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Sample records for motor vehicle-related spinal

  1. Tribal motor vehicle injury prevention programs for reducing disparities in motor vehicle-related injuries.

    PubMed

    West, Bethany A; Naumann, Rebecca B

    2014-04-18

    A previous analysis of National Vital Statistics System data for 2003-2007 that examined disparities in rates of motor vehicle-related death by race/ethnicity and sex found that death rates for American Indians/Alaska Natives were two to four times the rates of other races/ethnicities. To address the disparity in motor vehicle-related injuries and deaths among American Indians/Alaska Natives, CDC funded four American Indian tribes during 2004-2009 to tailor, implement, and evaluate evidence-based road safety interventions. During the implementation of these four motor vehicle-related injury prevention pilot programs, seat belt and child safety seat use increased and alcohol-impaired driving decreased. Four American Indian/Alaska Native tribal communities-the Tohono O'odham Nation, the Ho-Chunk Nation, the White Mountain Apache Tribe, and the San Carlos Apache Tribe-implemented evidence-based road safety interventions to reduce motor vehicle-related injuries and deaths. Each community selected interventions from the Guide to Community Preventive Services and implemented them during 2004-2009. Furthermore, each community took a multifaceted approach by incorporating several strategies, such as school and community education programs, media campaigns, and collaborations with law enforcement officers into their programs. Police data and direct observational surveys were the main data sources used to assess results of the programs. Results included increased use of seat belts and child safety seats, increased enforcement of alcohol-impaired driving laws, and decreased motor vehicle crashes involving injuries or deaths. CDC's Office of Minority Health and Health Equity selected the intervention analysis and discussion as an example of a program that might be effective for reducing motor vehicle-related injury disparities in the United States. The Guide to Community Preventive Services recognizes these selected interventions as effective; this report examines the

  2. 41 CFR 102-34.320 - What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? 102-34.320 Section 102-34.320....320 What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? (a) You may use a fleet charge card specifically issued for this purpose. These cards are designed...

  3. 41 CFR 102-34.320 - What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? 102-34.320 Section 102-34.320....320 What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? (a) You may use a fleet charge card specifically issued for this purpose. These cards are designed...

  4. 41 CFR 102-34.320 - What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? 102-34.320 Section 102-34.320....320 What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? (a) You may use a fleet charge card specifically issued for this purpose. These cards are designed...

  5. 41 CFR 102-34.320 - What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? 102-34.320 Section 102-34.320....320 What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? (a) You may use a fleet charge card specifically issued for this purpose. These cards are designed...

  6. 41 CFR 102-34.320 - What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? 102-34.320 Section 102-34.320....320 What Government-issued charge cards may I use to purchase fuel and motor vehicle related services? (a) You may use a fleet charge card specifically issued for this purpose. These cards are designed...

  7. Reducing Motor Vehicle-Related Injuries at an Arizona Indian Reservation: Ten Years of Application of Evidence-Based Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Piontkowski, Stephen R; Peabody, Jon S; Reede, Christine; Velascosoltero, José; Tsatoke, Gordon; Shelhamer, Timothy; Hicks, Kenny R

    2015-01-01

    Unintentional injury is a significant public health burden for American Indians and Alaska Natives and was the leading cause of death among those aged 1 to 44 years between 1999 and 2004. Of those deaths, motor vehicle-related deaths cause the most mortality, justifying the need for intervention at an American Indian Reservation in Arizona (United States). We describe motor vehicle injury prevention program operations from 2004 through 2013. This community-based approach led by a multidisciplinary team primarily comprised of environmental public health and law enforcement personnel implemented evidence-based strategies to reduce the impact of motor vehicle-related injuries and deaths, focusing on reducing impaired driving and increasing occupant restraint use. Strategies included: mass media campaigns to enhance awareness and outreach; high-visibility sobriety checkpoints; passing and enforcing 0.08% blood alcohol concentration limits for drivers and primary occupant restraint laws; and child car seat distribution and education. Routine monitoring and evaluation data showed a significant 5% to 7% annual reduction of motor vehicle crashes (MVCs), nighttime MVCs, MVCs with injuries/fatalities, and nighttime MVCs with injuries/fatalities between 2004 and 2013, but the annual percent change in arrests for driving under the influence (DUI) was not significant. There was also a 144% increase in driver/front seat passenger seat belt use, from 19% in 2011 before the primary occupant restraint law was enacted to 47% during the first full year of enforcement (2013). Car seat checkpoint data also suggested a 160% increase in car seat use, from less than 20% to 52% in 2013. Implementation of evidence-based strategies in injury prevention, along with employment of key program approaches such as strong partnership building, community engagement, and consistent staffing and funding, can narrow the public health disparity gap experienced among American Indian and Alaska Native

  8. Spinal metaplasticity in respiratory motor control

    PubMed Central

    Fields, Daryl P.; Mitchell, Gordon S.

    2015-01-01

    A hallmark feature of the neural system controlling breathing is its ability to exhibit plasticity. Less appreciated is the ability to exhibit metaplasticity, a change in the capacity to express plasticity (i.e., “plastic plasticity”). Recent advances in our understanding of cellular mechanisms giving rise to respiratory motor plasticity lay the groundwork for (ongoing) investigations of metaplasticity. This detailed understanding of respiratory metaplasticity will be essential as we harness metaplasticity to restore breathing capacity in clinical disorders that compromise breathing, such as cervical spinal injury, motor neuron disease and other neuromuscular diseases. In this brief review, we discuss key examples of metaplasticity in respiratory motor control, and our current understanding of mechanisms giving rise to spinal plasticity and metaplasticity in phrenic motor output; particularly after pre-conditioning with intermittent hypoxia. Progress in this area has led to the realization that similar mechanisms are operative in other spinal motor networks, including those governing limb movement. Further, these mechanisms can be harnessed to restore respiratory and non-respiratory motor function after spinal injury. PMID:25717292

  9. Descending motor pathways and the spinal motor system - Limbic and non-limbic components

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holstege, Gert

    1991-01-01

    Research on descending motor pathways to caudal brainstem and spinal cord in the spinal motor system is reviewed. Particular attention is given to somatic and autonomic motoneurons in the spinal cord and brainstem, local projections to motoneurons, bulbospinal interneurons projecting to motoneurons, descending pathways of somatic motor control systems, and descending pathways involved in limbic motor control systems.

