). Using intracortical EEG we show that after selective removal of subplate neurons in the limb region of S1, endogenous and sensory evoked spindle burst activity is largely abolished. Consistent with the reduced in vivo activity in the S1 limb region, we find by in vitro recordings that thalamocortical inputs to layer 4 neurons are weak. In addition, we find that removal of subplate neurons in the S1 barrel region prevents the development of the characteristic histological barrel-like appearance. Thus, subplate neurons are crucially involved in the generation of particular types of early network activity in the neonatal cortex, which are an important feature of cortical development. The altered EEG pattern following subplate damage could be applicable in the neurological assessment of human neonates. PMID:22238105

  10. Hemisection spinal cord injury in rat: the value of intraoperative somatosensory evoked potential monitoring.

    PubMed

    Cloud, Beth A; Ball, Bret G; Chen, Bingkun K; Knight, Andrew M; Hakim, Jeffrey S; Ortiz, Ana M; Windebank, Anthony J

    2012-11-15

    Techniques used to produce partial spinal cord injuries in animal models have the potential for creating variability in lesions. The amount of tissue affected may influence the functional outcomes assessed in the animals. The recording of somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs) may be a valuable tool for assessing the extent of lesion applied in animal models of traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). Intraoperative tibial SSEP recordings were assessed during surgically induced lateral thoracic hemisection SCI in Sprague-Dawley rats. The transmission of SSEPs, or lack thereof, was determined and compared against the integrity of the dorsal funiculi on each side of the spinal cord upon histological sectioning. An association was found between the presence of an SSEP signal and presence of intact dorsal funiculus tissue. The relative risk is 4.50 (95% confidence interval: 1.83-11.08) for having an intact dorsal funiculus when the ipsilateral SSEP was present compared to when it was absent. Additionally, the amount of spared spinal cord tissue correlates with final functional assessments at nine weeks post injury: BBB (linear regression, R²=0.618, p<0.001) and treadmill test (linear regression, R²=0.369, p=0.016). Therefore, we propose intraoperative SSEP monitoring as a valuable tool to assess extent of lesion and reduce variability between animals in experimental studies of SCI.

  11. Human umbilical cord blood cells restore brain damage induced changes in rat somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Geissler, Maren; Dinse, Hubert R; Neuhoff, Sandra; Kreikemeier, Klaus; Meier, Carola

    2011-01-01

    Intraperitoneal transplantation of human umbilical cord blood (hUCB) cells has been shown to reduce sensorimotor deficits after hypoxic ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats. However, the neuronal correlate of the functional recovery and how such a treatment enforces plastic remodelling at the level of neural processing remains elusive. Here we show by in-vivo recordings that hUCB cells have the capability of ameliorating the injury-related impairment of neural processing in primary somatosensory cortex. Intact cortical processing depends on a delicate balance of inhibitory and excitatory transmission, which is disturbed after injury. We found that the dimensions of cortical maps and receptive fields, which are significantly altered after injury, were largely restored. Additionally, the lesion induced hyperexcitability was no longer observed in hUCB treated animals as indicated by a paired-pulse behaviour resembling that observed in control animals. The beneficial effects on cortical processing were reflected in an almost complete recovery of sensorimotor behaviour. Our results demonstrate that hUCB cells reinstall the way central neurons process information by normalizing inhibitory and excitatory processes. We propose that the intermediate level of cortical processing will become relevant as a new stage to investigate efficacy and mechanisms of cell therapy in the treatment of brain injury.

  12. Motor Skill Acquisition and Retention after Somatosensory Electrical Stimulation in Healthy Humans.

    PubMed

    Veldman, Menno P; Zijdewind, Inge; Maffiuletti, Nicola A; Hortobágyi, Tibor

    2016-01-01

    Somatosensory electrical stimulation (SES) can increase motor performance, presumably through a modulation of neuronal excitability. Because the effects of SES can outlast the period of stimulation, we examined the possibility that SES can also enhance the retention of motor performance, motor memory consolidation, after 24 h (Day 2) and 7 days (Day 7), that such effects would be scaled by SES duration, and that such effects were mediated by changes in aspects of corticospinal excitability, short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI), and intracortical facilitation (ICF). Healthy young adults (n = 40) received either 20 (SES-20), 40 (SES-40), or 60 min (SES-60) of real SES, or sham SES (SES-0). The results showed SES-20 increased visuomotor performance on Day 2 (15%) and Day 7 (17%) and SES-60 increased visuomotor performance on Day 7 (11%; all p < 0.05) compared with SES-0. Specific responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) increased immediately after SES (p < 0.05) but not on Days 2 and 7. In addition, changes in behavioral and neurophysiological parameters did not correlate, suggesting that paths and structures other than the ones TMS can assay must be (also) involved in the increases in visuomotor performance after SES. As examined in the present study, low-intensity peripheral electrical nerve stimulation did not have acute effects on healthy adults' visuomotor performance but SES had delayed effects in the form of enhanced motor memory consolidation that were not scaled by the duration of SES.

  13. Integrated approach for studying adaptation mechanisms in the human somatosensory cortical network.

    PubMed

    Venkatesan, Lalit; Barlow, Steven M; Popescu, Mihai; Popescu, Anda

    2014-11-01

    Magnetoencephalography and independent component analysis (ICA) was utilized to study and characterize neural adaptation in the somatosensory cortical network. Repetitive punctate tactile stimuli were applied unilaterally to the dominant hand and face using a custom-built pneumatic stimulator called the TAC-Cell. ICA-based source estimation from the evoked neuromagnetic responses indicated cortical activity in the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI) for face stimulation, while hand stimulation resulted in robust contralateral SI and posterior parietal cortex (PPC) activation. Activity was also observed in the secondary somatosensory cortical area (SII) with reduced amplitude and higher variability across subjects. There was a significant difference in adaptation rate between SI and higher-order somatosensory cortices for hand stimulation. Adaptation was significantly dependent on stimulus frequency and pulse index within the stimulus train for both hand and face stimulation. The peak latency of the activity was significantly dependent on stimulation site (hand vs. face) and cortical area (SI vs. PPC). The difference in the peak latency of activity in SI and PPC is presumed to reflect a hierarchical serial-processing mechanism in the somatosensory cortex.

  14. Sensory gating, inhibition control and gamma oscillations in the human somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chia-Hsiung; Chan, Pei-Ying S; Niddam, David M; Tsai, Shang-Yueh; Hsu, Shih-Chieh; Liu, Chia-Yih

    2016-02-04

    Inhibiting the responses to irrelevant stimuli is an essential component of human cognitive function. Pre-attentive auditory sensory gating (SG), an attenuated neural activation to the second identical stimulus, has been found to be related to the performance of higher-hierarchical brain function. However, it remains unclear whether other cortical regions, such as somatosensory cortex, also possess similar characteristics, or if such a relationship is modality-specific. This study used magnetoencephalography to record neuromagnetic responses to paired-pulse electrical stimulation to median nerve in 22 healthy participants. Somatosensory SG ratio and cortical brain oscillations were obtained and compared with the behavioral performance of inhibition control, as evaluated by somatosensory and auditory Go-Nogo tasks. The results showed that somatosensory P35m SG ratio correlated with behavioral performance of inhibition control. Such relationship was also established in relation to the auditory Go-Nogo task. Finally, a higher frequency value of evoked gamma oscillations was found to relate to a better somatosensory SG ability. In conclusion, our data provided an empirical link between automatic cortical inhibition and behavioral performance of attentive inhibition control. This study invites further research on the relationships among gamma oscillations, neurophysiological indices, and behavioral performance in clinical populations in terms of SG or cortical inhibition.

  15. Regularity of approaching visual stimuli influences spatial expectations for subsequent somatosensory stimuli.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Tsukasa; Katayama, Jun'ichi

    2017-03-07

    This study examines how the regularity of visual stimuli approaching the body influences spatial expectations of subsequent somatosensory stimuli by recording event-related brain potentials (ERPs) during a simple reaction time (RT) task involving responses to somatosensory stimuli. Twenty-one participants were instructed to put their arms on a desk, and three LEDs were placed equidistantly between their arms. Electrical stimuli were presented with a high probability (80%) of being applied to one wrist and a low probability (20%) of being applied to the opposite wrist. One trial was composed of three visual stimuli followed by one electrical stimulus. In the regular approach condition, LEDs flashed sequentially toward the wrist with the high-probability somatosensory stimulus. In the irregular approach condition, the first and second visual stimuli were presented randomly, but the third visual stimulus was invariably presented near the wrist with the high-probability stimulus. In both conditions, RTs for low-probability stimuli were slower than those for high-probability stimuli, and the low-probability stimuli elicited larger P3 amplitudes than the high-probability stimuli. Furthermore, the largest P3 amplitude was elicited by low-probability stimuli under the regular approach condition, whereas the amplitudes of contingent negative variation (CNV) elicited before the presentation of the somatosensory stimuli did not differ between conditions. These results indicate that regularity of visual stimuli approaching the body facilitates an automatic spatial expectation for subsequent somatosensory stimuli.

  16. Reliability of Visual and Somatosensory Feedback in Skilled Movement: The Role of the Cerebellum.

    PubMed

    Mizelle, J C; Oparah, Alexis; Wheaton, Lewis A

    2016-01-01

    The integration of vision and somatosensation is required to allow for accurate motor behavior. While both sensory systems contribute to an understanding of the state of the body through continuous updating and estimation, how the brain processes unreliable sensory information remains to be fully understood in the context of complex action. Using functional brain imaging, we sought to understand the role of the cerebellum in weighting visual and somatosensory feedback by selectively reducing the reliability of each sense individually during a tool use task. We broadly hypothesized upregulated activation of the sensorimotor and cerebellar areas during movement with reduced visual reliability, and upregulated activation of occipital brain areas during movement with reduced somatosensory reliability. As specifically compared to reduced somatosensory reliability, we expected greater activations of ipsilateral sensorimotor cerebellum for intact visual and somatosensory reliability. Further, we expected that ipsilateral posterior cognitive cerebellum would be affected with reduced visual reliability. We observed that reduced visual reliability results in a trend towards the relative consolidation of sensorimotor activation and an expansion of cerebellar activation. In contrast, reduced somatosensory reliability was characterized by the absence of cerebellar activations and a trend towards the increase of right frontal, left parietofrontal activation, and temporo-occipital areas. Our findings highlight the role of the cerebellum for specific aspects of skillful motor performance. This has relevance to understanding basic aspects of brain functions underlying sensorimotor integration, and provides a greater understanding of cerebellar function in tool use motor control.

  17. fMRI investigation of unexpected somatosensory feedback perturbation during speech.

    PubMed

    Golfinopoulos, Elisa; Tourville, Jason A; Bohland, Jason W; Ghosh, Satrajit S; Nieto-Castanon, Alfonso; Guenther, Frank H

    2011-04-01

    Somatosensory feedback plays a critical role in the coordination of articulator movements for speech production. In response to unexpected resistance to lip or jaw movements during speech, fluent speakers can use the difference between the somatosensory expectations of a speech sound and the actual somatosensory feedback to adjust the trajectories of functionally relevant but unimpeded articulators. In an effort to investigate the neural substrates underlying the somatosensory feedback control of speech, we used an event-related sparse sampling functional magnetic resonance imaging paradigm and a novel pneumatic device that unpredictably blocked subjects' jaw movements. In comparison to speech, perturbed speech, in which jaw perturbation prompted the generation of compensatory speech motor commands, demonstrated increased effects in bilateral ventral motor cortex, right-lateralized anterior supramarginal gyrus, inferior frontal gyrus pars triangularis and ventral premotor cortex, and bilateral inferior posterior cerebellum (lobule VIII). Structural equation modeling revealed a significant increased influence from left anterior supramarginal gyrus to right anterior supramarginal gyrus and from left anterior supramarginal gyrus to right ventral premotor cortex as well as a significant increased reciprocal influence between right ventral premotor cortex and right ventral motor cortex and right anterior supramarginal gyrus and right inferior frontal gyrus pars triangularis for perturbed speech relative to speech. These results suggest that bilateral anterior supramarginal gyrus, right inferior frontal gyrus pars triangularis, right ventral premotor and motor cortices are functionally coupled and influence speech motor output when somatosensory feedback is unexpectedly perturbed during speech production.

  18. Sensory gating, inhibition control and gamma oscillations in the human somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Chia-Hsiung; Chan, Pei-Ying S.; Niddam, David M.; Tsai, Shang-Yueh; Hsu, Shih-Chieh; Liu, Chia-Yih

    2016-01-01

    Inhibiting the responses to irrelevant stimuli is an essential component of human cognitive function. Pre-attentive auditory sensory gating (SG), an attenuated neural activation to the second identical stimulus, has been found to be related to the performance of higher-hierarchical brain function. However, it remains unclear whether other cortical regions, such as somatosensory cortex, also possess similar characteristics, or if such a relationship is modality-specific. This study used magnetoencephalography to record neuromagnetic responses to paired-pulse electrical stimulation to median nerve in 22 healthy participants. Somatosensory SG ratio and cortical brain oscillations were obtained and compared with the behavioral performance of inhibition control, as evaluated by somatosensory and auditory Go-Nogo tasks. The results showed that somatosensory P35m SG ratio correlated with behavioral performance of inhibition control. Such relationship was also established in relation to the auditory Go-Nogo task. Finally, a higher frequency value of evoked gamma oscillations was found to relate to a better somatosensory SG ability. In conclusion, our data provided an empirical link between automatic cortical inhibition and behavioral performance of attentive inhibition control. This study invites further research on the relationships among gamma oscillations, neurophysiological indices, and behavioral performance in clinical populations in terms of SG or cortical inhibition. PMID:26843358

  19. Architectonic mapping of somatosensory areas involved in skilled forelimb movements and tool use.

    PubMed

    Mayer, Andrei; Nascimento-Silva, Márcio L; Keher, Natalia B; Bittencourt-Navarrete, Ruben Ernesto; Gattass, Ricardo; Franca, João G

    2016-05-01

    Cebus monkeys stand out from other New World monkeys by their ability to perform fine hand movements, and by their spontaneous use of tools in the wild. Those behaviors rely on the integration of somatosensory information, which occurs in different areas of the parietal cortex. Although a few studies have examined and parceled the somatosensory areas of the cebus monkey, mainly using electrophysiological criteria, very little is known about its anatomical organization. In this study we used SMI-32 immunohistochemistry, myelin, and Nissl stains to characterize the architecture of the parietal cortical areas of cebus monkeys. Seven cortical areas were identified between the precentral gyrus and the anterior bank of the intraparietal sulcus. Except for areas 3a and 3b, distinction between different somatosensory areas was more evident in myelin-stained sections and SMI-32 immunohistochemistry than in Nissl stain, especially for area 2 and subdivisions of area 5. Our results show that cebus monkeys have a relatively complex somatosensory cortex, similar to that of macaques and humans. This suggests that, during primate evolution, the emergence of new somatosensory areas underpinned complex manual behaviors in most Old World simians and in the New World cebus monkey. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:1399-1423, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Neurodegeneration in the somatosensory cortex after experimental diffuse brain injury

    PubMed Central

    Lisembee, Amanda M.

    2012-01-01

    Disruption and consequent reorganization of central nervous system circuits following traumatic brain injury may manifest as functional deficits and behavioral morbidities. We previously reported axotomy and neuronal atrophy in the ventral basal (VB) complex of the thalamus, without gross degeneration after experimental diffuse brain injury in adult rats. Pathology in VB coincided with the development of late-onset aberrant behavioral responses to whisker stimulation, which lead to the current hypothesis that neurodegeneration after experimental diffuse brain injury includes the primary somatosensory barrel cortex (S1BF), which receives projection of VB neurons and mediates whisker somatosensation. Over 28 days after midline fluid percussion brain injury, argyrophilic reaction product within superficial layers and layer IV barrels at 1 day progresses into the cortex to subcortical white matter by 7 days, and selective inter-barrel septa and subcortical white matter labeling at 28 days. Cellular consequences were determined by stereological estimates of neuronal nuclear volumes and number. In all cortical layers, neuronal nuclear volumes significantly atrophied by 42–49% at 7 days compared to sham, which marginally attenuated by 28 days. Concomitantly, the number of healthy neurons was reduced by 34–45% at 7 days compared to sham, returning to control levels by 28 days. Progressive neurodegeneration, including argyrophilic reaction product and neuronal nuclear atrophy, indicates injury-induced damage and reorganization of the reciprocal thalamocortical projections that mediate whisker somatosensation. The rodent whisker barrel circuit may serve as a discrete model to evaluate the causes and consequences of circuit reorganization after diffuse brain injury. PMID:21597967

  1. Somatosensory-evoked blink response: investigation of the physiological mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Miwa, H; Nohara, C; Hotta, M; Shimo, Y; Amemiya, K

    1998-02-01

    The somatosensory-evoked blink response (SBR) is a newly identified blink reflex elicited by electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves. The present study was performed to investigate the physiological mechanism underlying the SBR elicited by median nerve stimulation in normal subjects. The peripheral afferents responsible for the SBR included low-threshold cutaneous fibres. In the SBR-positive subjects, the late (R2) component of the blink reflex elicited by supraorbital nerve stimulation and the SBR facilitated each other when both responses were induced at the same time, but they each caused long-lasting inhibition in the other when one stimulus was given as a conditioning stimulus. The extent of inhibition was correlated with the size of the preceding SBR. In the SBR-negative subjects, simultaneous inhibition of R2 was observed when median nerve stimulation was applied as a conditioning stimulus. Brainstem excitability, as evaluated by blink-reflex recovery studies, did not differ between SBR-positive and SBR-negative subjects. Therefore, based on anatomical and physiological findings, it appears that the reflex pathways of the SBR and R2 converge within the brainstem and compete with each other, presumably by presynaptic inhibition at the premotor level, before entering the common blink-reflex pathway. The influence of median nerve stimulation upon tonic contraction of the orbicularis oculi muscle was studied to detect the latent SBR. There was not only a facilitatory period corresponding to the SBR but also an active inhibitory period (exteroceptive suppression), suggesting that the mechanism generating the SBR is not only influenced by blink-reflex volleys but also by active exteroceptive suppression. Thus, the SBR may appear as a result of integration of facilitatory and inhibitory mechanisms within the brainstem.

  2. Using constellation pharmacology to define comprehensively a somatosensory neuronal subclass.

    PubMed

    Teichert, Russell W; Memon, Tosifa; Aman, Joseph W; Olivera, Baldomero M

    2014-02-11

    Change is intrinsic to nervous systems; change is required for learning and conditioning and occurs with disease progression, normal development, and aging. To better understand mammalian nervous systems and effectively treat nervous-system disorders, it is essential to track changes in relevant individual neurons. A critical challenge is to identify and characterize the specific cell types involved and the molecular-level changes that occur in each. Using an experimental strategy called constellation pharmacology, we demonstrate that we can define a specific somatosensory neuronal subclass, cold thermosensors, across different species and track changes in these neurons as a function of development. Cold thermosensors are uniformly responsive to menthol and innocuous cool temperature (17 °C), indicating that they express TRPM8 channels. A subset of cold thermosensors expressed α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) but not other nAChR subtypes. Differences in temperature threshold of cold thermosensors correlated with functional expression of voltage-gated K channels Kv1.1/1.2: Relatively higher expression of KV1.1/1.2 channels resulted in a higher threshold response to cold temperature. Other signaling components varied during development and between species. In cold thermosensors of neonatal mice and rats, ATP receptors were functionally expressed, but the expression disappeared with development. This developmental change occurred earlier in low-threshold than high-threshold cold thermosensors. Most rat cold thermosensors expressed TRPA1 channels, whereas mouse cold thermosensors did not. The broad implications of this study are that it is now feasible to track changes in receptor and ion-channel expression in individual neuronal subclasses as a function of development, learning, disease, or aging.

  3. EDITORIAL: Close contact Close contact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demming, Anna

    2010-07-01

    The development of scanning probe techniques, such as scanning tunnelling microscopy [1], has often been touted as the catalyst for the surge in activity and progress in nanoscale science and technology. Images of nanoscale structural detail have served as an invaluable investigative resource and continue to fascinate with the fantastical reality of an intricate nether world existing all around us, but hidden from view of the naked eye by a disparity in scale. As is so often the case, the invention of the scanning tunnelling microscope heralded far more than just a useful new apparatus, it demonstrated the scope for exploiting the subtleties of electronic contact. The shrinking of electronic devices has been a driving force for research into molecular electronics, in which an understanding of the nature of electronic contact at junctions is crucial. In response, the number of experimental techniques in molecular electronics has increased rapidly in recent years. Scanning tunnelling microscopes have been used to study electron transfer through molecular films on a conducting substrate, and the need to monitor the contact force of scanning tunnelling electrodes led to the use of atomic force microscopy probes coated in a conducting layer as studied by Cui and colleagues in Arizona [2]. In this issue a collaboration of researchers at Delft University and Leiden University in the Netherlands report a new device architecture for the independent mechanical and electrostatic tuning of nanoscale charge transport, which will enable thorough studies of molecular transport in the future [3]. Scanning probes can also be used to pattern surfaces, such as through spatially-localized Suzuki and Heck reactions in chemical scanning probe lithography. Mechanistic aspects of spatially confined Suzuki and Heck chemistry are also reported in this issue by researchers in Oxford [4]. All these developments in molecular electronics fabrication and characterization provide alternative

  4. [Tactile agnosia and dysfunction of the primary somatosensory area. Data of the study by somatosensory evoked potentials in patients with deficits of tactile object recognition].

    PubMed

    Mauguière, F; Isnard, J

    1995-01-01

    The question as to whether a failure of recognition unrelated to impaired sensory processing or to disorder of naming can occur in the somato-sensory modality has been eagerly debated in the french neurology. Taking as an argument the fact that he had never observed a tactile agnosia in the absence of subtle sensory deficits Dejerine denied the localizing value of tactile agnosia (or asterognosis). Conversely Delay, 20 years later, identified tactile performances such as discrimination of texture and shapes, which he considered as a specific neocortical function, that were lost in parietal syndromes with astereognosis and preserved elementary sensations. He also coined the term "tactile asymbolia" to qualify the patients with astereognosis in whom these performances are preserved. When referring to the definition of agnosias only "tactile asymbolia" should be considered as a "true" tactile agnosia. The recording of early somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) now offers the possibility of assessing non invasively the function of the primary somatosensory cortex (in particular area 3b). We have recorded SEPs to median nerve or finger stimulation in 309 subjects with a focal hemispheric lesion presenting with a somatosensory deficit of any type. We could confirm that asterognosis referable to impaired discrimination of textures and/or shapes in the absence of impaired elementary sensation is quite rare since it was observed in only 12 of our patients (3.9%). Moreover early cortical SEPs reflecting the activity of the primary somatosensory area (N20 or/and P27) were clearly abnormal in all of them. A single patient of this group of 12 could be considered as a case of tactile asymbolia but his early cortical SEPs were abnormal. The only condition combining a failure of tactile recognition of objects with normal early SEPs is represented by the "tactile anomia" observed in callosal dysconnexions. Thus, in our patients unable to identify objects by palpation in spite of

  5. Evaluation of somatosensory cortical differences between flutter and vibration tactile stimuli.

    PubMed

    Han, Sang Woo; Chung, Yoon Gi; Kim, Hyung-Sik; Chung, Soon-Cheol; Park, Jang-Yeon; Kim, Sung-Phil

    2013-01-01

    In parallel with advances in haptic-based mobile computing systems, understanding of the neural processing of vibrotactile information becomes of great importance. In the human nervous system, two types of vibrotactile information, flutter and vibration, are delivered from mechanoreceptors to the somatosensory cortex through segregated neural afferents. To investigate how the somatosensory cortex differentiates flutter and vibration, we analyzed the cortical responses to vibrotactile stimuli with a wide range of frequencies. Specifically, we examined whether cortical activity changed most around 50 Hz, which is known as a boundary between flutter and vibration. We explored various measures to evaluate separability of cortical activity across frequency and found that the hypothesis margin method resulted in the greatest separability between flutter and vibration. This result suggests that flutter and vibration information may be processed by different neural processes in the somatosensory cortex.

  6. A mutant with bilateral whisker to barrel inputs unveils somatosensory mapping rules in the cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Renier, Nicolas; Dominici, Chloe; Erzurumlu, Reha S; Kratochwil, Claudius F; Rijli, Filippo M; Gaspar, Patricia; Chédotal, Alain

    2017-03-28

    In mammals, tactile information is mapped topographically onto the contralateral side of the brain in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Here we describe that in Robo3 mouse mutants a sizeable fraction of the trigemino-thalamic inputs project ipsilaterally rather than contralaterally. The resulting mixture of crossed and uncrossed sensory inputs creates bilateral whisker maps in the thalamus and cortex. Surprisingly, these maps are segregated resulting in a duplication of whisker representations and a doubling of the number of barrels without changes of the S1 size. Sensory deprivation shows competitive interactions between the ipsi/contralateral whisker maps. This study reveals that the somatosensory system can form a somatotopic map to integrate bilateral sensory inputs but organizes the maps in a different way than in the visual, or auditory systems. Therefore, while the molecular pre-patterning constrains their orientation and position, the preservation of the continuity of inputs defines the layout of the somatosensory maps.

  7. The Influence of Eye Closure on Somatosensory Discrimination: A Trade-off Between Simple Perception and Discrimination.

    PubMed

    Götz, Theresa; Hanke, David; Huonker, Ralph; Weiss, Thomas; Klingner, Carsten; Brodoehl, Stefan; Baumbach, Philipp; Witte, Otto W

    2017-04-12

    We often close our eyes to improve perception. Recent results have shown a decrease of perception thresholds accompanied by an increase in somatosensory activity after eye closure. However, does somatosensory spatial discrimination also benefit from eye closure? We previously showed that spatial discrimination is accompanied by a reduction of somatosensory activity. Using magnetoencephalography, we analyzed the magnitude of primary somatosensory (somatosensory P50m) and primary auditory activity (auditory P50m) during a one-back discrimination task in 21 healthy volunteers. In complete darkness, participants were requested to pay attention to either the somatosensory or auditory stimulation and asked to open or close their eyes every 6.5 min. Somatosensory P50m was reduced during a task requiring the distinguishing of stimulus location changes at the distal phalanges of different fingers. The somatosensory P50m was further reduced and detection performance was higher during eyes open. A similar reduction was found for the auditory P50m during a task requiring the distinguishing of changing tones. The function of eye closure is more than controlling visual input. It might be advantageous for perception because it is an effective way to reduce interference from other modalities, but disadvantageous for spatial discrimination because it requires at least one top-down processing stage.

  8. Lack of activation of human secondary somatosensory cortex in Unverricht-Lundborg type of progressive myoclonus epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Forss, N; Silén, T; Karjalainen, T

    2001-01-01

    Previous electroencephalographic and magnetoencephalographic studies have demonstrated giant early somatosensory cortical responses in patients with cortical myoclonus. We applied whole-scalp magnetoencephalography to study activation sequences of the somatosensory cortical network in 7 patients with Unverricht-Lundborg-type progressive myoclonus epilepsy diagnostically verified by DNA analysis. Responses to electric median nerve stimuli displayed 30-msec peaks at the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex that were four times stronger in patients than in control subjects. The amplitudes of 20-msec responses did not significantly differ between the groups. In contrast to control subjects, 5 patients displayed ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex activity at 48 to 61 msec in response to both left- and right-sided median nerve stimuli. Furthermore, their secondary somatosensory cortex was not significantly activated. These abnormalities indicate altered responsiveness of the entire somatosensory cortical network outside the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex in patients with Unverricht-Lundborg-type progressive myoclonus epilepsy. The deficient activation of the secondary somatosensory cortex in Unverricht-Lundborg patients may reflect disturbed sensorimotor integration, probably related to impaired movement coordination.

  9. Short-Latency Median-Nerve Somatosensory-Evoked Potentials and Induced Gamma-Oscillations in Humans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fukuda, Miho; Nishida, Masaaki; Juhasz, Csaba; Muzik, Otto; Sood, Sandeep; Chugani, Harry T.; Asano, Eishi

    2008-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that cortical gamma-oscillations are tightly linked with various forms of physiological activity. In the present study, the dynamic changes of intracranially recorded median-nerve somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) and somatosensory-induced gamma-oscillations were animated on a three-dimensional MR image, and the…

  10. Effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on the somatosensory cortex during prism adaptation.

    PubMed

    Yoon, Hee-Chul; Lee, Kyung-Hyun; Huh, Dong-Chan; Lee, Ji-Hang; Lee, Dong-Hyun

    2014-04-01

    Although the behavioral characteristics and the neural correlates of prism adaptation processes have been studied extensively, the underlying mechanism is yet to be investigated. Recently, somatosensory suppression was heralded as a mechanism for the sensory re-alignment process accompanying the adaptation. Somatosensory suppression should facilitate the re-alignment process in the proprioceptive system. The shift in the proprioceptive system takes place mostly during a concurrent visual feedback (CVF) condition; during a terminal visual feedback (TVF) condition, the visual system experiences significant adaptation (visual shift), so somatosensory suppression should have minimal functional consequences under TVF. To test this hypothesis, a repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) was applied to the primary somatosensory cortex as an artificial somatosensory suppression right after the reaching initiation in CVF and TVF conditions, and changes in adaptation were observed. Because somatosensory suppression is already in effect during CVF, rTMS would cause no significant changes. During TVF with rTMS, however, significantly different patterns of adaptation could be expected when compared to a sham rTMS condition. Young adults (N = 12) participated in 4 sessions (CVF/ TVF, real/sham rTMS); visual proprioceptive, and total shifts were measured. Movement time and curvature of the reaching movement were measured during the adaptation phase. Results showed that while the total shift was unchanged, the proprioceptive shift increased and the visual shift decreased in the TVF condition when rTMS was delivered. However, the total, proprioceptive, and visual shifts were not influenced by rTMS in the CVF condition. Suppression of proprioception induced by the rTMS could be one of the requisites for successful proprioceptive shift during prism adaptation.

  11. Somatosensory response properties of excitatory and inhibitory neurons in rat motor cortex.

    PubMed

    Murray, Peter D; Keller, Asaf

    2011-09-01

    In sensory cortical networks, peripheral inputs differentially activate excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Inhibitory neurons typically have larger responses and broader receptive field tuning compared with excitatory neurons. These differences are thought to underlie the powerful feedforward inhibition that occurs in response to sensory input. In the motor cortex, as in the somatosensory cortex, cutaneous and proprioceptive somatosensory inputs, generated before and during movement, strongly and dynamically modulate the activity of motor neurons involved in a movement and ultimately shape cortical command. Human studies suggest that somatosensory inputs modulate motor cortical activity in a center excitation, surround inhibition manner such that input from the activated muscle excites motor cortical neurons that project to it, whereas somatosensory input from nearby, nonactivated muscles inhibit these neurons. A key prediction of this hypothesis is that inhibitory and excitatory motor cortical neurons respond differently to somatosensory inputs. We tested this prediction with the use of multisite extracellular recordings in anesthetized rats. We found that fast-spiking (presumably inhibitory) neurons respond to tactile and proprioceptive inputs at shorter latencies and larger response magnitudes compared with regular-spiking (presumably excitatory) neurons. In contrast, we found no differences in the receptive field size of these neuronal populations. Strikingly, all fast-spiking neuron pairs analyzed with cross-correlation analysis displayed common excitation, which was significantly more prevalent than common excitation for regular-spiking neuron pairs. These findings suggest that somatosensory inputs preferentially evoke feedforward inhibition in the motor cortex. We suggest that this provides a mechanism for dynamic selection of motor cortical modules during voluntary movements.

  12. Contact dermatitis in military personnel.

    PubMed

    Dever, Tara T; Walters, Michelle; Jacob, Sharon

    2011-01-01

    Military personnel encounter the same allergens and irritants as their civilian counterparts and are just as likely to develop contact dermatitis from common exposures encountered in everyday life. In addition, they face some unique exposures that can be difficult to avoid owing to their occupational duties. Contact dermatitis can be detrimental to a military member's career if he or she is unable to perform core duties or avoid the inciting substances. An uncontrolled contact dermatitis can result in the member's being placed on limited-duty (ie, nondeployable) status, needing a job or rate change, or separation from military service. We present some common causes of contact dermatitis in military personnel worldwide and some novel sources of contact dermatitis in this population that may not be intuitive.

  13. Role of somatosensory and vestibular cues in attenuating visually induced human postural sway

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterka, Robert J.; Benolken, Martha S.

    1993-01-01

    The purpose was to determine the contribution of visual, vestibular, and somatosensory cues to the maintenance of stance in humans. Postural sway was induced by full field, sinusoidal visual surround rotations about an axis at the level of the ankle joints. The influences of vestibular and somatosensory cues were characterized by comparing postural sway in normal and bilateral vestibular absent subjects in conditions that provided either accurate or inaccurate somatosensory orientation information. In normal subjects, the amplitude of visually induced sway reached a saturation level as stimulus amplitude increased. The saturation amplitude decreased with increasing stimulus frequency. No saturation phenomena was observed in subjects with vestibular loss, implying that vestibular cues were responsible for the saturation phenomenon. For visually induced sways below the saturation level, the stimulus-response curves for both normal and vestibular loss subjects were nearly identical implying that (1) normal subjects were not using vestibular information to attenuate their visually induced sway, possibly because sway was below a vestibular-related threshold level, and (2) vestibular loss subjects did not utilize visual cues to a greater extent than normal subjects; that is, a fundamental change in visual system 'gain' was not used to compensate for a vestibular deficit. An unexpected finding was that the amplitude of body sway induced by visual surround motion could be almost three times greater than the amplitude of the visual stimulus in normals and vestibular loss subjects. This occurred in conditions where somatosensory cues were inaccurate and at low stimulus amplitudes. A control system model of visually induced postural sway was developed to explain this finding. For both subject groups, the amplitude of visually induced sway was smaller by a factor of about four in tests where somatosensory cues provided accurate versus inaccurate orientation information. This

  14. Cortical and medullary somatosensory projections to the cochlear nuclear complex in the hedgehog tenrec.

    PubMed

    Wolff, A; Künzle, H

    1997-01-17

    Various tracer substances were injected into the spinal cord, the dorsal column nuclei, the trigeminal nuclear complex and the somatosensory cortex in Madagascan hedgehog tenrecs. With the exception of the cases injected exclusively into the spinal cord all injections gave rise to sparse, but distinct anterograde projections to the cochlear nuclear complex, particularly the granular cell domain within and outside of the dorsal cochlear nucleus. Among these cochlear afferents the projection from the primary somatosensory cortex is the most remarkable because the hedgehog tenrec has one of the lowest encephalisation indices among mammals and a similar cortico-cochlear connection has not been demonstrated so far in other species.

  15. Role of somatosensory and vestibular cues in attenuating visually induced human postural sway

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterka, R. J.; Benolken, M. S.

    1995-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the contribution of visual, vestibular, and somatosensory cues to the maintenance of stance in humans. Postural sway was induced by full-field, sinusoidal visual surround rotations about an axis at the level of the ankle joints. The influences of vestibular and somatosensory cues were characterized by comparing postural sway in normal and bilateral vestibular absent subjects in conditions that provided either accurate or inaccurate somatosensory orientation information. In normal subjects, the amplitude of visually induced sway reached a saturation level as stimulus amplitude increased. The saturation amplitude decreased with increasing stimulus frequency. No saturation phenomena were observed in subjects with vestibular loss, implying that vestibular cues were responsible for the saturation phenomenon. For visually induced sways below the saturation level, the stimulus-response curves for both normal subjects and subjects experiencing vestibular loss were nearly identical, implying (1) that normal subjects were not using vestibular information to attenuate their visually induced sway, possibly because sway was below a vestibular-related threshold level, and (2) that subjects with vestibular loss did not utilize visual cues to a greater extent than normal subjects; that is, a fundamental change in visual system "gain" was not used to compensate for a vestibular deficit. An unexpected finding was that the amplitude of body sway induced by visual surround motion could be almost 3 times greater than the amplitude of the visual stimulus in normal subjects and subjects with vestibular loss. This occurred in conditions where somatosensory cues were inaccurate and at low stimulus amplitudes. A control system model of visually induced postural sway was developed to explain this finding. For both subject groups, the amplitude of visually induced sway was smaller by a factor of about 4 in tests where somatosensory cues provided

  16. Contact modeling for robotics applications

    SciTech Connect

    Lafarge, R.A.; Lewis, C.

    1998-08-01

    At Sandia National Laboratories (SNL), the authors are developing the ability to accurately predict motions for arbitrary numbers of bodies of arbitrary shapes experiencing multiple applied forces and intermittent contacts. In particular, the authors are concerned with the simulation of systems such as part feeders or mobile robots operating in realistic environments. Preliminary investigation of commercial dynamics software packages led them to the conclusion that they could use commercial software to provide everything they needed except for the contact model. They found that ADAMS best fit their needs for a simulation package. To simulate intermittent contacts, they need collision detection software that can efficiently compute the distances between non-convex objects and return the associated witness features. They also require a computationally efficient contact model for rapid simulation of impact, sustained contact under load, and transition to and from contact conditions. This paper provides a technical review of a custom hierarchical distance computation engine developed at Sandia, called the C-Space Toolkit (CSTk). In addition, they describe an efficient contact model using a non-linear damping term developed by SNL and Ohio State. Both the CSTk and the non-linear damper have been incorporated in a simplified two-body testbed code, which is used to investigate how to correctly model the contact using these two utilities. They have incorporated this model into the ADAMS software using the callable function interface. An example that illustrates the capabilities of the 9.02 release of ADAMS with their extensions is provided.

  17. Elastohydrodynamic lubrication of elliptical contacts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hamrock, B. J.

    1981-01-01

    The determination of the minimum film thickness within contact is considered for both fully flooded and starved conditions. A fully flooded conjunction is one in which the film thickness is not significantly changed when the amount of lubricant is increased. The fully flooded results presented show the influence of contact geometry on minimum film thickness as expressed by the ellipticity parameter and the dimensionless speed, load, and materials parameters. These results are applied to materials of high elastic modulus (hard EHL), such as metal, and to materials of low elastic modulus(soft EHL), such as rubber. In addition to the film thickness equations that are developed, contour plots of pressure and film thickness are given which show the essential features of elastohydrodynamically lubricated conjunctions. The crescent shaped region of minimum film thickness, with its side lobes in which the separation between the solids is a minimum, clearly emerges in the numerical solutions. In addition to the 3 presented for the fully flooded results, 15 more cases are used for hard EHL contacts and 18 cases are used for soft EHL contacts in a theoretical study of the influence of lubricant starvation on film thickness and pressure. From the starved results for both hard and soft EHL contacts, a simple and important dimensionless inlet boundary distance is specified. This inlet boundary distance defines whether a fully flooded or a starved condition exists in the contact. Contour plots of pressure and film thickness in and around the contact are shown for conditions.

  18. Control of Somatosensory Cortical Processing by Thalamic Posterior Medial Nucleus: A New Role of Thalamus in Cortical Function

    PubMed Central

    Castejon, Carlos; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-01-01

    Current knowledge of thalamocortical interaction comes mainly from studying lemniscal thalamic systems. Less is known about paralemniscal thalamic nuclei function. In the vibrissae system, the posterior medial nucleus (POm) is the corresponding paralemniscal nucleus. POm neurons project to L1 and L5A of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in the rat brain. It is known that L1 modifies sensory-evoked responses through control of intracortical excitability suggesting that L1 exerts an influence on whisker responses. Therefore, thalamocortical pathways targeting L1 could modulate cortical firing. Here, using a combination of electrophysiology and pharmacology in vivo, we have sought to determine how POm influences cortical processing. In our experiments, single unit recordings performed in urethane-anesthetized rats showed that POm imposes precise control on the magnitude and duration of supra- and infragranular barrel cortex whisker responses. Our findings demonstrated that L1 inputs from POm imposed a time and intensity dependent regulation on cortical sensory processing. Moreover, we found that blocking L1 GABAergic inhibition or blocking P/Q-type Ca2+ channels in L1 prevents POm adjustment of whisker responses in the barrel cortex. Additionally, we found that POm was also controlling the sensory processing in S2 and this regulation was modulated by corticofugal activity from L5 in S1. Taken together, our data demonstrate the determinant role exerted by the POm in the adjustment of somatosensory cortical processing and in the regulation of cortical processing between S1 and S2. We propose that this adjustment could be a thalamocortical gain regulation mechanism also present in the processing of information between cortical areas. PMID:26820514

  19. Effect of the number of pins and inter-pin distance on somatosensory evoked magnetic fields following mechanical tactile stimulation.