  10. Corticospinal circuit plasticity in motor rehabilitation from spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Serradj, Najet; Agger, Sydney F; Hollis, Edmund R

    2016-12-06

    Restoring corticospinal function after spinal cord injury is a significant challenge as the corticospinal tract elicits no substantive, spontaneous regeneration, and its interruption leaves a permanent deficit. The corticospinal circuit serves multiple motor and sensory functions within the mammalian nervous system as the direct link between isocortex and spinal cord. Maturation of the corticospinal circuit involves the refinement of projections within the spinal cord and a subsequent refinement of motor maps within the cortex. The plasticity of these cortical motor maps mirrors the acquisition of skilled motor learning, and both the maps and motor skills are disrupted following injury to the corticospinal tract. The motor cortex exhibits the capacity to incorporate changes in corticospinal projections induced by both spontaneous and therapeutic-mediated plasticity of corticospinal axons through appropriate rehabilitation. An understanding of the mechanisms of corticospinal plasticity in motor learning will undoubtedly help inform strategies to improve motor rehabilitation after spinal cord injury.

  11. Genetically identified spinal interneurons integrating tactile afferents for motor control

    PubMed Central

    Panek, Izabela; Farah, Carl

    2015-01-01

    Our movements are shaped by our perception of the world as communicated by our senses. Perception of sensory information has been largely attributed to cortical activity. However, a prior level of sensory processing occurs in the spinal cord. Indeed, sensory inputs directly project to many spinal circuits, some of which communicate with motor circuits within the spinal cord. Therefore, the processing of sensory information for the purpose of ensuring proper movements is distributed between spinal and supraspinal circuits. The mechanisms underlying the integration of sensory information for motor control at the level of the spinal cord have yet to be fully described. Recent research has led to the characterization of spinal neuron populations that share common molecular identities. Identification of molecular markers that define specific populations of spinal neurons is a prerequisite to the application of genetic techniques devised to both delineate the function of these spinal neurons and their connectivity. This strategy has been used in the study of spinal neurons that receive tactile inputs from sensory neurons innervating the skin. As a result, the circuits that include these spinal neurons have been revealed to play important roles in specific aspects of motor function. We describe these genetically identified spinal neurons that integrate tactile information and the contribution of these studies to our understanding of how tactile information shapes motor output. Furthermore, we describe future opportunities that these circuits present for shedding light on the neural mechanisms of tactile processing. PMID:26445867

  12. Update: Motor vehicle-related deaths, active and reserve components, U.S. Armed Forces, 1999-2012.

    PubMed

    2013-11-01

    From 1999 to 2012, there were 4,479 motor vehicle accident (MVA)-related deaths among members of the U.S. Armed Forces. Of these, the single most common underlying cause of death was motorcycle accidents (n=1,134; 25.6%). Among active component service members during the 14-year surveillance period, the annual number (n=355) and rate (25.1 per 100,000 person-years[p-yrs]) of MVA-related deaths peaked in 2004. Since then, a steady downward trend followed and the 2012 number (n=184) and rate (13.2 per 100,000 p-yrs) were the lowest of the entire period. For members of the reserve component, the annual number of deaths peaked in 2005 (n=86), but the number in 2012 (n=22) was the lowest of the period. In 2012, the number (n=90) and rate of deaths (6.5 per 100,000 p-yrs) related to motorcycle accidents among active component service members almost equaled the number (n=94) and rate of deaths (6.7 per 100,000 p-yrs) from all other types of motor vehicle accidents combined. During the entire period, numbers of fatal motor vehicle accidents tended to be higher in the warmer months of the year. After 2009, motor vehicle accidents were no longer the leading, non-war- related cause of death among U.S. service members.

  13. Chlorpheniramine produces spinal motor, proprioceptive and nociceptive blockades in rats.

    PubMed

    Tzeng, Jann-Inn; Lin, Heng-Teng; Chen, Yu-Wen; Hung, Ching-Hsia; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2015-04-05

    This study aimed to assess the local anesthetic effects of chlorpheniramine in spinal anesthesia and is compared with mepivacaine, a widely-used local anesthetic. Spinal anesthesia with chlorpheniramine and mepivacaine was constructed in a dosage-dependent fashion after the rats were injected intrathecally. The spinal block effect of chlorpheniramine in motor function, nociception, and proprioception was compared to that of mepivacaine. We revealed that intrathecal chlorpheniramine and mepivacaine exhibited a dose-dependent spinal block of motor function, nociception, and proprioception. On the 50% effective dose (ED50) basis, the ranks of potencies in motor function, nociception, and proprioception were chlorpheniramine>mepivacaine (P<0.01 for the differences). On the equianesthetic basis (ED25, ED50, ED75), the duration of spinal anesthesia with chlorpheniramine was greater than that of mepivacaine (P<0.01 for the differences). Instead of mepivacaine, chlorpheniramine produced a greater duration of sensory blockade than the motor blockade. These preclinical data showed that chlorpheniramine has a better sensory-selective action over motor block to produce more potent and long-lasting spinal anesthesia than mepivacaine.

  14. A regionalised strategy for improving motor vehicle-related highway driver deaths using a weighted averages method

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Tad; Rivara, Frederick P; Mozingo, David W; Lottenberg, Lawrence; Harris, Zachary B; Casella, George; Liu, Huazhi; Moldawer, Lyle L; Efron, Philip A; Ang, Darwin N

    2015-01-01

    Objective The state of Florida has some of the most dangerous highways in the USA. In 2006, Florida averaged 1.65 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles travelled (VMT) compared with the national average of 1.42. A study was undertaken to find a method of identifying counties that contributed to the most driver fatalities after a motor vehicle collision (MVC). By regionalising interventions unique to this subset of counties, the use of resources would have the greatest potential of improving statewide driver death. Methods The Florida Highway Safety Motor Vehicle database 2000–2006 was used to calculate driver VMT-weighted deaths by county. A total of 3 468 326 motor vehicle crashes were evaluated. Counties that had driver death rates higher than the state average were sorted by a weighted averages method. Multivariate regression was used to calculate the likelihood of death for various risk factors. Results VMT-weighted death rates identified 12 out of 67 counties that contributed up to 50% of overall driver fatalities. These counties were primarily clustered in central and south Florida. The strongest independent risk factors for driver death attributable to MVC in these high-risk counties were alcohol/drug use, rural roads, speed limit ≥45 mph, adverse weather conditions, divided highways, vehicle type, vehicle defects and roadway location. Conclusions Using the weighted averages method, a small subset of counties contributing to the majority of statewide driver fatalities was identified. Regionalised interventions on specific risk factors in these counties may have the greatest impact on reducing driver-related MVC fatalities. PMID:21685144

  15. Motor neurons and the generation of spinal motor neuron diversity

    PubMed Central

    Stifani, Nicolas

    2014-01-01

    Motor neurons (MNs) are neuronal cells located in the central nervous system (CNS) controlling a variety of downstream targets. This function infers the existence of MN subtypes matching the identity of the targets they innervate. To illustrate the mechanism involved in the generation of cellular diversity and the acquisition of specific identity, this review will focus on spinal MNs (SpMNs) that have been the core of significant work and discoveries during the last decades. SpMNs are responsible for the contraction of effector muscles in the periphery. Humans possess more than 500 different skeletal muscles capable to work in a precise time and space coordination to generate complex movements such as walking or grasping. To ensure such refined coordination, SpMNs must retain the identity of the muscle they innervate. Within the last two decades, scientists around the world have produced considerable efforts to elucidate several critical steps of SpMNs differentiation. During development, SpMNs emerge from dividing progenitor cells located in the medial portion of the ventral neural tube. MN identities are established by patterning cues working in cooperation with intrinsic sets of transcription factors. As the embryo develop, MNs further differentiate in a stepwise manner to form compact anatomical groups termed pools connecting to a unique muscle target. MN pools are not homogeneous and comprise subtypes according to the muscle fibers they innervate. This article aims to provide a global view of MN classification as well as an up-to-date review of the molecular mechanisms involved in the generation of SpMN diversity. Remaining conundrums will be discussed since a complete understanding of those mechanisms constitutes the foundation required for the elaboration of prospective MN regeneration therapies. PMID:25346659

  16. Tapping into spinal circuits to restore motor function.

    PubMed

    Barbeau, H; McCrea, D A; O'Donovan, M J; Rossignol, S; Grill, W M; Lemay, M A

    1999-07-01

    Motivated by the challenge of improving neuroprosthetic devices, the authors review current knowledge relating to harnessing the potential of spinal neural circuits, such as reflexes and pattern generators. If such spinal interneuronal circuits could be activated, they could provide the coordinated control of many muscles that is so complex to implement with a device that aims to address each participating muscle individually. The authors' goal is to identify candidate spinal circuits and areas of research that might open opportunities to effect control of human limbs through electrical activation of such circuits. David McCrea's discussion of the ways in which hindlimb reflexes in the cat modify motor activity may help in developing optimal strategies for functional neuromuscular stimulation (FNS), by using knowledge of how reflex actions can adapt to different conditions. Michael O'Donovan's discussion of the development of rhythmogenic networks in the chick embryo may provide clues to methods of generating rhythmic activity in the adult spinal cord. Serge Rossignol examines the spinal pattern generator for locomotion in cats, its trigger mechanisms, modulation and adaptation, and suggests how this knowledge can help guide therapeutic approaches in humans. Hugues Barbeau applies the work of Rossignol and others to locomotor training in human subjects who have suffered spinal cord injury (SCI) with incomplete motor function loss (IMFL). Michel Lemay and Warren Grill discuss some of the technical challenges that must be addressed by engineers to implement a neuroprosthesis using electrical stimulation of the spinal cord, particularly the control issues that would have to be resolved.

  17. Motor imagery muscle contraction strength influences spinal motor neuron excitability and cardiac sympathetic nerve activity.

    PubMed

    Bunno, Yoshibumi; Suzuki, Toshiaki; Iwatsuki, Hiroyasu

    2015-12-01

    [Purpose] The aim of this study was to investigate the changes in spinal motor neuron excitability and autonomic nervous system activity during motor imagery of isometric thenar muscle activity at 10% and 50% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC). [Methods] The F-waves and low frequency/high frequency (LF/HF) ratio were recorded at rest, during motor imagery, and post-trial. For motor imagery trials, subjects were instructed to imagine thenar muscle activity at 10% and 50% MVC while holding the sensor of a pinch meter for 5 min. [Results] The F-waves and LF/HF ratio during motor imagery at 50% MVC were significantly increased compared with those at rest, whereas those during motor imagery at 10% MVC were not significantly different from those at rest. The relative values of the F/M amplitude ratio during motor imagery at 50% MVC were significantly higher than those at 10% MVC. The relative values of persistence and the LF/HF ratio during motor imagery were similar during motor imagery at the two muscle contraction strengths. [Conclusion] Motor imagery can increase the spinal motor neuron excitability and cardiac sympathetic nerve activity. Motor imagery at 50% MVC may be more effective than motor imagery at 10% MVC.

  18. Experience-dependent development of spinal motor neurons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Inglis, F. M.; Zuckerman, K. E.; Kalb, R. G.; Walton, K. D. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Locomotor activity in many species undergoes pronounced alterations in early postnatal life, and environmental cues may be responsible for modifying this process. To determine how these events are reflected in the nervous system, we studied rats reared under two different conditions-the presence or absence of gravity-in which the performance of motor operations differed. We found a significant effect of rearing environment on the size and complexity of dendritic architecture of spinal motor neurons, particularly those that are likely to participate in postural control. These results provide evidence that neurons subserving motor function undergo activity-dependent maturation in early postnatal life in a manner analogous to sensory systems.