    PubMed

    Onishi, Hideaki; Sugawara, Kazuhiro; Yamashiro, Koya; Sato, Daisuke; Suzuki, Makoto; Kirimoto, Hikari; Tamaki, Hiroyuki; Murakami, Hiroatsu; Kameyama, Shigeki

    2013-10-16

    Magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings were collected to investigate the effect of the number of mechanical pins and inter-pin distance on somatosensory evoked magnetic fields (SEFs) following mechanical stimulation (MS). We used a 306-ch whole-head MEG system. SEFs were elicited through tactile stimuli with 1-, 2-, 3-, 4- and 8-pins using healthy participants. Tactile stimuli were applied to the tip of the right index finger. SEF following electrical stimulation of the index finger was recorded in order to compare the activity in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) following MS. Prominent SEFs were recorded from the contralateral hemisphere approximately 54 ms (P50m) and 125 ms (P100m) after MS regardless of the number of pins. Equivalent current dipoles were located in the S1. The source activities for P50m and P100m significantly increased in tandem with the number of pins for MS. However, the increased ratios for the source activities according to the increase in the number of pins were significantly smaller than that induced by electrical stimulation, and when the number of the pins doubled from 1-pin to 2-pins, from 2-pins to 4-pins, and from 4-pins to 8-pins, S1 activities increased by only 130%. Additionally, source activities significantly increased when the inter-pin distance increased from 2.4 to 7.2 mm. The number of stimulated receptors was considered to have increased with an increase in the inter-pin distance as well as an increase in the number of pins. These findings clarified the effect of the number of pins and inter-pin distance for MS on SEFs.

  20. Anatomical, physiological and molecular properties of Martinotti cells in the somatosensory cortex of the juvenile rat

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yun; Toledo-Rodriguez, Maria; Gupta, Anirudh; Wu, Caizhi; Silberberg, Gilad; Luo, Junyi; Markram, Henry

    2004-01-01

    Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings followed by histochemical staining and single-cell RT-PCR were obtained from 180 Martinotti interneurones located in layers II to VI of the somatosensory cortex of Wistar rats (P13–P16) in order to examine their anatomical, electrophysiological and molecular properties. Martinotti cells (MCs) mostly displayed ovoid-shaped somata, bitufted dendritic morphologies, and axons with characteristic spiny boutons projecting to layer I and spreading horizontally across neighbouring columns more than 1 mm. Electron microscopic examination of MC boutons revealed that all synapses were symmetrical and most synapses (71%) were formed onto dendritic shafts. MCs were found to contact tuft, apical and basal dendrites in multiple neocortical layers: layer II/III MCs targeted mostly layer I and to a lesser degree layer II/III; layer IV MCs targeted mostly layer IV and to a lesser degree layer I; layer V and VI MCs targeted mostly layer IV and layer I and to a lesser degree the layer in which their somata was located. MCs typically displayed spike train accommodation (90%; n = 127) in response to depolarizing somatic current injections, but some displayed non-accommodating (8%) and a few displayed irregular spiking responses (2%). Some accommodating and irregular spiking MCs also responded initially with bursts (17%). Accommodating responses were found in all layers, non-accommodating mostly in upper layers and bursting mostly in layer V. Single-cell multiplex RT-PCR performed on 63 MCs located throughout layers II–VI, revealed that all MCs were somatostatin (SOM) positive, and negative for parvalbumin (PV) as well as vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP). Calbindin (CB), calretinin (CR), neuropeptide Y (NPY) and cholecystokinin (CCK) were co- expressed with SOM in some MCs. Some layer-specific trends seem to exist. Finally, 24 accommodating MCs were examined for the expression of 26 ion channel genes. The ion channels with the highest expression

  1. Objective classification of motion- and direction-sensitive neurons in primary somatosensory cortex of awake monkeys.

    PubMed

    Warren, S; Hamalainen, H A; Gardner, E P

    1986-09-01

    In order to classify movement-sensitive neurons in SI cortex, and to estimate their relative distribution, we have developed a new simple method for controlled motion of textured surfaces across the skin, as well as a set of objective criteria for determining direction selectivity. Moving stimuli were generated using 5 mm thick precision gear wheels, whose teeth formed a grafting. They were mounted on the shafts of low-torque potentiometers (to measure the speed and direction of movement) and rolled manually across the skin using the potentiometer shaft as an axle. As the grafting wheel was advanced, its ridges sequentially contacted a specific set of points on the skin, leaving gaps of defined spacing that were unstimulated. This stimulus was reproducible from trial to trial and produced little distention of the skin. Three objective criteria were used to categorize responses: the ratio of responses to motion in the most and least preferred directions [direction index (DI)], the difference between mean firing rates in the two directions divided by the average standard deviation [index of discriminability (delta'e)], and statistical tests. Neurons were classified as direction sensitive if DI greater than 35, delta's greater than or equal to 1.35 (equivalent to 75% correct discrimination by an unbiased observer), and firing rates in most- and least-preferred directions were significantly different (P less than 0.05). Good agreement was found between the three classification schemes. Recordings were made from 1,020 cortical neurons in the hand and forearm regions of primary somatosensory cortex (areas 3b, 1 and 2) of five macaque monkeys. Tangential motion across the skin was found to be an extremely effective stimulus for SI cortical neurons. Two hundred eighty six of 757 tactile neurons (38%) responded more vigorously to moving stimuli than to pressure or tapping the skin. One hundred twenty-one cells were tested with moving gratings and were classified according

  2. Value of somatosensory and motor evoked potentials in predicting arm recovery after a stroke

    PubMed Central

    Feys, H.; Van Hees, J.; Bruyninckx, F.; Mercelis, R.; De Weerdt, W.

    2000-01-01

    OBJECTIVES—Prediction of motor recovery in the arm in patients with stroke is generally based on clinical examination. However, neurophysiological measures may also have a predictive value. The aims of this study were to assess the role of somatosensory (SSEPs) and motor (MEPs) evoked potentials in the prediction of arm motor recovery and to determine whether these measures added further predictive information to that gained from clinical examination.
METHODS—Sixty four patients who had had a stroke and presented with obvious motor deficit of the arm were examined in terms of three clinical variables (motor performance, muscle tone, and overall disability) and for SSEPs and MEPs. Clinical and neurophysiological examinations were done at entry to the study (2 to 5 weeks poststroke), and at about 2 months after stroke. Further clinical follow up was conducted at 6 and 12 months after stroke.
RESULTS—Neurophysiological measures made in the acute phase were of little use alone in predicting motor recovery of the arm at 2,6, and 12 months after stroke. At 2 months, the absence of SSEPs and MEPs indicated a very poor outcome. Conversely, if the responses were preserved, a great variation in motor outcome was found. Multiple regression analysis showed that the addition of SSEPs and MEPs to the clinical examination increased the possibility of predicting arm recovery in the long term. In the acute phase, the combination of the motor score and SSEPs were best able to predict outcome. The long term outcome based on variables taken at 2 months, was best predicted through incorporating the three clinical measures and MEPs.
CONCLUSIONS—Neurophysiological measures alone are of limited value in predicting long term outcome. However, predictive accuracy is substantially improved through the combined use of both of these measures and clinical variables.

 PMID:10675214

  3. Thalamic adenylyl cyclase 1 is required for barrel formation in the somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, A; Lee, L-J; Hayashi, Y; Muglia, L; Itohara, S; Erzurumlu, R S; Iwasato, T

    2015-04-02

    Cyclic AMP signaling is critical for activity-dependent refinement of neuronal circuits. Global disruption of adenylyl cyclase 1 (AC1), the major calcium/calmodulin-stimulated adenylyl cyclase in the brain, impairs formation of whisker-related discrete neural modules (the barrels) in cortical layer 4 in mice. Since AC1 is expressed both in the thalamus and the neocortex, the question of whether pre- or postsynaptic (or both) AC1 plays a role in barrel formation has emerged. Previously, we generated cortex-specific AC1 knockout (Cx-AC1KO) mice and found that these animals develop histologically normal barrels, suggesting a potentially more prominent role for thalamic AC1 in barrel formation. To determine this, we generated three new lines of mice: one in which AC1 is disrupted in nearly half of the thalamic ventrobasal nucleus cells in addition to the cortical excitatory neurons (Cx/pTh-AC1KO mouse), and another in which AC1 is disrupted in the thalamus but not in the cortex or brainstem nuclei of the somatosensory system (Th-AC1KO mouse). Cx/pTh-AC1KO mice show severe deficits in barrel formation. Th-AC1KO mice show even more severe disruption in barrel patterning. In these two lines, single thalamocortical (TC) axon labeling revealed a larger lateral extent of TC axons in layer 4 compared to controls. In the third line, all calcium-stimulated adenylyl cyclases (both AC1 and AC8) are deleted in cortical excitatory neurons. These mice have normal barrels. Taken together, these results indicate that thalamic AC1 plays a major role in patterning and refinement of the mouse TC circuitry.

  4. Increased intrinsic brain connectivity between pons and somatosensory cortex during attacks of migraine with aura.

    PubMed

    Hougaard, Anders; Amin, Faisal Mohammad; Larsson, Henrik B W; Rostrup, Egill; Ashina, Messoud

    2017-02-27

    The neurological disturbances of migraine aura are caused by transient cortical dysfunction due to waves of spreading depolarization that disrupt neuronal signaling. The effects of these cortical events on intrinsic brain connectivity during attacks of migraine aura have not previously been investigated. Studies of spontaneous migraine attacks are notoriously challenging due to their unpredictable nature and patient discomfort. We investigated 16 migraine patients with visual aura during attacks and in the attack-free state using resting state fMRI. We applied a hypothesis-driven seed-based approach focusing on cortical visual areas and areas involved in migraine pain, and a data-driven independent component analysis approach to detect changes in intrinsic brain signaling during attacks. In addition, we performed the analyses after mirroring the MRI data according to the side of perceived aura symptoms. We found a marked increase in connectivity during attacks between the left pons and the left primary somatosensory cortex including the head and face somatotopic areas (peak voxel: P = 0.0096, (x, y, z) = (-54, -32, 32), corresponding well with the majority of patients reporting right-sided pain. For aura-side normalized data, we found increased connectivity during attacks between visual area V5 and the lower middle frontal gyrus in the symptomatic hemisphere (peak voxel: P = 0.0194, (x, y, z) = (40, 40, 12). The present study provides evidence of altered intrinsic brain connectivity during attacks of migraine with aura, which may reflect consequences of cortical spreading depression, suggesting a link between aura and headache mechanisms. Hum Brain Mapp, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Somatosensory evoked potentials assess the efficacy of circumcision for premature ejaculation.

    PubMed

    Xia, J-D; Jiang, H-S; Zhu, L-L; Zhang, Z; Chen, H; Dai, Y-T

    2016-07-01

    To assess the efficacy and mechanism of circumcision in the treatment of premature ejaculation (PE) with redundant prepuce, we enrolled a total of 81 PE patients who received circumcision. The patients' ejaculatory ability and sexual performances were evaluated before and after circumcision by using questionnaires (Intravaginal ejaculation latency time (IELT), Chinese Index of PE with 5 questions (CIPE-5) and International Index of Erectile function- 5 (IIEF-5)). Furthermore, somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) including dorsal nerve (DNSEP) and glans penis (GPSEP) of the patients were also measured. The mean IELTs of preoperation and post operation were 1.10±0.55 and 2.48±2.03 min, respectively (P<0.001). In addition, the geometric mean IELT after operation was 2.16 min, compared with the baseline 1.07 min before the operation, the fold increase of the IELT was 2.02. Compared with the uncircumcised status, scores of CIPE-5 showed a significant increase after circumcision (P<0.001). The mean latencies (and amplitudes) of GPSEP and DNSEP were 38.1±4.0 ms (3.0±1.9 uV) and 40.5±3.4 ms (2.8±1.6 uV) before circumcision, respectively; and 42.8±3.3 ms (2.8±1.6 uV) and 40.5±4.1 ms (2.4±1.2 uV) in the follow-up end point after circumcision. Only the latencies of GPSEP showed significant prolongation before and after circumcision (P<0.001). The ejaculation time improvement after circumcision is so small, and equal to placebo response, therefore it could not be interpreted as a therapeutic method in men with PE.

  6. The role of vestibular and somatosensory systems in intersegmental control of upright stance

    PubMed Central

    Creath, Rob; Kiemel, Tim; Horak, Fay; Jeka, John J.

    2009-01-01

    Upright stance was perturbed using sinusoidal platform rotations to see how vestibular and somatosensory information are used to control segment and intersegmental dynamics in subjects with bilateral vestibular loss (BVL) and healthy controls (C). Subjects stood with eyes closed on a rotating platform (±1.2°) for frequencies ranging from 0.01–0.4 Hz in the presence and absence of light fingertip touch. Trunk movement relative to the platform of BVLs was higher than Cs at higher platform frequencies whereas leg movement relative to the platform was similar for both groups. With the addition of light touch, both groups showed similar trunk and leg segment movement relative to the platform. Trunk-leg coordination was in-phase for frequencies below 1 Hz and anti-phase above 1 Hz. Interestingly, BVLs showed evidence of a “legs-leading-trunk” relationship in the shift from in-phase to anti-phase around 1 Hz. Controls showed no preference for either segment to lead the coordinative shift from in- to anti-phase. The results suggest that the balance instability of BVL subjects stems from high variability of the trunk, rather than the legs. The high trunk variability may emerge from the “legs-leading” intersegmental relationship upon which BVLs rely. Because BVLs derive information about self-orientation primarily from the support surface when their eyes are closed, the legs initiate the shift to anti-phase trunk-leg coordination that is necessary for stable upright stance control. Higher trunk variability suggests that this strategy results in lower overall postural stability. Light touch substitutes for vestibular information, leading to lower trunk variability along with a trunk-leg phase shift similar to controls, without a preference for either segment to lead the shift. The results suggest that vestibulospinal control acts primarily to stabilize the trunk in space and to facilitate intersegmental dynamics. PMID:18776597

  7. Contact Lens Risks

    MedlinePlus

    ... Health and Consumer Devices Consumer Products Contact Lenses Contact Lens Risks Share Tweet Linkedin Pin it More ... redness blurred vision swelling pain Serious Hazards of Contact Lenses Symptoms of eye irritation can indicate a ...

  8. Contact Lens Care

    MedlinePlus

    ... For Consumers Consumer Information by Audience For Women Contact Lens Care Share Tweet Linkedin Pin it More ... 1088, www.fda.gov/medwatch Learn More about Contact Lens Care Other Tips on Contact Lenses Decorative ...

  9. Adhesion in hydrogel contacts.

    PubMed

    Torres, J R; Jay, G D; Kim, K-S; Bothun, G D

    2016-05-01

    A generalized thermomechanical model for adhesion was developed to elucidate the mechanisms of dissipation within the viscoelastic bulk of a hyperelastic hydrogel. Results show that in addition to the expected energy release rate of interface formation, as well as the viscous flow dissipation, the bulk composition exhibits dissipation due to phase inhomogeneity morphological changes. The mixing thermodynamics of the matrix and solvent determines the dynamics of the phase inhomogeneities, which can enhance or disrupt adhesion. The model also accounts for the time-dependent behaviour. A parameter is proposed to discern the dominant dissipation mechanism in hydrogel contact detachment.

  10. Adhesion in hydrogel contacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torres, J. R.; Jay, G. D.; Kim, K.-S.; Bothun, G. D.

    2016-05-01

    A generalized thermomechanical model for adhesion was developed to elucidate the mechanisms of dissipation within the viscoelastic bulk of a hyperelastic hydrogel. Results show that in addition to the expected energy release rate of interface formation, as well as the viscous flow dissipation, the bulk composition exhibits dissipation due to phase inhomogeneity morphological changes. The mixing thermodynamics of the matrix and solvent determines the dynamics of the phase inhomogeneities, which can enhance or disrupt adhesion. The model also accounts for the time-dependent behaviour. A parameter is proposed to discern the dominant dissipation mechanism in hydrogel contact detachment.

  11. Contact dermatitis in Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Olumide, Y M

    1985-05-01

    Nickel is the most important sensitizer in Lagos, with an incidence of 12.3% of 453 patients tested. There was no sex difference, as the wearing of necklaces and bracelets was equally fashionable among both sexes. Housewife eczema is not common, probably because of hardening. Dermatitis from additives in the processing of leather and rubber footwear was the next most common. Chromate sensitivity comes usually from leather or cement. Cultural and climatic factors are mainly responsible for differences in the incidence of contact dermatitis found in Lagos from other countries.

  12. Pain perception: predictive value of sex, depression, anxiety, somatosensory amplification, obesity, and age

    PubMed Central

    Kivrak, Yuksel; Kose-Ozlece, Hatice; Ustundag, Mehmet Fatih; Asoglu, Mehmet

    2016-01-01

    Objective Factors affecting pain sensation are still being investigated. In this study, we aimed to examine the effects of sex, age, body mass index (BMI), somatosensory amplification, anxiety, and depression on the perception of pain. Methods Venipuncture was performed on 140 healthy individuals. All the cases completed a sociodemographic data form, visual analog scale (VAS), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), Beck Depression Inventory, and Somatosensory Amplification Scale. Height and weight were also measured. Results When both the sexes were compared, there was no difference in terms of VAS, BMI, age, and Beck Depression Inventory, but Somatosensory Amplification Scale and BAI were found to be higher in females. A correlation was found among VAS points, BAI, and BMI. The results of a regression analysis show that the BAI score is a predictor for the VAS score. Conclusion These results indicate that anxiety may be a predictor of pain, whereas sex, depression, somatosensory amplification, age, and weight do not appear to influence the perception of pain. PMID:27536113

  13. The Role of Attention in Somatosensory Processing: A Multi-Trait, Multi-Method Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wodka, Ericka L.; Puts, Nicolaas A. J.; Mahone, E. Mark; Edden, Richard A. E.; Tommerdahl, Mark; Mostofsky, Stewart H.

    2016-01-01

    Sensory processing abnormalities in autism have largely been described by parent report. This study used a multi-method (parent-report and measurement), multi-trait (tactile sensitivity and attention) design to evaluate somatosensory processing in ASD. Results showed multiple significant within-method (e.g., parent report of different…

  14. Imbalance in Multiple Sclerosis: A Result of Slowed Spinal Somatosensory Conduction

    PubMed Central

    Cameron, Michelle H.; Horak, Fay B.; Herndon, Robert R.; Bourdette, Dennis

    2009-01-01

    Balance problems and falls are common in people with multiple sclerosis (MS) but their cause and nature are not well understood. It is known that MS affects many areas of the central nervous system that can impact postural responses to maintain balance, including the cerebellum and the spinal cord. Cerebellar balance disorders are associated with normal latencies but reduced scaling of postural responses. We therefore examined the latency and scaling of automatic postural responses, and their relationship to somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs), in 10 people with MS and imbalance and 10 age-, sex-matched, healthy controls. The latency and scaling of postural responses to backward surface translations of 5 different velocities and amplitudes, and the latency of spinal and supraspinal somatosensory conduction, were examined. Subjects with MS had large, but very delayed automatic postural response latencies compared to controls (161ms ± 31 vs 102 ± 21, p < 0.01) and these postural response latencies correlated with the latencies of their spinal SSEPs (r=0.73, p< 0.01). Subjects with MS also had normal or excessive scaling of postural response amplitude to perturbation velocity and amplitude. Longer latency postural responses were associated with less velocity scaling and more amplitude scaling. Balance deficits in people with MS appear to be caused by slowed spinal somatosensory conduction and not by cerebellar involvement. People with MS appear to compensate for their slowed spinal somatosensory conduction by increasing the amplitude scaling and the magnitude of their postural responses. PMID:18570015

  15. Human Short-Latency Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in Impact Acceleration Research: Equipment, Procedures and Techniques

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1990-10-01

    Instrumentation Data Sheet .......................... 10 Figure 8. Human Physiology Screen One ....................................... 1I1 Figure 9. Human ... Physiology Screen Two...................................... 12 Figure 10. Human Physiology Screen Three ..................................... 12 Figure...Short-Latency Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in Impact Acceleration Research ***** HUMAN PHYSIOLOGY SCREEN***** Please Read First To move from one

  16. Functional assays of local connectivity in the somatosensory cortex of individuals with autism.

    PubMed

    Coskun, Mehmet Akif; Loveland, Katherine A; Pearson, Deborah A; Papanicolaou, Andrew C; Sheth, Bhavin R

    2013-06-01

    Emerging evidence for differences between individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and neurotypical (NT) individuals in somatic processing and brain response to touch suggests somatosensory cortex as a promising substrate for elucidating differences in functional brain connectivity between individuals with and without autism. Signals from adjacent digits project to neighboring locations or representations in somatosensory cortex. When a digit is stimulated, i.e. touched, its representation in cortex is directly activated; local intracortical connections indirectly activate nonprimary cortical representations corresponding to adjacent digits. The response of the nonprimary cortical representations is thus a proxy for connection strength. Local overconnectivity in autism implies that the nonprimary/primary response ratios of the ASD group will be higher than those of the NT group. D1 and D2 of the dominant hand of the participant were individually stimulated while we recorded neural responses using magnetoencephalography. The cortical representations of D1 and D2 (somatosensory-evoked fields) were computed from the ensemble-averaged data using (a) dipole model fits and (b) singular value decomposition. Individual adjacent/primary response ratios were measured, and group response ratio data were fitted with straight lines. Local overconnectivity in autism implies steeper ASD vs. NT group slopes. Our findings did not support local overconnectivity. Slopes were found to be significantly shallower for the ASD group than the NT group. Our findings support the idea of local underconnectivity in the somatosensory cortex of the brains of individuals with ASD.

  17. A Somatosensory Latency between the Thalamus and Cortex also Correlates with Level of Intelligence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, T. Edward; Jensen, Arthur R.

    1993-01-01

    Results for sensory thalamocortical latency (3 somatosensory evoked potentials) for 205 college students agree with data that correlate a more extensive visual evoked potential latency with intelligence quotient. Findings suggest that the correlation occurs because the latency indexes cortical nerve conduction velocity. (SLD)

  18. Ankyrin-B structurally defines terminal microdomains of peripheral somatosensory axons.

    PubMed

    Engelhardt, Maren; Vorwald, Silke; Sobotzik, Jürgen-Markus; Bennett, Vann; Schultz, Christian

    2013-07-01

    Axons are subdivided into functionally organized microdomains, which are required for generation and propagation of action potentials (APs). In the central nervous system (CNS), APs are generated near the soma in the axon initial segment (AIS) and propagated by nodes of Ranvier (noR). The crucial role of the membrane adapter proteins ankyrin-B and ankyrin-G as organizers of AIS and noR is now well established. By comparison, little is known on the localization and function of these proteins in sensory axon terminals of the peripheral nervous systems (PNS). Here, we tested the hypothesis that somatosensory PNS terminals are organized by distinct members of the ankyrin protein family. We discovered a specific distribution of ankyrin-B in somatosensory axon terminals of skin and muscle. Specifically, ankyrin-B was localized along the membrane of axons innervating Meissner corpuscles, Pacinian corpuscles and hair follicle receptors. Likewise, proprioceptive terminals of muscle spindles exhibited prominent ankyrin-B expression. Furthermore, ankyrin-B expression extended into nociceptive and thermoceptive intraepidermal nerve fibers. Interestingly, all studied somatosensory terminals were largely devoid of ankyrin-G, indicating that this scaffolding protein does not contribute to organization of mechanoelectric transduction zones in peripheral somatosensory neurons. Instead, we propose that ankyrin-B serves as a major membrane organizer in mechanoreceptive and nociceptive terminals of the PNS.

  19. Left Lateralized Enhancement of Orofacial Somatosensory Processing Due to Speech Sounds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ito, Takayuki; Johns, Alexis R.; Ostry, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Somatosensory information associated with speech articulatory movements affects the perception of speech sounds and vice versa, suggesting an intimate linkage between speech production and perception systems. However, it is unclear which cortical processes are involved in the interaction between speech sounds and orofacial somatosensory…

  20. Integration of visual and somatosensory target information in goal-directed eye and arm movements.

    PubMed

    Neggers, S F; Bekkering, H

    1999-03-01

    In this study, we compared separate and coordinated eye and hand movements towards visual or somatosensory target stimuli in a dark room, where no visual position information about the hand could be obtained. Experiment 1 showed that saccadic reaction times (RTs) were longer when directed to somatosensory targets than when directed to visual targets in both single- and dual-task conditions. However, for hand movements, this pattern was only found in the dual-task condition and not in the single-task condition. Experiment 1 also showed that correlations between saccadic and hand RTs were significantly higher when directed towards somatosensory targets than when directed towards visual targets. Importantly, experiment 2 indicated that this was not caused by differences in processing times at a perceptual level. Furthermore, hand-pointing accuracy was found to be higher when subjects had to move their eyes as well (dual task) compared to a single-task hand movement. However, this effect was more pronounced for movements to visual targets than to somatosensory targets. A schematic model of sensorimotor transformations for saccadic eye and goal-directed hand movements is proposed and possible shared mechanisms of the two motor systems are discussed.

  1. Early changes in somatosensory function in spinal pain: protocol for a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Back and neck pain are common conditions that have a high burden of disease. Changes in somatosensory function in the periphery, the spinal cord and the brain have been well documented at the time when these conditions have become chronic. It is unknown, however, how early these changes occur, what the timecourse is of sensory dysfunction and what the specific nature of these changes are in the first 12 weeks after onset of pain. In this paper, we describe the protocol for a systematic review of the literature on somatosensory dysfunction in the first 12 weeks after pain onset. Methods and design We will conduct a comprehensive search for articles indexed in the databases Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid Embase, Ovid PsycINFO and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trial (CENTRAL) from their inception to August 2013 that report on any aspect of somatosensory function in acute or subacute neck or back pain. Two independent reviewers will screen studies for eligibility, assess risk of bias and extract relevant data. Results will be tabulated and a narrative synthesis of the results conducted. Discussion Currently, there is a gap in our knowledge about the timing of somatosensory changes in back and neck pain. The systematic review outlined in this protocol aims to address this knowledge gap and inform developments in diagnostic tools and pain mechanism-based treatments. Trial Registration Our protocol has been registered on PROSPERO, CRD42013005113. PMID:24088219

  2. Basic properties of somatosensory-evoked responses in the dorsal hippocampus of the rat

    PubMed Central

    Bellistri, Elisa; Aguilar, Juan; Brotons-Mas, Jorge R; Foffani, Guglielmo; de la Prida, Liset Menendez

    2013-01-01

    The hippocampus is a pivotal structure for episodic memory function. This ability relies on the possibility of integrating different features of sensory stimuli with the spatio-temporal context in which they occur. While recent studies now suggest that somatosensory information is already processed by the hippocampus, the basic mechanisms still remain unexplored. Here, we used electrical stimulation of the paws, the whisker pad or the medial lemniscus to probe the somatosensory pathway to the hippocampus in the anaesthetized rat, and multisite electrodes, in combination with tetrode and intracellular recordings, to look at the properties of somatosensory hippocampal responses. We found that peripheral and lemniscal stimulation elicited small local field potential responses in the dorsal hippocampus about 35–40 ms post-stimulus. Current source density analysis established the local nature of these responses, revealing associated synaptic sinks that were consistently confined to the molecular layer (ML) of the dentate gyrus (DG), with less regular activation of the CA1 stratum lacunosum moleculare (SLM). A delayed (40–45 ms), potentially active, current source that outlasted the SLM sink was present in about 50% cases around the CA1 pyramidal cell layer. Somatosensory stimulation resulted in multi-unit firing increases in the majority of DG responses (79%), whereas multi-unit firing suppression was observed in the majority of CA1 responses (62%). Tetrode and intracellular recordings of individual cells confirmed different firing modulation in the DG and the CA1 region, and verified the active nature of both the early ML sink and delayed somatic CA1 source. Hippocampal responses to somatosensory stimuli were dependent on fluctuations in the strength and composition of synaptic inputs due to changes of the ongoing local (hippocampal) and distant (cortical) state. We conclude that somatosensory signals reach the hippocampus mainly from layer II entorhinal cortex to

  3. Distinct α- and β-band rhythms over rat somatosensory cortex with similar properties as in humans.

    PubMed

    Fransen, Anne M M; Dimitriadis, George; van Ede, Freek; Maris, Eric

    2016-06-01

    We demonstrate distinct α- (7-14 Hz) and β-band (15-30 Hz) rhythms in rat somatosensory cortex in vivo using epidural electrocorticography recordings. Moreover, we show in rats that a genuine β-rhythm coexists alongside β-activity that reflects the second harmonic of the arch-shaped somatosensory α-rhythm. This demonstration of a genuine somatosensory β-rhythm depends on a novel quantification of neuronal oscillations that is based on their rhythmic nature: lagged coherence. Using lagged coherence, we provide two lines of evidence that this somatosensory β-rhythm is distinct from the second harmonic of the arch-shaped α-rhythm. The first is based on the rhythms' spatial properties: the α- and β-rhythms are demonstrated to have significantly different topographies. The second is based on the rhythms' temporal properties: the lagged phase-phase coupling between the α- and β-rhythms is demonstrated to be significantly less than would be expected if both reflected a single underlying nonsinusoidal rhythm. Finally, we demonstrate that 1) the lagged coherence spectrum is consistent between signals from rat and human somatosensory cortex; and 2) a tactile stimulus has the same effect on the somatosensory α- and β-rhythms in both rats and humans, namely suppressing them. Thus we not only provide evidence for the existence of genuine α- and β-rhythms in rat somatosensory cortex, but also for their homology to the primate sensorimotor α- and β-rhythms.

  4. Cerebellar inhibitory output shapes the temporal dynamics of its somatosensory inferior olivary input.

    PubMed

    Hogri, Roni; Segalis, Eyal; Mintz, Matti

    2014-08-01

    The cerebellum is necessary and sufficient for the acquisition and execution of adaptively timed conditioned motor responses following repeated paired presentations of a conditioned stimulus and an unconditioned stimulus. The underlying plasticity depends on the convergence of conditioned and unconditioned stimuli signals relayed to the cerebellum by the pontine nucleus and the inferior olive (IO), respectively. Adaptive timing of conditioned responses relies on the correctly predicted onset of the unconditioned stimulus, usually a noxious somatosensory stimulus. We addressed two questions: First, does the IO relay information regarding the duration of somatosensory stimuli to the cerebellum? Multiple-unit recordings from the IO of anesthetized rats that received periorbital airpuffs of various durations revealed that sustained somatosensory stimuli are invariably transformed into phasic IO outputs. The phasic response was followed by a post-peak depression in IO activity as compared to baseline, providing the cerebellum with a highly synchronous signal, time-locked to the stimulus' onset. Second, we sought to examine the involvement of olivocerebellar interactions in this signal transformation. Cerebello-olivary inhibition was interrupted using temporary pharmacological inactivation of cerebellar output nuclei, resulting in more sustained (i.e., less synchronous) IO responses to sustained somatosensory stimuli, in which the post-peak depression was substituted with elevated activity as compared to baseline. We discuss the possible roles of olivocerebellar negative-feedback loops and baseline cerebello-olivary inhibition levels in shaping the temporal dynamics of the IO's response to somatosensory stimuli and the consequences of this shaping for cerebellar plasticity and its ability to adapt to varying contexts.

  5. Expectation violation and attention to pain jointly modulate neural gain in somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Fardo, Francesca; Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Allen, Micah; Dietz, Martin J; Roepstorff, Andreas; Friston, Karl J

    2017-03-21

    The neural processing and experience of pain are influenced by both expectations and attention. For example, the amplitude of event-related pain responses is enhanced by both novel and unexpected pain, and by moving the focus of attention towards a painful stimulus. Under predictive coding, this congruence can be explained by appeal to a precision-weighting mechanism, which mediates bottom-up and top-down attentional processes by modulating the influence of feedforward and feedback signals throughout the cortical hierarchy. The influence of expectation and attention on pain processing can be mapped onto changes in effective connectivity between or within specific neuronal populations, using a canonical microcircuit (CMC) model of hierarchical processing. We thus implemented a CMC within dynamic causal modelling for magnetoencephalography in human subjects, to investigate how expectation violation and attention to pain modulate intrinsic (within-source) and extrinsic (between-source) connectivity in the somatosensory hierarchy. This enabled us to establish whether both expectancy and attentional processes are mediated by a similar precision-encoding mechanism within a network of somatosensory, frontal and parietal sources. We found that both unexpected and attended pain modulated the gain of superficial pyramidal cells in primary and secondary somatosensory cortex. This modulation occurred in the context of increased lateralized recurrent connectivity between somatosensory and fronto-parietal sources, driven by unexpected painful occurrences. Finally, the strength of effective connectivity parameters in S1, S2 and IFG predicted individual differences in subjective pain modulation ratings. Our findings suggest that neuromodulatory gain control in the somatosensory hierarchy underlies the influence of both expectation violation and attention on cortical processing and pain perception.

  6. Exploring the Mechanisms of Exercise-Induced Hypoalgesia Using Somatosensory and Laser Evoked Potentials

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Matthew D.; Taylor, Janet L.; Booth, John; Barry, Benjamin K.

    2016-01-01

    Exercise-induced hypoalgesia is well described, but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of exercise on somatosensory evoked potentials, laser evoked potentials, pressure pain thresholds and heat pain thresholds. These were recorded before and after 3-min of isometric elbow flexion exercise at 40% of the participant's maximal voluntary force, or an equivalent period of rest. Exercise-induced hypoalgesia was confirmed in two experiments (Experiment 1–SEPs; Experiment 2–LEPs) by increased pressure pain thresholds at biceps brachii (24.3 and 20.6% increase in Experiment 1 and 2, respectively; both d > 0.84 and p < 0.001) and first dorsal interosseous (18.8 and 21.5% increase in Experiment 1 and 2, respectively; both d > 0.57 and p < 0.001). In contrast, heat pain thresholds were not significantly different after exercise (forearm: 10.8% increase, d = 0.35, p = 0.10; hand: 3.6% increase, d = 0.06, p = 0.74). Contrasting effects of exercise on the amplitude of laser evoked potentials (14.6% decrease, d = −0.42, p = 0.004) and somatosensory evoked potentials (10.9% increase, d = −0.02, p = 1) were also observed, while an equivalent period of rest showed similar habituation (laser evoked potential: 7.3% decrease, d = −0.25, p = 0.14; somatosensory evoked potential: 20.7% decrease, d = −0.32, p = 0.006). The differential response of pressure pain thresholds and heat pain thresholds to exercise is consistent with relative insensitivity of thermal nociception to the acute hypoalgesic effects of exercise. Conflicting effects of exercise on somatosensory evoked potentials and laser evoked potentials were observed. This may reflect non-nociceptive contributions to the somatosensory evoked potential, but could also indicate that peripheral nociceptors contribute to exercise-induced hypoalgesia. PMID:27965587

  7. Exploring the Mechanisms of Exercise-Induced Hypoalgesia Using Somatosensory and Laser Evoked Potentials.

    PubMed

    Jones, Matthew D; Taylor, Janet L; Booth, John; Barry, Benjamin K

    2016-01-01

    Exercise-induced hypoalgesia is well described, but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of exercise on somatosensory evoked potentials, laser evoked potentials, pressure pain thresholds and heat pain thresholds. These were recorded before and after 3-min of isometric elbow flexion exercise at 40% of the participant's maximal voluntary force, or an equivalent period of rest. Exercise-induced hypoalgesia was confirmed in two experiments (Experiment 1-SEPs; Experiment 2-LEPs) by increased pressure pain thresholds at biceps brachii (24.3 and 20.6% increase in Experiment 1 and 2, respectively; both d > 0.84 and p < 0.001) and first dorsal interosseous (18.8 and 21.5% increase in Experiment 1 and 2, respectively; both d > 0.57 and p < 0.001). In contrast, heat pain thresholds were not significantly different after exercise (forearm: 10.8% increase, d = 0.35, p = 0.10; hand: 3.6% increase, d = 0.06, p = 0.74). Contrasting effects of exercise on the amplitude of laser evoked potentials (14.6% decrease, d = -0.42, p = 0.004) and somatosensory evoked potentials (10.9% increase, d = -0.02, p = 1) were also observed, while an equivalent period of rest showed similar habituation (laser evoked potential: 7.3% decrease, d = -0.25, p = 0.14; somatosensory evoked potential: 20.7% decrease, d = -0.32, p = 0.006). The differential response of pressure pain thresholds and heat pain thresholds to exercise is consistent with relative insensitivity of thermal nociception to the acute hypoalgesic effects of exercise. Conflicting effects of exercise on somatosensory evoked potentials and laser evoked potentials were observed. This may reflect non-nociceptive contributions to the somatosensory evoked potential, but could also indicate that peripheral nociceptors contribute to exercise-induced hypoalgesia.

  8. Contact Lenses for Vision Correction

    MedlinePlus

    ... Ophthalmologist Patient Stories Español Eye Health / Glasses & Contacts Contact Lenses Sections Contact Lenses for Vision Correction Proper ... to Know About Contact Lenses Colored Contact Lenses Contact Lenses for Vision Correction Written by: Kierstan Boyd ...

  9. Allergic Contact Dermatitis

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Jenny L.

    2010-01-01

    Epicutaneous patch testing is the gold standard method for the diagnosis of allergic contact dermatitis. Despite this knowledge, many clinical dermatologists do not offer patch testing in their offices or offer testing with only a limited number of allergens. Introduced in 1995, the Thin-Layer Rapid Use Epicutaneous Test originally contained 23 allergens and one control. In 2007, five additional allergens were added. This United States Food and Drug Administration-approved patch testing system made patch testing more convenient, and after its introduction, more dermatologists offered patch testing services. However, the number of allergens in the Thin-Layer Rapid Use Epicutaneous Test remains relatively low. Every two years, the North American Contact Dermatitis Group collects and reports the data from patch testing among its members to a standardized series of allergens. In 2005-2006, the Group used a series of 65 allergens. Of the top 30 allergens reported in 2005-2006, 10 were not included in the Thin-Layer Rapid Use Epicutaneous Test. Knowledge of and testing for additional allergens such as these may increase patch testing yield. PMID:20967194

  10. Medical management of contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Alexandroff, A B; Johnston, G A

    2009-10-01

    Allergic and irritant contact dermatitis are important dermatological problems. Although the frequencies of positive reactions to a number of allergens have decreased during last 30 years because of better avoidance (and at least in part due to improved legislation), contact allergy to other agents is rising. The medical treatment starts from a correct identification of triggers of contact dermatitis which could allow patients to reduce or avoid exposure to these agents in future. A good clinical history, examination and immunological tests including patch testing are of crucial importance at this stage. Further management includes emollients, topical and oral corticosteroids, topical calcineurin inhibitors, azathioprine and ciclosporin. Methotrexate and alitretinoin are recent additions to the armamentarium of dermatologists who manage contact dermatitis.

  11. Somatosensory Psychophysical Losses in Inhabitants of Riverside Communities of the Tapajós River Basin, Amazon, Brazil: Exposure to Methylmercury Is Possibly Involved

    PubMed Central

    Khoury, Eliana Dirce Torres; Souza, Givago da Silva; da Costa, Carlos Araújo; de Araújo, Amélia Ayako Kamogari; de Oliveira, Cláudia Simone Baltazar; Silveira, Luiz Carlos de Lima; Pinheiro, Maria da Conceição Nascimento

    2015-01-01

    . There was a weak linear correlation between tactile sensation threshold and mercury concentration in the head hair samples. No correlation was found for the other two measurements. Mercury-exposed subjects had impaired somatosensory function compared with non-exposed control subjects. Long-term mercury exposure of riverside communities in the Tapajós river basin is a possible but not a definitely proven cause for psychophysical somatosensory losses observed in their population. Additionally, the relatively simple psychophysical measures used in this work should be followed by more rigorous measures of the same population. PMID:26658153

  12. Incorporation of additives into polymers

    DOEpatents

    McCleskey, T. Mark; Yates, Matthew Z.

    2003-07-29

    There has been invented a method for incorporating additives into polymers comprising: (a) forming an aqueous or alcohol-based colloidal system of the polymer; (b) emulsifying the colloidal system with a compressed fluid; and (c) contacting the colloidal polymer with the additive in the presence of the compressed fluid. The colloidal polymer can be contacted with the additive by having the additive in the compressed fluid used for emulsification or by adding the additive to the colloidal system before or after emulsification with the compressed fluid. The invention process can be carried out either as a batch process or as a continuous on-line process.

  13. The primary somatosensory cortex and the insula contribute differently to the processing of transient and sustained nociceptive and non-nociceptive somatosensory inputs.

    PubMed

    Hu, Li; Zhang, Li; Chen, Rui; Yu, Hongbo; Li, Hong; Mouraux, André

    2015-11-01

    Transient nociceptive stimuli elicit consistent brain responses in the primary and secondary somatosensory cortices (S1, S2), the insula and the anterior and mid-cingulate cortex (ACC/MCC). However, the functional significance of these responses, especially their relationship with sustained pain perception, remains largely unknown. Here, using functional magnetic resonance imaging, we characterize the differential involvement of these brain regions in the processing of sustained nociceptive and non-nociceptive somatosensory input. By comparing the spatial patterns of activity elicited by transient (0.5 ms) and long-lasting (15 and 30 s) stimuli selectively activating nociceptive or non-nociceptive afferents, we found that the contralateral S1 responded more strongly to the onset of non-nociceptive stimulation as compared to the onset of nociceptive stimulation and the sustained phases of nociceptive and non-nociceptive stimulation. Similarly, the anterior insula responded more strongly to the onset of nociceptive stimulation as compared to the onset of non-nociceptive stimulation and the sustained phases of nociceptive and non-nociceptive stimulation. This suggests that S1 is specifically sensitive to changes in incoming non-nociceptive input, whereas the anterior insula is specifically sensitive to changes in incoming nociceptive input. Second, we found that the MCC responded more strongly to the onsets as compared to the sustained phases of both nociceptive and non-nociceptive stimulation, suggesting that it could be involved in the detection of change regardless of sensory modality. Finally, the posterior insula and S2 responded maximally during the sustained phase of non-nociceptive stimulation but not nociceptive stimulation, suggesting that these regions are preferentially involved in processing non-nociceptive somatosensory input.

  14. Neuroplastic changes related to pain occur at multiple levels of the human somatosensory system: A somatosensory-evoked potentials study in patients with cervical radicular pain.

    PubMed

    Tinazzi, M; Fiaschi, A; Rosso, T; Faccioli, F; Grosslercher, J; Aglioti, S M

    2000-12-15

    Studies suggest that pain may play a major role in determining cortical rearrangements in the adult human somatosensory system. Most studies, however, have been performed under conditions whereby pain coexists with massive deafferentation (e.g., amputations). Moreover, no information is available on whether spinal and brainstem changes contribute to pain-related reorganizational processes in humans. Here we assess the relationships between pain and plasticity by recording somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) in patients who complained of pain to the right thumb after a right cervical monoradiculopathy caused by compression of the sixth cervical root, but did not present with clinical or neurophysiological signs of deafferentation. Subcortical and cortical potentials evoked by stimulation of digital nerves of the right thumb and middle finger were compared with those obtained after stimulation of the left thumb and middle finger and with those obtained in a control group tested in comparable conditions. Amplitudes of spinal N13, brainstem P14, parietal N20 and P27, and frontal N30 potentials after stimulation of the painful right thumb were greater than those of the nonpainful left thumb and showed a positive correlation with magnitude of pain. This right-left asymmetry was absent after stimulation of the patients' middle fingers and in control subjects. Results suggest that chronic cervical radicular pain is associated with changes in neural activity at multiple levels of the somatosensory system. The absence of correlation between the amplitude of spinal, brainstem, and cortical components of SEPs suggests that enhancement of cortical activity is not a simple amplification of subcortical enhancement.

  15. Food additives

    PubMed Central

    Spencer, Michael

    1974-01-01

    Food additives are discussed from the food technology point of view. The reasons for their use are summarized: (1) to protect food from chemical and microbiological attack; (2) to even out seasonal supplies; (3) to improve their eating quality; (4) to improve their nutritional value. The various types of food additives are considered, e.g. colours, flavours, emulsifiers, bread and flour additives, preservatives, and nutritional additives. The paper concludes with consideration of those circumstances in which the use of additives is (a) justified and (b) unjustified. PMID:4467857

  16. Somatosensory pleasure circuit: from skin to brain and back.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, Donna M; McGlone, Francis P; Yosipovitch, Gil

    2015-05-01

    The skin senses serve a discriminative function, allowing us to manipulate objects and detect touch and temperature, and an affective/emotional function, manifested as itch or pain when the skin is damaged. Two different classes of nerve fibre mediate these dissociable aspects of cutaneous somatosensation: (i) myelinated A-beta and A-delta afferents that provide rapid information about the location and physical characteristics of skin contact; and (ii) unmyelinated, slow-conducting C-fibre afferents that are typically associated with coding the emotional properties of pain and itch. However, recent research has identified a third class of C-fibre afferents that code for the pleasurable properties of touch - c-tactile afferents or CTs. Clinical application of treatments that target pleasant, CT-mediated touch (such as massage therapy) could, in the future, provide a complementary, non-pharmacological means of treating both the physical and psychological aspects of chronic skin conditions such as itch and eczema.

  17. Guidelines and recommendations for assessment of somatosensory function in oro-facial pain conditions--a taskforce report.

    PubMed

    Svensson, P; Baad-Hansen, L; Pigg, M; List, T; Eliav, E; Ettlin, D; Michelotti, A; Tsukiyama, Y; Matsuka, Y; Jääskeläinen, S K; Essick, G; Greenspan, J D; Drangsholt, M

    2011-05-01

    The goals of an international taskforce on somatosensory testing established by the Special Interest Group of Oro-facial Pain (SIG-OFP) under the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) were to (i) review the literature concerning assessment of somatosensory function in the oro-facial region in terms of techniques and test performance, (ii) provide guidelines for comprehensive and screening examination procedures, and (iii) give recommendations for future development of somatosensory testing specifically in the oro-facial region. Numerous qualitative and quantitative psychophysical techniques have been proposed and used in the description of oro-facial somatosensory function. The selection of technique includes time considerations because the most reliable and accurate methods require multiple repetitions of stimuli. Multiple-stimulus modalities (mechanical, thermal, electrical, chemical) have been applied to study oro-facial somatosensory function. A battery of different test stimuli is needed to obtain comprehensive information about the functional integrity of the various types of afferent nerve fibres. Based on the available literature, the German Neuropathic Pain Network test battery appears suitable for the study of somatosensory function within the oro-facial area as it is based on a wide variety of both qualitative and quantitative assessments of all cutaneous somatosensory modalities. Furthermore, these protocols have been thoroughly described and tested on multiple sites including the facial skin and intra-oral mucosa. Standardisation of both comprehensive and screening examination techniques is likely to improve the diagnostic accuracy and facilitate the understanding of neural mechanisms and somatosensory changes in different oro-facial pain conditions and may help to guide management.

  18. Phantom acupuncture: dissociating somatosensory and cognitive/affective components of acupuncture stimulation with a novel form of placebo acupuncture.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jeungchan; Napadow, Vitaly; Kim, Jieun; Lee, Seunggi; Choi, Woojin; Kaptchuk, Ted J; Park, Kyungmo

    2014-01-01

    In a clinical setting, acupuncture treatment consists of multiple components including somatosensory stimulation, treatment context, and attention to needle-based procedures. In order to dissociate somatosensory versus contextual and attentional aspects of acupuncture, we devised a novel form of placebo acupuncture, a visual manipulation dubbed phantom acupuncture, which reproduces the acupuncture needling ritual without somatosensory tactile stimulation. Subjects (N = 20) received both real (REAL) and phantom (PHNT) acupuncture. Subjects were retrospectively classified into two groups based on PHNT credibility (PHNTc, who found phantom acupuncture credible; and PHNTnc, who did not). Autonomic and psychophysical responses were monitored. We found that PHNT can be delivered in a credible manner. Acupuncture needling, a complex, ritualistic somatosensory intervention, induces sympathetic activation (phasic skin conductance [SC] response), which may be specific to the somatosensory component of acupuncture. In contrast, contextual effects, such as needling credibility, are instead associated with a shift toward relative cardiovagal activation (decreased heart rate) during needling and sympathetic inhibition (decreased SC) and parasympathetic activation (decreased pupil size) following acupuncture needling. Visual stimulation characterizing the needling ritual is an important factor for phasic autonomic responses to acupuncture and may undelie the needling orienting response. Our study suggests that phantom acupuncture can be a viable sham control for acupuncture as it completely excludes the somatosensory component of real needling while maintaining the credibility of the acupuncture treatment context in many subjects.

  19. Ethosuximide Affects Paired-Pulse Facilitation in Somatosensory Cortex of WAG\\Rij Rats as a Model of Absence Seizure

    PubMed Central

    Ghamkhari Nejad, Ghazaleh; Shahabi, Parviz; Alipoor, Mohamad Reza; Ghaderi Pakdel, Firouz; Asghari, Mohammad; Sadighi Alvandi, Mina

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: The interaction between somatosensory cortex and thalamus via a thalamocortical loop is a theory behind induction of absence epilepsy. Inside peri-oral somatosensory (S1po) and primary somatosensory forelimb (S1fl) regions, excitatory and inhibitory systems are not balanced and GABAergic inhibitory synapses seem to play a fundamental role in short-term plasticity alterations. Methods: We investigated the effects of Ethosuximide on presynaptic changes by utilizing paired-pulse stimulation that was recorded from somatosensory cortex in 18 WAG\\Rij rats during epileptic activity. A twisted tripolar electrode including two stimulating electrodes and one recording electrode was implanted into the S1po and S1FL according to stereotaxic landmarks. Paired-pulses (200 µs, 100-1000 µA, 0.1 Hz) were applied to somatosensory cortex at 50, 100, 400, 500 ms inter-pulse intervals for 50 min period. Results: The results showed that paired-pulse facilitation was significantly reduced at all intervals in all times, but compared to the control group of epileptic WAG/Rij rats (p<0.05), it was exceptional about the first 10 minutes after the injection. At the intervals of 50 and 100 ms, a remarkable PPD was found in second, third, fourth and fifth 10-min post injection. Conclusion: These experiments indicate that Ethosuximide has effects on presynaptic facilitation in somatosensory cortex inhibitory loops by alteration in GABA levels that leads to a markedly diminished PPF in paired-pulse stimulation. PMID:26819920

  20. Spinal direct current stimulation modulates the activity of gracile nucleus and primary somatosensory cortex in anaesthetized rats

    PubMed Central

    Aguilar, J; Pulecchi, F; Dilena, R; Oliviero, A; Priori, A; Foffani, G

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Afferent somatosensory activity from the spinal cord has a profound impact on the activity of the brain. Here we investigated the effects of spinal stimulation using direct current, delivered at the thoracic level, on the spontaneous activity and on the somatosensory evoked potentials of the gracile nucleus, which is the main entry point for hindpaw somatosensory signals reaching the brain from the dorsal columns, and of the primary somatosensory cortex in anaesthetized rats. Anodal spinal direct current stimulation (sDCS) increased the spontaneous activity and decreased the amplitude of evoked responses in the gracile nucleus, whereas cathodal sDCS produced the opposite effects. At the level of the primary somatosensory cortex, the changes in spontaneous activity induced by sDCS were consistent with the effects observed in the gracile nucleus, but the changes in cortical evoked responses were more variable and state dependent. Therefore, sDCS can modulate in a polarity-specific manner the supraspinal activity of the somatosensory system, offering a versatile bottom-up neuromodulation technique that could potentially be useful in a number of clinical applications. PMID:21825031

  1. The need to add motor evoked potential monitoring to somatosensory and electromyographic monitoring in cervical spine surgery

    PubMed Central

    Epstein, Nancy E.

    2013-01-01

    Intraoperative neural monitoring (IONM), utilizing somatosensory evoked potentials (SEP) and electromyography (EMG), was introduced to cervical spine surgery in the late 1980's. However, as SEP only provided physiological data regarding the posterior cord, new motor deficits were observed utilizing SEP alone. This prompted the development of motor evoked potential monitoring (MEP) which facilitated real-time assessment of the anterior/anterolateral spinal cord. Although all three modalities, SEP, EMG, and MEP, are routinely available for IONM of cervical spine procedures, MEP are not yet routinely employed. The purpose of this review is to emphasize that MEP should now routinely accompany SEP and EMG when performing IONM of cervical spine surgery. Interestingly, one of the most common reasons for malpractice suits involving the cervical spine, is quadriparesis/quadriplegia following a single level anterior cervical diskectomy and fusion (ACDF). Previously, typical allegations in these suits included; negligent surgery, lack of informed consent, failure to diagnose/treat, and failure to brace. Added to this list, perhaps, as the 5th most reason for a suit will be failure to monitor with MEP. This review documents the value of MEP monitoring in addition to SEP and EMG monitoring in cervical spine surgery. The addition of MEP0 should minimize major motor injuries, and more accurately and reliably detect impending anterior cord deterioration that may be missed with SEP monitoring alone. PMID:24340237

  2. No Evidence for Threat-Induced Spatial Prioritization of Somatosensory Stimulation during Pain Control Using a Synchrony Judgment Paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Van Damme, Stefaan

    2016-01-01

    Topical research efforts on attention to pain often take a critical look at the modulatory role of top-down factors. For instance, it has been shown that the fearful expectation of pain at a location of the body directs attention towards that body part. In addition, motivated attempts to control this pain were found to modulate this prioritization effect. Such studies have often used a temporal order judgment task, requiring participants to judge the order in which two stimuli are presented by indicating which one they perceived first. As this constitutes a forced-choice response format, such studies may be subject to response bias. The aim of the current study was to address this concern. We used a ternary synchrony judgment paradigm, in which participants judged the order in which two somatosensory stimuli occurred. Critically, participants now also had the option to give a ‘simultaneous’ response when they did not perceive a difference. This way we eliminated the need for guessing, and thus reduced the risk of response bias. One location was threatened with the possibility of pain in half of the trials, as predicted by an auditory cue. Additionally, half of the participants (pain control group) were encouraged to avoid pain stimuli by executing a quick button press. The other half (comparison group) performed a similar action, albeit unrelated to the occurrence of pain. Our data did not support threat-induced spatial prioritization, nor did we find evidence that pain control attempts influenced attention in any way. PMID:27270456

  3. Interhemispheric modulation of sensory transmission in the primary somatosensory cortex of rats.

    PubMed

    Shin, H C; Won, C K; Jung, S C; Oh, S; Park, S; Sohn, J H

    1997-07-18

    Single unit responses of the primary somatosensory (SI) cortical neurons to the stimulation of the forepaw single digit were monitored in anesthetized rats before and after subcutaneous injection of lidocaine to an ipsilateral homologous receptive field (IHRF). Quantitative determination of the temporal changes of afferent sensory transmission was done by analyzing poststimulus time histograms of unit responses. Temporary deafferentation to the IHRF induced immediate, but reversible suppression of afferent sensory transmission in the SI cortex and this suppression lasts up to 35 min post-deafferentation period (during 10-15 min, -21.81 +/- 5.9%, P < 0.01). This result suggests that temporary absence of afferent inflow from the digit to the SI cortex may exert interhemispheric modulation of afferent sensory transmission in the opposite somatosensory cortex of anesthetized rats.

  4. Interactions of acoustic and somatosensory evoked responses in a polysensory cortex of the cat.

    PubMed

    Toldi, J; Fehér, O

    1987-01-01

    Interactions of acoustic and somatosensory evoked potentials were studied in the anterior suprasylvian gyrus of the cat. The interactions showed dynamic changes and were susceptible to different kinds of influences. The interactions could be influenced by synchronous activation of the acoustic and somatosensory inputs with 2 Hz frequency, or by elevating the stimulus frequency. Interactions could be influenced by amphetamine and gamma-glutamyl-taurine, drugs known as capable of influencing the arousal level of the brain. The antagonists of amphetamine prevented this effect. Drugs acting on the cortical GABA-ergic system proved also to be decisive in the interactions of evoked potentials of different origins. In some experiments unit activity was recorded parallel with evoked potentials.

  5. Visual-Somatosensory Integration is Linked to Physical Activity Level in Older Adults.

    PubMed

    Mahoney, Jeannette R; Dumas, Kristina; Holtzer, Roee

    2015-01-01

    Studies examining multisensory integration (MSI) in aging consistently demonstrate greater reaction time (RT) facilitation in old compared to young adults, but often fail to determine the utility of MSI. The aim of the current experiment was to further elucidate the utility of MSI in aging by determining its relationship to physical activity level. 147 non-demented older adults (mean age 77 years; 57% female) participated. Participants were instructed to make speeded responses to visual, somatosensory, and visual-somatosensory (VS) stimuli. Depending on the magnitude of the individuals' RT facilitation, participants were classified into a MSI or NO MSI group. Physical activity was assessed using a validated physical activity scale. As predicted, RTs to VS stimuli were significantly shorter than those elicited to constituent unisensory conditions. Multisensory RT facilitation was a significant predictor of total number of physical activity days per month, with individuals in the NO MSI group reporting greater engagement in physical activities compared to those requiring greater RT facilitation.

  6. Dizziness and Loss of Balance in Individuals With Diabetes: Relative Contribution of Vestibular Versus Somatosensory Dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Walley, Megan; Anderson, Elizabeth; Pippen, Mary Walch; Maitland, Gerry

    2014-04-01

    The authors studied patients with diabetes and complaints of dizziness to determine whether peripheral neuropathy or inner ear dysfunction was more likely to disturb balance. Quantitative testing showed that the majority failed to maintain balance in vestibular-related conditions and had normal equilibrium scores in conditions relying on somatosensory input. Vestibular dysfunction should be an immediate consideration in patients with diabetes and complaints of dizziness regardless of the presence of peripheral neuropathy.

  7. Therapeutic hypothermia and reliability of somatosensory evoked potentials in predicting outcome after cardiopulmonary arrest.

    PubMed

    Rothstein, Ted Laurence

    2012-08-01

    The loss of the N20 component on testing median somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEP) has been established as the most reliable indicator of unfavorable prognosis in post-cardiopulmonary arrest patients. With the intervention of therapeutic hypothermia in the management of patients who remain comatose following cardiopulmonary arrest that association is now in dispute. Abandoning SSEP as a key prognostic indicator of neurologic outcome would be a serious loss and cannot be justified.

  8. Palliation of recurrent Ewing sarcoma of the pelvis with cryoablation and somatosensory-evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Lessard, Anne-Marie I; Gilchrist, James; Schaefer, Leah; Dupuy, Damian E

    2009-01-01

    Palliation of recurrent Ewing sarcoma can be difficult to treat due to tumor resistance to chemotherapy and previously received maximum dose radiotherapy. We report the successful use of cryoablation for pain palliation in a patient with recurrent pelvic Ewing sarcoma. Tumor location necessitated use of somatosensory-evoked potentials to prevent nerve damage to the S1 nerve root. Clinical and imaging aspects of the case are discussed.

  9. Cross-sectional imaging of functional activation in the rat somatosensory cortex with optical coherence tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aguirre, A. D.; Chen, Y.; Ruvinskaya, L.; Devor, A.; Boas, D. A.; Fujimoto, J. G.

    2005-08-01

    Simultaneous optical coherence tomography (OCT) and video microscopy were performed on the rat somatosensory cortex through a thinned skull during forepaw stimulation. Fractional change measurements in OCT images reveal a functional signal timecourse similar to well understood hemodynamic signal timecourses measured with video microscopy. The precise etiology of the observed OCT functional signal is still under investigation, but these results suggest that OCT can provide high-resolution cross-sectional images of functional neuro-vascular activation.

  10. Vestibular-somatosensory convergence in head movement control during locomotion after long-duration space flight.

    PubMed

    Mulavara, A P; Ruttley, T; Cohen, H S; Peters, B T; Miller, C; Brady, R; Merkle, L; Bloomberg, J J

    2012-01-01

    Space flight causes astronauts to be exposed to adaptation in both the vestibular and body load-sensing somatosensory systems. The goal of these studies was to examine the contributions of vestibular and body load-sensing somatosensory influences on vestibular mediated head movement control during locomotion after long-duration space flight. Subjects walked on a motor driven treadmill while performing a gaze stabilization task. Data were collected from three independent subject groups that included bilateral labyrinthine deficient (LD) patients, normal subjects before and after 30 minutes of 40% bodyweight unloaded treadmill walking, and astronauts before and after long-duration space flight. Motion data from the head and trunk segments were used to calculate the amplitude of angular head pitch and trunk vertical translation movement while subjects performed a gaze stabilization task, to estimate the contributions of vestibular reflexive mechanisms in head pitch movements. Exposure to unloaded locomotion caused a significant increase in head pitch movements in normal subjects, whereas the head pitch movements of LD patients were significantly decreased. This is the first evidence of adaptation of vestibular mediated head movement responses to unloaded treadmill walking. Astronaut subjects showed a heterogeneous response of both increases and decreases in the amplitude of head pitch movement. We infer that body load-sensing somatosensory input centrally modulates vestibular input and can adaptively modify vestibularly mediated head-movement control during locomotion. Thus, space flight may cause central adaptation of the converging vestibular and body load-sensing somatosensory systems leading to alterations in head movement control.

  11. Children with cerebral palsy have uncharacteristic somatosensory cortical oscillations after stimulation of the hand mechanoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Kurz, M J; Becker, K M; Heinrichs-Graham, E; Wilson, T W

    2015-10-01

    Numerous clinical investigations have reported that children with cerebral palsy (CP) have tactile discrimination deficits that likely limit their ability to plan and manipulate objects. Despite this clinical awareness, we still have a substantial knowledge gap in our understanding of the neurological basis for these tactile discrimination deficits. Previously, we have shown that children with CP have aberrant theta-alpha (4-14 Hz) oscillations in the somatosensory cortices following tactile stimulation of the foot. In this investigation, we evaluated if these aberrant theta-alpha oscillations also extend to the hand. Magnetoencephalography was used to evaluate event-related changes in the theta-alpha and beta (18-34 Hz) somatosensory cortical oscillations in groups of children with CP and typically developing (TD) children following tactile stimulation of their hands. Our results showed that the somatosensory theta-alpha oscillations were relatively intact in children with CP, which is in contrast to our previous results for foot tactile stimulations. We suspect that these inter-study differences may be related to the higher probability that the neural tracts serving the lower extremities are damaged in children with CP, compared to those serving the upper extremities. This inference is plausible since the participating children with CP had Manual Ability Classification System (MACS) levels between I and II. In contrast to the theta-alpha results, children with CP did exhibit a sharp increase in beta activity during the same time period, which was not observed in TD children. This suggests that children with CP still have deficits in the computational aspect of somatosensory processing.

  12. Effects of aerobic exercise under different thermal conditions on human somatosensory processing.

    PubMed

    Nakata, Hiroki; Oshiro, Misaki; Namba, Mari; Shibasaki, Manabu

    2016-10-01

    The present study aimed to investigate the effects of aerobic exercise on human somatosensory processing recorded by somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) under temperate [TEMP, 20°C and 40% relative humidity (RH)] and hot (HOT, 35°C and 30% RH) environments. Fifteen healthy subjects performed 4 × 15-min bouts of a moderate cycling exercise [mean power output: 156.5 ± 7.7 (SE) W], with a 10-min rest period and received a posterior tibial nerve stimulation at the left ankle before and after each exercise bout; SEPs were recorded in five sessions; 1st (pre), 2nd (post-1st exercise bout), 3rd (post-2nd exercise bout), 4th (post-3rd exercise bout), and 5th (post-4th exercise bout). The peak latencies and amplitudes of the P37, N50, P60, and N70 components at Cz were evaluated. The latencies of P37, N50, P60, and N70 were significantly shorter with the repetition of aerobic exercise, and these shortened latencies were significantly greater in the HOT condition than in the TEMP condition (P37: 3rd, P < 0.05, and 5th, P < 0.01; P60: 4th, P < 0.05, and 5th, P < 0.01; N70: 4th, P < 0.05, and 5th, P < 0.001). No significant differences were observed in the amplitudes of any SEP component under either thermal condition. These results suggest that the conduction velocity of the ascending somatosensory input was accelerated by increases in body temperature, and aerobic exercise did not alter the strength of neural activity in cortical somatosensory processing.

  13. Vestibular-Somatosensory Convergence in Head Movement Control During Locomotion after Long-Duration Space Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Ruttley, Tara; Cohen, Helen; Peters, Brian; Miller, Chris; Brady, Rachel; Merkle, Lauren; Bloomberg, Jacob

    2010-01-01

    Exposure to the microgravity conditions of space flight induces adaptive modification in the control of vestibular-mediated reflexive head movement during locomotion after space flight. Space flight causes astronauts to be exposed to somatosensory adaptation in both the vestibular and body load-sensing (BLS) systems. The goal of these studies was to examine the contributions of vestibular and BLS-mediated somatosensory influences on head movement control during locomotion after long-duration space flight. Subjects were asked to walk on a treadmill driven at 1.8 m/s while performing a visual acuity task. Data were collected using the same testing protocol from three independent subject groups; 1) normal subjects before and after exposure to 30 minutes of 40% bodyweight unloaded treadmill walking, 2) bilateral labyrinthine deficient (LD) patients and 3) astronauts who performed the protocol before and after long duration space flight. Motion data from head and trunk segmental motion data were obtained to calculate the angular head pitch (HP) movements during walking trials while subjects performed the visual task, to estimate the contributions of vestibular reflexive mechanisms in HP movements. Results showed that exposure to unloaded locomotion caused a significant increase in HP movements, whereas in the LD patients the HP movements were significantly decreased. Astronaut subjects results showed a heterogeneous response of both increases and decreases in the amplitude of HP movement. We infer that BLS-mediated somatosensory input centrally modulates vestibular input and can adaptively modify head-movement control during locomotion. Thus, space flight may cause a central adaptation mediated by the converging vestibular and body load-sensing somatosensory systems.

  14. Distributed functions of detection and discrimination of vibrotactile stimuli in the hierarchical human somatosensory system.

    PubMed

    Kim, Junsuk; Müller, Klaus-Robert; Chung, Yoon Gi; Chung, Soon-Cheol; Park, Jang-Yeon; Bülthoff, Heinrich H; Kim, Sung-Phil

    2014-01-01

    According to the hierarchical view of human somatosensory network, somatic sensory information is relayed from the thalamus to primary somatosensory cortex (S1), and then distributed to adjacent cortical regions to perform further perceptual and cognitive functions. Although a number of neuroimaging studies have examined neuronal activity correlated with tactile stimuli, comparatively less attention has been devoted toward understanding how vibrotactile stimulus information is processed in the hierarchical somatosensory cortical network. To explore the hierarchical perspective of tactile information processing, we studied two cases: (a) discrimination between the locations of finger stimulation; and (b) detection of stimulation against no stimulation on individual fingers, using both standard general linear model (GLM) and searchlight multi-voxel pattern analysis (MVPA) techniques. These two cases were studied on the same data set resulting from a passive vibrotactile stimulation experiment. Our results showed that vibrotactile stimulus locations on fingers could be discriminated from measurements of human functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). In particular, it was in case (a) we observed activity in contralateral posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and supramarginal gyrus (SMG) but not in S1, while in case; (b) we found significant cortical activations in S1 but not in PPC and SMG. These discrepant observations suggest the functional specialization with regard to vibrotactile stimulus locations, especially, the hierarchical information processing in the human somatosensory cortical areas. Our findings moreover support the general understanding that S1 is the main sensory receptive area for the sense of touch, and adjacent cortical regions (i.e., PPC and SMG) are in charge of a higher level of processing and may thus contribute most for the successful classification between stimulated finger locations.

  15. A systematic analysis of neurons with large somatosensory receptive fields covering multiple body regions in the secondary somatosensory area of macaque monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Toda, T.; Hihara, S.; Tanaka, M.; Iriki, A.; Iwamura, Y.

    2016-01-01

    Previous neurophysiological studies performed in macaque monkeys have revealed complex somatosensory responses in the secondary somatosensory area (SII), such as large receptive fields (RFs), as well as bilateral ones. However, systematic analyses of neurons with large RFs have not been performed. In the present study, we recorded single-unit activities in SII of awake macaque monkeys to investigate systematically large RFs by dividing the whole body into four body regions (head, trunk, forelimb, and hindlimb). Recorded neurons were classified into two types, according to whether the RFs were confined to one body region: single (n = 817) and combined (n = 282) body-region types. These two types were distinct in terms of the percentage of bilateral RFs: 55% in the single-region type and 90% in the combined type, demonstrating that two types of RF enlargement occur simultaneously in the combined type, namely, RF convergence from different body regions and RF convergence from both hemibodies. Among the combined-type RFs, two tendencies of RF convergence were found: 1) the distal parts of the limbs (i.e., hand and foot) and the mouth are interconnected, and 2) the trunk RFs extend continuously toward the distal parts of the limb and head to cover the entire body surface. Our distribution analysis on unfolded maps clarified that neurons having RFs with these two tendencies were distributed within specific subregions in SII. PMID:27559139

  16. Contact Us about Asbestos

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    How to contact EPA for more information on asbestos, including state and regional contacts, EPA’s Asbestos Abatement/Management Ombudsman and the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Assistance Information Service (TSCA Hotline).

  17. Colored Contact Lens Dangers

    MedlinePlus

    ... Halloween Hazard: The Hidden Dangers of Buying Decorative Contact Lenses Without a Prescription Sep. 26, 2013 It ... the truth." Real People, Real Problems with Colored Contact Lenses Julian: Teenager Blinded In One Eye By ...

  18. Multimodel quantitative analysis of somatosensory evoked potentials after cardiac arrest with graded hypothermia.

    PubMed

    Leanne Moon Young; Choudhary, Rishabh; Xiaofeng Jia

    2016-08-01

    Cardiac arrest (CA) is one of the most prominent causes of morbidity and mortality in adults. Therapeutic hypothermia (TH) is a recommended treatment to improve survival and functional outcome following CA, however, it is unclear what degree of TH is most beneficial. It has been suggested that TH of 33°C provides no survival or outcome benefits over TH of 36°C. Additionally, there is a lack of verified objective quantitative prognostic tools for comatose CA patients under TH. In this study, we calculated three quantitative markers of somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEP) to examine their potential to track recovery in the early period following CA under graded TH. A total of 16 rats were randomly divided among 4 temperature groups (n=4/group): normothermia (N0, 36.5-37.5°C), hypothermia 1 (H1, 30-32°C), hypothermia 2 (H2, 32-34°C) and hypothermia 3 (H3, 34-36°C). All rats underwent a 15min baseline SSEP recording followed by 9min asphyxial-CA, resulting in severe cerebral injury, and immediate temperature management following resuscitation for 6 hours. SSEP recordings were maintained in 15 min intervals from 30min-4hrs after resuscitation. The N10 amplitude, N10 latency and quantitative SSEP phase space area (qSSEP-PSA) were calculated for the early recovery period and normalized to their respective baselines. Functional recovery was determined by the neurological deficit scale (NDS). N10 amplitude was significantly larger in H1, H2 and H3 compared to N0. N10 latency was significantly longer in H1 than all temperature groups and all hypothermia groups had significantly longer latencies than N0. qSSEP-PSA had significantly better recovery in H1 and H2 than N0. Animals with good outcome (72hr NDS>50) had better recovery of all markers. N10 amplitude was significantly correlated with N10 latency and qSSEP-PSA. The results importantly demonstrate that quantified SSEPs have the potential to objectively track recovery following CA with graded TH.

  19. Origin of subcortical somatosensory evoked potentials in response to posterior tibial nerve stimulation in humans.

    PubMed

    Urasaki, E; Wada, S; Yokota, A; Tokimura, T; Yasukouchi, H

    1993-06-01

    To identify the origin of short latency somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs) to posterior tibial nerve stimulation, direct recordings were made from the cervical cord, the ventricular system and the frontal subcortex during 8 neurosurgical operations. The origin of each component of SSEPs was also studied in 7 selected patients with various lesions in the central nervous system. In addition, SSEPs to median nerve stimulation were investigated in 4 of 8 surgical cases and all 7 cases of the lesion study group. Bilateral posterior tibial nerve stimulation in 10 normal subjects showed spinal N28 on the skin of the posterior neck and far-field P30 and N33 components followed by a cortical P38 component at the scalp. Direct recordings made to the mid-brain through the medulla oblongata showed a negative potential with gradually increasing latency. The peak of the negativity in the vicinity of the dorsal column nucleus showed almost the same latency as that of the scalp far-field P30, and positivity with a stationary peak was found above the dorsal column nucleus. Above the mid-pons, there was a stationary negativity with no latency shift, showing the same peak latency as that of scalp N33. The spatiotemporal distributions of P30 and N33 to posterior tibial nerve stimulation were analogous to those of P14 and N18 by median nerve stimulation. Transesophageal and direct cervical cord recordings showed that the spinal N13 phase to median nerve stimulation was reversed between the dorsal and ventral sides of the cervical cord. No such reversal occurred for the spinal N28 potential. Clinical lesion studies showed that changes in P30 and P14, and in N33 and N18 correlated with one another: that is, 1) prolongation of latency of N33 was also observed for N18; 2) absence of P30 was paralleled by the absence of P14. These data suggest that spinal N28 originates from ascending activity such as a dorsal column volley, and scalp P30 comes from activity near the dorsal column

  20. Somatosensory brainstem, thalamus, and cortex of the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus).

    PubMed

    Sawyer, Eva K; Turner, Emily C; Kaas, Jon H

    2016-06-15

    Pinnipeds (sea lions, seals, and walruses) are notable for many reasons, including their ape-sized brains, their adaptation to a coastal niche that combines mastery of the sea with strong ties to land, and the remarkable abilities of their trigeminal whisker system. However, little is known about the central nervous system of pinnipeds. Here we report on the somatosensory areas of the nervous system of the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus). Using stains for Nissl, cytochrome oxidase, and vesicular glutamate transporters, we investigated the primary somatosensory areas in the brainstem, thalamus, and cortex in one sea lion pup and the external anatomy of the brain in a second pup. We find that the sea lion's impressive array of whiskers is matched by a large trigeminal representation in the brainstem with well-defined parcellation that resembles the barrelettes found in rodents but scaled upward in size. The dorsal column nuclei are large and distinct. The ventral posterior nucleus of the thalamus has divisions, with a large area for the presumptive head representation. Primary somatosensory cortex is located in the neocortex just anterior to the main vertical fissure, and precisely locating it as we do here is useful for comparing the highly gyrified pinniped cortex with that of other carnivores. To our knowledge this work is the first comprehensive report on the central nervous system areas for any sensory system in a pinniped. The results may be useful both in the veterinary setting and for comparative studies related to brain evolution.

  1. Image-Guided Transcranial Focused Ultrasound Stimulates Human Primary Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wonhye; Kim, Hyungmin; Jung, Yujin; Song, In-Uk; Chung, Yong An; Yoo, Seung-Schik

    2015-01-01

    Focused ultrasound (FUS) has recently been investigated as a new mode of non-invasive brain stimulation, which offers exquisite spatial resolution and depth control. We report on the elicitation of explicit somatosensory sensations as well as accompanying evoked electroencephalographic (EEG) potentials induced by FUS stimulation of the human somatosensory cortex. As guided by individual-specific neuroimage data, FUS was transcranially delivered to the hand somatosensory cortex among healthy volunteers. The sonication elicited transient tactile sensations on the hand area contralateral to the sonicated hemisphere, with anatomical specificity of up to a finger, while EEG recordings revealed the elicitation of sonication-specific evoked potentials. Retrospective numerical simulation of the acoustic propagation through the skull showed that a threshold of acoustic intensity may exist for successful cortical stimulation. The neurological and neuroradiological assessment before and after the sonication, along with strict safety considerations through the individual-specific estimation of effective acoustic intensity in situ and thermal effects, showed promising initial safety profile; however, equal/more rigorous precautionary procedures are advised for future studies. The transient and localized stimulation of the brain using image-guided transcranial FUS may serve as a novel tool for the non-invasive assessment and modification of region-specific brain function. PMID:25735418

  2. Behavioural and neurofunctional impact of transcranial direct current stimulation on somatosensory learning.

    PubMed

    Hilgenstock, Raphael; Weiss, Thomas; Huonker, Ralph; Witte, Otto W

    2016-04-01

    We investigated the effect of repeated delivery of anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on somatosensory performance and long-term learning. Over the course of five days, tDCS was applied to the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) by means of neuronavigation employing magnetencephalography (MEG). Compared to its sham application, tDCS promoted tactile learning by reducing the two-point discrimination threshold assessed by the grating orientation task (GOT) primarily by affecting intersessional changes in performance. These results were accompanied by alterations in the neurofunctional organization of the brain, as revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging conducted prior to the study, at the fifth day of tDCS delivery and four weeks after the last application of tDCS. A decrease in activation at the primary site of anodal tDCS delivery in the left S1 along retention of superior tactile acuity was observed at follow-up four weeks after the application of tDCS. Thus, we demonstrate long-term effects that repeated tDCS imposes on somatosensory functioning. This is the first study to provide insight into the mode of operation of tDCS on the brain's response to long-term perceptual learning, adding an important piece of evidence from the domain of non-invasive brain stimulation to show that functional changes detectable by fMRI in primary sensory cortices participate in perceptual learning.

  3. Understanding the role of the primary somatosensory cortex: Opportunities for rehabilitation.

    PubMed

    Borich, M R; Brodie, S M; Gray, W A; Ionta, S; Boyd, L A

    2015-12-01

    Emerging evidence indicates impairments in somatosensory function may be a major contributor to motor dysfunction associated with neurologic injury or disorders. However, the neuroanatomical substrates underlying the connection between aberrant sensory input and ineffective motor output are still under investigation. The primary somatosensory cortex (S1) plays a critical role in processing afferent somatosensory input and contributes to the integration of sensory and motor signals necessary for skilled movement. Neuroimaging and neurostimulation approaches provide unique opportunities to non-invasively study S1 structure and function including connectivity with other cortical regions. These research techniques have begun to illuminate casual contributions of abnormal S1 activity and connectivity to motor dysfunction and poorer recovery of motor function in neurologic patient populations. This review synthesizes recent evidence illustrating the role of S1 in motor control, motor learning and functional recovery with an emphasis on how information from these investigations may be exploited to inform stroke rehabilitation to reduce motor dysfunction and improve therapeutic outcomes.