  19. Spinal muscular atrophy: Factors that modulate motor neurone vulnerability.

    PubMed

    Tu, Wen-Yo; Simpson, Julie E; Highley, J Robin; Heath, Paul R

    2017-02-02

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a leading genetic cause of infant death, is a neurodegenerative disease characterised by the selective loss of particular groups of motor neurones in the anterior horn of the spinal cord with concomitant muscle weakness. To date, no effective treatment is available, however, there are ongoing clinical trials are in place which promise much for the future. However, there remains an ongoing problem in trying to link a single gene loss to motor neurone degeneration. Fortunately, given successful disease models that have been established and intensive studies on SMN functions in the past ten years, we are fast approaching the stage of identifying the underlying mechanisms of SMA pathogenesis Here we discuss potential disease modifying factors on motor neurone vulnerability, in the belief that these factors give insight into the pathological mechanisms of SMA and therefore possible therapeutic targets.

  20. Spinal inhibitory interneuron diversity delineates variant motor microcircuits

    PubMed Central

    Bikoff, Jay B.; Gabitto, Mariano I.; Rivard, Andre F.; Drobac, Estelle; Machado, Timothy A.; Miri, Andrew; Brenner-Morton, Susan; Famojure, Erica; Diaz, Carolyn; Alvarez, Francisco J.; Mentis, George Z.; Jessell, Thomas M.

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Animals generate movement by engaging spinal circuits that direct precise sequences of muscle contraction, but the identity and organizational logic of local interneurons that lie at the core of these circuits remain unresolved. Here we show that V1 interneurons, a major inhibitory population that controls motor output, fractionate into highly diverse subsets on the basis of the expression of nineteen transcription factors. Transcriptionally defined V1 subsets exhibit distinct physiological signatures and highly structured spatial distributions with mediolateral and dorsoventral positional biases. These positional distinctions constrain patterns of input from sensory and motor neurons, arguing that interneuron position is a determinant of microcircuit organization. Moreover, V1 diversity indicates that different inhibitory microcircuits exist for motor pools controlling hip, ankle, and foot muscles, revealing a variable circuit architecture for interneurons that control limb movement. PMID:26949184

  1. Survival motor neuron protein in motor neurons determines synaptic integrity in spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Martinez, Tara L; Kong, Lingling; Wang, Xueyong; Osborne, Melissa A; Crowder, Melissa E; Van Meerbeke, James P; Xu, Xixi; Davis, Crystal; Wooley, Joe; Goldhamer, David J; Lutz, Cathleen M; Rich, Mark M; Sumner, Charlotte J

    2012-06-20

    The inherited motor neuron disease spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is caused by deficient expression of survival motor neuron (SMN) protein and results in severe muscle weakness. In SMA mice, synaptic dysfunction of both neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) and central sensorimotor synapses precedes motor neuron cell death. To address whether this synaptic dysfunction is due to SMN deficiency in motor neurons, muscle, or both, we generated three lines of conditional SMA mice with tissue-specific increases in SMN expression. All three lines of mice showed increased survival, weights, and improved motor behavior. While increased SMN expression in motor neurons prevented synaptic dysfunction at the NMJ and restored motor neuron somal synapses, increased SMN expression in muscle did not affect synaptic function although it did improve myofiber size. Together these data indicate that both peripheral and central synaptic integrity are dependent on motor neurons in SMA, but SMN may have variable roles in the maintenance of these different synapses. At the NMJ, it functions at the presynaptic terminal in a cell-autonomous fashion, but may be necessary for retrograde trophic signaling to presynaptic inputs onto motor neurons. Importantly, SMN also appears to function in muscle growth and/or maintenance independent of motor neurons. Our data suggest that SMN plays distinct roles in muscle, NMJs, and motor neuron somal synapses and that restored function of SMN at all three sites will be necessary for full recovery of muscle power.

  2. Early functional impairment of sensory-motor connectivity in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Mentis, George Z.; Blivis, Dvir; Liu, Wenfang; Drobac, Estelle; Crowder, Melissa E.; Kong, Lingling; Alvarez, Francisco J.; Sumner, Charlotte J.; O'Donovan, Michael J.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY To define alterations of neuronal connectivity that occur during motor neuron degeneration, we characterized the function and structure of spinal circuitry in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) model mice. SMA motor neurons show reduced proprioceptive reflexes that correlate with decreased number and function of synapses on motor neuron somata and proximal dendrites. These abnormalities occur at an early stage of disease in motor neurons innervating proximal hindlimb muscles and medial motor neurons innervating axial muscles, but only at end-stage disease in motor neurons innervating distal hindlimb muscles. Motor neuron loss follows afferent synapse loss with the same temporal and topographical pattern. Trichostatin A, which improves motor behavior and survival of SMA mice, partially restores spinal reflexes illustrating the reversibility of these synaptic defects. De-afferentation of motor neurons is an early event in SMA and may be a primary cause of motor dysfunction that is amenable to therapeutic intervention. PMID:21315257

  3. Early functional impairment of sensory-motor connectivity in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Mentis, George Z; Blivis, Dvir; Liu, Wenfang; Drobac, Estelle; Crowder, Melissa E; Kong, Lingling; Alvarez, Francisco J; Sumner, Charlotte J; O'Donovan, Michael J

    2011-02-10

    To define alterations of neuronal connectivity that occur during motor neuron degeneration, we characterized the function and structure of spinal circuitry in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) model mice. SMA motor neurons show reduced proprioceptive reflexes that correlate with decreased number and function of synapses on motor neuron somata and proximal dendrites. These abnormalities occur at an early stage of disease in motor neurons innervating proximal hindlimb muscles and medial motor neurons innervating axial muscles, but only at end-stage disease in motor neurons innervating distal hindlimb muscles. Motor neuron loss follows afferent synapse loss with the same temporal and topographical pattern. Trichostatin A, which improves motor behavior and survival of SMA mice, partially restores spinal reflexes, illustrating the reversibility of these synaptic defects. Deafferentation of motor neurons is an early event in SMA and may be a primary cause of motor dysfunction that is amenable to therapeutic intervention.

  4. Sustained Hypoxia Elicits Competing Spinal Mechanisms of Phrenic Motor Facilitation

    PubMed Central

    Devinney, Michael J.; Nichols, Nicole L.