  4. Seeing is not feeling: posterior parietal but not somatosensory cortex engagement during touch observation.

    PubMed

    Chan, Annie W-Y; Baker, Chris I

    2015-01-28

    Observing touch has been reported to elicit activation in human primary and secondary somatosensory cortices and is suggested to underlie our ability to interpret other's behavior and potentially empathy. However, despite these reports, there are a large number of inconsistencies in terms of the precise topography of activation, the extent of hemispheric lateralization, and what aspects of the stimulus are necessary to drive responses. To address these issues, we investigated the localization and functional properties of regions responsive to observed touch in a large group of participants (n = 40). Surprisingly, even with a lenient contrast of hand brushing versus brushing alone, we did not find any selective activation for observed touch in the hand regions of somatosensory cortex but rather in superior and inferior portions of neighboring posterior parietal cortex, predominantly in the left hemisphere. These regions in the posterior parietal cortex required the presence of both brush and hand to elicit strong responses and showed some selectivity for the form of the object or agent of touch. Furthermore, the inferior parietal region showed nonspecific tactile and motor responses, suggesting some similarity to area PFG in the monkey. Collectively, our findings challenge the automatic engagement of somatosensory cortex when observing touch, suggest mislocalization in previous studies, and instead highlight the role of posterior parietal cortex.

  5. Image-guided transcranial focused ultrasound stimulates human primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Lee, Wonhye; Kim, Hyungmin; Jung, Yujin; Song, In-Uk; Chung, Yong An; Yoo, Seung-Schik

    2015-03-04

    Focused ultrasound (FUS) has recently been investigated as a new mode of non-invasive brain stimulation, which offers exquisite spatial resolution and depth control. We report on the elicitation of explicit somatosensory sensations as well as accompanying evoked electroencephalographic (EEG) potentials induced by FUS stimulation of the human somatosensory cortex. As guided by individual-specific neuroimage data, FUS was transcranially delivered to the hand somatosensory cortex among healthy volunteers. The sonication elicited transient tactile sensations on the hand area contralateral to the sonicated hemisphere, with anatomical specificity of up to a finger, while EEG recordings revealed the elicitation of sonication-specific evoked potentials. Retrospective numerical simulation of the acoustic propagation through the skull showed that a threshold of acoustic intensity may exist for successful cortical stimulation. The neurological and neuroradiological assessment before and after the sonication, along with strict safety considerations through the individual-specific estimation of effective acoustic intensity in situ and thermal effects, showed promising initial safety profile; however, equal/more rigorous precautionary procedures are advised for future studies. The transient and localized stimulation of the brain using image-guided transcranial FUS may serve as a novel tool for the non-invasive assessment and modification of region-specific brain function.

  6. Skill-specific changes in somatosensory-evoked potentials and reaction times in baseball players.

    PubMed

    Yamashiro, Koya; Sato, Daisuke; Onishi, Hideaki; Yoshida, Takuya; Horiuchi, Yoko; Nakazawa, Sho; Maruyama, Atsuo

    2013-03-01

    Athletic training is known to induce neuroplastic alterations in specific somatosensory circuits, which are reflected by changes in short-latency somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs). The aim of this study is to clarify whether specific training in athletes affects the long-latency SEPs related to information processing of stimulation. The long-latency SEPs P100 and N140 were recorded at midline cortical electrode positions (Fz, Cz, and Pz) in response to stimulation of the index finger of the dominant hand in fifteen baseball players (baseball group) and in fifteen athletes in sports such as swimming, track and field events, and soccer (sports group) that do not require fine somatosensory discrimination or motor control of the hand. The long-latency SEPs were measured under a passive condition (no response required) and a reaction time (RT) condition in which subjects were instructed to rapidly push a button in response to stimulus presentation. The peak P100 and peak N140 latencies and RT were significantly shorter in the baseball group than the sports group. Moreover, there were significant positive correlations between RT and both the peak P100 and the peak N140 latencies. Specific athletic training regimens that involve the hand may induce neuroplastic alterations in the cortical hand representation areas playing a vital role in rapid sensory processing and initiation of motor responses.

  7. Image-Guided Transcranial Focused Ultrasound Stimulates Human Primary Somatosensory Cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Wonhye; Kim, Hyungmin; Jung, Yujin; Song, In-Uk; Chung, Yong An; Yoo, Seung-Schik

    2015-03-01

    Focused ultrasound (FUS) has recently been investigated as a new mode of non-invasive brain stimulation, which offers exquisite spatial resolution and depth control. We report on the elicitation of explicit somatosensory sensations as well as accompanying evoked electroencephalographic (EEG) potentials induced by FUS stimulation of the human somatosensory cortex. As guided by individual-specific neuroimage data, FUS was transcranially delivered to the hand somatosensory cortex among healthy volunteers. The sonication elicited transient tactile sensations on the hand area contralateral to the sonicated hemisphere, with anatomical specificity of up to a finger, while EEG recordings revealed the elicitation of sonication-specific evoked potentials. Retrospective numerical simulation of the acoustic propagation through the skull showed that a threshold of acoustic intensity may exist for successful cortical stimulation. The neurological and neuroradiological assessment before and after the sonication, along with strict safety considerations through the individual-specific estimation of effective acoustic intensity in situ and thermal effects, showed promising initial safety profile; however, equal/more rigorous precautionary procedures are advised for future studies. The transient and localized stimulation of the brain using image-guided transcranial FUS may serve as a novel tool for the non-invasive assessment and modification of region-specific brain function.

  8. Task-specific role of ipsilateral pathways: somatosensory evoked potentials during cooperative hand movements.

    PubMed

    Schrafl-Altermatt, Miriam; Dietz, Volker

    2014-12-17

    Task-specific neural coupling during cooperative hand movements has been described in healthy volunteers, manifested by bilateral reflex electromyographic responses in forearm muscles following unilateral ulnar nerve stimulation and by task-specific activation of secondary somatosensory cortical areas (S2) in functional MRI. The aim of this study was to investigate the role of sensory input to the ipsilateral and contralateral cortex during a cooperative task. Somatosensory evoked potentials from the ulnar nerve were recorded over the ipsilateral and contralateral cortex during resting and during cooperative and noncooperative hand movements. Ipsilateral potentials with smaller amplitude were present under all conditions in almost all participants. In relation to the resting condition, the amplitudes of both the ipsilateral and the contralateral potential were reduced during the cooperative and the noncooperative tasks. Nevertheless, the reduction in amplitude was similar for the ipsilateral and the contralateral potentials in the noncooperative task, but less on the ipsilateral compared with the contralateral side during the cooperative task. The ratio of ipsilateral/contralateral somatosensory evoked potential amplitude was thus significantly larger during the cooperative task compared with the control task and the resting condition. This indicates a functional role of ipsilateral pathways connecting the cervical spinal cord with the cortex during the cooperative task. These observations favor the idea of a task-specific mediation of sensory input from both hands to the ipsilateral and contralateral hemispheres as the basis of neuronal coupling.

  9. Suppression of vibrotactile discrimination by transcranial magnetic stimulation of primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Morley, J W; Vickery, R M; Stuart, M; Turman, A B

    2007-08-01

    A number of human and animal studies have reported a differential representation of the frequency of vibrotactile stimuli in the somatosensory cortices: neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) are predominantly responsive to lower frequencies of tactile vibration, and those in the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII) are predominantly responsive to higher frequencies. We employed transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) over SI in human subjects to investigate the extent to which the inactivation of SI disrupted the discrimination of vibrotactile stimulation at frequencies that give rise to the tactile sensations of flutter (30 Hz) and vibration (200 Hz). Frequency discrimination around the 30-Hz standard following application of TMS to SI was reduced in seven of the eight subjects, and around the 200-Hz standard was reduced in all eight subjects. The average change in discrimination following TMS was about 20% for both low and high frequencies of vibrotactile stimulation. These data suggest that disruption of SI: (1) has a direct effect on the discrimination of both low and high frequencies of vibrotactile stimuli, consistent with a serial model of processing, or (2) has a direct effect on low-frequency vibrotactile stimuli and an indirect effect on the processing of high-frequency vibrotactile stimuli by SII via cortico-cortical connections between the two regions.

  10. Bilateral connectivity in the somatosensory region using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) by wavelet coherence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernandez Rojas, Raul; Huang, Xu; Ou, Keng-Liang

    2016-12-01

    Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) has been used in medical imaging to obtain oxygenation and hemodynamic response in the cerebral cortex. This technique has been applied in cortical activation detection and functional connectivity in brain research. Despite some advances in functional connectivity, most of the studies have focused on the prefrontal cortex and little has been done to study the somatosensory region (S1). For that reason, the aim of our present study is to assess bilateral connectivity in the somatosensory region by using NIRS and noxious stimulation. Eleven healthy subjects were investigated using near-infrared spectroscopy during an acupuncture stimulation procedure to safely induce pain in subjects. A multiscale analysis based on wavelet transform coherence (WTC) was designed to assess the functional connectivity of corresponding channel pairs within the left and right s1 region. The cortical activation in the somatosensory region was higher after the acupuncture stimulation, which was consistent with similar studies. The coherence in time-frequency domain between homologous signals generated by contralateral channel pairs revealed two main periods (3.2 s and 12.8 s) with high coherence. Based on the WTC analysis, it was also found that the coherence increase in these periods was task-related. This study contributes to the research field to investigate cerebral hemodynamic response of pain perception using NIRS and demonstrates the use of wavelet transform as a method to investigate functional lateralization in the cerebral cortex.

  11. The roles of primary somatosensory cortex in the coding of pain

    PubMed Central

    Vierck, Charles J.; Whitsel, Barry L.; Favorov, Oleg V.; Brown, Alexander W.; Tommerdahl, Mark

    2014-01-01

    The intensity and submodality of pain are widely attributed to stimulus encoding by peripheral and subcortical spinal/trigeminal portions of the somatosensory nervous system. Consistent with this interpretation are studies of surgically anesthetized animals, showing that relationships between nociceptive stimulation and activation of neurons are similar at subcortical levels of somatosensory projection and within the primary somatosensory cortex (in cytoarchitectural areas 3b and 1 of SI). Such findings have led to characterizations of SI as a network which preserves, rather than transforms, the excitatory drive it receives from subcortical levels. Inconsistent with this perspective are images and neurophysiological recordings of SI neurons in lightly anesthetized primates. These studies show that an extreme anterior position within SI (area 3a) receives input originating predominantly from unmyelinated nociceptors, distinguishing it from posterior SI (areas 3b and 1), long recognized as receiving input predominantly from myelinated afferents, including nociceptors. Of particular importance, interactions between these subregions during maintained nociceptive stimulation are accompanied by an altered SI response to myelinated and unmyelinated nociceptors. A revised view of pain coding within SI cortex is discussed, and potentially significant clinical implications are emphasized. PMID:23245864

  12. Abnormal Somatosensory Synchronization in Patients With Paroxysmal Kinesigenic Dyskinesia: A Magnetoencephalographic Study.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, Fu-Jung; Hsu, Wan-Yu; Chen, Wei-Ta; Chen, Rou-Shayn; Lin, Yung-Yang

    2016-08-11

    Paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia (PKD) is a rare group of hyperkinetic movement disorders characterized by brief attacks of choreoathetosis or dystonia. To clarify the alterations of the functional connectivity within the somatosensory network in PKD patients, magnetoencephalographic (MEG) responses to paired median-nerve electrical stimulation were recorded in 10 PKD patients treated by carbamazepine or oxcarbamazepine and 22 age-matched controls. In patients, MEG recordings were obtained during drug-on and -off periods. Source-based functional connectivity analysis was performed between contralateral primary (cSI) and secondary (cSII), and ipsilateral secondary (iSII) somatosensory areas. During drug-off periods, patients with PKD demonstrated decreased cSI-iSII and increased cSII-iSII somatosensory connectivity at theta band. Drug-on periods lowered the functional connectivity in cSI-cSII at alpha and beta bands and in cSII-iSII at theta band compared with the drug-off periods. We suggest that altered theta functional connectivity in cSI-iSII and cSII-iSII could be the neurophysiological signatures in PKD.

  13. Common Coding and Dynamic Interactions Between Observed, Imagined, and Experienced Motor and Somatosensory Activity

    PubMed Central

    Case, Laura K; Pineda, Jaime; Ramachandran, Vilayanur S

    2015-01-01

    Motor imagery and perception- considered generally as forms of motor simulation- share overlapping neural representations with motor production. While much research has focused on the extent of this “common coding,” less attention has been paid to how these overlapping representations interact. How do imagined, observed, or produced actions influence one another, and how do we maintain control over our perception and behavior? In the first part of this review we describe interactions between motor production and motor simulation, and explore apparent regulatory mechanisms that balance these processes. Next, we consider the somatosensory system. Numerous studies now support a “sensory mirror system” comprised of neural representations activated by either afferent sensation or vicarious sensation. In the second part of this review we summarize evidence for shared representations of sensation and sensory simulation (including imagery and observed sensation), and suggest that similar interactions and regulation of simulation occur in the somatosensory domain as in the motor domain. We suggest that both motor and somatosensory simulations are flexibly regulated to support simulations congruent with our sensorimotor experience and goals and suppress or separate the influence of those that are not. These regulatory mechanisms are frequently revealed by cases of brain injury but can also be employed to facilitate sensorimotor rehabilitation. PMID:25863237

  14. Effect of Range and Angular Velocity of Passive Movement on Somatosensory Evoked Magnetic Fields.

    PubMed

    Sugawara, Kazuhiro; Onishi, Hideaki; Yamashiro, Koya; Kojima, Sho; Miyaguchi, Shota; Kotan, Shinichi; Tsubaki, Atsuhiro; Kirimoto, Hikari; Tamaki, Hiroyuki; Shirozu, Hiroshi; Kameyama, Shigeki

    2016-09-01

    To clarify characteristics of each human somatosensory evoked field (SEF) component following passive movement (PM), PM1, PM2, and PM3, using high spatiotemporal resolution 306-channel magnetoencephalography and varying PM range and angular velocity. We recorded SEFs following PM under three conditions [normal range-normal velocity (NN), small range-normal velocity (SN), and small range-slow velocity (SS)] with changing movement range and angular velocity in 12 participants and calculated the amplitude, equivalent current dipole (ECD) location, and the ECD strength for each component. All components were observed in six participants, whereas only PM1 and PM3 in the other six. Clear response deflections at the ipsilateral hemisphere to PM side were observed in seven participants. PM1 amplitude was larger under NN and SN conditions, and mean ECD location for PM1 was at primary motor area. PM3 amplitude was larger under SN condition and mean ECD location for PM3 under SS condition was at primary somatosensory area. PM1 amplitude was dependent on the angular velocity of PM, suggesting that PM1 reflects afferent input from muscle spindle, whereas PM3 amplitude was dependent on the duration. The ECD for PM3 was located in the primary somatosensory cortex, suggesting that PM3 reflects cutaneous input. We confirmed the hypothesis for locally distinct generators and characteristics of each SEF component.

  15. Early changes in somatosensory function in spinal pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Marcuzzi, Anna; Dean, Catherine M; Wrigley, Paul J; Hush, Julia M

    2015-02-01

    Alterations in sensory processing have been demonstrated in chronic low back and neck pain. However, it has not been yet systematically summarized how early these changes occur in spinal pain. This systematic review examines the available literature measuring somatosensory function in acute (<6 weeks) and subacute (6-12 weeks) spinal pain. The protocol for this review has been registered on the International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (PROSPERO). An electronic search of 4 databases was conducted to retrieve studies assessing somatosensory function by quantitative sensory testing in adults with spinal pain of up to 12 weeks duration. Two reviewers independently screened the studies and assessed the risk of bias. Studies were grouped according to spinal pain condition (whiplash injury, idiopathic neck pain, and nonspecific low back pain), and, where possible, meta-analyses were performed for comparable results. Fifteen studies were included. Sources of bias included lack of assessor blinding, unclear sampling methods, and lack of control for confounders. We found that: (1) there is consistent evidence for thermal and widespread mechanical pain hypersensitivity in the acute stage of whiplash, (2) there is no evidence for pain hypersensitivity in the acute and subacute stage of idiopathic neck pain, although the body of evidence is small, and (3) hyperalgesia and spinal cord hyperexcitability have been detected in early stages of nonspecific low back pain, although evidence about widespread effects are conflicting. Future longitudinal research using multiple sensory modalities and standardized testing may reveal the involvement of somatosensory changes in the development and maintenance of chronic pain.

  16. Contact Lenses on Submarines

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-26

    NAVAL SUBMARINE MEDICAL RESEARCH LABORATORY SUBMARINE BASE, GROTON, CONN. REPORT NUMBER 1048 CONTACT LENSES ON SUBMARINES... CONTACT LENSES ON SUBMARINES by James F. Socks, CDR, MSC, USN NAVAL SUBMARINE MEDICAL RESEARCH LABORATORY REPORT NUMBER 1048 NAVAL MEDICAL RESEARCH...DRSCHLAB Approved for public release; distribution unlimited SUMMARY PAGE PROBLEM To determine the feasibility of wearing contact lenses aboard

  17. Glasses and Contact Lenses

    MedlinePlus

    ... dientes Video: Getting an X-ray Glasses and Contact Lenses KidsHealth > For Kids > Glasses and Contact Lenses Print A A A What's in this ... together the way they should. But eyeglasses or contact lenses, also called corrective lenses, can help most ...

  18. Ferromagnetic tunnel contacts to graphene: Contact resistance and spin signal

    SciTech Connect

    Cubukcu, M.; Laczkowski, P.; Vergnaud, C.; Marty, A.; Attané, J.-P.; Notin, L.; Vila, L. Jamet, M.; Martin, M.-B.; Seneor, P.; Anane, A.; Deranlot, C.; Fert, A.; Auffret, S.; Ducruet, C.

    2015-02-28

    We report spin transport in CVD graphene-based lateral spin valves using different magnetic contacts. We compared the spin signal amplitude measured on devices where the cobalt layer is directly in contact with the graphene to the one obtained using tunnel contacts. Although a sizeable spin signal (up to ∼2 Ω) is obtained with direct contacts, the signal is strongly enhanced (∼400 Ω) by inserting a tunnel barrier. In addition, we studied the resistance-area product (R.A) of a variety of contacts on CVD graphene. In particular, we compared the R.A products of alumina and magnesium oxide tunnel barriers grown by sputtering deposition of aluminum or magnesium and subsequent natural oxidation under pure oxygen atmosphere or by plasma. When using an alumina tunnel barrier on CVD graphene, the R.A product is high and exhibits a large dispersion. This dispersion can be highly reduced by using a magnesium oxide tunnel barrier, as for the R.A value. This study gives insight in the material quest for reproducible and efficient spin injection in CVD graphene.

  19. Complementary Barrier Infrared Detector (CBIRD) Contact Methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ting, David Z.; Hill, Cory J.; Gunapala, Sarath D.

    2013-01-01

    The performance of the CBIRD detector is enhanced by using new device contacting methods that have been developed. The detector structure features a narrow gap adsorber sandwiched between a pair of complementary, unipolar barriers that are, in turn, surrounded by contact layers. In this innovation, the contact adjacent to the hole barrier is doped n-type, while the contact adjacent to the electron barrier is doped p-type. The contact layers can have wider bandgaps than the adsorber layer, so long as good electrical contacts are made to them. If good electrical contacts are made to either (or both) of the barriers, then one could contact the barrier(s) directly, obviating the need for additional contact layers. Both the left and right contacts can be doped either n-type or ptype. Having an n-type contact layer next to the electron barrier creates a second p-n junction (the first being the one between the hole barrier and the adsorber) over which applied bias could drop. This reduces the voltage drop over the adsorber, thereby reducing dark current generation in the adsorber region.

  20. Food additives

    MedlinePlus

    ... or natural. Natural food additives include: Herbs or spices to add flavor to foods Vinegar for pickling ... Certain colors improve the appearance of foods. Many spices, as well as natural and man-made flavors, ...

  1. Tactile impoverishment and sensorimotor restriction deteriorate the forepaw cutaneous map in the primary somatosensory cortex of adult rats.

    PubMed

    Coq, J O; Xerri, C

    1999-12-01

    We investigated the effects of sensory deprivation on the forepaw representation in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) in the adult rat. Cortical maps were constructed from high-resolution multiunit recordings of the response of layer IV neurons to somatosensory stimuli. The main features of the forepaw representation were described in terms of areal extent and topography of the cortical map, and sensory submodality, size, and location of the receptive field (RF) of small clusters of the cortical neurons. After being weaned, two groups of Long-Evans rats were housed in a standard (SE) or impoverished (IE) environment for 65-115 days. A third group of SE rats was subjected to severe sensorimotor restriction (SR) of one forepaw for 7 days or 14 days, by using a one-sleeved cast. A concomitant effect of unilateral forelimb immobilization was a forced use of the nonrestricted forelimb in postural balance. The maps of both forepaws were derived 24 h after the cast was removed and the animal was allowed normal limb use. In a fourth group, SE rats experienced a 7-day immobilization followed by symmetrical limb use for 7 days before we mapped the hemisphere contralateral to the casted limb. For the SE and IE rats, the total areal extent of the cutaneous forepaw representation was similar, but IE rats exhibited a significant expansion of cortical islets serving high-threshold, presumably noncutaneous inputs, which were included in the cutaneous maps. In addition, SI neurons of IE rats had greatly enlarged glabrous, but not hairy, skin RFs. For the SR rats, the areal extent of the cutaneous map of the casted forepaw decreased by about 50%, after both 7- and 14-day forelimb immobilization. Large cortical sectors presumed to be formerly activated by cutaneous inputs were driven by high-threshold inputs that disrupted the somatotopic representation of the forepaw skin surfaces. These "emergent" representational sectors were topographically organized. By contrast, the areal

  2. Attention and visual interference stimulation affect somatosensory processing: a magnetoencephalographic study.

    PubMed

    Lam, K; Kakigi, R; Mukai, T; Yamasaki, H

    2001-01-01

    In our previous study, continuous visual (cartoon and random dot motion) and auditory (music) stimulation changed the somatosensory evoked magnetic fields following electrical stimulation of the median nerve in human subjects. They enhanced the middle-latency components (3M and 4M) generated in the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex, and reduced the MI component generated in the ipsilateral secondary somatosensory cortex. We speculated that such interference effects were caused by activation of polymodal neurons in areas 5 and/or 7 of the parietal lobe as well as in the medial superior temporal region and superior temporal sulcus. However, we could not exclude the effect of attention on such interference effects. In the present study, to know the effect of attention on visual and auditory interference in these changes, we stimulated the bilateral median nerves unilaterally in a random order, and asked subjects to count the number of times the left median nerve was stimulated while visual or auditory interference was applied. Five components (1M-5M) were identified in the hemisphere contralateral to the stimulated nerve and only one component (MI) was found in the ipsilateral hemisphere. The 3M and 4M components (33-75 ms in latency) were enhanced by both attention and visual interference stimulation but not by auditory stimulation. The 5M component (70-115 ms) and MI component (70-133 ms) were enhanced by attention, but were not changed by attention together with visual or auditory interference. Summarizing the results of our previous study and the present study, (1) visual interference alone enhanced the 3M and 4M but reduced the MI, and (2) attention alone also enhanced the 3M and 4M, and enhanced the 5M and MI. As a result, (3) visual interference with attention enhanced the 3M and 4M more, and showed no significant change of the 5M and MI. This was compatible with a summation of the effects caused by visual interference alone and attention alone, but

  3. Rewiring the primary somatosensory cortex in carpal tunnel syndrome with acupuncture.

    PubMed

    Maeda, Yumi; Kim, Hyungjun; Kettner, Norman; Kim, Jieun; Cina, Stephen; Malatesta, Cristina; Gerber, Jessica; McManus, Claire; Ong-Sutherland, Rebecca; Mezzacappa, Pia; Libby, Alexandra; Mawla, Ishtiaq; Morse, Leslie R; Kaptchuk, Ted J; Audette, Joseph; Napadow, Vitaly

    2017-03-02

    Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most common entrapment neuropathy, affecting the median nerve at the wrist. Acupuncture is a minimally-invasive and conservative therapeutic option, and while rooted in a complex practice ritual, acupuncture overlaps significantly with many conventional peripherally-focused neuromodulatory therapies. However, the neurophysiological mechanisms by which acupuncture impacts accepted subjective/psychological and objective/physiological outcomes are not well understood. Eligible patients (n = 80, 65 female, age: 49.3 ± 8.6 years) were enrolled and randomized into three intervention arms: (i) verum electro-acupuncture 'local' to the more affected hand; (ii) verum electro-acupuncture at 'distal' body sites, near the ankle contralesional to the more affected hand; and (iii) local sham electro-acupuncture using non-penetrating placebo needles. Acupuncture therapy was provided for 16 sessions over 8 weeks. Boston Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Questionnaire assessed pain and paraesthesia symptoms at baseline, following therapy and at 3-month follow-up. Nerve conduction studies assessing median nerve sensory latency and brain imaging data were acquired at baseline and following therapy. Functional magnetic resonance imaging assessed somatotopy in the primary somatosensory cortex using vibrotactile stimulation over three digits (2, 3 and 5). While all three acupuncture interventions reduced symptom severity, verum (local and distal) acupuncture was superior to sham in producing improvements in neurophysiological outcomes, both local to the wrist (i.e. median sensory nerve conduction latency) and in the brain (i.e. digit 2/3 cortical separation distance). Moreover, greater improvement in second/third interdigit cortical separation distance following verum acupuncture predicted sustained improvements in symptom severity at 3-month follow-up. We further explored potential differential mechanisms of local versus distal acupuncture using diffusion tensor

  4. Contact lens in keratoconus

    PubMed Central

    Rathi, Varsha M; Mandathara, Preeji S; Dumpati, Srikanth

    2013-01-01

    Contact lenses are required for the visual improvement in patients with keratoconus. Various contact lens options, such as rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses, soft and soft toric lenses, piggy back contact lenses (PBCL), hybrid lenses and scleral lenses are availble. This article discusses about selection of a lens depending on the type of keratoconus and the fitting philosophies of various contact lenses including the starting trial lens. A Medline search was carried out for articles in the English language with the keywords keratoconus and various contact lenses such as Rose k lens, RGP lens, hybrid lens, scleral lens and PBCL. PMID:23925325

  5. The neural dynamics of somatosensory processing and adaptation across childhood: a high-density electrical mapping study

    PubMed Central

    Uppal, Neha; Foxe, John J.; Butler, John S.; Acluche, Frantzy

    2016-01-01

    Young children are often hyperreactive to somatosensory inputs hardly noticed by adults, as exemplified by irritation to seams or labels in clothing. The neurodevelopmental mechanisms underlying changes in sensory reactivity are not well understood. Based on the idea that neurodevelopmental changes in somatosensory processing and/or changes in sensory adaptation might underlie developmental differences in somatosensory reactivity, high-density electroencephalography was used to examine how the nervous system responds and adapts to repeated vibrotactile stimulation over childhood. Participants aged 6–18 yr old were presented with 50-ms vibrotactile stimuli to the right wrist over the median nerve at 5 blocked interstimulus intervals (ranging from ∼7 to ∼1 stimulus per second). Somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) revealed three major phases of activation within the first 200 ms, with scalp topographies suggestive of neural generators in contralateral somatosensory cortex. Although overall SEPs were highly similar for younger, middle, and older age groups (6.1–9.8, 10.0–12.9, and 13.0–17.8 yr old), there were significant age-related amplitude differences in initial and later phases of the SEP. In contrast, robust adaptation effects for fast vs. slow presentation rates were observed that did not differ as a function of age. A greater amplitude response in the later portion of the SEP was observed for the youngest group and may be related to developmental changes in responsivity to somatosensory stimuli. These data suggest the protracted development of the somatosensory system over childhood, whereas adaptation, as assayed in this study, is largely in place by ∼7 yr of age. PMID:26763781

  6. Corticofugal projections induce long-lasting effects on somatosensory responses in the trigeminal complex of the rat

    PubMed Central

    Malmierca, Eduardo; Chaves-Coira, Irene; Rodrigo-Angulo, Margarita; Nuñez, Angel

    2014-01-01

    The sensory information flow at subcortical relay stations is controlled by the action of topographic connections from the neocortex. To determinate the functional properties of the somatosensory corticofugal projections to the principal (Pr5) and caudal spinal (Sp5C) trigeminal nuclei, we performed unitary recordings in anesthetized rats. To examine the effect of these cortical projections we used tactile stimulation of the whisker and electrical stimulation of somatosensory cortices. Corticofugal anatomical projections to Pr5 and Sp5C nuclei were detected by using retrograde fluorescent tracers. Neurons projecting exclusively to Pr5 were located in the cingulate cortex while neurons projecting to both Sp5C and Pr5 nuclei were located in the somatosensory and insular cortices (>75% of neurons). Physiological results indicated that primary somatosensory cortex produced a short-lasting facilitating or inhibiting effects (<5 min) of tactile responses in Pr5 nucleus through activation of NMDA glutamatergic or GABAA receptors since effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of APV and bicuculline, respectively. In contrast, stimulation of secondary somatosensory cortex did not affect most of the Pr5 neurons; however both cortices inhibited the nociceptive responses in the Sp5C nucleus through activation of glycinergic or GABAA receptors because effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of strychnine and bicuculline, respectively. These and anatomical results demonstrated that the somatosensory cortices projects to Pr5 nucleus to modulate tactile responses by excitatory and inhibitory actions, while projections to the Sp5C nucleus control nociceptive sensory transmission by only inhibitory effects. Thus, somatosensory cortices may modulate innocuous and noxious inputs simultaneously, contributing to the perception of specifically tactile or painful sensations. PMID:24904321

  7. The biology of skin wetness perception and its implications in manual function and for reproducing complex somatosensory signals in neuroprosthetics.

    PubMed

    Filingeri, Davide; Ackerley, Rochelle

    2017-01-25

    Our perception of skin wetness is generated readily, yet humans have no known receptor (hygroreceptor) to signal this directly. It is easy to imagine the sensation of water running over our hands, or the feel of rain on our skin. The synthetic sensation of wetness is thought to be produced from a combination of specific skin thermal and tactile inputs, registered through thermoreceptors and mechanoreceptors, respectively. The present review explores how thermal and tactile afference from the periphery can generate the percept of wetness centrally. We propose that the main signals include information about skin cooling, signaled primarily by thinly-myelinated thermoreceptors, and rapid changes in touch, through fast-conducting, myelinated mechanoreceptors. Potential central sites for integration of these signals, and thus the perception of skin wetness, include the primary and secondary somatosensory cortices and the insula cortex. The interactions underlying these processes can also be modeled to aid in understanding and engineering the mechanisms. Further, we discuss the role that sensing wetness could play in precision grip and the dexterous manipulation of objects. We expand on these lines of inquiry to the application of the knowledge in designing and creating skin sensory feedback in prosthetics. The addition of real-time, complex sensory signals would mark a significant advance in the use and incorporation of prosthetic body parts for amputees in everyday life.

  8. Early and Moderate Sensory Stimulation Exerts a Protective Effect on Perilesion Representations of Somatosensory Cortex after Focal Ischemic Damage

    PubMed Central

    Xerri, Christian; Zennou-Azogui, Yoh'i

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that intensive training within an early critical time window after focal cortical ischemia increases the area of damaged tissue and is detrimental to behavioral recovery. We postulated that moderate stimulation initiated soon after the lesion could have protective effects on peri-infarct cortical somatotopic representations. Therefore, we have assessed the effects of mild cutaneous stimulation delivered in an attention-demanding behavioral context on the functional organization of the perilesion somatosensory cortex using high-density electrophysiological mapping. We compared the effects of 6-day training initiated on the 3rd day postlesion (early training; ET) to those of same-duration training started on the 8th day (delayed training; DT). Our findings confirm previous work showing that the absence of training aggravates representational loss in the perilesion zone. In addition, ET was found to be sufficient to limit expansion of the ischemic lesion and reduce tissue loss, and substantially maintain the neuronal responsiveness to tactile stimulation, thereby preserving somatotopic map arrangement in the peri-infarct cortical territories. By contrast, DT did not prevent tissue loss and only partially reinstated lost representations in a use-dependent manner within the spared peri-infarct cortical area. This study differentiates the effects of early versus delayed training on perilesion tissue and cortical map reorganization, and underscores the neuroprotective influence of mild rehabilitative stimulation on neuronal response properties in the peri-infarct cortex during an early critical period. PMID:24914807

  9. Physical Exercise Preserves Adult Visual Plasticity in Mice and Restores it after a Stroke in the Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Kalogeraki, Evgenia; Pielecka-Fortuna, Justyna; Hüppe, Janika M.; Löwel, Siegrid

    2016-01-01

    The primary visual cortex (V1) is widely used to study brain plasticity, which is not only crucial for normal brain function, such as learning and memory, but also for recovery after brain injuries such as stroke. In standard cage (SC) raised mice, experience-dependent ocular dominance (OD) plasticity in V1 declines with age and is compromised by a lesion in adjacent and distant cortical regions. In contrast, mice raised in an enriched environment (EE), exhibit lifelong OD plasticity and are protected from losing OD plasticity after a stroke-lesion in the somatosensory cortex. Since SC mice with an access to a running wheel (RW) displayed preserved OD plasticity during aging, we investigated whether physical exercise might also provide a plasticity promoting effect after a cortical stroke. To this end, we tested if adult RW-raised mice preserved OD plasticity after stroke and also if short-term running after stroke restored OD plasticity to SC mice. Indeed, unlike mice without a RW, adult RW mice continued to show OD plasticity even after stroke, and a 2 weeks RW experience after stroke already restored lost OD plasticity. Additionally, the experience-enabled increase of the spatial frequency and contrast threshold of the optomotor reflex of the open eye, normally lost after a stroke, was restored in both groups of RW mice. Our data suggest that physical exercise alone can not only preserve visual plasticity into old age, but also restore it after a cortical stroke. PMID:27708575

  10. Receptive Field Properties of the Macaque Second Somatosensory Cortex: Nonlinear Mechanisms Underlying the Representation of Orientation Within a Finger Pad

    PubMed Central

    Thakur, Pramodsingh H.; Fitzgerald, Paul J.; Lane, John W.; Hsiao, Steven S.

    2007-01-01

    We investigate the position invariant receptive field properties of neurons in the macaque second somatosensory (SII) cortical region. Previously we reported that many SII region neurons show orientation tuning in the center of multiple finger pads of the hand and further that the tuning is similar on different pads, which can be interpreted as position invariance. Here we study the receptive field properties of a single finger pad for a subset (n = 61) of those 928 neurons, using a motorized oriented bar that we positioned at multiple locations across the pad. We calculate both vector fields and linear receptive fields of the finger pad to characterize the receptive field properties that give rise to the tuning, and we perform an additional regression analysis to quantify linearity, invariance, or both in individual neurons. We show that orientation tuning of SII region neurons is based on a variety of mechanisms. For some neurons, the tuning is explained by simple excitatory regions, simple inhibitory regions, or some combination of these structures. However, a large fraction of the neurons (n = 20 of 61, 33%) show position invariance that is not explained well by their linear receptive fields. Finding invariance within a finger pad, coupled with the previous result of similar tuning on different pads, indicates that some SII region neurons may exhibit similar tuning throughout large regions of the hand. We hypothesize that invariant neurons play an important role in tactile form recognition. PMID:17192440

  11. Physical Exercise Preserves Adult Visual Plasticity in Mice and Restores it after a Stroke in the Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Kalogeraki, Evgenia; Pielecka-Fortuna, Justyna; Hüppe, Janika M; Löwel, Siegrid

    2016-01-01

    The primary visual cortex (V1) is widely used to study brain plasticity, which is not only crucial for normal brain function, such as learning and memory, but also for recovery after brain injuries such as stroke. In standard cage (SC) raised mice, experience-dependent ocular dominance (OD) plasticity in V1 declines with age and is compromised by a lesion in adjacent and distant cortical regions. In contrast, mice raised in an enriched environment (EE), exhibit lifelong OD plasticity and are protected from losing OD plasticity after a stroke-lesion in the somatosensory cortex. Since SC mice with an access to a running wheel (RW) displayed preserved OD plasticity during aging, we investigated whether physical exercise might also provide a plasticity promoting effect after a cortical stroke. To this end, we tested if adult RW-raised mice preserved OD plasticity after stroke and also if short-term running after stroke restored OD plasticity to SC mice. Indeed, unlike mice without a RW, adult RW mice continued to show OD plasticity even after stroke, and a 2 weeks RW experience after stroke already restored lost OD plasticity. Additionally, the experience-enabled increase of the spatial frequency and contrast threshold of the optomotor reflex of the open eye, normally lost after a stroke, was restored in both groups of RW mice. Our data suggest that physical exercise alone can not only preserve visual plasticity into old age, but also restore it after a cortical stroke.

  12. Early and moderate sensory stimulation exerts a protective effect on perilesion representations of somatosensory cortex after focal ischemic damage.

    PubMed

    Xerri, Christian; Zennou-Azogui, Yoh'i

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that intensive training within an early critical time window after focal cortical ischemia increases the area of damaged tissue and is detrimental to behavioral recovery. We postulated that moderate stimulation initiated soon after the lesion could have protective effects on peri-infarct cortical somatotopic representations. Therefore, we have assessed the effects of mild cutaneous stimulation delivered in an attention-demanding behavioral context on the functional organization of the perilesion somatosensory cortex using high-density electrophysiological mapping. We compared the effects of 6-day training initiated on the 3rd day postlesion (early training; ET) to those of same-duration training started on the 8th day (delayed training; DT). Our findings confirm previous work showing that the absence of training aggravates representational loss in the perilesion zone. In addition, ET was found to be sufficient to limit expansion of the ischemic lesion and reduce tissue loss, and substantially maintain the neuronal responsiveness to tactile stimulation, thereby preserving somatotopic map arrangement in the peri-infarct cortical territories. By contrast, DT did not prevent tissue loss and only partially reinstated lost representations in a use-dependent manner within the spared peri-infarct cortical area. This study differentiates the effects of early versus delayed training on perilesion tissue and cortical map reorganization, and underscores the neuroprotective influence of mild rehabilitative stimulation on neuronal response properties in the peri-infarct cortex during an early critical period.

  13. [Immunology of contact allergy].

    PubMed

    Martin, S F

    2011-10-01

    Contact allergy is a skin disease that is caused by the reaction of the immune system to low molecular weight chemicals. A hallmark of contact allergens is their chemical reactivity, which is not exhibited by toxic irritants. Covalent binding of contact allergens to or complex formation with proteins is essential for the activation of the immune system. As a consequence antigenic epitopes are formed, which are recognized by contact allergen-specific T cells. The generation of effector and memory T cells causes the high antigen specificity and the repeated antigen-specific skin reaction of contact allergy. New findings reveal that the less specific reaction of the innate immune system to contact allergens closely resembles the reaction to an infection. Therefore, contact allergy can be viewed as an immunologic misunderstanding since the skin contact with chemical allergens is interpreted as an infection. The growing understanding of the molecular and cellular pathologic mechanisms of contact allergy can aid the development of specific therapies and of in vitro alternatives to animal testing for the identification of contact allergens.

  14. Contact Dermatitis for the Practicing Allergist.

    PubMed

    Bernstein, David I

    2015-01-01

    This article provides an overview of important practice recommendations from the recently updated Contact Dermatitis Practice Parameter. This updated parameter provides essential recommendations pertaining to clinical history, physical examination, and patch testing evaluation of patients suspected of allergic contact dermatitis. In addition to providing guidance for performing and interpreting closed patch testing, the updated parameter provides concrete recommendations for assessing metal hypersensitivity in patients receiving prosthetic devices, for evaluating workers with occupational contact dermatitis, and also for addressing allergic contact dermatitis in children. Finally, the document provides practical recommendations useful for educating patients regarding avoidance of exposure to known contact sensitizers in the home and at work. The Contact Dermatitis Parameter is designed as a practical, evidence-based clinical tool to be used by allergists and dermatologists who routinely are called upon to evaluate patients with skin disorders.

  15. Non-contact measurement of contact wire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, Yaxing; Ye, Xuemei; Li, Zhongke; Yue, Kaiduan

    2008-12-01

    The overhead contact system is the power supply unit of the electric locomotive. This article is to introduce our newly developed method to measure the height and pull out value of the contact wire. A carema dolly which can move on railway is applied to bear the weight of the measure equipment; two linear CCD cameras are installed on the dolly symmetrically about the midline of two rails. While the dolly move along the railway, two CCD cameras grasp the image synchronously, and a computer real-time process the images, the height and pull out value can be calculate out from the images.

  16. Dynamic contact angle measurements on superhydrophobic surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jeong-Hyun; Kavehpour, H. Pirouz; Rothstein, Jonathan P.

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, the dynamic advancing and receding contact angles of a series of aqueous solutions were measured on a number of hydrophobic and superhydrophobic surfaces using a modified Wilhelmy plate technique. Superhydrophobic surfaces are hydrophobic surfaces with micron or nanometer sized surface roughness. These surfaces have very large static advancing contact angles and little static contact angle hysteresis. In this study, the dynamic advancing and dynamic receding contact angles on superhydrophobic surfaces were measured as a function of plate velocity and capillary number. The dynamic contact angles measured on a smooth hydrophobic Teflon surface were found to obey the scaling with capillary number predicted by the Cox-Voinov-Tanner law, θD3 ∝ Ca. The response of the dynamic contact angle on the superhydrophobic surfaces, however, did not follow the same scaling law. The advancing contact angle was found to remain constant at θA = 160∘, independent of capillary number. The dynamic receding contact angle measurements on superhydrophobic surfaces were found to decrease with increasing capillary number; however, the presence of slip on the superhydrophobic surface was found to result in a shift in the onset of dynamic contact angle variation to larger capillary numbers. In addition, a much weaker dependence of the dynamic contact angle on capillary number was observed for some of the superhydrophobic surfaces tested.

  17. [Periorbital contact eczema].

    PubMed

    Worm, M; Sterry, W

    2005-11-01

    Periorbital contact eczema is most commonly the result of an allergic contact dermatitis whereas other eczematous skin diseases like atopic eczema or seborrheic eczema occur less frequently. Also, other diseases like autoimmune disorders or rosacea need to be considered. Allergic contact dermatitis is a T-cell-mediated immunological response towards ubiquitous contact allergens. Activated T-cells migrate through the vessels into the skin and produce several inflammatory mediators. Epicutaneous patch testing is an important tool for the diagnosis of contact allergy whereby the allergens are analysed in terms of their ability to induce eczematous skin reaction. Until now the short-term use of corticosteroids are is employed for the treatment of allergic contact eczema. Modern substances with an optimal therapeutic index should rather be used.

  18. Potlining Additives

    SciTech Connect

    Rudolf Keller

    2004-08-10

    In this project, a concept to improve the performance of aluminum production cells by introducing potlining additives was examined and tested. Boron oxide was added to cathode blocks, and titanium was dissolved in the metal pool; this resulted in the formation of titanium diboride and caused the molten aluminum to wet the carbonaceous cathode surface. Such wetting reportedly leads to operational improvements and extended cell life. In addition, boron oxide suppresses cyanide formation. This final report presents and discusses the results of this project. Substantial economic benefits for the practical implementation of the technology are projected, especially for modern cells with graphitized blocks. For example, with an energy savings of about 5% and an increase in pot life from 1500 to 2500 days, a cost savings of $ 0.023 per pound of aluminum produced is projected for a 200 kA pot.

  19. Phosphazene additives

    DOEpatents

    Harrup, Mason K; Rollins, Harry W

    2013-11-26

    An additive comprising a phosphazene compound that has at least two reactive functional groups and at least one capping functional group bonded to phosphorus atoms of the phosphazene compound. One of the at least two reactive functional groups is configured to react with cellulose and the other of the at least two reactive functional groups is configured to react with a resin, such as an amine resin of a polycarboxylic acid resin. The at least one capping functional group is selected from the group consisting of a short chain ether group, an alkoxy group, or an aryloxy group. Also disclosed are an additive-resin admixture, a method of treating a wood product, and a wood product.

  20. Contact angle hysteresis explained.

    PubMed

    Gao, Lichao; McCarthy, Thomas J

    2006-07-04

    A view of contact angle hysteresis from the perspectives of the three-phase contact line and of the kinetics of contact line motion is given. Arguments are made that advancing and receding are discrete events that have different activation energies. That hysteresis can be quantified as an activation energy by the changes in interfacial area is argued. That this is an appropriate way of viewing hysteresis is demonstrated with examples.

  1. Soft contact lenses

    PubMed Central

    Sutherland, R. L.; VanLeeuwen, Wm. N.

    1972-01-01

    A series of 55 patients were fitted with a new type of hydrophilic soft contact lens. These were found more comfortable than hard contact lenses and they had a protective and pain-relieving action in cases of chronic corneal disease. Vision was not as good as with hard contact lenses and a greater potential danger of infection was found. They are preferred by many patients despite the noticeable thick edge and the difficulty of obtaining an identical replacement. PMID:5042887

  2. Optical contact micrometer

    DOEpatents

    Jacobson, Steven D.

    2014-08-19

    Certain examples provide optical contact micrometers and methods of use. An example optical contact micrometer includes a pair of opposable lenses to receive an object and immobilize the object in a position. The example optical contact micrometer includes a pair of opposable mirrors positioned with respect to the pair of lenses to facilitate viewing of the object through the lenses. The example optical contact micrometer includes a microscope to facilitate viewing of the object through the lenses via the mirrors; and an interferometer to obtain one or more measurements of the object.

  3. Colors and contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Bonamonte, Domenico; Foti, Caterina; Romita, Paolo; Vestita, Michelangelo; Angelini, Gianni

    2014-01-01

    The diagnosis of skin diseases relies on several clinical signs, among which color is of paramount importance. In this review, we consider certain clinical presentations of both eczematous and noneczematous contact dermatitis in which color plays a peculiar role orientating toward the right diagnosis. The conditions that will be discussed include specific clinical-morphologic subtypes of eczematous contact dermatitis, primary melanocytic, and nonmelanocytic contact hyperchromia, black dermographism, contact chemical leukoderma, and others. Based on the physical, chemical, and biologic factors underlying a healthy skin color, the various skin shades drawing a disease picture are thoroughly debated, stressing their etiopathogenic origins and histopathologic aspects.

  4. Differential changes in gingival somatosensory sensitivity after painful electrical tooth stimulation.

    PubMed

    Baad-Hansen, Lene; Lu, Shengyi; Kemppainen, Pentti; List, Thomas; Zhang, Zhenting; Svensson, Peter

    2015-04-01

    We aimed to evaluate the effect of painful tooth stimulation on gingival somatosensory sensitivity of healthy volunteers in a randomized, controlled design. Thirteen healthy volunteers (six women, seven men; 28.4 ± 5.0 years) were included for two experimental sessions of electrical tooth stimulation: painful tooth stimulation and tooth stimulation below the sensory threshold (control). Eight of the human subjects participated in a third session without tooth stimulation. In all sessions, the somatosensory sensitivity of the gingiva adjacent to the stimulated tooth was evaluated with a standardized battery of quantitative sensory tests (QST) before, immediately after and 30 min after tooth stimulation. Painful tooth stimulation evoked significant decreases in warmth and heat pain thresholds (P < 0.001) as well as pressure pain thresholds (increased sensitivity) (P = 0.024) and increases in mechanical detection thresholds (decreased sensitivity) (P < 0.050). Similar thermal threshold changes (P < 0.019) but no mechanical changes were found after tooth stimulation below the sensory threshold (P > 0.086). No QST changes were detected in the session without tooth stimulation (P > 0.060). In conclusion, modest increased gingival sensitivity to warmth, painful heat and pressure stimuli as well as desensitization to non-painful mechanical stimulation were demonstrated after tooth stimulation. This suggests involvement of competing heterotopic facilitatory and inhibitory mechanisms. Furthermore, stimulation below the sensory threshold induced similar thermal sensitization suggesting the possibility of activation of axon-reflex-like mechanisms even at intensities below the perception threshold. These findings may have implications for interpretation of somatosensory results in patients with chronic intraoral pain.

  5. Altered somatosensory barrel cortex refinement in the developing brain of Mecp2-null mice.

    PubMed

    Moroto, M; Nishimura, A; Morimoto, M; Isoda, K; Morita, T; Yoshida, M; Morioka, S; Tozawa, T; Hasegawa, T; Chiyonobu, T; Yoshimoto, K; Hosoi, H

    2013-11-06

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) gene. In previous studies, monoaminergic dysfunctions have been detected in patients with RTT and in a murine model of RTT, the Mecp2-null mouse. Therefore, the pathogenesis of RTT is thought to involve impairments in the monoaminergic systems. However, there have been limited data showing that the impairment of monoamines leads to early symptoms during development. We used histochemistry to study the somatosensory barrel cortex in the B6.129P2(C)-Mecp2(tm1.1Bird) mouse model of RTT. The barrel cortex is widely used to investigate neuronal development and its regulation by various neurotransmitters including 5-HT. 5-HT levels were measured by high performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection (HPLC/EC), and serotonin transporter (SERT) and 5-HT1B receptor mRNAs were measured in the somatosensory cortex, thalamus and striatum on postnatal days (P) 10, P20 and P40. Mecp2-null mice (Mecp2-/y) had significantly smaller barrel fields than age-matched wild-type controls (Mecp2+/y) on P10 and P40, but the topographic map was accurately formed. Levels of 5-HT, and SERT and 5-HT1B receptor mRNA expression in the somatosensory cortex did not differ significantly between the Mecp2-null and wild-type mice on P10. However, thalamic 5-HT was reduced in Mecp2-null mice. Our data indicate that a lack of MeCP2 may disturb the refinement of the barrel cortex in the early postnatal period. Our findings suggest that a decrease in thalamic 5-HT might be involved in this phenomenon.

  6. Comparing development of synaptic proteins in rat visual, somatosensory, and frontal cortex.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Joshua G A; Jones, David G; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2013-01-01

    Two theories have influenced our understanding of cortical development: the integrated network theory, where synaptic development is coordinated across areas; and the cascade theory, where the cortex develops in a wave-like manner from sensory to non-sensory areas. These different views on cortical development raise challenges for current studies aimed at comparing detailed maturation of the connectome among cortical areas. We have taken a different approach to compare synaptic development in rat visual, somatosensory, and frontal cortex by measuring expression of pre-synaptic (synapsin and synaptophysin) proteins that regulate vesicle cycling, and post-synaptic density (PSD-95 and Gephyrin) proteins that anchor excitatory or inhibitory (E-I) receptors. We also compared development of the balances between the pairs of pre- or post-synaptic proteins, and the overall pre- to post-synaptic balance, to address functional maturation and emergence of the E-I balance. We found that development of the individual proteins and the post-synaptic index overlapped among the three cortical areas, but the pre-synaptic index matured later in frontal cortex. Finally, we applied a neuroinformatics approach using principal component analysis and found that three components captured development of the synaptic proteins. The first component accounted for 64% of the variance in protein expression and reflected total protein expression, which overlapped among the three cortical areas. The second component was gephyrin and the E-I balance, it emerged as sequential waves starting in somatosensory, then frontal, and finally visual cortex. The third component was the balance between pre- and post-synaptic proteins, and this followed a different developmental trajectory in somatosensory cortex. Together, these results give the most support to an integrated network of synaptic development, but also highlight more complex patterns of development that vary in timing and end point among the

  7. Prominent activation of the intraparietal and somatosensory areas during angle discrimination by intra-active touch.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jiajia; Han, Hongbin; Chui, Dehua; Shen, Yong; Wu, Jinglong

    2012-12-01

    Intra-active touch (IAT) is a process that involves a body part doing the touching (active touch [AT]) and another body part being touched (passive touch [PT]) simultaneously. The brain representation related to IAT is still unclear. A total of 23 subjects carried out angle discrimination under PT, AT and IAT conditions with functional magnetic resonance imaging. All of the tasks were strictly dependent on cutaneous feedback from the finger(s). As the subjects were able to perceive the angle stimuli from the right (touching) and left (touched) sides during the IAT condition, we expected there would be greater brain activation with the IAT condition than for the AT or PT condition. Therefore, we hypothesized that the region within and/or around the intraparietal sulcus (IPS) and the part of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) that is associated with high-level tactile spatial processing would be more active during the IAT task than during the AT and PT tasks. Compared with the areas activated by the motor somatosensory control task, the most prominent activation areas evoked by the three-angle discrimination tasks were in the SI and secondary somatosensory cortex areas in the bilateral parietal operculum, IPS, lateral occipital complex, insula and cerebellum. Finally, we directly compared IAT with AT and PT, and the results suggest that the contralateral part of IPS and part of the SI are more active under IAT conditions than under either AT or PT conditions. These results suggest that both hemispheres contribute to angle discrimination during IAT.

  8. The functional and anatomical dissection of somatosensory subpopulations using mouse genetics

    PubMed Central

    Le Pichon, Claire E.; Chesler, Alexander T.

    2014-01-01

    The word somatosensation comes from joining the Greek word for body (soma) with a word for perception (sensation). Somatosensory neurons comprise the largest sensory system in mammals and have nerve endings coursing throughout the skin, viscera, muscle, and bone. Their cell bodies reside in a chain of ganglia adjacent to the dorsal spinal cord (the dorsal root ganglia) and at the base of the skull (the trigeminal ganglia). While the neuronal cell bodies are intermingled within the ganglia, the somatosensory system is in reality composed of numerous sub-systems, each specialized to detect distinct stimuli, such as temperature and touch. Historically, somatosensory neurons have been classified using a diverse host of anatomical and physiological parameters, such as the size of the cell body, degree of myelination, histological labeling with markers, specialization of the nerve endings, projection patterns in the spinal cord and brainstem, receptive tuning, and conduction velocity of their action potentials. While useful, the picture that emerged was one of heterogeneity, with many markers at least partially overlapping. More recently, by capitalizing on advances in molecular techniques, researchers have identified specific ion channels and sensory receptors expressed in subsets of sensory neurons. These studies have proved invaluable as they allow genetic access to small subsets of neurons for further molecular dissection. Data being generated from transgenic mice favor a model whereby an array of dedicated neurons is responsible for selectively encoding different modalities. Here we review the current knowledge of the different sensory neuron subtypes in the mouse, the markers used to study them, and the neurogenetic strategies used to define their anatomical projections and functional roles. PMID:24795573

  9. Somatosensory phenotype is associated with thalamic metabolites and pain intensity after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Widerström-Noga, Eva; Cruz-Almeida, Yenisel; Felix, Elizabeth R.; Pattany, Pradip M.

    2015-01-01

    Neuropathic pain is one of the most difficult consequences of spinal cord injury (SCI). The clinical correlates of the underlying mechanisms responsible for neuropathic pain are not well understood, although methods such as quantitative somatosensory testing (QST) or brain imaging have been used to further a mechanism-based understanding of pain. Our previous SCI study demonstrated a significantly lower glutamate-glutamine/myo-inositol ratio (Glx/Ins) in the anterior cingulate cortex in persons with severe neuropathic pain compared with those with less severe neuropathic pain or pain-free, able-bodied controls, suggesting that a combination of decreased glutamatergic metabolism and glial activation may contribute to the development of severe neuropathic pain after SCI. The present study aimed to determine the relationships between somatosensory function below the level of injury and low thalamic Glx/Ins in persons with intense neuropathic pain after SCI. Participants underwent QST and a 3 Tesla proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy. A cluster analysis including SCI participants resulted in 1 group (n = 19) with significantly (P < 0.001) greater pain intensity (6.43 ± 1.63; high neuropathic pain [HNP], and lower Glx/Ins [1.22 ± 0.16]) and another group (n = 35) with lower pain intensity ratings (1.59 ± 1.52, low neuropathic pain [LNP], and higher Glx/Ins [1.47 ± 0.26]). After correcting for age, QST indicated significantly greater somatosensory function in the HNP group compared with the LNP group. Our results are consistent with research suggesting that damage to, but not abolition of, the spinothalamic tract contributes to development of neuropathic pain after SCI and that secondary inflammatory processes may amplify residual spinothalamic tract signals by facilitation, disinhibition, or sensitization. PMID:25599312

  10. The influence of visual perspective on the somatosensory steady-state response during pain observation

    PubMed Central

    Canizales, Dora L.; Voisin, Julien I. A.; Michon, Pierre-Emmanuel; Roy, Marc-André; Jackson, Philip L.

    2013-01-01

    The observation and evaluation of other’s pain activate part of the neuronal network involved in the actual experience of pain, including those regions subserving the sensori-discriminative dimension of pain. This was largely interpreted as evidence showing that part of the painful experience can be shared vicariously. Here, we investigated the effect of the visual perspective from which other people’s pain is seen on the cortical response to continuous 25 Hz non-painful somatosensory stimulation (somatosensory steady-state response: SSSR). Based on the shared representation framework, we expected first-person visual perspective (1PP) to yield more changes in cortical activity than third-person visual perspective (3PP) during pain observation. Twenty healthy adults were instructed to rate a series of pseudo-dynamic pictures depicting hands in either painful or non-painful scenarios, presented either in 1PP (0–45° angle) or 3PP (180° angle), while changes in brain activity was measured with a 128-electode EEG system. The ratings demonstrated that the same scenarios were rated on average as more painful when observed from the 1PP than from the 3PP. As expected from previous works, the SSSR response was decreased after stimulus onset over the left caudal part of the parieto-central cortex, contralateral to the stimulation side. Moreover, the difference between the SSSR was of greater amplitude when the painful situations were presented from the 1PP compared to the 3PP. Together, these results suggest that a visuospatial congruence between the viewer and the observed scenarios is associated with both a higher subjective evaluation of pain and an increased modulation in the somatosensory representation of observed pain. These findings are discussed with regards to the potential role of visual perspective in pain communication and empathy. PMID:24367323

  11. Heart rate variability is encoded in the spontaneous discharge of thalamic somatosensory neurones in cat

    PubMed Central

    Massimini, Marcello; Porta, Alberto; Mariotti, Maurizio; Malliani, Alberto; Montano, Nicola

    2000-01-01

    We studied the spontaneous discharge variability of thalamocortical somatosensory neurones in the awake cat in order to disclose its possible information content. The presence of slow (0.09–1.39 Hz) regular fluctuations in the discharge rate of these cells during the waking state has been previously reported. Oscillations in a similar frequency range are known to characterize the activity of central and peripheral neurones pertaining to the autonomic nervous system and the variability of heart period (RR interval variability).A surrogate data test, performed on our database, confirmed the presence of slow (0.05–1 Hz) non-random fluctuations in firing rate.Linear regression detected the presence of an inverse relationship between the values of RR interval and the concurrent levels of neural discharge.Frequency domain analysis indicated that a significant coupling between the two variability signals preferentially occurred in two frequency bands: in the frequency of the respiratory sinus arrhythmia and in correspondence with a slower rhythm (0.07–0.3 Hz), the two signals being in phase opposition in most of the cases.Coherent fluctuations could also be observed when epochs of evoked activity were analysed, while coupling between the two variability signals appeared to be disrupted after sleep onset.We conclude that RR interval variability, an internally generated dynamic related to basic visceral regulation, is encoded in the discharge of single somatosensory thalamocortical neurones during wakefulness. A possible interaction with the transmission of somatosensory information has to be evaluated. PMID:10896727

  12. Somatosensory Evoked Field in Response to Visuotactile Stimulation in 3- to 4-Year-Old Children

    PubMed Central

    Remijn, Gerard B.; Kikuchi, Mitsuru; Shitamichi, Kiyomi; Ueno, Sanae; Yoshimura, Yuko; Nagao, Kikuko; Tsubokawa, Tsunehisa; Kojima, Haruyuki; Higashida, Haruhiro; Minabe, Yoshio

    2014-01-01

    A child-customized magnetoencephalography system was used to investigate somatosensory evoked field (SEF) in 3- to 4-year-old children. Three stimulus conditions were used in which the children received tactile-only stimulation to their left index finger or visuotactile stimulation. In the two visuotactile conditions, the children received tactile stimulation to their finger while they watched a video of tactile stimulation applied either to someone else’s finger (the finger-touch condition) or to someone else’s toe (the toe-touch condition). The latencies and source strengths of equivalent current dipoles (ECDs) over contralateral (right) somatosensory cortex were analyzed. In the preschoolers who provided valid ECDs, the stimulus conditions induced an early-latency ECD occurring between 60 and 68 ms mainly with an anterior direction. We further identified a middle-latency ECD between 97 and 104 ms, which predominantly had a posterior direction. Finally, initial evidence was found for a late-latency ECD at about 139–151 ms again more often with an anterior direction. Differences were found in the source strengths of the middle-latency ECDs among the stimulus conditions. For the paired comparisons that could be formed, ECD source strength was more pronounced in the finger-touch condition than in the tactile-only and the toe-touch conditions. Although more research is necessary to expand the data set, this suggests that visual information modulated preschool SEF. The finding that ECD source strength was higher when seen and felt touch occurred to the same body part, as compared to a different body part, might further indicate that connectivity between visual and tactile information is indexed in preschool somatosensory cortical activity, already in a somatotopic way. PMID:24715860

  13. Integration of auditory and somatosensory error signals in the neural control of speech movements.

    PubMed

    Feng, Yongqiang; Gracco, Vincent L; Max, Ludo

    2011-08-01

    We investigated auditory and somatosensory feedback contributions to the neural control of speech. In task I, sensorimotor adaptation was studied by perturbing one of these sensory modalities or both modalities simultaneously. The first formant (F1) frequency in the auditory feedback was shifted up by a real-time processor and/or the extent of jaw opening was increased or decreased with a force field applied by a robotic device. All eight subjects lowered F1 to compensate for the up-shifted F1 in the feedback signal regardless of whether or not the jaw was perturbed. Adaptive changes in subjects' acoustic output resulted from adjustments in articulatory movements of the jaw or tongue. Adaptation in jaw opening extent in response to the mechanical perturbation occurred only when no auditory feedback perturbation was applied or when the direction of adaptation to the force was compatible with the direction of adaptation to a simultaneous acoustic perturbation. In tasks II and III, subjects' auditory and somatosensory precision and accuracy were estimated. Correlation analyses showed that the relationships 1) between F1 adaptation extent and auditory acuity for F1 and 2) between jaw position adaptation extent and somatosensory acuity for jaw position were weak and statistically not significant. Taken together, the combined findings from this work suggest that, in speech production, sensorimotor adaptation updates the underlying control mechanisms in such a way that the planning of vowel-related articulatory movements takes into account a complex integration of error signals from previous trials but likely with a dominant role for the auditory modality.

  14. Cholecystokinin action on layer 6b neurons in somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Leeyup; Moore, Scott D.; Cox, Charles L.

    2009-01-01

    Layer 6b in neocortex is a distinct sublamina at the ventral portion of layer 6. Corticothalamic projections arise from 6b neurons, but few studies have examined the functional properties of these cells. In the present study we examined the actions of cholecystokinin (CCK) on layer 6b neocortical neurons using whole-cell patch clamp recording techniques. We found that the general CCK receptor agonist CCK8S (sulfated CCK octapeptide) strongly depolarized the neurons, and this action persisted in the presence of tetrodotoxin, suggesting a postsynaptic site of action. The excitatory actions of CCK8S were mimicked by the selective CCKB receptor agonist CCK4, and attenuated by the selective CCKB receptor antagonist L365260, indicating a role for CCKB receptors. Voltage clamp recordings revealed that CCK8S produced a slow inward current associated with a decreased conductance with a reversal potential near the K+ equilibrium potential. In addition, intracellular cesium also blocked the inward current, suggesting the involvement of a K+ conductance, likely Kleak. Our data indicate that CCK, acting via CCKB receptors, produces a long-lasting excitation of layer 6b neocortical neurons, and this action may play a critical role in modulation of corticothalamic circuit activity. PMID:19497313

  15. Astrocyte and Neuronal Plasticity in the Somatosensory System.

    PubMed

    Sims, Robert E; Butcher, John B; Parri, H Rheinallt; Glazewski, Stanislaw

    2015-01-01

    Changing the whisker complement on a rodent's snout can lead to two forms of experience-dependent plasticity (EDP) in the neurons of the barrel cortex, where whiskers are somatotopically represented. One form, termed coding plasticity, concerns changes in synaptic transmission and connectivity between neurons. This is thought to underlie learning and memory processes and so adaptation to a changing environment. The second, called homeostatic plasticity, serves to maintain a restricted dynamic range of neuronal activity thus preventing its saturation or total downregulation. Current explanatory models of cortical EDP are almost exclusively neurocentric. However, in recent years, increasing evidence has emerged on the role of astrocytes in brain function, including plasticity. Indeed, astrocytes appear as necessary partners of neurons at the core of the mechanisms of coding and homeostatic plasticity recorded in neurons. In addition to neuronal plasticity, several different forms of astrocytic plasticity have recently been discovered. They extend from changes in receptor expression and dynamic changes in morphology to alteration in gliotransmitter release. It is however unclear how astrocytic plasticity contributes to the neuronal EDP. Here, we review the known and possible roles for astrocytes in the barrel cortex, including its plasticity.

  16. Wearable telescopic contact lens.

    PubMed

    Arianpour, Ashkan; Schuster, Glenn M; Tremblay, Eric J; Stamenov, Igor; Groisman, Alex; Legerton, Jerry; Meyers, William; Amigo, Goretty Alonso; Ford, Joseph E

    2015-08-20

    We describe the design, fabrication, and testing of a 1.6 mm thick scleral contact lens providing both 1× and 2.8× magnified vision paths, intended for use as a switchable eye-borne telescopic low-vision aid. The F/9.7 telescopic vision path uses an 8.2 mm diameter annular entrance pupil and 4 internal reflections in a polymethyl methacrylate precision optic. This gas-impermeable insert is contained inside a smooth outer casing of rigid gas-permeable polymer, which also provides achromatic correction for refraction at the curved lens face. The unmagnified F/4.1 vision path is through the central aperture of the lens, with additional transmission between the annular telescope rings to enable peripheral vision. We discuss potential solutions for providing oxygenation for an extended wear version of the lens. The prototype lenses were characterized using a scale-model human eye, and telescope functionality was confirmed in a small-scale clinical (nondispensed) demonstration.

  17. ’Short-Latency’ Somatosensory Evoked Potentials during Experimentally Induced Biodynamic Stress in Humans.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1985-12-01

    BP, a negative-going * ."" near-field wave originating in the brachial plexus, the A and B waves of Chiappa , et a]. (1980), and the NI, N2, and P2...1981) and by Chiappa , et al. (1980). Table 2 shows the baseline means and standard deviations of the SSEP peaks for all five Ss, derived from the loose...Head and Spine. Charles Thomas, Springfield, 1982, 324-378. Chiappa , K.H., Choi, S.K. and Young, R.R. Short latency somatosensory evoked potentials

  18. Somatosensory evoked potentials aid prediction after hypoxic-ischaemic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Kane, Nick; Oware, Agyepong

    2015-10-01

    Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, basic life support and early defibrillation are leading to more survivors of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest reaching hospital. Once stabilised on an intensive care unit, it can be difficult to predict the neurological outcome using clinical criteria alone, particularly with modern management using sedation, neuromuscular blockade and hypothermia. If we are to prevent ongoing futile life support, it is important to try to identify the majority of patients who, despite best efforts, will not make a meaningful recovery. Somatosensory evoked potentials are widely available electrophysiological tests that can provide an objective biomarker of a poor neurological outcome and assist in predicting the prognosis.

  19. Functional response of cerebral blood flow induced by somatosensory stimulation in rats with subarachnoid hemorrhage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhiguo; Huang, Qin; Liu, Peng; Li, Pengcheng; Ma, Lianting; Lu, Jinling

    2015-09-01

    Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is often accompanied by cerebral vasospasm (CVS), which is the phenomenon of narrowing of large cerebral arteries, and then can produce delayed ischemic neurological deficit (DIND) such as lateralized sensory dysfunction. CVS was regarded as a major contributor to DIND in patients with SAH. However, therapy for preventing vasospasm after SAH to improve the outcomes may not work all the time. It is important to find answers to the relationship between CVS and DIND after SAH. How local cerebral blood flow (CBF) is regulated during functional activation after SAH still remains poorly understood, whereas, the regulation of CBF may play an important role in weakening the impact of CVS on cortex function. Therefore, it is worthwhile to evaluate the functional response of CBF in the activated cortex in an SAH animal model. Most evaluation of the effect of SAH is presently carried out by neurological behavioral scales. The functional imaging of cortical activation during sensory stimulation may help to reflect the function of the somatosensory cortex more locally than the behavioral scales do. We investigated the functional response of CBF in the somatosensory cortex induced by an electrical stimulation to contralateral forepaw via laser speckle imaging in a rat SAH model. Nineteen Sprague-Dawley rats from two groups (control group, n=10 and SAH group, n=9) were studied. SAH was induced in rats by double injection of autologous blood into the cisterna magna after CSF aspiration. The same surgical procedure was applied in the control group without CSF aspiration or blood injection. Significant CVS was found in the SAH group. Meanwhile, we observed a delayed peak of CBF response in rats with SAH compared with those in the control group, whereas no significant difference was found in magnitude, duration, and areas under curve of relative CBF changes between the two groups. The results suggest that the regulation function of local CBF during

  20. Short-term expansion of receptive fields in rat primary somatosensory cortex after hindpaw digit denervation.

    PubMed

    Byrne, J A; Calford, M B

    1991-11-29

    The immediate effect of changing the driving cutaneous input to locations within primary somatosensory cortex (SI) was examined by denervating one or more digits of the rat hindpaw by amputation or local anesthesia. When all or part of a receptive field of a cluster of neurons was denervated, it was found that the cortical location recorded from gained responsiveness to cutaneous stimulation of hindpaw areas bordering the denervated region. In 22 of the 29 animals studied this expansion took place within 5 min of the denervation.

  1. ISPMER: Integrated system for combined PET, MRI, and electrophysiological recording in somatosensory studies in rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shih, Yen-Yu; Chen, You-Yin; Chen, Jyh-Cheng; Chang, Chen; Jaw, Fu-Shan

    2007-10-01

    The present study developed an integrated system for use in combined PET, MRI, and electrophysiological recording in somatosensory studies in rats, called ISPMER. A stereotaxic frame was designed for animal positioning that could be used in all three measurement modalities, and its dimensions complied with the gold standard of the Paxinos and Watson rat brain atlas. A graphical user interface was developed for analyzing the data using several signal processing algorithms. This integrated system provides a novel interface for the recording and processing of three-dimensional neuronal signals in three modalities.

  2. The impact of contact patterns on epidemic dynamics.

    PubMed

    Yin, Qiuju; Shi, Tianyu; Dong, Chao; Yan, Zhijun

    2017-01-01

    In social networks, individuals have relationships with their neighbor nodes (acquaintance contacts) and also randomly contact other nodes without direct links (stranger contacts). However, these two types of contact patterns are rarely considered together. In this paper, we propose a modified SIS (Susceptible-Infected-Susceptible) model in which a node not only contacts neighbor nodes but also randomly contacts other nodes in the network. We implement the model on a scale-free network and study the influence of different types of contact patterns on epidemic dynamics as well as three possible strategies people adopt when disease outbreaks. The results show that a greater preference for acquaintance contacts makes a disease outbreak less likely. Moreover, the best protective strategy to control the disease is to adjust both the contact number and the contact pattern. In addition, the epidemic is more likely to be controlled when individuals take more information into consideration.

  3. The impact of contact patterns on epidemic dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Qiuju; Shi, Tianyu; Dong, Chao; Yan, Zhijun

    2017-01-01

    In social networks, individuals have relationships with their neighbor nodes (acquaintance contacts) and also randomly contact other nodes without direct links (stranger contacts). However, these two types of contact patterns are rarely considered together. In this paper, we propose a modified SIS (Susceptible-Infected-Susceptible) model in which a node not only contacts neighbor nodes but also randomly contacts other nodes in the network. We implement the model on a scale-free network and study the influence of different types of contact patterns on epidemic dynamics as well as three possible strategies people adopt when disease outbreaks. The results show that a greater preference for acquaintance contacts makes a disease outbreak less likely. Moreover, the best protective strategy to control the disease is to adjust both the contact number and the contact pattern. In addition, the epidemic is more likely to be controlled when individuals take more information into consideration. PMID:28291800

  4. Optical intrinsic signals in rat primary somatosensory cortex during non-noxious and noxious elecrical stimulation of the sciatic nerve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Weihua; Li, Pengcheng; Chen, Shangbin; Luo, Qingming

    2003-12-01

    Optical imaging method was applied into observing the temporal-spatial characteristic of rat primary somatosensory cortex during graded electrical stimulation of the sciatic nerve (5hz,duration of 2s,0.5ms puls,1x,10x and 20x muscle twitch threshold). We found that the temporal and spatial properties of hindlimb somatosensory cortex were modulated by graded intensity electrical stimulation of the sciatic nerve. The magnitude and time course were larger and longer with the intensity raising. And the spatial extent was wider at 20x stimulus than the other two kinds of stimulus. Therefore, our optical imaging was based on 570nm, which only reflect the changes of blood volume. Then our future study will reveal more information of pain modulation in primary somatosensory cortex.

  5. Kinematic mapping reveals different spatial distributions of center of pressure high-speed regions under somatosensory loss.

    PubMed

    Portela, Fellipe M; Ferreira, Arthur S

    2014-01-01

    The spatial distribution of center-of-pressure speed during postural tasks and its changes due to somatosensory constraint (temporary ischemic hypoxia on ankle/feet) were investigated in young, healthy subjects (n = 13). A single high-speed region in the central region of the statokinesigram was observed during postural tasks with full sensory information. A significant increase in the quantity of high-speed regions was observed during ischemia and somatosensory constraint, whereas a significant increase in the quantity of high-speed regions localized more distant to the center of center-of-pressure area occurred under somatosensory constraints, suggesting a redirection of center-of-pressure trajectory to adjust the position of the center of mass with respect to the egocentric reference of balance.

  6. Cooling of the cerebellar interpositus nucleus abolishes somatosensory cortical learning-related activity in eyeblink conditioned rabbits.

    PubMed

    Wikgren, Jan; Lavond, David G; Ruusuvirta, Timo; Korhonen, Tapani

    2006-06-03

    Nictitating membrane movement and multiple-unit activity in the somatosensory cortex were recorded from rabbits during paired (N=6) and unpaired (N=5) presentations of a tone conditioned stimulus (CS) and an airpuff unconditioned stimulus (US). A behavioural conditioned response (CR) to the CS and an accompanying neural response in the somatosensory cortex developed only in the paired group. Inactivation of the cerebellar interpositus nucleus abolished both the acquired CR and the accompanying neural response. However, the CS facilitated both behavioural and neural responses to the US during the inactivation. Thus, the absence of the CR could not be accounted for by the general inability of the CS to alter the behaviour constituting the CR or the activity of the somatosensory cortex. These findings suggest that the efferent copy of the signal related to the eyeblink CR is projected from the cerebellum to the cerebral cortical areas of the US modality.

  7. Factor XII Contact Activation.

    PubMed

    Naudin, Clément; Burillo, Elena; Blankenberg, Stefan; Butler, Lynn; Renné, Thomas

    2017-03-27

    Contact activation is the surface-induced conversion of factor XII (FXII) zymogen to the serine protease FXIIa. Blood-circulating FXII binds to negatively charged surfaces and this contact to surfaces triggers a conformational change in the zymogen inducing autoactivation. Several surfaces that have the capacity for initiating FXII contact activation have been identified, including misfolded protein aggregates, collagen, nucleic acids, and platelet and microbial polyphosphate. Activated FXII initiates the proinflammatory kallikrein-kinin system and the intrinsic coagulation pathway, leading to formation of bradykinin and thrombin, respectively. FXII contact activation is well characterized in vitro and provides the mechanistic basis for the diagnostic clotting assay, activated partial thromboplastin time. However, only in the past decade has the critical role of FXII contact activation in pathological thrombosis been appreciated. While defective FXII contact activation provides thromboprotection, excess activation underlies the swelling disorder hereditary angioedema type III. This review provides an overview of the molecular basis of FXII contact activation and FXII contact activation-associated disease states.

  8. Contact symmetries and Hamiltonian thermodynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Bravetti, A.; Lopez-Monsalvo, C.S.; Nettel, F.

    2015-10-15

    It has been shown that contact geometry is the proper framework underlying classical thermodynamics and that thermodynamic fluctuations are captured by an additional metric structure related to Fisher’s Information Matrix. In this work we analyse several unaddressed aspects about the application of contact and metric geometry to thermodynamics. We consider here the Thermodynamic Phase Space and start by investigating the role of gauge transformations and Legendre symmetries for metric contact manifolds and their significance in thermodynamics. Then we present a novel mathematical characterization of first order phase transitions as equilibrium processes on the Thermodynamic Phase Space for which the Legendre symmetry is broken. Moreover, we use contact Hamiltonian dynamics to represent thermodynamic processes in a way that resembles the classical Hamiltonian formulation of conservative mechanics and we show that the relevant Hamiltonian coincides with the irreversible entropy production along thermodynamic processes. Therefore, we use such property to give a geometric definition of thermodynamically admissible fluctuations according to the Second Law of thermodynamics. Finally, we show that the length of a curve describing a thermodynamic process measures its entropy production.

  9. Individuals with post-stroke hemiparesis are able to use additional sensory information to reduce postural sway.

    PubMed

    Cunha, B P; Alouche, S R; Araujo, I M G; Freitas, S M S F

    2012-03-28

    The present study aimed to investigate whether stroke survivals are able to use the additional somatosensory information provided by the light touch to reduce their postural sway during the upright stance. Eight individuals, naturally right-handed pre-stroke, and eight healthy age-matched adults stood as quiet as possible on a force plate during 35s. Participants performed two trials for each visual condition (eyes open and closed) and somatosensory condition (with and without the right or left index fingertip touching an instrumented rigid and fixed bar). When participants touched the bar, they were asked to apply less than 1N of vertical force. The postural sway was assessed by the center of pressure (COP) displacement area, mean amplitude and velocity. In addition, the mean and standard deviation of the force vertically applied on the bar during the trials with touch were assessed. The averaged values of COP area, amplitude and velocity were greater for stroke individuals compared to healthy adults during all visual and somatosensory conditions. For both groups, the values of all variables increased when participants stood with eyes closed and reduced when they touched the bar regardless of the side of the touch. Overall, the results suggested that, as healthy individuals, persons with post-stroke hemiparesis are able to use the additional somatosensory information provided by the light touch to reduce the postural sway.

  10. Noneczematous Contact Dermatitis

    PubMed Central

    Foti, Caterina; Vestita, Michelangelo; Angelini, Gianni

    2013-01-01

    Irritant or allergic contact dermatitis usually presents as an eczematous process, clinically characterized by erythematoedematovesicous lesions with intense itching in the acute phase. Such manifestations become erythematous-scaly as the condition progresses to the subacute phase and papular-hyperkeratotic in the chronic phase. Not infrequently, however, contact dermatitis presents with noneczematous features. The reasons underlying this clinical polymorphism lie in the different noxae and contact modalities, as well as in the individual susceptibility and the various targeted cutaneous structures. The most represented forms of non-eczematous contact dermatitis include the erythema multiforme-like, the purpuric, the lichenoid, and the pigmented kinds. These clinical entities must obviously be discerned from the corresponding “pure” dermatitis, which are not associated with contact with exogenous agents. PMID:24109520

  11. BISON Contact Improvements CASL FY14 Report

    SciTech Connect

    Spencer, B. W.; Hales, J. D.; Gaston, D. R.; Karpeev, D. A.; Williamson, R. L.; Novascone, S. R.; Perez, D. M.; Gardner, R. J.; Gamble, K. A.