    2016-01-01

    Acute intermittent hypoxia (AIH) induces phrenic long-term facilitation (pLTF), a form of spinal motor plasticity. Competing mechanisms give rise to phrenic motor facilitation (pMF; a general term including pLTF) depending on the severity of hypoxia within episodes. In contrast, moderate acute sustained hypoxia (mASH) does not elicit pMF. By varying the severity of ASH and targeting competing mechanisms of pMF, we sought to illustrate why moderate AIH (mAIH) elicits pMF but mASH does not. Although mAIH elicits serotonin-dependent pLTF, mASH does not; thus, mAIH-induced pLTF is pattern sensitive. In contrast, severe AIH (sAIH) elicits pLTF through adenosine-dependent mechanisms, likely from greater extracellular adenosine accumulation. Because serotonin- and adenosine-dependent pMF interact via cross talk inhibition, we hypothesized that pMF is obscured because the competing mechanisms of pMF are balanced and offsetting during mASH. Here, we demonstrate the following: (1) blocking spinal A2A receptors with MSX-3 reveals mASH-induced pMF; and (2) sASH elicits A2A-dependent pMF. In anesthetized rats pretreated with intrathecal A2A receptor antagonist injections before mASH (PaO2 = 40–54 mmHg) or sASH (PaO2 = 25–36 mmHg), (1) mASH induced a serotonin-dependent pMF and (2) sASH induced an adenosine-dependent pMF, which was enhanced by spinal serotonin receptor inhibition. Thus, competing adenosine- and serotonin-dependent mechanisms contribute differentially to pMF depending on the pattern/severity of hypoxia. Understanding interactions between these mechanisms has clinical relevance as we develop therapies to treat severe neuromuscular disorders that compromise somatic motor behaviors, including breathing. Moreover, these results demonstrate how competing mechanisms of plasticity can give rise to pattern sensitivity in pLTF. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Intermittent hypoxia elicits pattern-sensitive spinal plasticity and improves motor function after spinal injury or

  5. Dopamine from the brain promotes spinal motor neuron generation during development and adult regeneration.

    PubMed

    Reimer, Michell M; Norris, Anneliese; Ohnmacht, Jochen; Patani, Rickie; Zhong, Zhen; Dias, Tatyana B; Kuscha, Veronika; Scott, Angela L; Chen, Yu-Chia; Rozov, Stanislav; Frazer, Sarah L; Wyatt, Cameron; Higashijima, Shin-ichi; Patton, E Elizabeth; Panula, Pertti; Chandran, Siddharthan; Becker, Thomas; Becker, Catherina G

    2013-06-10

    Coordinated development of brain stem and spinal target neurons is pivotal for the emergence of a precisely functioning locomotor system. Signals that match the development of these far-apart regions of the central nervous system may be redeployed during spinal cord regeneration. Here we show that descending dopaminergic projections from the brain promote motor neuron generation at the expense of V2 interneurons in the developing zebrafish spinal cord by activating the D4a receptor, which acts on the hedgehog pathway. Inhibiting this essential signal during early neurogenesis leads to a long-lasting reduction of motor neuron numbers and impaired motor responses of free-swimming larvae. Importantly, during successful spinal cord regeneration in adult zebrafish, endogenous dopamine promotes generation of spinal motor neurons, and dopamine agonists augment this process. Hence, we describe a supraspinal control mechanism for the development and regeneration of specific spinal cell types that uses dopamine as a signal.

  6. Therapy induces widespread reorganization of motor cortex after complete spinal transection that supports motor recovery.

    PubMed

    Ganzer, Patrick D; Manohar, Anitha; Shumsky, Jed S; Moxon, Karen A

    2016-05-01

    Reorganization of the somatosensory system and its relationship to functional recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI) has been well studied. However, little is known about the impact of SCI on organization of the motor system. Recent studies suggest that step-training paradigms in combination with spinal stimulation, either electrically or through pharmacology, are more effective than step training alone at inducing recovery and that reorganization of descending corticospinal circuits is necessary. However, simpler, passive exercise combined with pharmacotherapy has also shown functional improvement after SCI and reorganization of, at least, the sensory cortex. In this study we assessed the effect of passive exercise and serotonergic (5-HT) pharmacological therapies on behavioral recovery and organization of the motor cortex. We compared the effects of passive hindlimb bike exercise to bike exercise combined with daily injections of 5-HT agonists in a rat model of complete mid-thoracic transection. 5-HT pharmacotherapy combined with bike exercise allowed the animals to achieve unassisted weight support in the open field. This combination of therapies also produced extensive expansion of the axial trunk motor cortex into the deafferented hindlimb motor cortex and, surprisingly, reorganization within the caudal and even the rostral forelimb motor cortex areas. The extent of the axial trunk expansion was correlated to improvement in behavioral recovery of hindlimbs during open field locomotion, including weight support. From a translational perspective, these data suggest a rationale for developing and optimizing cost-effective, non-invasive, pharmacological and passive exercise regimes to promote plasticity that supports restoration of movement after spinal cord injury.

  7. Selective loss of alpha motor neurons with sparing of gamma motor neurons and spinal cord cholinergic neurons in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Powis, Rachael A; Gillingwater, Thomas H

    2016-03-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a neuromuscular disease characterised primarily by loss of lower motor neurons from the ventral grey horn of the spinal cord and proximal muscle atrophy. Recent experiments utilising mouse models of SMA have demonstrated that not all motor neurons are equally susceptible to the disease, revealing that other populations of neurons can also be affected. Here, we have extended investigations of selective vulnerability of neuronal populations in the spinal cord of SMA mice to include comparative assessments of alpha motor neuron (α-MN) and gamma motor neuron (γ-MN) pools, as well as other populations of cholinergic neurons. Immunohistochemical analyses of late-symptomatic SMA mouse spinal cord revealed that numbers of α-MNs were significantly reduced at all levels of the spinal cord compared with controls, whereas numbers of γ-MNs remained stable. Likewise, the average size of α-MN cell somata was decreased in SMA mice with no change occurring in γ-MNs. Evaluation of other pools of spinal cord cholinergic neurons revealed that pre-ganglionic sympathetic neurons, central canal cluster interneurons, partition interneurons and preganglionic autonomic dorsal commissural nucleus neuron numbers all remained unaffected in SMA mice. Taken together, these findings indicate that α-MNs are uniquely vulnerable among cholinergic neuron populations in the SMA mouse spinal cord, with γ-MNs and other cholinergic neuronal populations being largely spared.

  8. Recapitulation of spinal motor neuron-specific disease phenotypes in a human cell model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhi-Bo; Zhang, Xiaoqing; Li, Xue-Jun

    2013-03-01

    Establishing human cell models of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) to mimic motor neuron-specific phenotypes holds the key to understanding the pathogenesis of this devastating disease. Here, we developed a closely representative cell model of SMA by knocking down the disease-determining gene, survival motor neuron (SMN), in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). Our study with this cell model demonstrated that knocking down of SMN does not interfere with neural induction or the initial specification of spinal motor neurons. Notably, the axonal outgrowth of spinal motor neurons was significantly impaired and these disease-mimicking neurons subsequently degenerated. Furthermore, these disease phenotypes were caused by SMN-full length (SMN-FL) but not SMN-Δ7 (lacking exon 7) knockdown, and were specific to spinal motor neurons. Restoring the expression of SMN-FL completely ameliorated all of the disease phenotypes, including specific axonal defects and motor neuron loss. Finally, knockdown of SMN-FL led to excessive mitochondrial oxidative stress in human motor neuron progenitors. The involvement of oxidative stress in the degeneration of spinal motor neurons in the SMA cell model was further confirmed by the administration of N-acetylcysteine, a potent antioxidant, which prevented disease-related apoptosis and subsequent motor neuron death. Thus, we report here the successful establishment of an hESC-based SMA model, which exhibits disease gene isoform specificity, cell type specificity, and phenotype reversibility. Our model provides a unique paradigm for studying how motor neurons specifically degenerate and highlights the potential importance of antioxidants for the treatment of SMA.

  9. SPINAL MEDIATION OF MOTOR LEARNING AND MEMORY IN THE RAT FETUS

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Scott R.

    2014-01-01

    Fetal rats can alter patterns of interlimb coordination after experience with a yoke that links two legs together. Yoke training results in a pronounced increase in conjugate limb movements (CLM). To determine whether yoke motor learning is mediated by spinal cord circuitry, fetal subjects at embryonic day 20 (E20) received yoke training after mid-thoracic spinal cord transection or sham surgery. Both spinal and sham-treated fetuses exhibited an increase in CLM during training. In a second experiment, fetuses received initial yoke training, then were transected or sham treated before a 2nd training. Spinal and sham fetuses that were yoked during both training sessions exhibited a more rapid rise in CLM than those yoked only in the later session. These findings indicate that motor learning in fetal rats can be supported by spinal cord circuitry alone, and that savings implies a form of motor memory localized in the spinal cord. PMID:25735558

  10. Selective vulnerability of spinal and cortical motor neuron subpopulations in delta7 SMA mice.

    PubMed

    d'Errico, Paolo; Boido, Marina; Piras, Antonio; Valsecchi, Valeria; De Amicis, Elena; Locatelli, Denise; Capra, Silvia; Vagni, Francesco; Vercelli, Alessandro; Battaglia, Giorgio

    2013-01-01

    Loss of the survival motor neuron gene (SMN1) is responsible for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the most common inherited cause of infant mortality. Even though the SMA phenotype is traditionally considered as related to spinal motor neuron loss, it remains debated whether the specific targeting of motor neurons could represent the best therapeutic option for the disease. We here investigated, using stereological quantification methods, the spinal cord and cerebral motor cortex of ∆7 SMA mice during development, to verify extent and selectivity of motor neuron loss. We found progressive post-natal loss of spinal motor neurons, already at pre-symptomatic stages, and a higher vulnerability of motor neurons innervating proximal and axial muscles. Larger motor neurons decreased in the course of disease, either for selective loss or specific developmental impairment. We also found a selective reduction of layer V pyramidal neurons associated with layer V gliosis in the cerebral motor cortex. Our data indicate that in the ∆7 SMA model SMN loss is critical for the spinal cord, particularly for specific motor neuron pools. Neuronal loss, however, is not selective for lower motor neurons. These data further suggest that SMA pathogenesis is likely more complex than previously anticipated. The better knowledge of SMA models might be instrumental in shaping better therapeutic options for affected patients.

  11. Skeletal muscle DNA damage precedes spinal motor neuron DNA damage in a mouse model of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA).

    PubMed

    Fayzullina, Saniya; Martin, Lee J

    2014-01-01

    Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) is a hereditary childhood disease that causes paralysis by progressive degeneration of skeletal muscles and spinal motor neurons. SMA is associated with reduced levels of full-length Survival of Motor Neuron (SMN) protein, due to mutations in the Survival of Motor Neuron 1 gene. The mechanisms by which lack of SMN causes SMA pathology are not known, making it very difficult to develop effective therapies. We investigated whether DNA damage is a perinatal pathological event in SMA, and whether DNA damage and cell death first occur in skeletal muscle or spinal cord of SMA mice. We used a mouse model of severe SMA to ascertain the extent of cell death and DNA damage throughout the body of prenatal and newborn mice. SMA mice at birth (postnatal day 0) exhibited internucleosomal fragmentation in genomic DNA from hindlimb skeletal muscle, but not in genomic DNA from spinal cord. SMA mice at postnatal day 5, compared with littermate controls, exhibited increased apoptotic cell death profiles in skeletal muscle, by hematoxylin and eosin, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling, and electron microscopy. SMA mice had no increased cell death, no loss of choline acetyl transferase (ChAT)-positive motor neurons, and no overt pathology in the ventral horn of the spinal cord. At embryonic days 13 and 15.5, SMA mice did not exhibit statistically significant increases in cell death profiles in spinal cord or skeletal muscle. Motor neuron numbers in the ventral horn, as identified by ChAT immunoreactivity, were comparable in SMA mice and control littermates at embryonic day 15.5 and postnatal day 5. These observations demonstrate that in SMA, disease in skeletal muscle emerges before pathology in spinal cord, including loss of motor neurons. Overall, this work identifies DNA damage and cell death in skeletal muscle as therapeutic targets for SMA.