    2014-09-01

    The BISON code is the foundation for multiple fuel performance modeling efforts, and is currently under heavy development. For a variety of fuel forms, the effects of heat conduction across a gap and mechanical contact between components of a fuel system are very significant. It is thus critical that BISON have robust capabilities for enforcement of thermal and mechanical contact. BISON’s solver robustness has generally been quite good before mechanical contact between the fuel and cladding occurs, but there have been significant challenges obtaining converged solutions once that contact occurs and the solver begins to enforce mechanical contact constraints. During the current year, significant development effort has been focused on the enforcement of mechanical contact to provide improved solution robustness. In addition to this work to improve mechanical contact robustness, an investigation into questionable results attributable to thermal contact has been performed. This investigation found that the order of integration typically used on the surfaces involved in thermal contact was not sufficiently high. To address this problem, a new option was provided to permit the use of a different integration order for surfaces, and new usage recommendations were provided.

  12. Early and late activity in somatosensory cortex reflects changes in bodily self-consciousness: an evoked potential study.

    PubMed

    Aspell, J E; Palluel, E; Blanke, O

    2012-08-02

    How can we investigate the brain mechanisms underlying self-consciousness? Recent behavioural studies on multisensory bodily perception have shown that multisensory conflicts can alter bodily self-consciousness such as in the "full body illusion" (FBI) in which changes in self-identification with a virtual body and tactile perception are induced. Here we investigated whether experimental changes in self-identification during the FBI are accompanied by activity changes in somatosensory cortex by recording somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs). To modulate self-identification, participants were filmed by a video camera from behind while their backs were stroked, either synchronously (illusion condition) or asynchronously (control condition) with respect to the stroking seen on their virtual body. Tibial nerve SEPs were recorded during the FBI and analysed using evoked potential (EP) mapping. Tactile mislocalisation was measured using the crossmodal congruency task. SEP mapping revealed five sequential periods of brain activation during the FBI, of which two differed between the illusion condition and the control condition. Activation at 30-50 ms (corresponding to the P40 component) in primary somatosensory cortex was stronger in the illusion condition. A later activation at ∼110-200 ms, likely originating in higher-tier somatosensory regions in parietal cortex, was stronger and lasted longer in the control condition. These data show that changes in bodily self-consciousness modulate activity in primary and higher-tier somatosensory cortex at two distinct processing steps. We argue that early modulations of primary somatosensory cortex may be a consequence of (1) multisensory integration of synchronous vs. asynchronous visuo-tactile stimuli and/or (2) differences in spatial attention (to near or far space) between the conditions. The later activation in higher-tier parietal cortex (and potentially other regions in temporo-parietal and frontal cortex) likely

  13. Chronic Stress and Peripheral Pain: Evidence for Distinct, Region-specific Changes in Visceral and Somatosensory Pain Regulatory Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Gen; Hong, Shuangsong; Hayes, John M; Wiley, John W

    2015-01-01

    Chronic stress alters the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and enhances visceral and somatosensory pain perception. It is unresolved whether chronic stress has distinct effects on visceral and somatosensory pain regulatory pathways. Previous studies reported that stress-induced visceral hyperalgesia is associated with reciprocal alterations of endovanilloid and endocannabinoid pain pathways in DRG neurons innervating the pelvic viscera. In this study, we compared somatosensory and visceral hyperalgesia with respect to differential responses of peripheral pain regulatory pathways in a rat model of chronic, intermittent stress. We found that chronic stress induced reciprocal changes in the endocannabinoid 2-AG (increased) and endocannabinoid degradation enzymes COX-2 and FAAH (decreased), associated with down-regulation of CB1 and up-regulation of TRPV1 receptors in L6-S2 DRG but not L4-L5 DRG neurons. In contrast, sodium channels Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 were up-regulated in L4-L5 but not L6-S2 DRGs in stressed rats, which was reproduced in control L4-L5 DRGs treated with corticosterone in vitro. The reciprocal changes of CB1, TRPV1 and sodium channels were cell-specific and observed in the sub-population of nociceptive neurons. Behavioral assessment showed that visceral hyperalgesia persisted, whereas somatosensory hyperalgesia and enhanced expression of Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 sodium channels in L4-L5 DRGs normalized 3 days after completion of the stress phase. These data indicate that chronic stress induces visceral and somatosensory hyperalgesia that involves differential changes in endovanilloid and endocannabinoid pathways, and sodium channels in DRGs innervating the pelvic viscera and lower extremities. These results suggest that chronic stress-induced visceral and lower extremity somatosensory hyperalgesia can be treated selectively at different levels of the spinal cord. PMID:26408049

  14. Inherited erythromelalgia due to mutations in SCN9A: natural history, clinical phenotype and somatosensory profile.

    PubMed

    McDonnell, Aoibhinn; Schulman, Betsy; Ali, Zahid; Dib-Hajj, Sulayman D; Brock, Fiona; Cobain, Sonia; Mainka, Tina; Vollert, Jan; Tarabar, Sanela; Waxman, Stephen G

    2016-04-01

    Inherited erythromelalgia, the first human pain syndrome linked to voltage-gated sodium channels, is widely regarded as a genetic model of human pain. Because inherited erythromelalgia was linked to gain-of-function changes of sodium channel Na(v)1.7 only a decade ago, the literature has mainly consisted of reports of genetic and/or clinical characterization of individual patients. This paper describes the pattern of pain, natural history, somatosensory profile, psychosocial status and olfactory testing of 13 subjects with primary inherited erythromelalgia with mutations of SCN9A, the gene encoding Na(v)1.7. Subjects were clinically profiled using questionnaires, quantitative sensory testing and olfaction testing during the in-clinic phase of the study. In addition, a detailed pain phenotype for each subject was obtained over a 3-month period at home using diaries, enabling subjects to self-report pain attacks, potential triggers, duration and severity of pain. All subjects reported pain and heat in the extremities (usually feet and/or hands), with pain attacks triggered by heat or exercise and relieved mainly by non-pharmacological manoeuvres such as cooling. A large proportion of pain attacks (355/1099; 32%) did not involve a specific trigger. There was considerable variability in the number, duration and severity of pain attacks between subjects, even those carrying the same mutation within a family, and within individuals over the 12-13 week observation period. Most subjects (11/13) had pain between attacks. For these subjects, mean pain severity between pain attacks was usually lower than that during an attack. Olfaction testing using the Sniffin'T test did not demonstrate hyperosmia. One subject had evidence of orthostatic hypotension. Overall, there was a statistically significant correlation between total Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale scores (P= 0.005) and pain between attacks and for Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale Depression scores and pain

  15. Allergic contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Becker, Detlef

    2013-07-01

    Allergic contact dermatitis is a frequent inflammatory skin disease. The suspected diagnosis is based on clinical symptoms, a plausible contact to allergens and a suitable history of dermatitis. Differential diagnoses should be considered only after careful exclusion of any causal contact sensitization. Hence, careful diagnosis by patch testing is of great importance. Modifications of the standardized test procedure are the strip patch test and the repeated open application test. The interpretation of the SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) patch test as well as testing with the patients' own products and working materials are potential sources of error. Accurate patch test reading is affected in particular by the experience and individual factors of the examiner. Therefore, a high degree of standardization and continuous quality control is necessary and may be supported by use of an online patch test reading course made available by the German Contact Dermatitis Research Group. A critical relevance assessment of allergic patch test reactions helps to avoid relapses and the consideration of differential diagnoses. Any allergic test reaction should be documented in an allergy ID card including the INCI name, if appropriate. The diagnostics of allergic contact dermatitis is endangered by a seriously reduced financing of patch testing by the German statutory health insurances. Restrictive regulations by the German Drug Law block the approval of new contact allergens for routine patch testing. Beside the consistent avoidance of allergen contact, temporary use of systemic and topical corticosteroids is the therapy of first choice.

  16. Functional connectivity and activity of white matter in somatosensory pathways under tactile stimulations.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xi; Yang, Zhipeng; Bailey, Stephen K; Zhou, Jiliu; Cutting, Laurie E; Gore, John C; Ding, Zhaohua

    2017-03-08

    Functional MRI has proven to be effective in detecting neural activity in brain cortices on the basis of blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) contrast, but has relatively poor sensitivity for detecting neural activity in white matter. To demonstrate that BOLD signals in white matter are detectable and contain information on neural activity, we stimulated the somatosensory system and examined distributions of BOLD signals in related white matter pathways. The temporal correlation profiles and frequency contents of BOLD signals were compared between stimulation and resting conditions, and between relevant white matter fibers and background regions, as well as between left and right side stimulations. Quantitative analyses show that, overall, MR signals from white matter fiber bundles in the somatosensory system exhibited significantly greater temporal correlations with the primary sensory cortex and greater signal power during tactile stimulations than in a resting state, and were stronger than corresponding measurements for background white matter both during stimulations and in a resting state. The temporal correlation and signal power under stimulation were found to be twice those observed from the same bundle in a resting state, and bore clear relations with the side of stimuli. These indicate that BOLD signals in white matter fibers encode neural activity related to their functional roles connecting cortical volumes, which are detectable with appropriate methods.

  17. The Development of Nociceptive Network Activity in the Somatosensory Cortex of Freely Moving Rat Pups

    PubMed Central

    Chang, P.; Fabrizi, L.; Olhede, S.; Fitzgerald, M.

    2016-01-01

    Cortical perception of noxious stimulation is an essential component of pain experience but it is not known how cortical nociceptive activity emerges during brain development. Here we use continuous telemetric electrocorticogram (ECoG) recording from the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) of awake active rat pups to map functional nociceptive processing in the developing brain over the first 4 weeks of life. Cross-sectional and longitudinal recordings show that baseline S1 ECoG energy increases steadily with age, with a distinctive beta component replaced by a distinctive theta component in week 3. Event-related potentials were evoked by brief noxious hindpaw skin stimulation at all ages tested, confirming the presence of functional nociceptive spinothalamic inputs in S1. However, hindpaw incision, which increases pain sensitivity at all ages, did not increase S1 ECoG energy until week 3. A significant increase in gamma (20–50 Hz) energy occurred in the presence of skin incision at week 3 accompanied by a longer-lasting increase in theta (4–8 Hz) energy at week 4. Continuous ECoG recording demonstrates specific postnatal functional stages in the maturation of S1 cortical nociception. Somatosensory cortical coding of an ongoing pain “state” in awake rat pups becomes apparent between 2 and 4 weeks of age. PMID:27797835

  18. Insula and somatosensory cortical myelination and iron markers underlie individual differences in empathy

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Micah; Frank, Darya; Glen, James C.; Fardo, Francesca; Callaghan, Martina F.; Rees, Geraint

    2017-01-01

    Empathy is a key component of our ability to engage and interact with others. In recent years, the neural mechanisms underlying affective and cognitive empathy have garnered intense interest. This work demonstrates that empathy for others depends upon a distributed network of regions such as the insula, parietal cortex, and somatosensory areas, which are also activated when we ourselves experience an empathized-with emotion (e.g., pain). Individuals vary markedly in their ability to empathize with others, which predicts the tendency to help others and relates to individual differences in the neuroanatomy of these areas. Here, we use a newly developed, high-resolution (800 μm isotropic), quantitative MRI technique to better elucidate the neuroanatomical underpinnings of individual differences in empathy. Our findings extend previous studies of the neuroanatomical correlates of cognitive and affective empathy. In particular, individual differences in cognitive empathy were associated with markers of myeloarchitectural integrity of the insular cortex, while affective empathy was predicted by a marker of iron content in second somatosensory cortex. These results indicate potential novel biomarkers of trait empathy, suggesting that microstructural features of an empathy and body-related network are crucial for understanding the mental and emotional states of others. PMID:28256532

  19. Motor imagery evokes increased somatosensory activity in Parkinson's disease patients with tremor.

    PubMed

    Helmich, Rick C; Bloem, Bastiaan R; Toni, Ivan

    2012-08-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is surprisingly heterogeneous: some patients have a prominent resting tremor, while others never develop this symptom. Here we investigate whether the functional organization of the voluntary motor system differs between PD patients with and without resting tremor, and whether these differences relate to the cerebral circuit producing tremor. We compared 18 PD patients with marked tremor, 20 PD patients without tremor, and 19 healthy controls. Subjects performed a controlled motor imagery task during fMRI scanning. We quantified imagery-related cerebral activity by contrasting imagery of biomechanically difficult and easy movements. Tremor-related activity was identified by relating cerebral activity to fluctuations in tremor amplitude, using electromyography during scanning. PD patients with tremor had better behavioral performance than PD patients without tremor. Furthermore, tremulous PD patients showed increased imagery-related activity in somatosensory area 3a, as compared with both healthy controls and to nontremor PD patients. This effect was independent from tremor-related activity, which was localized to the motor cortex, cerebellum, and thalamic ventral intermediate nucleus (VIM). The VIM, with known projections to area 3a, was unique in showing both tremor- and imagery-related responses. We conclude that parkinsonian tremor influences motor imagery by modulating central somatosensory processing through the VIM. This mechanism may explain clinical differences between PD patients with and without tremor.

  20. Quality discrimination for noxious stimuli in secondary somatosensory cortex: a MEG-study.

    PubMed

    Maihöfner, Christian; Kaltenhäuser, Martin

    2009-11-01

    A complex cortical network is believed to encode the multi-dimensionality of the human pain experience. In the present study, we used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to examine whether the cortical processing of noxious stimuli with different psychophysical properties differs in primary (S1) and secondary (S2) somatosensory cortices. Noxious low (condition 1) and high (condition 2) current density stimulations of equal stimulus intensities were applied at the left forearm in 12 subjects in a randomised order. Concomitantly, subjects had to evaluate the corresponding sensory-discriminative and affective-motivational pain dimensions. MEG revealed an increased activation of bilateral secondary somatosensory cortices (S2) during condition 2 compared to condition 1. Higher activations of bilateral S2 were significantly correlated with higher scores for the sensory-discriminative component during condition 2. In contrast, corresponding scores for the affective-motivational pain dimension did not differ between both conditions. Therefore, concerning the sensory dimension of the human pain experience we conclude that the S2 cortex is involved in the encoding of quality discrimination.

  1. Visual–Somatosensory Integration is Linked to Physical Activity Level in Older Adults

    PubMed Central

    Mahoney, Jeannette R.; Dumas, Kristina; Holtzer, Roee

    2016-01-01

    Studies examining multisensory integration (MSI) in aging consistently demonstrate greater reaction time (RT) facilitation in old compared to young adults, but often fail to determine the utility of MSI. The aim of the current experiment was to further elucidate the utility of MSI in aging by determining its relationship to physical activity level. 147 non-demented older adults (mean age 77 years; 57% female) participated. Participants were instructed to make speeded responses to visual, somatosensory, and visual–somatosensory (VS) stimuli. Depending on the magnitude of the individuals’ RT facilitation, participants were classified into a MSI or NO MSI group. Physical activity was assessed using a validated physical activity scale. As predicted, RTs to VS stimuli were significantly shorter than those elicited to constituent unisensory conditions. Multisensory RT facilitation was a significant predictor of total number of physical activity days per month, with individuals in the NO MSI group reporting greater engagement in physical activities compared to those requiring greater RT facilitation. PMID:26152050

  2. Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in Patients with Hypoxic-Ischemic Brain Injury.

    PubMed

    Horn, Janneke; Tjepkema-Cloostermans, Marleen C

    2017-02-01

    Predicting the future of patients with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy after successful cardiopulmonary resuscitation is often difficult. Registration of the median nerve somatosensory evoked potential (SSEP) can assist in the neurologic evaluation in these patients. In this article, the authors discuss the principles, applications, and limitations of SSEP registration in the intensive care unit, with a focus on prognostication. Registration of the SSEP is a very reliable and reproducible method, if it is performed and interpreted correctly. During SSEP recordings, great care should be taken to improve the signal-to-noise ratio. If the noise level is too high, the peripheral responses are abnormal or the response is not reproducible in a second set of stimuli; therefore, interpretation of the SSEPs cannot be done reliably. A bilaterally absent cortical SSEP response is a very reliable predictor of poor neurologic outcome in patients with HIE. It has a high specificity, but a low sensitivity, indicating that present cortical responses are a weak predictor of a good recovery. Further research is being done to increase the sensitivity. Somatosensory evoked potentials can be used in a multimodal approach for prognostication of outcome.

  3. Transcranial magnetic stimulation over human secondary somatosensory cortex disrupts perception of pain intensity.

    PubMed

    Lockwood, Patricia L; Iannetti, Gian Domenico; Haggard, Patrick

    2013-09-01

    Pain is a complex sensory experience resulting from the activity of a network of brain regions. However, the functional contribution of individual regions in this network remains poorly understood. We delivered single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to the contralateral primary somatosensory cortex (S1), secondary somatosensory cortex (S2) and vertex (control site) 120 msec after selective stimulation of nociceptive afferents using neodymium:yttrium-aluminium-perovskite (Nd:YAP) laser pulses causing painful sensations. Participants were required to judge either the intensity (medium/high) or the spatial location (proximal/distal) of the stimulus in a two-alternative forced choice paradigm. When TMS pulses were delivered over S2, participants' ability to judge pain intensity was disrupted, as compared to S1 and vertex (control) stimulation. Signal-detection analysis demonstrated a loss of sensitivity to stimulation intensity, rather than a shift in perceived pain level or response bias. We did not find any effect of TMS on the ability to localise nociceptive stimuli on the skin. The novel finding that TMS over S2 can disrupt perception of pain intensity suggests a causal role for S2 in encoding of pain intensity.

  4. Stochastic resonance in the spinal cord and somatosensory cortex of the cat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manjarrez, Elias; Rojas-Piloni, Gerardo; Perez, Hugo; Mendez, Ignacio; Hernandez-Paxtian, Zulma; Flores, Amira

    2003-05-01

    The aim of this study was to demonstrate the occurrence of stochastic resonance (SR) in spinal and cortical potentials elicited by periodic tactile stimuli in the anaesthetised cat. The periodic tactile stimuli were applied on the central pad of the hindpaw and the noisy tactile stimuli on the glabrous skin of the third hindpaw digit. This protocol allowed that the signal and noise were mixed not in the skin but in the somatosensory regions of the central nervous system. The results show that a particular level of tactile noise can increase the amplitude of the spinal and cortical potentials elicited by periodic tactile stimuli. The topographical distribution of evoked potentials indicates that the effects of noise were spatially restricted. All cats showed distinct SR behavior at the spinal and cortical stages of the sensory encoding. Such SR was abolished in the cortical but not in the spinal recording after the sectioning of the ascending pathways. This suggests that the spinal neurones may also contribute to the SR observed at the cortical level. The present study documents the first evidence that the SR phenomenon occurs in the spinal and cortical somatosensory system itself and not only in the peripheral sensory receptors.

  5. Structure of a single whisker representation in layer 2 of mouse somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Clancy, Kelly B; Schnepel, Philipp; Rao, Antara T; Feldman, Daniel E

    2015-03-04

    Layer (L)2 is a major output of primary sensory cortex that exhibits very sparse spiking, but the structure of sensory representation in L2 is not well understood. We combined two-photon calcium imaging with deflection of many whiskers to map whisker receptive fields, characterize sparse coding, and quantitatively define the point representation in L2 of mouse somatosensory cortex. Neurons within a column-sized imaging field showed surprisingly heterogeneous, salt-and-pepper tuning to many different whiskers. Single whisker deflection elicited low-probability spikes in highly distributed, shifting neural ensembles spanning multiple cortical columns. Whisker-evoked response probability correlated strongly with spontaneous firing rate, but weakly with tuning properties, indicating a spectrum of inherent responsiveness across pyramidal cells. L2 neurons projecting to motor and secondary somatosensory cortex differed in whisker tuning and responsiveness, and carried different amounts of information about columnar whisker deflection. From these data, we derive a quantitative, fine-scale picture of the distributed point representation in L2.

  6. Reconciling Homeostatic and Use-Dependent Plasticity in the Context of Somatosensory Deprivation

    PubMed Central

    Orczyk, John J.; Garraghty, Preston E.

    2015-01-01

    The concept of homeostatic plasticity postulates that neurons maintain relatively stable rates of firing despite changing inputs. Homeostatic and use-dependent plasticity mechanisms operate concurrently, although they have different requirements for induction. Depriving central somatosensory neurons of their primary activating inputs reduces activity and results in compensatory changes that favor excitation. Both a reduction of GABAergic inhibition and increase in glutamatergic excitatory transmission are observed in input-deprived cortex. Topographic reorganization of the adult somatosensory cortex is likely driven by both homeostatic and use-dependent mechanisms. Plasticity is induced by changes in the strengths of synaptic inputs, as well as changes in temporal correlation of neuronal activity. However, there is less certainty regarding the in vivo contribution of homeostatic mechanisms as in vitro experiments rely on manipulations that create states that do not normally occur in the living nervous system. Homeostatic plasticity seems to occur, but more in vivo research is needed to determine mechanisms. In vitro research is also needed but should better conform to conditions that might occur naturally in vivo. PMID:25866682

  7. Beta oscillations in the monkey sensorimotor network reflect somatosensory decision making

    PubMed Central

    Haegens, Saskia; Nácher, Verónica; Hernández, Adrián; Luna, Rogelio; Jensen, Ole; Romo, Ranulfo

    2011-01-01

    The neuronal correlate of perceptual decision making has been extensively studied in the monkey somatosensory system by using a vibrotactile discrimination task, showing that stimulus encoding, retention, and comparison are widely distributed across cortical areas. However, from a network perspective, it is not known what role oscillations play in this task. We recorded local field potentials (LFPs) from diverse cortical areas of the sensorimotor system while one monkey performed the vibrotactile discrimination task. Exclusively during stimulus presentation, a periodic response reflecting the stimulus frequency was observed in the somatosensory regions, suggesting that after initial processing, the frequency content of the stimulus is coded in some other way than entrainment. Interestingly, we found that oscillatory activity in the beta band reflected the dynamics of decision making in the monkey sensorimotor network. During the comparison and decision period, beta activity showed a categorical response that reflected the decision of the monkey and distinguished correct from incorrect responses. Importantly, this differential activity was absent in a control condition that involved the same stimulation and response but no decision making required, suggesting it does not merely reflect the maintenance of a motor plan. We conclude that beta band oscillations reflect the temporal and spatial dynamics of the accumulation and processing of evidence in the sensorimotor network leading to the decision outcome. PMID:21670296

  8. The role of self-touch in somatosensory and body representation disorders after stroke

    PubMed Central

    van Stralen, H. E.; van Zandvoort, M. J. E.; Dijkerman, H. C.

    2011-01-01

    Somatosensory impairments occur in about half of the cases of stroke. These impairments range from primary deficits in tactile detection and the perception of features, to higher order impairments in haptic object recognition and bodily experience. In this paper, we review the influence of active- and self-touch on somatosensory impairments after stroke. Studies have shown that self-touch improves tactile detection in patients with primary tactile deficits. A small number of studies concerned with the effect of self-touch on bodily experience in healthy individuals have demonstrated that self-touch influences the structural representation of one's own body. In order to better understand the effect of self-touch on body representations, we present an informal study of a stroke patient with somatoparaphrenia and misoplegia. The role of self-touch on body ownership was investigated by asking the patient to stroke the impaired left hand and foreign hands. The patient reported ownership and a change in affect over all presented hands through self-touch. The time it took to accomplish ownership varied, based on the resemblance of the foreign hand to the patient's own hand. Our findings suggest that self-touch can modulate impairments in body ownership and affect, perhaps by helping to reinstate the representation of the body. PMID:21969696

  9. Transcriptional profiling at whole population and single cell levels reveals somatosensory neuron molecular diversity

    PubMed Central

    Chiu, Isaac M; Barrett, Lee B; Williams, Erika K; Strochlic, David E; Lee, Seungkyu; Weyer, Andy D; Lou, Shan; Bryman, Gregory S; Roberson, David P; Ghasemlou, Nader; Piccoli, Cara; Ahat, Ezgi; Wang, Victor; Cobos, Enrique J; Stucky, Cheryl L; Ma, Qiufu; Liberles, Stephen D; Woolf, Clifford J

    2014-01-01

    The somatosensory nervous system is critical for the organism's ability to respond to mechanical, thermal, and nociceptive stimuli. Somatosensory neurons are functionally and anatomically diverse but their molecular profiles are not well-defined. Here, we used transcriptional profiling to analyze the detailed molecular signatures of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons. We used two mouse reporter lines and surface IB4 labeling to purify three major non-overlapping classes of neurons: 1) IB4+SNS-Cre/TdTomato+, 2) IB4−SNS-Cre/TdTomato+, and 3) Parv-Cre/TdTomato+ cells, encompassing the majority of nociceptive, pruriceptive, and proprioceptive neurons. These neurons displayed distinct expression patterns of ion channels, transcription factors, and GPCRs. Highly parallel qRT-PCR analysis of 334 single neurons selected by membership of the three populations demonstrated further diversity, with unbiased clustering analysis identifying six distinct subgroups. These data significantly increase our knowledge of the molecular identities of known DRG populations and uncover potentially novel subsets, revealing the complexity and diversity of those neurons underlying somatosensation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04660.001 PMID:25525749

  10. A vibrotactile behavioral battery for investigating somatosensory processing in children and adults.

    PubMed

    Puts, Nicolaas A J; Edden, Richard A E; Wodka, Ericka L; Mostofsky, Stewart H; Tommerdahl, Mark

    2013-08-15

    The cortical dynamics of somatosensory processing can be investigated using vibrotactile psychophysics. It has been suggested that different vibrotactile paradigms target different cortical mechanisms, and a number of recent studies have established links between somatosensory cortical function and measurable aspects of behavior. The relationship between cortical mechanisms and sensory function is particularly relevant with respect to developmental disorders in which altered inhibitory processing has been postulated, such as in ASD and ADHD. In this study, a vibrotactile battery consisting of nine tasks (incorporating reaction time, detection threshold, and amplitude- and frequency discrimination) was applied to a cohort of healthy adults and a cohort of typically developing children to assess the feasibility of such a vibrotactile battery in both cohorts, and the performance between children and adults was compared. These results showed that children and adults were both able to perform these tasks with a similar performance, although the children were slightly less sensitive in frequency discrimination. Performance within different task-groups clustered together in adults, providing further evidence that these tasks tap into different cortical mechanisms, which is also discussed. This clustering was not observed in children, which may be potentially indicative of development and a greater variability. In conclusion, in this study, we showed that both children and adults were able to perform an extensive vibrotactile battery, and we showed the feasibility of applying this battery to other (e.g., neurodevelopmental) cohorts to probe different cortical mechanisms.

  11. Diagnostic classification of intrinsic functional connectivity highlights somatosensory, default mode, and visual regions in autism.

    PubMed

    Chen, Colleen P; Keown, Christopher L; Jahedi, Afrooz; Nair, Aarti; Pflieger, Mark E; Bailey, Barbara A; Müller, Ralph-Axel

    2015-01-01

    Despite consensus on the neurological nature of autism spectrum disorders (ASD), brain biomarkers remain unknown and diagnosis continues to be based on behavioral criteria. Growing evidence suggests that brain abnormalities in ASD occur at the level of interconnected networks; however, previous attempts using functional connectivity data for diagnostic classification have reached only moderate accuracy. We selected 252 low-motion resting-state functional MRI (rs-fMRI) scans from the Autism Brain Imaging Data Exchange (ABIDE) including typically developing (TD) and ASD participants (n = 126 each), matched for age, non-verbal IQ, and head motion. A matrix of functional connectivities between 220 functionally defined regions of interest was used for diagnostic classification, implementing several machine learning tools. While support vector machines in combination with particle swarm optimization and recursive feature elimination performed modestly (with accuracies for validation datasets <70%), diagnostic classification reached a high accuracy of 91% with random forest (RF), a nonparametric ensemble learning method. Among the 100 most informative features (connectivities), for which this peak accuracy was achieved, participation of somatosensory, default mode, visual, and subcortical regions stood out. Whereas some of these findings were expected, given previous findings of default mode abnormalities and atypical visual functioning in ASD, the prominent role of somatosensory regions was remarkable. The finding of peak accuracy for 100 interregional functional connectivities further suggests that brain biomarkers of ASD may be regionally complex and distributed, rather than localized.

  12. The effects of acute cortical somatosensory deafferentation on grip force control

    PubMed Central

    Richardson, Andrew G.; Attiah, Mark A.; Berman, Jeffrey I.; Chen, H. Isaac; Liu, Xilin; Zhang, Milin; Van der Spiegel, Jan; Lucas, Timothy H.

    2015-01-01

    Grip force control involves mechanisms to adjust to unpredictable and predictable changes in loads during manual manipulation. Somatosensory feedback is critical not just to reactive, feedback control but also to updating the internal representations needed for proactive, feedforward control. The role of primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in these control strategies is not well established. Here we investigated grip force control in a rare case of acute central deafferentation following resection of S1. The subject had complete loss of somatosensation in the right arm without any deficit in muscle strength or reflexes. In the first task, the subject was asked to maintain a constant grip force with and without visual feedback. The subject was able to attain the target force with visual feedback but not maintain that force for more than a few seconds after visual feedback was removed. In the second task, the subject was asked to grip and move an instrumented object. The induced acceleration-dependent loads were countered by adjustments in grip force. Both amplitude and timing of the grip force modulation were not affected by deafferentation. The dissociation of these effects demonstrates the differential contribution of S1 to the mechanisms of grip force control. PMID:26587914

  13. Central somatosensory changes associated with improved dynamic balance in subjects with anterior cruciate ligament deficiency.

    PubMed

    Courtney, Carol A; Rine, Rose M

    2006-10-01

    To examine the mechanisms underlying return to pre-injury function in individuals with anterior cruciate ligament deficiency (ACL-D), we grouped 15 individuals (18-50 years of age) with ACL-D by functional status and strength (i.e. copers, non-copers and adapters) and compared measures of proprioception, somatosensory evoked potentials and neuromuscular responses to dynamic testing between groups. Seven subjects without ACL-D provided a comparative sample for dynamic balance testing (DBT). DBT consisted of bilateral EMG recordings of anterior tibialis, medial gastrocnemius, medial hamstrings and quadriceps during toes-down platform rotation. Relative latencies and relative amplitudes were calculated. Somatosensory evoked potential (SEPs) testing was based on identifying the presence or absence of the P27 potential. Proprioception was tested using threshold to detection of passive movement (TDPM). Those with the highest level of function, the copers, had a proprioceptive deficit, loss of P27 and altered postural synergies consisting of earlier and larger hamstring activation. Conversely, those with the lowest functional status, the non-copers, had strength and proprioception deficits, intact SEPs and inconsistent postural synergies. These results suggest that changes in central sensory representation may facilitate altered postural synergies that enable return to pre-injury functional status.

  14. [Methylmercury causes diffuse damage to the somatosensory cortex: how to diagnose Minamata disease].

    PubMed

    Ekino, Shigeo; Ninomiya, Tadashi; Imamura, Keiko; Susa, Mari

    2007-01-01

    The first acute case of methylmercury (MeHg) poisoning by the consumption of fish arose in Minamata, Japan, in 1953. It was officially recognized and called Minamata disease (MD) in 1956. There are still arguments about the definition of MD in terms of its associated clinical symptoms and lesions even 50 years after the initial recognition of MD. Studies on this MD epidemic are reviewed along with its historical background. Since MeHg dispersed from Minamata to the Shiranui Sea, residents living around the sea had been exposed to low-dose MeHg through fish consumption for about 20 years (at least from 1950 to 1968). These chronic MeHg poisoning patients complained of paresthesia at the distal parts of their extremities and around the lips even 30 years after the cessation of exposure to MeHg of anthropogenic origin. The persisting somatosensory disorders after the discontinuation of exposure to MeHg were induced by diffuse damage to the somatosensory cortex, but not by damage to the peripheral nervous system, as previously believed. Based on these findings, symptoms and lesions in MeHg poisoning are reappraised.

  15. Diagnostic use of dermatomal somatosensory-evoked potentials in spinal disorders: Case series

    PubMed Central

    Dikmen, Pinar Yalinay; Oge, A. Emre

    2013-01-01

    Objective/Context Dermatomal somatosensory-evoked potentials (dSEPs) may be valuable for diagnostic purposes in selected cases with spinal disorders. Design Reports on cases with successful use of dSEPs. Findings Cases 1 and 2 had lesions causing multiple root involvement (upper to middle lumbar region in Case 1 and lower sacral region in Case 2). Cystic lesions in both cases seemed to compress more than one nerve root, and stimulation at the center of the involved dermatomes in dSEPs helped to reveal the functional abnormality. Cases 3 and 4 had lesions involving the spinal cord with or without nerve root impairment. In Case 3, an magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-verified lesion seemed to occupy a considerable volume of the lower spinal cord, causing only very restricted clinical sensory and motor signs. In Case 4, a cervical MRI showed a small well-circumscribed intramedullary lesion at right C2 level. All neurophysiological investigations were normal in the latter two patients (motor, tibial, and median somatosensory-evoked potentials in Case 3, and electromyography in both) except for the dSEPs. Conclusions Objectifying the presence and degree of sensory involvement in spinal disorders may be helpful for establishing diagnoses and in therapeutic decision-making. Valuable information could be provided by dSEPs in selected patients with multiple root or spinal cord involvement. PMID:24089995

  16. Task-relevant modulation of primary somatosensory cortex suggests a prefrontal-cortical sensory gating system.

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Michael; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Rotte, Michael

    2005-08-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that somatosensory information is modulated cortically for task-specific sensory inflow: Several studies report short-term adaptation of representational maps in primary somatosensory cortex (SI) due to attention or induced by task-related motor activity such as handwriting. Recently, it has been hypothesized that the frontal or prefrontal cortex may modulate SI. In order to test this hypothesis, we studied the functional organization of SI while subjects performed the Tower of Hanoi task. This task is known to be related to activation of frontal or prefrontal areas. The functional organization of SI while performing the Tower of Hanoi task was compared to the organization of SI during performing the same movements but without the Tower of Hanoi task and with rest. Topography of SI was assessed using neuromagnetic source imaging based on tactile stimulation of the first (D1) and fifth digits (D5). Performing the Tower of Hanoi task was accompanied by plastic changes in SI as indicated by significant shifts in the cortical representations of D1 and D5: They moved further apart during the Tower of Hanoi task compared to the control task containing the same movements but without the cognitive characteristic. Thus, we conclude that SI maps undergo dynamic modulation depending on motor tasks with different cognitive demands. The results suggest that this short-term plasticity may be regulated by a prefrontal-cortical sensory gating system.

  17. Somatosensory organ topography across the star of the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata).

    PubMed

    Sawyer, Eva K; Catania, Kenneth C

    2016-04-01

    Quantifying somatosensory receptor distribution in glabrous skin is usually difficult because of the diversity of skin receptor subtypes and their location within the dermis and epidermis. However, the glabrous noses of moles are an exception. In most species of moles, the skin on the nose is covered with domed mechanosensory units known as an Eimer's organs. Eimer's organs contain a stereotyped array of different mechanosensory neurons, meaning that the distribution of mechanosensitive nerve endings can be inferred by visual inspection of the skin surface. Here we detail the distribution of Eimer's organs on the highly derived somatosensory star on the rostrum of the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata). The star consists of 22 fleshy appendages, or rays, that are covered in Eimer's organs. We find that the density of Eimer's organs increases from proximal to distal locations along the length of the star's rays with a ratio of 1:2.3:3.1 from the surface nearest to the nostril, to the middle part of ray, to the ray tip, respectively. This ratio is comparable to the increase in receptor unit density reported for the human hand, from the palm, to the middle of the digits, to the distal fingertips. We also note that the tactile fovea of the star-nosed mole, located on the medial ventral ray, does not have increased sensory organ density, and we describe these findings in comparison with other sensory fovea.

  18. Somatosensory organ topography across the star of the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata)

    PubMed Central

    Sawyer, Eva K.; Catania, Kenneth C.

    2015-01-01

    Quantifying somatosensory receptor distribution in glabrous skin is usually difficult due to the diversity of skin receptor subtypes and their location within the dermis and epidermis. However, the glabrous noses of moles are an exception. In most species of moles, the skin on the nose is covered with domed mechanosensory units known as an Eimer’s organs. Eimer’s organs contain a stereotyped array of different mechanosensory neurons, meaning the distribution of mechanosensitive nerve endings can be inferred by visual inspection of the skin surface. Here we detail the distribution of Eimer’s organs on the highly derived somatosensory star on the rostrum of the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata). The star consists of 22 fleshy appendages, or rays, that are covered in Eimer’s organs. We find that the density of Eimer’s organs increases from proximal to distal along the length of the star’s rays with a ratio of 1: 2.3: 3.1 from the surface nearest to the nostril, to the middle part of ray, to the ray tip, respectively. This ratio is comparable to the increase in receptor unit density reported in the human hand, from the palm to the middle of the digits, to the distal fingertips. We also note that the tactile fovea of the star nosed mole, located on the medial ventral ray, does not have increased sensory organ density, and we describe these findings in comparison to other sensory fovea. PMID:26659700

  19. Visual-somatosensory integration in aging: does stimulus location really matter?

    PubMed

    Mahoney, Jeannette R; Wang, Cuiling; Dumas, Kristina; Holtzer, Roee

    2014-05-01

    Individuals are constantly bombarded by sensory stimuli across multiple modalities that must be integrated efficiently. Multisensory integration (MSI) is said to be governed by stimulus properties including space, time, and magnitude. While there is a paucity of research detailing MSI in aging, we have demonstrated that older adults reveal the greatest reaction time (RT) benefit when presented with simultaneous visual-somatosensory (VS) stimuli. To our knowledge, the differential RT benefit of visual and somatosensory stimuli presented within and across spatial hemifields has not been investigated in aging. Eighteen older adults (Mean = 74 years; 11 female), who were determined to be non-demented and without medical or psychiatric conditions that may affect their performance, participated in this study. Participants received eight randomly presented stimulus conditions (four unisensory and four multisensory) and were instructed to make speeded foot-pedal responses as soon as they detected any stimulation, regardless of stimulus type and location of unisensory inputs. Results from a linear mixed effect model, adjusted for speed of processing and other covariates, revealed that RTs to all multisensory pairings were significantly faster than those elicited to averaged constituent unisensory conditions (p < 0.01). Similarly, race model violation did not differ based on unisensory spatial location (p = 0.41). In summary, older adults demonstrate significant VS multisensory RT effects to stimuli both within and across spatial hemifields.

  20. Neuronal mechanisms mediating the variability of somatosensory evoked potentials during sleep oscillations in cats

    PubMed Central

    Rosanova, Mario; Timofeev, Igor

    2005-01-01

    The slow oscillation (SO) generated within the corticothalamic system is composed of active and silent states. The studies of response variability during active versus silent network states within thalamocortical system of human and animals provided inconsistent results. To investigate this inconsistency, we used electrophysiological recordings from the main structures of the somatosensory system in anaesthetized cats. Stimulation of the median nerve (MN) elicited cortical responses during all phases of SO. Cortical responses to stimulation of the medial lemniscus (ML) were virtually absent during silent periods. At the ventral-posterior lateral (VPL) level, ML stimuli elicited either EPSPs in isolation or EPSPs crowned by spikes, as a function of membrane potential. Response to MN stimuli elicited compound synaptic responses and spiked at any physiological level of membrane potential. The responses of dorsal column nuclei neurones to MN stimuli were of similar latency, but the latencies of antidromic responses to ML stimuli were variable. Thus, the variable conductance velocity of ascending prethalamic axons was the most likely cause of the barrages of synaptic events in VPL neurones mediating their firing at different level of the membrane potential. We conclude that the preserved ability of the somatosensory system to transmit the peripheral stimuli to the cerebral cortex during all the phases of sleep slow oscillation is based on the functional properties of the medial lemniscus and on the intrinsic properties of the thalamocortical cells. However the reduced firing ability of the cortical neurones during the silent state may contribute to impair sensory processing during sleep. PMID:15528249

  1. Telescopic vision contact lens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremblay, Eric J.; Beer, R. Dirk; Arianpour, Ashkan; Ford, Joseph E.