  12. Rebuilding motor function of the spinal cord based on functional electrical stimulation.

    PubMed

    Shen, Xiao-Yan; Du, Wei; Huang, Wei; Chen, Yi

    2016-08-01

    Rebuilding the damaged motor function caused by spinal cord injury is one of the most serious challenges in clinical neuroscience. The function of the neural pathway under the damaged sites can be rebuilt using functional electrical stimulation technology. In this study, the locations of motor function sites in the lumbosacral spinal cord were determined with functional electrical stimulation technology. A three-dimensional map of the lumbosacral spinal cord comprising the relationship between the motor function sites and the corresponding muscle was drawn. Based on the individual experimental parameters and normalized coordinates of the motor function sites, the motor function sites that control a certain muscle were calculated. Phasing pulse sequences were delivered to the determined motor function sites in the spinal cord and hip extension, hip flexion, ankle plantarflexion, and ankle dorsiflexion movements were successfully achieved. The results show that the map of the spinal cord motor function sites was valid. This map can provide guidance for the selection of electrical stimulation sites during the rebuilding of motor function after spinal cord injury.

  13. Rebuilding motor function of the spinal cord based on functional electrical stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Xiao-yan; Du, Wei; Huang, Wei; Chen, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Rebuilding the damaged motor function caused by spinal cord injury is one of the most serious challenges in clinical neuroscience. The function of the neural pathway under the damaged sites can be rebuilt using functional electrical stimulation technology. In this study, the locations of motor function sites in the lumbosacral spinal cord were determined with functional electrical stimulation technology. A three-dimensional map of the lumbosacral spinal cord comprising the relationship between the motor function sites and the corresponding muscle was drawn. Based on the individual experimental parameters and normalized coordinates of the motor function sites, the motor function sites that control a certain muscle were calculated. Phasing pulse sequences were delivered to the determined motor function sites in the spinal cord and hip extension, hip flexion, ankle plantarflexion, and ankle dorsiflexion movements were successfully achieved. The results show that the map of the spinal cord motor function sites was valid. This map can provide guidance for the selection of electrical stimulation sites during the rebuilding of motor function after spinal cord injury. PMID:27651782

  14. High yield extraction of pure spinal motor neurons, astrocytes and microglia from single embryo and adult mouse spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Beaudet, Marie-Josée; Yang, Qiurui; Cadau, Sébastien; Blais, Mathieu; Bellenfant, Sabrina; Gros-Louis, François; Berthod, François

    2015-01-01

    Extraction of mouse spinal motor neurons from transgenic mouse embryos recapitulating some aspects of neurodegenerative diseases like amyotrophic lateral sclerosis has met with limited success. Furthermore, extraction and long-term culture of adult mouse spinal motor neurons and glia remain also challenging. We present here a protocol designed to extract and purify high yields of motor neurons and glia from individual spinal cords collected on embryos and adult (5-month-old) normal or transgenic mice. This method is based on mild digestion of tissue followed by gradient density separation allowing to obtain two millions motor neurons over 92% pure from one E14.5 single embryo and more than 30,000 from an adult mouse. These cells can be cultured more than 14 days in vitro at a density of 100,000 cells/cm2 to maintain optimal viability. Functional astrocytes and microglia and small gamma motor neurons can be purified at the same time. This protocol will be a powerful and reliable method to obtain motor neurons and glia to better understand mechanisms underlying spinal cord diseases. PMID:26577180

  15. Spinal microcircuits comprising dI3 interneurons are necessary for motor functional recovery following spinal cord transection

    PubMed Central

    Bui, Tuan V; Stifani, Nicolas; Akay, Turgay; Brownstone, Robert M

    2016-01-01

    The spinal cord has the capacity to coordinate motor activities such as locomotion. Following spinal transection, functional activity can be regained, to a degree, following motor training. To identify microcircuits involved in this recovery, we studied a population of mouse spinal interneurons known to receive direct afferent inputs and project to intermediate and ventral regions of the spinal cord. We demonstrate that while dI3 interneurons are not necessary for normal locomotor activity, locomotor circuits rhythmically inhibit them and dI3 interneurons can activate these circuits. Removing dI3 interneurons from spinal microcircuits by eliminating their synaptic transmission left locomotion more or less unchanged, but abolished functional recovery, indicating that dI3 interneurons are a necessary cellular substrate for motor system plasticity following transection. We suggest that dI3 interneurons compare inputs from locomotor circuits with sensory afferent inputs to compute sensory prediction errors that then modify locomotor circuits to effect motor recovery. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21715.001 PMID:27977000

  16. Augmentation of Voluntary Locomotor Activity by Transcutaneous Spinal Cord Stimulation in Motor-Incomplete Spinal Cord-Injured Individuals.

    PubMed

    Hofstoetter, Ursula S; Krenn, Matthias; Danner, Simon M; Hofer, Christian; Kern, Helmut; McKay, William B; Mayr, Winfried; Minassian, Karen

    2015-10-01

    The level of sustainable excitability within lumbar spinal cord circuitries is one of the factors determining the functional outcome of locomotor therapy after motor-incomplete spinal cord injury. Here, we present initial data using noninvasive transcutaneous lumbar spinal cord stimulation (tSCS) to modulate this central state of excitability during voluntary treadmill stepping in three motor-incomplete spinal cord-injured individuals. Stimulation was applied at 30 Hz with an intensity that generated tingling sensations in the lower limb dermatomes, yet without producing muscle reflex activity. This stimulation changed muscle activation, gait kinematics, and the amount of manual assistance required from the therapists to maintain stepping with some interindividual differences. The effect on motor outputs during treadmill-stepping was essentially augmentative and step-phase dependent despite the invariant tonic stimulation. The most consistent modification was found in the gait kinematics, with the hip flexion during swing increased by 11.3° ± 5.6° across all subjects. This preliminary work suggests that tSCS provides for a background increase in activation of the lumbar spinal locomotor circuitry that has partially lost its descending drive. Voluntary inputs and step-related feedback build upon the stimulation-induced increased state of excitability in the generation of locomotor activity. Thus, tSCS essentially works as an electrical neuroprosthesis augmenting remaining motor control.