    2011-03-01

    We present the concept, optical design, and first proof of principle experimental results for a telescopic contact lens intended to become a visual aid for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), providing magnification to the user without surgery or external head-mounted optics. Our contact lens optical system can provide a combination of telescopic and non-magnified vision through two independent optical paths through the contact lens. The magnified optical path incorporates a telescopic arrangement of positive and negative annular concentric reflectors to achieve 2.8x - 3x magnification on the eye, while light passing through a central clear aperture provides unmagnified vision.

  2. Optical contacting of quartz

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Payne, L. L.

    1982-01-01

    The strength of the bond between optically contacted quartz surfaces was investigated. The Gravity Probe-B (GP-B) experiment to test the theories of general relativity requires extremely precise measurements. The quartz components of the instruments to make these measurements must be held together in a very stable unit. Optical contacting is suggested as a possible method of joining these components. The fundamental forces involved in optical contacting are reviewed and relates calculations of these forces to the results obtained in experiments.

  3. Contact gating at GHz frequency in graphene

    PubMed Central

    Wilmart, Q.; Inhofer, A.; Boukhicha, M.; Yang, W.; Rosticher, M.; Morfin, P.; Garroum, N.; Fève, G.; Berroir, J.-M.; Plaçais, B.

    2016-01-01

    The paradigm of graphene transistors is based on the gate modulation of the channel carrier density by means of a local channel gate. This standard architecture is subject to the scaling limit of the channel length and further restrictions due to access and contact resistances impeding the device performance. We propose a novel design, overcoming these issues by implementing additional local gates underneath the contact region which allow a full control of the Klein barrier taking place at the contact edge. In particular, our work demonstrates the GHz operation of transistors driven by independent contact gates. We benchmark the standard channel and novel contact gating and report for the later dynamical transconductance levels at the state of the art. Our finding may find applications in electronics and optoelectronics whenever there is need to control independently the Fermi level and the electrostatic potential of electronic sources or to get rid of cumbersome local channel gates. PMID:26879709

  4. Contact microscopy with synchrotron radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Panessa-Warren, B.J.

    1985-10-01

    Soft x-ray contact microscopy with synchrotron radiation offers the biologist and especially the microscopist, a way to morphologically study specimens that could not be imaged by conventional TEM, STEM or SEM methods (i.e. hydrated samples, samples easily damaged by an electron beam, electron dense samples, thick specimens, unstained low contrast specimens) at spatial resolutions approaching those of the TEM, with the additional possibility to obtain compositional (elemental) information about the sample as well. Although flash x-ray sources offer faster exposure times, synchrotron radiation provides a highly collimated, intense radiation that can be tuned to select specific discrete ranges of x-ray wavelengths or specific individual wavelengths which optimize imaging or microanalysis of a specific sample. This paper presents an overview of the applications of x-ray contact microscopy to biological research and some current research results using monochromatic synchrotron radiation to image biological samples. 24 refs., 10 figs.

  5. Somatosensory Rehabilitation for Neuropathic Pain in Burn Survivors: A Case Series.

    PubMed

    Nedelec, Bernadette; Calva, Valerie; Chouinard, Annick; Couture, Marie-Andrée; Godbout, Elisabeth; de Oliveira, Ana; LaSalle, Léo

    2016-01-01

    Neuropathic pain is an enormous rehabilitation challenge that has a substantial negative effect on patient function and quality of life. Somatosensory rehabilitation is a novel, nonpharmacological intervention described by Spicher based on the neuroplasticity of the somatosensory system. The rationale for somatosensory rehabilitation is that treating hypoesthesia will decrease neuropathic pain. Particularly for those with established neuropathic pain, the hypoesthesia may be masked by mechanical allodynia, which must be treated before treating the underlying hyposensitive zone. This case series describes the outcome of 17 burn survivors treated with somatosensory rehabilitation for their neuropathic pain. Before initiating treatment a modified version of the McGill Pain Questionnaire-short form (Questionnaire de la douleur St. Antoine, QDSA) was completed with the patients. The total score (×/64) was converted to percentage. The mechanical allodynia was assessed with the Rainbow Pain Scale that uses touch with the 15-g Semmes Weinstein Monofilaments (SWMs) and that was rated as painful on the visual analog scale (3/10 or resting pain + 1/10), as the criteria for mechanical allodynia. The severity level was assessed using seven predetermined SWMs to identify the smallest that elicited pain. The treatment consisted of avoiding all touch in the allodynic zone while concurrently providing proximal sensory and vibratory counter stimulation. Once the mechanical allodynia was eliminated, the underlying hypoesthesia was treated. Hypoesthesia was evaluated with the SWMs, and the percent improvement from baseline was calculated. The sensory reeducation treatment for hypoesthesia consisted of touch discrimination, texture perception, and vibratory stimulation. Seventeen patients (71/29% male/female, 21 ± 25% TBSA burned, 486 ± 596 days postburn) were evaluated and treated. Of these 15 initially presented with mechanical allodynia. The SWM scores had improved by 27 ± 21

  6. Estimation of phase signal change in neuronal current MRI for evoke response of tactile detection with realistic somatosensory laminar network model.

    PubMed

    BagheriMofidi, Seyed Mehdi; Pouladian, Majid; Jameie, Seyed Behnamedin; Abbaspour Tehrani-Fard, Ali

    2016-09-01

    Magnetic field generated by neuronal activity could alter magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) signals but detection of such signal is under debate. Previous researches proposed that magnitude signal change is below current detectable level, but phase signal change (PSC) may be measurable with current MRI systems. Optimal imaging parameters like echo time, voxel size and external field direction, could increase the probability of detection of this small signal change. We simulate a voxel of cortical column to determine effect of such parameters on PSC signal. We extended a laminar network model for somatosensory cortex to find neuronal current in each segment of pyramidal neurons (PN). 60,000 PNs of simulated network were positioned randomly in a voxel. Biot-savart law applied to calculate neuronal magnetic field and additional phase. The procedure repeated for eleven neuronal arrangements in the voxel. PSC signal variation with the echo time and voxel size was assessed. The simulated results show that PSC signal increases with echo time, especially 100/80 ms after stimulus for gradient echo/spin echo sequence. It can be up to 0.1 mrad for echo time = 175 ms and voxel size = 1.48 × 1.48 × 2.18 mm(3). With echo time less than 25 ms after stimulus, it was just acquired effects of physiological noise on PSC signal. The absolute value of the signal increased with decrease of voxel size, but its components had complex variation. External field orthogonal to local surface of cortex maximizes the signal. Expected PSC signal for tactile detection in the somatosensory cortex increase with echo time and have no oscillation.

  7. Can an electro-tactile vestibular substitution system improve balance in patients with unilateral vestibular loss under altered somatosensory conditions from the foot and ankle?

    PubMed

    Vuillerme, N; Hlavackova, P; Franco, C; Diot, B; Demongeot, J; Payan, Y

    2011-01-01

    This pilot study aimed at assessing the feasibility and the effectiveness of an electro Electro-tactile Vestibular Substitution System (EVSS) in patients with unilateral vestibular loss under normal and altered somatosensory conditions from the foot and ankle. Four unilateral vestibular-defective patients voluntarily participated in the experiment. They were asked to stand upright as still as possible with their eyes closed in two Normal and Altered foot and ankle sensory conditions. In the Normal condition, the postural task was executed on a firm support surface constituted by the force platform. In the Altered condition, a 2-cm thick foam support surface was placed under the participants' feet. These two foot and ankle sensory conditions were executed under two No EVSS and EVSS experimental conditions. The No EVSS condition served as a control condition. In the EVSS condition, participants executed the postural task using a biofeedback system whose underlying principle consisted of supplying them with additional information about their head orientation/motion with respect to gravitational vertical through electro-tactile stimulation of their tongue. Centre of foot pressure displacements (CoP) were recorded using the force platform. Results showed that, relative to the No EVSS condition, the EVSS condition decreased CoP displacements in both the Normal and the Altered foot and ankle sensory conditions. Interestingly, the stabilizing effect was more pronounced in the Altered than in the Normal foot and ankle sensory condition. These preliminary results suggest that patients with unilateral vestibular loss were able to take advantage to a head position-based electro-tactile tongue biofeedback to mitigate the postural perturbation induced by alteration of somatosensory input from the foot and the ankle.

  8. Better Ohmic Contacts For InP Semiconductor Devices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weizer, Victor G.; Fatemi, Navid S.

    1995-01-01

    Four design modifications enable fabrication of improved ohmic contacts on InP-based semiconductor devices. First modification consists of insertion of layer of gold phosphide between n-doped InP and metal or other overlayer of contact material. Second, includes first modification plus use of particular metal overlayer to achieve very low contact resistivities. Third, also involves deposition of Au(2)P(3) interlayer; in addition, refractory metal (W or Ta) deposited to form contact overlayer. In fourth, contact layer of Auln alloy deposited directly on InP. Improved contacts exhibit low electrical resistances and fabricated without exposing devices to destructive predeposition or postdeposition treatments.

  9. Additive Manufacturing Infrared Inspection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaddy, Darrell

    2014-01-01

    Additive manufacturing is a rapid prototyping technology that allows parts to be built in a series of thin layers from plastic, ceramics, and metallics. Metallic additive manufacturing is an emerging form of rapid prototyping that allows complex structures to be built using various metallic powders. Significant time and cost savings have also been observed using the metallic additive manufacturing compared with traditional techniques. Development of the metallic additive manufacturing technology has advanced significantly over the last decade, although many of the techniques to inspect parts made from these processes have not advanced significantly or have limitations. Several external geometry inspection techniques exist such as Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMM), Laser Scanners, Structured Light Scanning Systems, or even traditional calipers and gages. All of the aforementioned techniques are limited to external geometry and contours or must use a contact probe to inspect limited internal dimensions. This presentation will document the development of a process for real-time dimensional inspection technique and digital quality record of the additive manufacturing process using Infrared camera imaging and processing techniques.

  10. Occupational Contact Dermatitis

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Occupational contact dermatitis accounts for 90% of all cases of work-related cutaneous disorders. It can be divided into irritant contact dermatitis, which occurs in 80% of cases, and allergic contact dermatitis. In most cases, both types will present as eczematous lesions on exposed parts of the body, notably the hands. Accurate diagnosis relies on meticulous history taking, thorough physical examination, careful reading of Material Safety Data Sheets to distinguish between irritants and allergens, and comprehensive patch testing to confirm or rule out allergic sensitization. This article reviews the pathogenesis and clinical manifestations of occupational contact dermatitis and provides diagnostic guidelines and a rational approach to management of these often frustrating cases. PMID:20525126

  11. SAM Technical Contacts

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    These technical contacts are available to help with questions regarding method deviations, modifications, sample problems or interferences, quality control requirements, the use of alternative methods, or the need to address analytes or sample types.

  12. Contact dermatitis complicating pinnaplasty.

    PubMed

    Singh-Ranger, G; Britto, J A; Sommerlad, B C

    2001-04-01

    Proflavine allergy is uncommon, occurring in approximately 6% of patients attending contact dermatitis clinics. Proflavine wool is used by many surgeons in the UK as a dressing that can be moulded to conform to the contours of a corrected prominent ear. It may have bacteriostatic properties. We present a case where contact dermatitis in response to proflavine developed after pinnaplasty. This caused diagnostic confusion, a lengthened hospital stay and an unsightly hypertrophic scar.

  13. The impact of contact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finney, B.

    1986-10-01

    Scenarios of the impact on human society of radio contact with an extraterrestrial civilization are presented. Some believe that contact with advanced extraterrestrials would quickly devastate the human spirit, while others believe that these super-intelligent beings would show the inhabitants of the earth how to live in peace. It is proposed that the possible existence of extraterrestrial civilizations and the development of means of studying and communicating with them need to be considered.

  14. ELECTRIC CONTACT MEANS

    DOEpatents

    Grear, J.W. Jr.

    1959-03-10

    A switch adapted to maintain electrical connections under conditions of vibration or acceleration is described. According to the invention, thc switch includes a rotatable arm carrying a conductive bar arranged to close against two contacts spaced in the same plane. The firm and continuous engagement of the conductive bar with the contacts is acheived by utilizeing a spring located betwenn the vbar and athe a rem frzme and slidable mounting the bar in channel between two arms suspendef from the arm frame.

  15. Lettuce contact allergy.

    PubMed

    Paulsen, Evy; Andersen, Klaus E

    2016-02-01

    Lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) and its varieties are important vegetable crops worldwide. They are also well-known, rarely reported, causes of contact allergy. As lettuce allergens and extracts are not commercially available, the allergy may be underdiagnosed. The aims of this article are to present new data on lettuce contact allergy and review the literature. Lettuce is weakly allergenic, and occupational cases are mainly reported. Using aimed patch testing in Compositae-allergic patients, two recent Danish studies showed prevalence rates of positive lettuce reactions of 11% and 22%. The majority of cases are non-occupational, and may partly be caused by cross-reactivity. The sesquiterpene lactone mix seems to be a poor screening agent for lettuce contact allergy, as the prevalence of positive reactions is significantly higher in non-occupationally sensitized patients. Because of the easy degradability of lettuce allergens, it is recommended to patch test with freshly cut lettuce stem and supplement this with Compositae mix. As contact urticaria and protein contact dermatitis may present as dermatitis, it is important to perform prick-to-prick tests, and possibly scratch patch tests as well. Any person who is occupationally exposed to lettuce for longer periods, especially atopics, amateur gardeners, and persons keeping lettuce-eating pets, is potentially at risk of developing lettuce contact allergy.

  16. Surrogate modeling of deformable joint contact using artificial neural networks.

    PubMed

    Eskinazi, Ilan; Fregly, Benjamin J

    2015-09-01

    Deformable joint contact models can be used to estimate loading conditions for cartilage-cartilage, implant-implant, human-orthotic, and foot-ground interactions. However, contact evaluations are often so expensive computationally that they can be prohibitive for simulations or optimizations requiring thousands or even millions of contact evaluations. To overcome this limitation, we developed a novel surrogate contact modeling method based on artificial neural networks (ANNs). The method uses special sampling techniques to gather input-output data points from an original (slow) contact model in multiple domains of input space, where each domain represents a different physical situation likely to be encountered. For each contact force and torque output by the original contact model, a multi-layer feed-forward ANN is defined, trained, and incorporated into a surrogate contact model. As an evaluation problem, we created an ANN-based surrogate contact model of an artificial tibiofemoral joint using over 75,000 evaluations of a fine-grid elastic foundation (EF) contact model. The surrogate contact model computed contact forces and torques about 1000 times faster than a less accurate coarse grid EF contact model. Furthermore, the surrogate contact model was seven times more accurate than the coarse grid EF contact model within the input domain of a walking motion. For larger input domains, the surrogate contact model showed the expected trend of increasing error with increasing domain size. In addition, the surrogate contact model was able to identify out-of-contact situations with high accuracy. Computational contact models created using our proposed ANN approach may remove an important computational bottleneck from musculoskeletal simulations or optimizations incorporating deformable joint contact models.

  17. Surrogate Modeling of Deformable Joint Contact using Artificial Neural Networks

    PubMed Central

    Eskinazi, Ilan; Fregly, Benjamin J.

    2016-01-01

    Deformable joint contact models can be used to estimate loading conditions for cartilage-cartilage, implant-implant, human-orthotic, and foot-ground interactions. However, contact evaluations are often so expensive computationally that they can be prohibitive for simulations or optimizations requiring thousands or even millions of contact evaluations. To overcome this limitation, we developed a novel surrogate contact modeling method based on artificial neural networks (ANNs). The method uses special sampling techniques to gather input-output data points from an original (slow) contact model in multiple domains of input space, where each domain represents a different physical situation likely to be encountered. For each contact force and torque output by the original contact model, a multi-layer feed-forward ANN is defined, trained, and incorporated into a surrogate contact model. As an evaluation problem, we created an ANN-based surrogate contact model of an artificial tibiofemoral joint using over 75,000 evaluations of a fine-grid elastic foundation (EF) contact model. The surrogate contact model computed contact forces and torques about 1000 times faster than a less accurate coarse grid EF contact model. Furthermore, the surrogate contact model was seven times more accurate than the coarse grid EF contact model within the input domain of a walking motion. For larger input domains, the surrogate contact model showed the expected trend of increasing error with increasing domain size. In addition, the surrogate contact model was able to identify out-of-contact situations with high accuracy. Computational contact models created using our proposed ANN approach may remove an important computational bottleneck from musculoskeletal simulations or optimizations incorporating deformable joint contact models. PMID:26220591

  18. Primary somatosensory/motor cortical thickness distinguishes paresthesia-dominant from pain-dominant carpal tunnel syndrome.

    PubMed

    Maeda, Yumi; Kettner, Norman; Kim, Jieun; Kim, Hyungjun; Cina, Stephen; Malatesta, Cristina; Gerber, Jessica; McManus, Claire; Libby, Alexandra; Mezzacappa, Pia; Mawla, Ishtiaq; Morse, Leslie R; Audette, Joseph; Napadow, Vitaly

    2016-05-01

    Paresthesia-dominant and pain-dominant subgroups have been noted in carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), a peripheral neuropathic disorder characterized by altered primary somatosensory/motor (S1/M1) physiology. We aimed to investigate whether brain morphometry dissociates these subgroups. Subjects with CTS were evaluated with nerve conduction studies, whereas symptom severity ratings were used to allocate subjects into paresthesia-dominant (CTS-paresthesia), pain-dominant (CTS-pain), and pain/paresthesia nondominant (not included in further analysis) subgroups. Structural brain magnetic resonance imaging data were acquired at 3T using a multiecho MPRAGE T1-weighted pulse sequence, and gray matter cortical thickness was calculated across the entire brain using validated, automated methods. CTS-paresthesia subjects demonstrated reduced median sensory nerve conduction velocity (P = 0.05) compared with CTS-pain subjects. In addition, cortical thickness in precentral and postcentral gyri (S1/M1 hand area) contralateral to the more affected hand was significantly reduced in CTS-paresthesia subgroup compared with CTS-pain subgroup. Moreover, in CTS-paresthesia subjects, precentral cortical thickness was negatively correlated with paresthesia severity (r(34) = -0.40, P = 0.016) and positively correlated with median nerve sensory velocity (r(36) = 0.51, P = 0.001), but not with pain severity. Conversely, in CTS-pain subjects, contralesional S1 (r(9) = 0.62, P = 0.042) and M1 (r(9) = 0.61, P = 0.046) cortical thickness were correlated with pain severity, but not median nerve velocity or paresthesia severity. This double dissociation in somatotopically specific S1/M1 areas suggests a neuroanatomical substrate for symptom-based CTS subgroups. Such fine-grained subgrouping of CTS may lead to improved personalized therapeutic approaches, based on superior characterization of the linkage between peripheral and central neuroplasticity.

  19. Intraoperative somatosensory evoked potential recovery following opening of the fourth ventricle during posterior fossa decompression in Chiari malformation: case report.

    PubMed

    Grossauer, Stefan; Koeck, Katharina; Vince, Giles H

    2015-03-01

    The most appropriate surgical technique for posterior fossa decompression in Chiari malformation (CM) remains a matter of debate. Intraoperative electrophysiological studies during posterior fossa decompression of Type I CM (CM-I) aim to shed light on the entity's pathomechanism as well as on the ideal extent of decompression. The existing reports on this issue state that significant improvement in conduction occurs after craniotomy in all cases, but additional durotomy contributes a further improvement in only a minority of cases. This implies that craniotomy alone might suffice for clinical improvement without the need of duraplasty or even subarachnoid manipulation at the level of the craniocervical junction. In contrast to published data, the authors describe the case of a 32-year-old woman who underwent surgery for CM associated with extensive cervicothoracic syringomyelia and whose intraoperative somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs) did not notably improve after craniotomy or following durotomy; rather, they only improved after opening of the fourth ventricle and restoration of CSF flow through the foramen of Magendie. Postoperatively, the patient recovered completely from her preoperative neurological deficits. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of significant SSEP recovery after opening the fourth ventricle in the decompression of a CM-I. The electrophysiological and operative techniques are described in detail and the findings are discussed in the light of available literature. The authors conclude that there might be a subset of CM-I patients who require subarachnoid dissection at the level of the craniocervical junction to benefit clinically. Prospective studies with detailed electrophysiological analyses seem warranted to answer the question regarding the best surgical approach in CM-I decompression.

  20. Test-retest reliability of quantitative sensory testing for mechanical somatosensory and pain modulation assessment of masticatory structures.

    PubMed

    Costa, Y M; Morita-Neto, O; de Araújo-Júnior, E N S; Sampaio, F A; Conti, P C R; Bonjardim, L R

    2017-03-01

    Assessing the reliability of medical measurements is a crucial step towards the elaboration of an applicable clinical instrument. There are few studies that evaluate the reliability of somatosensory assessment and pain modulation of masticatory structures. This study estimated the test-retest reliability, that is over time, of the mechanical somatosensory assessment of anterior temporalis, masseter and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and the conditioned pain modulation (CPM) using the anterior temporalis as the test site. Twenty healthy women were evaluated in two sessions (1 week apart) by the same examiner. Mechanical detection threshold (MDT), mechanical pain threshold (MPT), wind-up ratio (WUR) and pressure pain threshold (PPT) were assessed on the skin overlying the anterior temporalis, masseter and TMJ of the dominant side. CPM was tested by comparing PPT before and during the hand immersion in a hot water bath. anova and intra-class correlation coefficients (ICCs) were applied to the data (α = 5%). The overall ICCs showed acceptable values for the test-retest reliability of mechanical somatosensory assessment of masticatory structures. The ICC values of 75% of all quantitative sensory measurements were considered fair to excellent (fair = 8·4%, good = 33·3% and excellent = 33·3%). However, the CPM paradigm presented poor reliability (ICC = 0·25). The mechanical somatosensory assessment of the masticatory structures, but not the proposed CPM protocol, can be considered sufficiently reliable over time to evaluate the trigeminal sensory function.

  1. Long-term dynamics of somatosensory activity in a stroke model of distal middle cerebral artery oclussion

    PubMed Central

    Barios, Juan A; Pisarchyk, Liudmila; Fernandez-Garcia, Laura; Barrio, Luis C; Ramos, Milagros; Martinez-Murillo, Ricardo

    2015-01-01

    A constant challenge in experimental stroke is the use of appropriate tests to identify signs of recovery and adverse effects linked to a particular therapy. In this study, we used a long-term longitudinal approach to examine the functional brain changes associated with cortical infarction in a mouse model induced by permanent ligation of the middle cerebral artery (MCA). Sensorimotor function and somatosensory cortical activity were evaluated with fault-foot and forelimb asymmetry tests in combination with somatosensory evoked potentials. The stroke mice exhibited both long-term deficits in the functional tests and impaired responses in the infarcted and intact hemispheres after contralateral and ipsilateral forepaw stimulation. In the infarcted hemisphere, reductions in the amplitudes of evoked responses were detected after contralateral and ipsilateral stimulation. In the intact hemisphere, and similar to cortical stroke patients, a gradual hyperexcitability was observed after contralateral stimulation but no parallel evidence of a response was detected after ipsilateral stimulation. Our results suggest the existence of profound and persistent changes in the somatosensory cortex in this specific mouse cortical stroke model. The study of evoked potentials constitutes a feasible and excellent tool for evaluating the fitness of the somatosensory cortex in relation to functional recovery after preclinical therapeutic intervention. PMID:26661150

  2. Detection of optogenetic stimulation in somatosensory cortex by non-human primates--towards artificial tactile sensation.

    PubMed

    May, Travis; Ozden, Ilker; Brush, Benjamin; Borton, David; Wagner, Fabien; Agha, Naubahar; Sheinberg, David L; Nurmikko, Arto V

    2014-01-01

    Neuroprosthesis research aims to enable communication between the brain and external assistive devices while restoring lost functionality such as occurs from stroke, spinal cord injury or neurodegenerative diseases. In future closed-loop sensorimotor prostheses, one approach is to use neuromodulation as direct stimulus to the brain to compensate for a lost sensory function and help the brain to integrate relevant information for commanding external devices via, e.g. movement intention. Current neuromodulation techniques rely mainly of electrical stimulation. Here we focus specifically on the question of eliciting a biomimetically relevant sense of touch by direct stimulus of the somatosensory cortex by introducing optogenetic techniques as an alternative to electrical stimulation. We demonstrate that light activated opsins can be introduced to target neurons in the somatosensory cortex of non-human primates and be optically activated to create a reliably detected sensation which the animal learns to interpret as a tactile sensation localized within the hand. The accomplishment highlighted here shows how optical stimulation of a relatively small group of mostly excitatory somatosensory neurons in the nonhuman primate brain is sufficient for eliciting a useful sensation from data acquired by simultaneous electrophysiology and from behavioral metrics. In this first report to date on optically neuromodulated behavior in the somatosensory cortex of nonhuman primates we do not yet dissect the details of the sensation the animals exerience or contrast it to those evoked by electrical stimulation, issues of considerable future interest.

  3. Chronic exposure of adult rats to low doses of methylmercury induced a state of metabolic deficit in the somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Kong, Hang-Kin; Wong, Ming-Hung; Chan, Hing-Man; Lo, Samuel Chun-Lap

    2013-11-01

    Because of the ever-increasing bioaccumulation of methylmercury (MeHg) in the marine food chain, human consumers are exposed to low doses of MeHg continually through seafood consumption. Epidemiological studies strongly suggest that chronic prenatal exposure to nanomolar of MeHg has immense negative impacts on neurological development in neonates. However, effects of chronic exposure to low doses (CELDs) of MeHg in adult brains on a molecular level are unknown. The current study aims to investigate the molecular effects of CELD of MeHg on adult somatosensory cortex in a rat model using proteomic techniques. Young adult rats were fed with a low dose of MeHg (40 μg/kg body weight/day) for a maximum of 12 weeks. Whole proteome expression of the somatosensory cortex (S1 area) of normal rats and those with CELD to MeHg were compared. Levels of MeHg, total calcium, adenosine triphosphate (ATP), and pyruvate were also measured. Comparative proteomic studies of the somatosensory cortexes revealed that 94 proteins involved in the various metabolic processes (including carbohydrate metabolism, generation of precursors for essential metabolites, energy, proteins, cellular components for morphogenesis, and neurotransmission) were down-regulated. Consequently, levels of important end products of active metabolism including ATP, pyruvate, and total calcium were also found to be significantly reduced concomitantly. Our results showed that CELD of MeHg induced a state of metabolic deficit in the somatosensory cortex of adult rats.

  4. [Cyclic processes in neuronal populations of the cat somatosensory cortex during extero- and interoceptive activation and in extinction].

    PubMed

    Lavrov, V V

    1991-11-01

    Comparative analysis of the EEG activation responses and multiunit responses in the cortical somatosensory (I) areas revealed a cyclic character of the multiunit discharges in response to light, sound, mechanical and chemical stimuli in alert cats. The fluctuations were reducing to initial values in the course of the stimulation.

  5. Effects of Improvement on Selective Attention: Developing Appropriate Somatosensory Video Game Interventions for Institutional-Dwelling Elderly with Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Shang-Ti; Chiang, I-Tsun; Liu, Eric Zhi-Feng; Chang, Maiga

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop appropriate somatosensory video game interventions on enhancing selective attention of institutional-dwelling elderly with disabilities. Fifty-eight participants aged 65[approximately]92 were recruited and divided into four groups, 4-week and 8-week experimental and two control groups, for evaluating the…

  6. Visual Responsiveness of Neurons in the Secondary Somatosensory Area and its Surrounding Parietal Operculum Regions in Awake Macaque Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Hihara, Sayaka; Taoka, Miki; Tanaka, Michio; Iriki, Atsushi

    2015-01-01

    Previous neurophysiological studies performed in macaque monkeys have shown that the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII) is essentially engaged in the processing of somatosensory information and no other sensory input has been reported. In contrast, recent human brain-imaging studies have revealed the effects of visual and auditory stimuli on SII activity, which suggest multisensory integration in the human SII. To determine whether multisensory responses of the SII also exist in nonhuman primates, we recorded single-unit activity in response to visual and auditory stimuli from the SII and surrounding regions in 8 hemispheres from 6 awake monkeys. Among 1157 recorded neurons, 306 neurons responded to visual stimuli. These visual neurons usually responded to rather complex stimuli, such as stimulation of the peripersonal space (40.5%), observation of human action (29.1%), and moving-object stimulation outside the monkey's reach (23.9%). We occasionally applied auditory stimuli to visual neurons and found 10 auditory-responsive neurons that exhibited somatosensory responses. The visual neurons were distributed continuously along the lateral sulcus covering the entire SII, along with other somatosensory neurons. These results highlight the need to investigate novel functional roles—other than somesthetic sensory processing—of the SII. PMID:25962920

  7. Visual Responsiveness of Neurons in the Secondary Somatosensory Area and its Surrounding Parietal Operculum Regions in Awake Macaque Monkeys.

    PubMed

    Hihara, Sayaka; Taoka, Miki; Tanaka, Michio; Iriki, Atsushi

    2015-11-01

    Previous neurophysiological studies performed in macaque monkeys have shown that the secondary somatosensory cortex (SII) is essentially engaged in the processing of somatosensory information and no other sensory input has been reported. In contrast, recent human brain-imaging studies have revealed the effects of visual and auditory stimuli on SII activity, which suggest multisensory integration in the human SII. To determine whether multisensory responses of the SII also exist in nonhuman primates, we recorded single-unit activity in response to visual and auditory stimuli from the SII and surrounding regions in 8 hemispheres from 6 awake monkeys. Among 1157 recorded neurons, 306 neurons responded to visual stimuli. These visual neurons usually responded to rather complex stimuli, such as stimulation of the peripersonal space (40.5%), observation of human action (29.1%), and moving-object stimulation outside the monkey's reach (23.9%). We occasionally applied auditory stimuli to visual neurons and found 10 auditory-responsive neurons that exhibited somatosensory responses. The visual neurons were distributed continuously along the lateral sulcus covering the entire SII, along with other somatosensory neurons. These results highlight the need to investigate novel functional roles-other than somesthetic sensory processing-of the SII.

  8. Metal Contacts on Low-Dimensional Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, Hui

    As the scaling of the microelectronics is reaching nano regime, low-dimensional materials have been of increasing interest for future electronics applications. The low-dimensional materials, such as Si nanowires (SiNWs), carbon nanotubes (CNTs), graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs), not only provide small body for further-scaled devices but also bring about new intrinsic properties for application in future optoelectronics, spintronics and so on. However, the small dimensions add significant difficulty for reducing contact resistance in the nanoelectronic devices. This dissertation presents a study of the metal contacts on low-dimensional materials. The focus of this work is on SiNWs and monolayer or few-layer MoS2. First, the metal contact on SiNW field effect transistors (FETs) was studied with a gate assisted Kelvin structure. In this work, I fabricated ambipolar SiNW FETs with Al contacts. The ambipolar characteristics and the gate assisted Kelvin structure enabled the measurement of the contact properties of both electron and hole flows at the same contact. In this work I found that the contact performance is affected by the carrier type that flows in the channel as well as the current direction. In addition, an inverter was designed and realized on a single SiNW leveraged by the ambipolar FET characteristics. Then, I have studied metal contacts on MoS2, which is one of typical two-dimensional semiconductors. In the first part of this work, Ag and Ti contacts on exfoliated MoS2 monolayers and few-layers are fabricated, characterized and analyzed. Based on the current-voltage (I-V) measurement, surface morphology and Raman spectroscopic measurement, I found that interface morphology plays an important role on the contact performance in MoS2 FETs. In the second part of this work, gate-assisted contact measurement was carried out on chemical vapor deposited low-dimensional MoS 2 layers. The contact resistance and current crowding have been

  9. When contact counts: Intergroup contact on business and intermarriage resistance in the Caucasus region.

    PubMed

    Gurrentz, Benjamin T; Finke, Roger

    2017-03-01

    Intergroup contact theory has been empirically supported in a variety of social contexts, but few samples have been drawn from rapidly developing nations undergoing severe political and sociocultural conflict. Using 2012 Caucasus Barometer data from the three nations of the South Caucasus - Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia - we test the effect of interreligious contact on various forms of out-group resistance in a region of the world that is both historically and presently marked with severe religious and ethnic conflict. Additionally, we take into account self-selection effects using propensity score matching. Results overwhelmingly support intergroup contact theory in all three countries, but objections toward intermarriage still remain high for treated groups. In addition, there exist significant differences based on the out-group studied, with the contact effects being the strongest for groups posing little religio-cultural or organized threat. Weaker contact effects, though, appear less related to threat and more contextual/out-group specific.

  10. The contact caveat: negative contact predicts increased prejudice more than positive contact predicts reduced prejudice.

    PubMed

    Barlow, Fiona Kate; Paolini, Stefania; Pedersen, Anne; Hornsey, Matthew J; Radke, Helena R M; Harwood, Jake; Rubin, Mark; Sibley, Chris G

    2012-12-01

    Contact researchers have largely overlooked the potential for negative intergroup contact to increase prejudice. In Study 1, we tested the interaction between contact quantity and valence on prejudice toward Black Australians (n = 1,476), Muslim Australians (n = 173), and asylum seekers (n = 293). In all cases, the association between contact quantity and prejudice was moderated by its valence, with negative contact emerging as a stronger and more consistent predictor than positive contact. In Study 2, White Americans (n = 441) indicated how much positive and negative contact they had with Black Americans on separate measures. Although both quantity of positive and negative contact predicted racism and avoidance, negative contact was the stronger predictor. Furthermore, negative (but not positive) contact independently predicted suspicion about Barack Obama's birthplace. These results extend the contact hypothesis by issuing an important caveat: Negative contact may be more strongly associated with increased racism and discrimination than positive contact is with its reduction.

  11. Calmodulin Methyltransferase Is Required for Growth, Muscle Strength, Somatosensory Development and Brain Function

    PubMed Central

    Haziza, Sitvanit; Magnani, Roberta; Lan, Dima; Keinan, Omer; Saada, Ann; Hershkovitz, Eli; Yanay, Nurit; Cohen, Yoram; Nevo, Yoram; Houtz, Robert L.; Sheffield, Val C.; Golan, Hava; Parvari, Ruti

    2015-01-01

    Calmodulin lysine methyl transferase (CaM KMT) is ubiquitously expressed and highly conserved from plants to vertebrates. CaM is frequently trimethylated at Lys-115, however, the role of CaM methylation in vertebrates has not been studied. CaM KMT was found to be homozygously deleted in the 2P21 deletion syndrome that includes 4 genes. These patients present with cystinuria, severe intellectual disabilities, hypotonia, mitochondrial disease and facial dysmorphism. Two siblings with deletion of three of the genes included in the 2P21 deletion syndrome presented with cystinuria, hypotonia, a mild/moderate mental retardation and a respiratory chain complex IV deficiency. To be able to attribute the functional significance of the methylation of CaM in the mouse and the contribution of CaM KMT to the clinical presentation of the 2p21deletion patients, we produced a mouse model lacking only CaM KMT with deletion borders as in the human 2p21deletion syndrome. No compensatory activity for CaM methylation was found. Impairment of complexes I and IV, and less significantly III, of the mitochondrial respiratory chain was more pronounced in the brain than in muscle. CaM KMT is essential for normal body growth and somatosensory development, as well as for the proper functioning of the adult mouse brain. Developmental delay was demonstrated for somatosensory function and for complex behavior, which involved both basal motor function and motivation. The mutant mice also had deficits in motor learning, complex coordination and learning of aversive stimuli. The mouse model contributes to the evaluation of the role of methylated CaM. CaM methylation appears to have a role in growth, muscle strength, somatosensory development and brain function. The current study has clinical implications for human patients. Patients presenting slow growth and muscle weakness that could result from a mitochondrial impairment and mental retardation should be considered for sequence analysis of the Ca

  12. Calmodulin Methyltransferase Is Required for Growth, Muscle Strength, Somatosensory Development and Brain Function.

    PubMed

    Haziza, Sitvanit; Magnani, Roberta; Lan, Dima; Keinan, Omer; Saada, Ann; Hershkovitz, Eli; Yanay, Nurit; Cohen, Yoram; Nevo, Yoram; Houtz, Robert L; Sheffield, Val C; Golan, Hava; Parvari, Ruti

    2015-08-01

    Calmodulin lysine methyl transferase (CaM KMT) is ubiquitously expressed and highly conserved from plants to vertebrates. CaM is frequently trimethylated at Lys-115, however, the role of CaM methylation in vertebrates has not been studied. CaM KMT was found to be homozygously deleted in the 2P21 deletion syndrome that includes 4 genes. These patients present with cystinuria, severe intellectual disabilities, hypotonia, mitochondrial disease and facial dysmorphism. Two siblings with deletion of three of the genes included in the 2P21 deletion syndrome presented with cystinuria, hypotonia, a mild/moderate mental retardation and a respiratory chain complex IV deficiency. To be able to attribute the functional significance of the methylation of CaM in the mouse and the contribution of CaM KMT to the clinical presentation of the 2p21deletion patients, we produced a mouse model lacking only CaM KMT with deletion borders as in the human 2p21deletion syndrome. No compensatory activity for CaM methylation was found. Impairment of complexes I and IV, and less significantly III, of the mitochondrial respiratory chain was more pronounced in the brain than in muscle. CaM KMT is essential for normal body growth and somatosensory development, as well as for the proper functioning of the adult mouse brain. Developmental delay was demonstrated for somatosensory function and for complex behavior, which involved both basal motor function and motivation. The mutant mice also had deficits in motor learning, complex coordination and learning of aversive stimuli. The mouse model contributes to the evaluation of the role of methylated CaM. CaM methylation appears to have a role in growth, muscle strength, somatosensory development and brain function. The current study has clinical implications for human patients. Patients presenting slow growth and muscle weakness that could result from a mitochondrial impairment and mental retardation should be considered for sequence analysis of the Ca

  13. Co-occurrence of Pain Symptoms and Somatosensory Sensitivity in Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Moisset, Xavier; Calbacho, Valentina; Torres, Pilar; Gremeau-Richard, Christelle; Dallel, Radhouane

    2016-01-01

    Background Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is a chronic and spontaneous oral pain with burning quality in the tongue or other oral mucosa without any identifiable oral lesion or laboratory finding. Pathogenesis and etiology of BMS are still unknown. However, BMS has been associated with other chronic pain syndromes including other idiopathic orofacial pain, the dynias group and the family of central sensitivity syndromes. This would imply that BMS shares common mechanisms with other cephalic and/or extracephalic chronic pains. The primary aim of this systematic review was to determine whether BMS is actually associated with other pain syndromes, and to analyze cephalic and extracephalic somatosensory sensitivity in these patients. Methods This report followed the PRISMA Statement. An electronic search was performed until January 2015 in PubMed, Cochrane library, Wiley and ScienceDirect. Searched terms included “burning mouth syndrome OR stomatodynia OR glossodynia OR burning tongue OR oral burning”. Studies were selected according to predefined inclusion criteria (report of an association between BMS and other pain(s) symptoms or of cutaneous cephalic and/or extracephalic quantitative sensory testing in BMS patients), and a descriptive analysis conducted. Results The search retrieved 1512 reports. Out of these, twelve articles met criteria for co-occurring pain symptoms and nine studies for quantitative sensory testing (QST) in BMS patients. The analysis reveals that in BMS patients co-occurring pain symptoms are rare, assessed by only 0.8% (12 of 1512) of the retrieved studies. BMS was associated with headaches, TMD, atypical facial pain, trigeminal neuralgia, post-herpetic facial pain, back pain, fibromyalgia, joint pain, abdominal pain, rectal pain or vulvodynia. However, the prevalence of pain symptoms in BMS patients is not different from that in the age-matched general population. QST studies reveal no or inconsistent evidence of abnormal cutaneous cephalic

  14. Focusing on Contact Lens Safety

    MedlinePlus

    ... Consumers Home For Consumers Consumer Updates Focusing on Contact Lens Safety Share Tweet Linkedin Pin it More ... substantial consumer injury. Back to top Types of Contact Lenses General categories Soft contact lenses. These are ...

  15. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject.

    PubMed

    Ioannides, Andreas A; Liu, Lichan; Poghosyan, Vahe; Saridis, George A; Gjedde, Albert; Ptito, Maurice; Kupers, Ron

    2013-01-01

    Cross-modal activity in visual cortex of blind subjects has been reported during performance of variety of non-visual tasks. A key unanswered question is through which pathways non-visual inputs are funneled to the visual cortex. Here we used tomographic analysis of single trial magnetoencephalography (MEG) data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor (M1) cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45-70 Hz activity at latencies of 20-50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann areas (BA) 7 and 40, which compared to lower frequencies, were substantially more pronounced in the blind than the sighted subjects. Critically, at frequencies from α-band up to 100 Hz we found clear, strong, and widespread responses in the visual cortex of the blind subject, which increased with the intensity of the somatosensory stimuli. Time-delayed mutual information (MI) revealed that in blind subject the stimulus information is funneled from the early somatosensory to visual cortex through posterior parietal BA 7 and 40, projecting first to visual areas V5 and V3, and eventually V1. The flow of information through this pathway occurred in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first evidence from MEG that in blind subjects, tactile information is routed from primary somatosensory to occipital cortex via the posterior parietal cortex.

  16. Effects of peripherally and centrally acting analgesics on somato-sensory evoked potentials.

    PubMed Central

    Moore, U J; Marsh, V R; Ashton, C H; Seymour, R A

    1995-01-01

    1. The effects of aspirin 1000 mg, paracetamol 1000 mg, codeine 60 mg on somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) were measured in a four-way cross-over study. 2. SEPs were elicited by electrical stimulation of the skin overlying the digital nerve at intensities close to pain threshold. 3. Amplitudes and latencies of both early and late SEPs were recorded, as well as first sensory threshold and subjective pain threshold. 4. None of the study medications affected the amplitude or latency of the late SEP components (100-250 ms post-stimulus). The amplitude of early components (15-30 ms post-stimulus) was also unaffected, but aspirin shortened the latency 30 min after ingestion. 5. Sensory detection and pain threshold to electrical skin stimulation were also unaffected by any of the study medications despite subjective central effects with codeine. PMID:8562292

  17. Subliminal stimuli modulate somatosensory perception rhythmically and provide evidence for discrete perception

    PubMed Central

    Baumgarten, Thomas J.; Königs, Sara; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim

    2017-01-01

    Despite being experienced as continuous, there is an ongoing debate if perception is an intrinsically discrete process, with incoming sensory information treated as a succession of single perceptual cycles. Here, we provide causal evidence that somatosensory perception is composed of discrete perceptual cycles. We used in humans an electrotactile temporal discrimination task preceded by a subliminal (i.e., below perceptual threshold) stimulus. Although not consciously perceived, subliminal stimuli are known to elicit neuronal activity in early sensory areas and modulate the phase of ongoing neuronal oscillations. We hypothesized that the subliminal stimulus indirectly, but systematically modulates the ongoing oscillatory phase in S1, thereby rhythmically shaping perception. The present results confirm that, without being consciously perceived, the subliminal stimulus critically influenced perception in the discrimination task. Importantly, perception was modulated rhythmically, in cycles corresponding to the beta-band (13–18 Hz). This can be compellingly explained by a model of discrete perceptual cycles. PMID:28276493

  18. The origin, and application of somatosensory evoked potentials as a neurophysiological technique to investigate neuroplasticity.

    PubMed

    Passmore, Steven R; Murphy, Bernadette; Lee, Timothy D

    2014-06-01

    Somatosensory evoked potentionals (SEPs) can be used to elucidate differences in cortical activity associated with a spinal manipulation (SM) intervention. The purpose of this narrative review is to overview the origin and application of SEPs, a neurophysiological technique to investigate neuroplasticity. Summaries of: 1) parameters for SEP generation and waveform recording; 2) SEP peak nomenclature, interpretation and generators; 3) peaks pertaining to tactile information processing (relevant to both chiropractic and other manual therapies); 4) utilization and application of SEPs; 5) SEPs concurrent with an experimental task and at baseline/control/pretest; 6) SEPs pain studies; and 7) SEPs design (pre/post) and neural reorganization/neuroplasticity; and 8) SEPs and future chiropractic research are all reviewed. Understanding what SEPs are, and their application allows chiropractors, educators, and other manual therapists interested in SM to understand the context, and importance of research findings from SM studies that involve SEPs.

  19. Long-latency components of somatosensory evoked potentials during passive tactile perception of gratings.

    PubMed

    Genna, C; Artoni, F; Fanciullacci, C; Chisari, C; Oddo, C M; Micera, S

    2016-08-01

    Perception of tactile stimuli elicits Somatosensory Evoked Potentials (SEPs) that can be recorded via non-invasive electroencephalography (EEG). However, it is not yet clear how SEPs localization, shape and latency are modulated by different stimuli during mechanical tactile stimulation of fingertips. The aim of this work is thus to characterize SEPs generated by the tactile perception of gratings during dynamic passive stimulation of the dominant fingertip by means of a mechatronic platform. Results show that a random sequence of stimuli elicited SEPs with two long-latency components: (i) a negative deflection around 140 ms located in the frontal-central-parietal side in the contralateral hemisphere; (ii) a positive deflection around 250 ms located in the frontal-central midline. Time-frequency analysis revealed significant continuous bilateral desynchronization in the alpha band throughout the passive stimulation. These results are a fundamental step towards building a model of brain responses during perception of tactile stimuli for future benchmarking studies.

  20. Regional hypoplasia of somatosensory cortex in growth-retarded mice (grt/grt).

    PubMed

    Sawada, Kazuhiko; Saito, Shigeyoshi; Sugasawa, Akari; Sato, Chika; Aoyama, Junya; Ohara, Naoko; Horiuchi-Hirose, Miwa; Kobayashi, Tetsuya

    2016-07-01

    Growth-retarded mouse (grt/grt) is a spontaneous mutant that is known as an animal model for primary congenital hypothyroidism caused by resistance to TSH signaling. The regional pattern of cerebral cortical hypoplasia was characterized in grt/grt mice. Ex vivo computed tomography (CT)-based volumetry was examined in four regions of the cerebral cortex, i.e., prefrontal, frontal, parietal and occipito-temporal regions, which were demarcated by structural landmarks on coronal CT images. A region-specific reduced volume of the parietal cortical region covering most of the somatosensory cortex was noted in grt/grt mice rather than in both heterozygous (grt/+) and wild-type (+/+) mice. We concluded that the cortical hypoplasia in grt/grt was seen in identical cortical regions corresponding to human congenital hypothyroidism.

  1. Unit responses of the secondary somatosensory cortex during defensive conditioning in cats.

    PubMed

    Kruchenko, Z A; Taran, G A

    1980-01-01

    Unit responses in the secondary somatosensory cortex during the formation and extinction of a defensive conditioned reflex to acoustic stimulation were investigated in chronic experiments on cats. In 21 of 28 neurons tested during defensive conditioning the firing pattern changed in accordance with the character of responses to electric shock reinforcement. Two types of conditioned-reflex unit responses were distinguished: excitatory and inhibitory. Most neurons responding to the conditioned stimulus by activation did so during the first 50 msec, which was 80-100 msec before the conditioned motor response. Considerable variability of the unit responses was observed during conditioning. By the time of stabilization of the conditioned-reflex connections the unit response to the conditioned stimulus was stable in form. The pattern of extinction of the conditioned unit activity was expressed as a decrease in the discharge frequency in responses of excitatory type and disinhibition of activity in the case of inhibitory responses.

  2. Plasticity of somatosensory inputs to the cochlear nucleus--implications for tinnitus.

    PubMed

    Shore, S E

    2011-11-01

    This chapter reviews evidence for functional connections of the somatosensory and auditory systems at the very lowest levels of the nervous system. Neural inputs from the dosal root and trigeminal ganglia, as well as their brain stem nuclei, cuneate, gracillis and trigeminal, terminate in the cochlear nuclei. Terminations are primarily in the shell regions surrounding the cochlear nuclei but some terminals are found in the magnocellular regions of cochlear nucleus. The effects of stimulating these inputs on multisensory integration are shown as short and long-term, both suppressive and enhancing. Evidence that these projections are glutamatergic and are altered after cochlear damage is provided in the light of probable influences on the modulation and generation of tinnitus.

  3. Plasticity of somatosensory inputs to the cochlear nucleus – implications for tinnitus

    PubMed Central

    Shore, S.E.

    2011-01-01

    This chapter reviews evidence for functional connections of the somatosensory and auditory systems at the very lowest levels of the nervous system. Neural inputs from the dosal root and trigeminal ganglia, as well as their brain stem nuclei, cuneate, gracillis and trigeminal, terminate in the cochlear nuclei. Terminations are primarily in the shell regions surrounding the cochlear nuclei but some terminals are found in the magnocellular regions of cochlear nucleus. The effects of stimulating these inputs on multisensory integration are shown as short and long-term, both suppressive and enhancing. Evidence that these projections are glutamatergic and are altered after cochlear damage is provided in the light of probable influences on the modulation and generation of tinnitus. PMID:21620940

  4. Whisker Deprivation Drives Two Phases of Inhibitory Synapse Weakening in Layer 4 of Rat Somatosensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Gainey, Melanie A; Wolfe, Renna; Pourzia, Olivia; Feldman, Daniel E

    2016-01-01

    Inhibitory synapse development in sensory neocortex is experience-dependent, with sustained sensory deprivation yielding fewer and weaker inhibitory synapses. Whether this represents arrest of synapse maturation, or a more complex set of processes, is unclear. To test this, we measured the dynamics of inhibitory synapse development in layer 4 of rat somatosensory cortex (S1) during continuous whisker deprivation from postnatal day 7, and in age-matched controls. In deprived columns, spontaneous miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs) and evoked IPSCs developed normally until P15, when IPSC amplitude transiently decreased, recovering by P16 despite ongoing deprivation. IPSCs remained normal until P22, when a second, sustained phase of weakening began. Delaying deprivation onset by 5 days prevented the P15 weakening. Both early and late phase weakening involved measurable reduction in IPSC amplitude relative to prior time points. Thus, deprivation appears to drive two distinct phases of active IPSC weakening, rather than simple arrest of synapse maturation.

  5. Effects of mindfulness meditation training on anticipatory alpha modulation in primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Kerr, Catherine E; Jones, Stephanie R; Wan, Qian; Pritchett, Dominique L; Wasserman, Rachel H; Wexler, Anna; Villanueva, Joel J; Shaw, Jessica R; Lazar, Sara W; Kaptchuk, Ted J; Littenberg, Ronnie; Hämäläinen, Matti S; Moore, Christopher I

    2011-05-30

    During selective attention, ∼7-14 Hz alpha rhythms are modulated in early sensory cortices, suggesting a mechanistic role for these dynamics in perception. Here, we investigated whether alpha modulation can be enhanced by "mindfulness" meditation (MM), a program training practitioners in sustained attention to body and breath-related sensations. We hypothesized that participants in the MM group would exhibit enhanced alpha power modulation in a localized representation in the primary somatosensory neocortex in response to a cue, as compared to participants in the control group. Healthy subjects were randomized to 8-weeks of MM training or a control group. Using magnetoencephalographic (MEG) recording of the SI finger representation, we found meditators demonstrated enhanced alpha power modulation in response to a cue. This finding is the first to show enhanced local alpha modulation following sustained attentional training, and implicates this form of enhanced dynamic neural regulation in the behavioral effects of meditative practice.

  6. Organization of somatosensory cortex in the northern grasshopper mouse (Onychomys leucogaster), a predatory rodent

    PubMed Central

    Sarko, Diana K.; Leitch, Duncan B.; Girard, Isabelle; Sikes, Robert S.; Catania, Kenneth C.

    2010-01-01

    Northern grasshopper mice (Onychomys leucogaster) are among the most highly carnivorous rodents in North America. Because predatory mammals may have specialization of senses used to detect prey, we investigated the organization of sensory areas within grasshopper mouse neocortex and quantified the number of myelinated axons in grasshopper mouse trigeminal, cochlear, and optic nerves. Multiunit electrophysiological recordings combined with analysis of flattened sections of neocortex processed for cytochrome oxidase were used to determine the topography of primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and the location and size of both the visual and auditory cortex in adult animals. These findings were then related to the distinctive chemoarchitecture of layer IV visible in flattened cortical sections of juvenile grasshopper mice labeled with the serotonin transporter (SERT) antibody, revealing a striking correspondence between electrophysiological maps and cortical anatomy. PMID:21120928

  7. Steady-State Somatosensory Evoked Potential for Brain-Computer Interface—Present and Future

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Sangtae; Kim, Kiwoong; Jun, Sung Chan

    2016-01-01

    Brain-computer interface (BCI) performance has achieved continued improvement over recent decades, and sensorimotor rhythm-based BCIs that use motor function have been popular subjects of investigation. However, it remains problematic to introduce them to the public market because of their low reliability. As an alternative resolution to this issue, visual-based BCIs that use P300 or steady-state visually evoked potentials (SSVEPs) seem promising; however, the inherent visual fatigue that occurs with these BCIs may be unavoidable. For these reasons, steady-state somatosensory evoked potential (SSSEP) BCIs, which are based on tactile selective attention, have gained increasing attention recently. These may reduce the fatigue induced by visual attention and overcome the low reliability of motor activity. In this literature survey, recent findings on SSSEP and its methodological uses in BCI are reviewed. Further, existing limitations of SSSEP BCI and potential future directions for the technique are discussed. PMID:26834611

  8. Effect of raising body temperature on visual and somatosensory evoked potentials in patients with multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed Central

    Matthews, W B; Read, D J; Pountney, E

    1979-01-01

    The effects of raising body temperature on the visual (VEP) and somatosensory (SEP) evoked potentials were observed in normal subjects and in patients with multiple sclerosis. The amplitude of the VEP was significantly reduced to the same degree after heating in normal subjects and in patients with multiple sclerosis but there was no effect on the latency of the potential. Changes in amplitude could not be related to reduction in acuity. In contrast, the cervical SEP was greatly disorganised after heating in many patients with multiple sclerosis while the only effect in normal subjects was to reduce the latency by increasing peripheral conduction velocity. These results suggest that heat caused conduction block in demyelinated axons in the sensory pathways of the cervical spinal cord. PMID:438834

  9. Exploring the variability of single trials in somatosensory evoked responses using constrained source extraction and RMT.

    PubMed

    Koutras, A; Kostopoulos, G K; Ioannides, A A

    2008-03-01

    This paper describes the theoretical background of a new data-driven approach to encephalographic single-trial (ST) data analysis. Temporal constrained source extraction using sparse decomposition identifies signal topographies that closely match the shape characteristics of a reference signal, one response for each ST. The correlations between these ST topographies are computed for formal Correlation Matrix Analysis (CMA) based on Random Matrix Theory (RMT). The RMT-CMA provides clusters of similar ST topologies in a completely unsupervised manner. These patterns are then classified into deterministic set and noise using well established RMT results. The efficacy of the method is applied to EEG and MEG data of somatosensory evoked responses (SERs). The results demonstrate that the method can recover brain signals with time course resembling the reference signal and follow changes in strength and/or topography in time by simply stepping the reference signal through time.

  10. Dendritic branching angles of pyramidal cells across layers of the juvenile rat somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Leguey, Ignacio; Bielza, Concha; Larrañaga, Pedro; Kastanauskaite, Asta; Rojo, Concepción; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; DeFelipe, Javier

    2016-09-01

    The characterization of the structural design of cortical microcircuits is essential for understanding how they contribute to function in both health and disease. Since pyramidal neurons represent the most abundant neuronal type and their dendritic spines constitute the major postsynaptic elements of cortical excitatory synapses, our understanding of the synaptic organization of the neocortex largely depends on the available knowledge regarding the structure of pyramidal cells. Previous studies have identified several apparently common rules in dendritic geometry. We study the dendritic branching angles of pyramidal cells across layers to further shed light on the principles that determine the geometric shapes of these cells. We find that the dendritic branching angles of pyramidal cells from layers II-VI of the juvenile rat somatosensory cortex suggest common design principles, despite the particular morphological and functional features that are characteristic of pyramidal cells in each cortical layer. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:2567-2576, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. The origin, and application of somatosensory evoked potentials as a neurophysiological technique to investigate neuroplasticity

    PubMed Central

    Passmore, Steven R.; Murphy, Bernadette; Lee, Timothy D.

    2014-01-01

    Somatosensory evoked potentionals (SEPs) can be used to elucidate differences in cortical activity associated with a spinal manipulation (SM) intervention. The purpose of this narrative review is to overview the origin and application of SEPs, a neurophysiological technique to investigate neuroplasticity. Summaries of: 1) parameters for SEP generation and waveform recording; 2) SEP peak nomenclature, interpretation and generators; 3) peaks pertaining to tactile information processing (relevant to both chiropractic and other manual therapies); 4) utilization and application of SEPs; 5) SEPs concurrent with an experimental task and at baseline/control/pretest; 6) SEPs pain studies; and 7) SEPs design (pre/post) and neural reorganization/neuroplasticity; and 8) SEPs and future chiropractic research are all reviewed. Understanding what SEPs are, and their application allows chiropractors, educators, and other manual therapists interested in SM to understand the context, and importance of research findings from SM studies that involve SEPs. PMID:24932021

  12. Allergic contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Alikhan, Ali; Maibach, Howard I

    2014-01-01

    Allergic contact dermatitis is one of the most important dermatologic disorders worldwide - it can cause significant morbidity and decreased quality of life, as well as having major economic implications and loss of vocational productivity. Patch testing is the most important discovery in allergic contact dermatitis and the best diagnostic modality to date; the thin-layer rapid- use epicutaneous (TRUE) test is a more recent patch test development which has improved the convenience and feasibility of the test. The future of allergic contact dermatitis is bright as we continue to learn more about the science of the disorder, as well as ways to improve diagnosis and patient care. Furthermore, it is important to remember, in this global age, that cooperation between health care providers worldwide is essential.

  13. Shoe allergic contact dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Matthys, Erin; Zahir, Amir; Ehrlich, Alison

    2014-01-01

    Foot dermatitis is a widespread condition, affecting men and women of all ages. Because of the location, this condition may present as a debilitating problem to those who have it. Allergic contact dermatitis involving the feet is frequently due to shoes or socks. The allergens that cause shoe dermatitis can be found in any constituent of footwear, including rubber, adhesives, leather, dyes, metals, and medicaments. The goal of treatment is to identify and minimize contact with the offending allergen(s). The lack of product information released from shoe manufacturers and the continually changing trends in footwear present a challenge in treating this condition. The aim of this study is to review the current literature on allergic contact shoe dermatitis; clinical presentation, allergens, patch testing, and management will be discussed. PubMed and MEDLINE databases were used for the search, with a focus on literature updates from the last 15 years.

  14. Acrylate Systemic Contact Dermatitis.

    PubMed

    Sauder, Maxwell B; Pratt, Melanie D

    2015-01-01

    Acrylates, the 2012 American Contact Dermatitis Society allergen of the year, are found in a range of products including the absorbent materials within feminine hygiene pads. When fully polymerized, acrylates are nonimmunogenic; however, if not completely cured, the monomers can be potent allergens.A 28-year-old woman is presented, who had her teeth varnished with Isodan (Septodont, Saint-Maur-des-Fossés, France) containing HEMA (2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) with no initial reaction. Approximately 1 month later, the patient developed a genital dermatitis secondary to her feminine hygiene pads. The initial reaction resolved, but 5 months later, the patient developed a systemic contact dermatitis after receiving a second varnishing.The patient was dramatically patch test positive to many acrylates. This case demonstrates a reaction to likely unpolymerized acrylates within a feminine hygiene pad, as well as broad cross-reactivity or cosensitivity to acrylates, and possibly a systemic contact dermatitis with systemic re-exposure to unpolymerized acrylates.

  15. Observing another in pain facilitates vicarious experiences and modulates somatosensory experiences

    PubMed Central

    Vandenbroucke, Sophie; Crombez, Geert; Loeys, Tom; Goubert, Liesbet

    2014-01-01

    Objective: This study investigated whether individuals reporting vicarious pain in daily life (e.g., the self-reported vicarious pain group) display vicarious experiences during an experimental paradigm, and also show an improved detection of somatosensory stimuli while observing another in pain. Furthermore, this study investigated the stability of these phenomena. Finally, this study explored the putative modulating role of dispositional empathy and hypervigilance for pain. Methods: Vicarious pain responders (i.e., reporting vicarious pain in daily life; N = 16) and controls (N = 19) were selected from a large sample, and viewed videos depicting pain-related (hands being pricked) and non-pain related scenes, whilst occasionally experiencing vibrotactile stimuli themselves on the left, right or both hands. Participants reported the location at which they felt a somatosensory stimulus. We calculated the number of vicarious errors (i.e., the number of trials in which an illusionary sensation was reported while observing pain-related scenes) and detection accuracy. Thirty-three participants (94.29%) took part in the same experiment 5 months later to investigate the temporal stability of the outcomes. Results: The vicarious pain group reported more vicarious errors compared with controls and this effect proved to be stable over time. Detection was facilitated while observing pain-related scenes compared with non-pain related scenes. Observers' characteristics, i.e., dispositional empathy and hypervigilance for pain, did not modulate the effects. Conclusion: Observing pain facilitates the detection of tactile stimuli, both in vicarious pain responders and controls. Interestingly, vicarious pain responders reported more vicarious errors during the experimental paradigm compared to controls and this effect remained stable over time. PMID:25191251

  16. Clinical effectiveness of low-level laser treatment on peripheral somatosensory neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Fallah, Alireza; Mirzaei, Alireza; Gutknecht, Norbert; Demneh, Amir Saberi

    2017-04-01

    Peripheral sensory neuropathy treatment is one of the common treatment problems and causes morbidity and mortality in people suffering from that. Although treatment depends on the underlying cause of the condition, nevertheless, in some cases, there is no cure for it, and it requires palliative and symptomatic treatment. In laboratory studies, low-level laser has been effective in the nerves protection and restoration. The aim of this article is to investigate the clinical efficacy of low-level laser on improvement of the peripheral somatosensory neuropathy. Search in the articles published up to 30 October 2015 (full text and abstracts) in databases PubMed (Medline), Cochrane library, Physiotherapy Evidence Database was performed. The studies of low-level laser trials on patients with peripheral neuropathy were carried out and evaluated in terms of the exclusion criteria. There are 35 articles among which 10 articles had the intended and required criteria. 1, 3, and 6 articles study the patients with diabetes, neuropathy caused by trauma, and carpal tunnel syndrome, respectively. In six studies, laser led to a reduction in sensory impairment and improvement of the physiological function of the sensory nerves. In these articles, lasers (Diode, GaAlAs, He-Ne) had wavelength range 660-860 nm, radiation power 20-250 mW, energy density 0.45-70 J/cm(2). The intervention sessions range was 6-21 times and patient follow-up was 0-6 months. According to the results of these studies, low-level laser therapy can improve sensory function in patients with peripheral somatosensory neuropathy, although little research have not been done, laser treatment regimens are varied and do not recommend a specific treatment protocol. It seems it requires more research to sum up better, particularly in relation to diabetes.

  17. Agreement between quantitative and qualitative sensory testing of changes in oro-facial somatosensory sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Agbaje, J; De Laat, A; Constantinus, P; Svensson, P; Baad-Hansen, L

    2017-01-01

    Qualitative somatosensory testing (QualST) is a simple chairside test. It can be used to roughly assess the presence or absence of altered somatosensory function. To use QualST clinically, it is important to assess its agreement with quantitative sensory testing (QST). The aims of this study were to assess the agreement between QST and QualST when testing the modulation of facial sensitivity by capsaicin in healthy participants and to explore the agreement between QST and QualST in assessing the intraoral sensory function in clinical atypical odontalgia (AO) patients. Eighteen healthy pain-free adults and data from 27 AO patients were included in the study. Thirteen QST and three QualST parameters were evaluated at each site. Z-scores were computed for healthy participants, and Loss-Gain scores were created. The agreement observed between QST and QualST in participants with no alterations in facial sensation (placebo) was good, that is ranging from 89% to 94%. A poorer agreement was seen after capsaicin application in all test modalities with agreement ranging from 50% to 72%. The commonest misclassification observed was participants classified as normal according to QST, but hyper- or hyposensitive according to QualST after capsaicin application, especially for cold and pinprick. A similar trend was observed in AO patients where patients classified as normal using QST were misclassified as hypersensitive and in few patients as hyposensitive by QualST. In conclusion, the study showed that QualST may be used as a screening tool in the clinical setting, especially to show that subjects have normal sensory function.

  18. Congenital foot deformation alters the topographic organization in the primate somatosensory system

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Chia-Chi; Qi, Hui-Xin; Reed, Jamie L.; Miller, Daniel J.; Kaas, Jon H.

    2015-01-01

    Limbs may fail to grow properly during fetal development, but the extent to which such growth alters the nervous system has not been extensively explored. Here we describe the organization of the somatosensory system in a 6-year-old monkey (Macaca radiata) born with a deformed left foot in comparison to the results from a normal monkey (Macaca fascicularis). Toes 1, 3, and 5 were missing, but the proximal parts of toes 2 and 4 were present. We used anatomical tracers to characterize the patterns of peripheral input to the spinal cord and brainstem, as well as between thalamus and cortex. We also determined the somatotopic organization of primary somatosensory area 3b of both hemispheres using multiunit electrophysiological recording. Tracers were subcutaneously injected into matching locations of each foot to reveal their representations within the lumbar spinal cord, and the gracile nucleus (GrN) of the brainstem. Tracers injected into the representations of the toes and plantar pads of cortical area 3b labeled neurons in the ventroposterior lateral nucleus (VPL) of the thalamus. Contrary to the orderly arrangement of the foot representation throughout the lemniscal pathway in the normal monkey, the plantar representation of the deformed foot was significantly expanded and intruded into the expected representations of toes in the spinal cord, GrN, VPL, and area 3b. We also observed abnormal representation of the intact foot in the ipsilateral spinal cord and contralateral area 3b. Thus, congenital malformation influences the somatotopic representation of the deformed as well as the intact foot. PMID:25326245

  19. Mirror-induced self-directed behaviors in rhesus monkeys after visual-somatosensory training.

    PubMed

    Chang, Liangtang; Fang, Qin; Zhang, Shikun; Poo, Mu-ming; Gong, Neng

    2015-01-19

    Mirror self-recognition is a hallmark of higher intelligence in humans. Most children recognize themselves in the mirror by 2 years of age. In contrast to human and some great apes, monkeys have consistently failed the standard mark test for mirror self-recognition in all previous studies. Here, we show that rhesus monkeys could acquire mirror-induced self-directed behaviors resembling mirror self-recognition following training with visual-somatosensory association. Monkeys were trained on a monkey chair in front of a mirror to touch a light spot on their faces produced by a laser light that elicited an irritant sensation. After 2-5 weeks of training, monkeys had learned to touch a face area marked by a non-irritant light spot or odorless dye in front of a mirror and by a virtual face mark on the mirroring video image on a video screen. Furthermore, in the home cage, five out of seven trained monkeys showed typical mirror-induced self-directed behaviors, such as touching the mark on the face or ear and then looking at and/or smelling their fingers, as well as spontaneously using the mirror to explore normally unseen body parts. Four control monkeys of a similar age that went through mirror habituation but had no training of visual-somatosensory association did not pass any mark tests and did not exhibit mirror-induced self-directed behaviors. These results shed light on the origin of mirror self-recognition and suggest a new approach to studying its neural mechanism.

  20. Heightened sensitivity to somatosensory stimuli in anorexia nervosa: an exploratory study with the SASTCA scale.

    PubMed

    Calvo Sagardoy, Rosa; Gallego Morales, Luis T; Kassem García, Soledad; Codesal Julián, Rosana; Blanco Fernández, Ascensión; Solórzano Ostolaza, Gloria; Morales Martínez, Carmen

    2014-11-04

    Objetivo: destacar la presencia de una sensibilidad extrema hacia estímulos externos e internos (Amplificación Somatosensorial) en pacientes con Anorexia, similar pero no idéntica, a la descrita en pacientes con unexple somatic symtoms. Método: Se ha elaborado una escala de Amplificación Somatosensorial para Trastornos de la Conducta Alimentaria, (SASTCA), que mide la intensidad de la respuesta hacia estímulos somatosensoriales específicos. La escala ha sido cumplimentada por un grupo de 48 pacientes anoréxicas y un grupo control de 31 sujetos emparejados en edad, sexo y nivel socioeducativo. Los resultados se han comparado con los obtenidos en la escala SSAS de Barsky. Resultados: La Fiabilidad (Alfa de Cronbach 0,946; dos mitades de Guttman 0,936) y la Validez (ROC, 0,933), son indicativas de elevada sensibilidad y especificidad de la escala SASTCA. El grupo de pacientes presenta una media 58,73 12,38, significativamente superior al grupo control 37,81 7,47, (=0,001). Las pacientes presentan en la escala SSAS una media 31,21 6,68 significativamente superior al grupo control 26,58 5,49 (=0,01), aunque la diferencia es menos extremada. Ambas escalas correlacionan positivamente. 0,634 Conclusiones: Los resultados sugieren la presencia en AN. de una sensibilidad extrema hacia estímulos somatosensoriales. ¿Podria esta elevada sensibilidad sensorial ayudarnos a explicar el proceso de formación del auto-concepto distorsionado (“gordo, enfermo, feo”) de estos pacientes? De confirmar su presencia en otras muestras de pacientes con anorexia, en sus familiares y en diferentes pacientes somatomorfos o TCA, esta elevada sensibilidad podría considerarse el endofenotipo somatomorfo del trastorno anoréxico.

  1. Encoding of Touch Intensity But Not Pleasantness in Human Primary Somatosensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Laubacher, Claire M.; Olausson, Håkan; Wang, Binquan; Spagnolo, Primavera A.; Bushnell, M. Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Growing interest in affective touch has delineated a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, have cast doubt on the segregation of touch discrimination and affect, suggesting that S1 also encodes affective qualities. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to examine the role of S1 in processing touch intensity and pleasantness. Twenty-six healthy human adults rated brushing on the hand during fMRI. Intensity ratings significantly predicted activation in S1, whereas pleasantness ratings predicted activation only in the anterior cingulate cortex. Nineteen subjects also received inhibitory rTMS over right hemisphere S1 and the vertex (control). After S1 rTMS, but not after vertex rTMS, sensory discrimination was reduced and subjects with reduced sensory discrimination rated touch as more intense. In contrast, rTMS did not alter ratings of touch pleasantness. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Growing interest in affective touch has identified a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, cast doubt on the separation of touch discrimination and affect. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation to demonstrate the representation of touch discrimination and intensity in S1, but the representation of pleasantness in the anterior cingulate cortex, not S1. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. Our study contributes to growing delineation of the affective touch system, a crucial step in understanding its dysregulation in numerous clinical conditions such as autism, eating disorders, depression, and chronic pain. PMID:27225773

  2. The Dual Nature of Early-Life Experience on Somatosensory Processing in the Human Infant Brain.

    PubMed

    Maitre, Nathalie L; Key, Alexandra P; Chorna, Olena D; Slaughter, James C; Matusz, Pawel J; Wallace, Mark T; Murray, Micah M

    2017-04-03

    Every year, 15 million preterm infants are born, and most spend their first weeks in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) [1]. Although essential for the support and survival of these infants, NICU sensory environments are dramatically different from those in which full-term infants mature and thus likely impact the development of functional brain organization [2]. Yet the integrity of sensory systems determines effective perception and behavior [3, 4]. In neonates, touch is a cornerstone of interpersonal interactions and sensory-cognitive development [5-7]. NICU treatments used to improve neurodevelopmental outcomes rely heavily on touch [8]. However, we understand little of how brain maturation at birth (i.e., prematurity) and quality of early-life experiences (e.g., supportive versus painful touch) interact to shape the development of the somatosensory system [9]. Here, we identified the spatial, temporal, and amplitude characteristics of cortical responses to light touch that differentiate them from sham stimuli in full-term infants. We then utilized this data-driven analytical framework to show that the degree of prematurity at birth determines the extent to which brain responses to light touch (but not sham) are attenuated at the time of discharge from the hospital. Building on these results, we showed that, when controlling for prematurity and analgesics, supportive experiences (e.g., breastfeeding, skin-to-skin care) are associated with stronger brain responses, whereas painful experiences (e.g., skin punctures, tube insertions) are associated with reduced brain responses to the same touch stimuli. Our results shed crucial insights into the mechanisms through which common early perinatal experiences may shape the somatosensory scaffolding of later perceptual, cognitive, and social development.

  3. Congenital foot deformation alters the topographic organization in the primate somatosensory system.

    PubMed

    Liao, Chia-Chi; Qi, Hui-Xin; Reed, Jamie L; Miller, Daniel J; Kaas, Jon H

    2016-01-01

    Limbs may fail to grow properly during fetal development, but the extent to which such growth alters the nervous system has not been extensively explored. Here we describe the organization of the somatosensory system in a 6-year-old monkey (Macaca radiata) born with a deformed left foot in comparison to the results from a normal monkey (Macaca fascicularis). Toes 1, 3, and 5 were missing, but the proximal parts of toes 2 and 4 were present. We used anatomical tracers to characterize the patterns of peripheral input to the spinal cord and brainstem, as well as between thalamus and cortex. We also determined the somatotopic organization of primary somatosensory area 3b of both hemispheres using multiunit electrophysiological recording. Tracers were subcutaneously injected into matching locations of each foot to reveal their representations within the lumbar spinal cord, and the gracile nucleus (GrN) of the brainstem. Tracers injected into the representations of the toes and plantar pads of cortical area 3b labeled neurons in the ventroposterior lateral nucleus (VPL) of the thalamus. Contrary to the orderly arrangement of the foot representation throughout the lemniscal pathway in the normal monkey, the plantar representation of the deformed foot was significantly expanded and intruded into the expected representations of toes in the spinal cord, GrN, VPL, and area 3b. We also observed abnormal representation of the intact foot in the ipsilateral spinal cord and contralateral area 3b. Thus, congenital malformation influences the somatotopic representation of the deformed as well as the intact foot.

  4. Learned control over spinal nociception reduces supraspinal nociception as quantified by late somatosensory evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Ruscheweyh, Ruth; Bäumler, Maximilian; Feller, Moritz; Krafft, Stefanie; Sommer, Jens; Straube, Andreas

    2015-12-01

    We have recently shown that subjects can learn to use cognitive-emotional strategies to suppress their spinal nociceptive flexor reflex (RIII reflex) under visual RIII feedback and proposed that this reflects learned activation of descending pain inhibition. Here, we investigated whether learned RIII suppression also affects supraspinal nociception and whether previous relaxation training increases success. Subjects were trained over 3 sessions to reduce their RIII size by self-selected cognitive-emotional strategies. Two groups received true RIII feedback (with or without previous relaxation training) and a sham group received false feedback (15 subjects per group). RIII reflexes, late somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs), and F-waves were recorded and pain intensity ratings collected. Both true feedback groups achieved significant (P < 0.01) but similar RIII suppression (to 79% ± 21% and 70% ± 17% of control). Somatosensory evoked potential amplitude (100-150 milliseconds after stimulation) was reduced in parallel with the RIII size (r = 0.57, P < 0.01). In the sham group, neither RIII size nor SEP amplitude was significantly reduced during feedback training. Pain intensity was significantly reduced in all 3 groups and also correlated with RIII reduction (r = 0.44, P < 0.01). F-wave parameters were not affected during RIII suppression. The present results show that learned RIII suppression also affects supraspinal nociception as quantified by SEPs, although effects on pain ratings were less clear. Lower motor neuron excitability as quantified by F-waves was not affected. Previous relaxation training did not significantly improve RIII feedback training success.

  5. Limb-state information encoded by peripheral and central somatosensory neurons: implications for an afferent interface.

    PubMed

    Weber, Douglas J; London, Brian M; Hokanson, James A; Ayers, Christopher A; Gaunt, Robert A; Torres, Ricardo R; Zaaimi, Boubker; Miller, Lee E

    2011-10-01

    A major issue to be addressed in the development of neural interfaces for prosthetic control is the need for somatosensory feedback. Here, we investigate two possible strategies: electrical stimulation of either dorsal root ganglia (DRG) or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). In each approach, we must determine a model that reflects the representation of limb state in terms of neural discharge. This model can then be used to design stimuli that artificially activate the nervous system to convey information about limb state to the subject. Electrically activating DRG neurons using naturalistic stimulus patterns, modeled on recordings made during passive limb movement, evoked activity in S1 that was similar to that of the original movement. We also found that S1 neural populations could accurately discriminate different patterns of DRG stimulation across a wide range of stimulus pulse-rates. In studying the neural coding in S1, we also decoded the kinematics of active limb movement using multi-electrode recordings in the monkey. Neurons having both proprioceptive and cutaneous receptive fields contributed equally to this decoding. Some neurons were most informative of limb state in the recent past, but many others appeared to signal upcoming movements suggesting that they also were modulated by an efference copy signal. Finally, we show that a monkey was able to detect stimulation through a large percentage of electrodes implanted in area 2. We discuss the design of appropriate stimulus paradigms for conveying time-varying limb state information, and the relative merits and limitations of central and peripheral approaches.

  6. Alexithymia and the labeling of facial emotions: response slowing and increased motor and somatosensory processing

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Alexithymia is a personality trait that is characterized by difficulties in identifying and describing feelings. Previous studies have shown that alexithymia is related to problems in recognizing others’ emotional facial expressions when these are presented with temporal constraints. These problems can be less severe when the expressions are visible for a relatively long time. Because the neural correlates of these recognition deficits are still relatively unexplored, we investigated the labeling of facial emotions and brain responses to facial emotions as a function of alexithymia. Results Forty-eight healthy participants had to label the emotional expression (angry, fearful, happy, or neutral) of faces presented for 1 or 3 seconds in a forced-choice format while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging. The participants’ level of alexithymia was assessed using self-report and interview. In light of the previous findings, we focused our analysis on the alexithymia component of difficulties in describing feelings. Difficulties describing feelings, as assessed by the interview, were associated with increased reaction times for negative (i.e., angry and fearful) faces, but not with labeling accuracy. Moreover, individuals with higher alexithymia showed increased brain activation in the somatosensory cortex and supplementary motor area (SMA) in response to angry and fearful faces. These cortical areas are known to be involved in the simulation of the bodily (motor and somatosensory) components of facial emotions. Conclusion The present data indicate that alexithymic individuals may use information related to bodily actions rather than affective states to understand the facial expressions of other persons. PMID:24629094

  7. Computational modeling of direct neuronal recruitment during intracortical microstimulation in somatosensory cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Overstreet, C. K.; Klein, J. D.; Helms Tillery, S. I.

    2013-12-01

    Objective. Electrical stimulation of cortical tissue could be used to deliver sensory information as part of a neuroprosthetic device, but current control of the location, resolution, quality, and intensity of sensations elicited by intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) remains inadequate for this purpose. One major obstacle to resolving this problem is the poor understanding of the neural activity induced by ICMS. Even with new imaging methods, quantifying the activity of many individual neurons within cortex is difficult. Approach. We used computational modeling to examine the response of somatosensory cortex to ICMS. We modeled the