  17. Sensory feedback synchronizes motor and sensory neuronal networks in the neonatal rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Inácio, Ana R; Nasretdinov, Azat; Lebedeva, Julia; Khazipov, Roustem

    2016-10-07

    Early stages of sensorimotor system development in mammals are characterized by the occurrence of spontaneous movements. Whether and how these movements support correlated activity in developing sensorimotor spinal cord circuits remains unknown. Here we show highly correlated activity in sensory and motor zones in the spinal cord of neonatal rats in vivo. Both during twitches and complex movements, movement-generating bursts in motor zones are followed by bursts in sensory zones. Deafferentation does not affect activity in motor zones and movements, but profoundly suppresses activity bursts in sensory laminae and results in sensorimotor uncoupling, implying a primary role of sensory feedback in sensorimotor synchronization. This is further supported by largely dissociated activity in sensory and motor zones observed in the isolated spinal cord in vitro. Thus, sensory feedback resulting from spontaneous movements is instrumental for coordination of activity in developing sensorimotor spinal cord circuits.

  18. Magnetic resonance imaging and motor-evoked potentials in spinal cord infarction: report of two cases.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Bergmann, Jürgen; Kronbichler, Martin; Lochner, Piergiorgio; Caleri, Francesca; Tezzon, Frediano; Ladurner, Gunther; Golaszewski, Stefan

    2010-08-01

    Because in the early phases of spinal cord ischemia magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be normal, its clinical diagnosis is often difficult. We aimed to explore if motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) recordings may contribute to earlier diagnosis of spinal cord stroke. The clinical, MRI, and MEP findings in one case each of cervical and lumbar spinal cord infarction were reported. Spinal MRI at admission was unremarkable in both patients. At this time, MEPs were abnormal in both patients, to the upper and lower limbs in the first patient, exclusively to the lower limbs in the second. Follow-up MRI examinations documented an infarction in the territory of the anterior spinal artery and of the Adamkiewicz artery, respectively. MEP study can be useful in demonstrating spinal cord involvement also when radiological evidence for spinal cord damage is absent or equivocal. Early diagnosis may allow earlier intervention and contribute to improved patient management.

  19. Spinal motor outputs during step-to-step transitions of diverse human gaits

    PubMed Central

    La Scaleia, Valentina; Ivanenko, Yuri P.; Zelik, Karl E.; Lacquaniti, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    Aspects of human motor control can be inferred from the coordination of muscles during movement. For instance, by combining multimuscle electromyographic (EMG) recordings with human neuroanatomy, it is possible to estimate alpha-motoneuron (MN) pool activations along the spinal cord. It has previously been shown that the spinal motor output fluctuates with the body's center-of-mass motion, with bursts of activity around foot-strike and foot lift-off during walking. However, it is not known whether these MN bursts are generalizable to other ambulation tasks, nor is it clear if the spatial locus of the activity (along the rostrocaudal axis of the spinal cord) is fixed or variable. Here we sought to address these questions by investigating the spatiotemporal characteristics of the spinal motor output during various tasks: walking forward, backward, tiptoe and uphill. We reconstructed spinal maps from 26 leg muscle EMGs, including some intrinsic foot muscles. We discovered that the various walking tasks shared qualitative similarities in their temporal spinal activation profiles, exhibiting peaks around foot-strike and foot-lift. However, we also observed differences in the segmental level and intensity of spinal activations, particularly following foot-strike. For example, forward level-ground walking exhibited a mean motor output roughly 2 times lower than the other gaits. Finally, we found that the reconstruction of the spinal motor output from multimuscle EMG recordings was relatively insensitive to the subset of muscles analyzed. In summary, our results suggested temporal similarities, but spatial differences in the segmental spinal motor outputs during the step-to-step transitions of disparate walking behaviors. PMID:24860484

  20. Electronic bypass of spinal lesions: activation of lower motor neurons directly driven by cortical neural signals

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Lower motor neurons in the spinal cord lose supraspinal inputs after complete spinal cord injury, leading to a loss of volitional control below the injury site. Extensive locomotor training with spinal cord stimulation can restore locomotion function after spinal cord injury in humans and animals. However, this locomotion is non-voluntary, meaning that subjects cannot control stimulation via their natural “intent”. A recent study demonstrated an advanced system that triggers a stimulator using forelimb stepping electromyographic patterns to restore quadrupedal walking in rats with spinal cord transection. However, this indirect source of “intent” may mean that other non-stepping forelimb activities may false-trigger the spinal stimulator and thus produce unwanted hindlimb movements. Methods We hypothesized that there are distinguishable neural activities in the primary motor cortex during treadmill walking, even after low-thoracic spinal transection in adult guinea pigs. We developed an electronic spinal bridge, called “Motolink”, which detects these neural patterns and triggers a “spinal” stimulator for hindlimb movement. This hardware can be head-mounted or carried in a backpack. Neural data were processed in real-time and transmitted to a computer for analysis by an embedded processor. Off-line neural spike analysis was conducted to calculate and preset the spike threshold for “Motolink” hardware. Results We identified correlated activities of primary motor cortex neurons during treadmill walking of guinea pigs with spinal cord transection. These neural activities were used to predict the kinematic states of the animals. The appropriate selection of spike threshold value enabled the “Motolink” system to detect the neural “intent” of walking, which triggered electrical stimulation of the spinal cord and induced stepping-like hindlimb movements. Conclusion We present a direct cortical “intent”-driven electronic spinal

  1. Extensive Fusion of Mitochondria in Spinal Cord Motor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Owens, Geoffrey C.; Walcott, Elisabeth C.

    2012-01-01

    The relative roles played by trafficking, fission and fusion in the dynamics of mitochondria in neurons have not been fully elucidated. In the present study, a slow widespread redistribution of mitochondria within cultured spinal cord motor neurons was observed as a result of extensive organelle fusion. Mitochondria were labeled with a photoconvertible fluorescent protein (mitoKaede) that is red-shifted following brief irradiation with blue light. The behavior of these selectively labeled mitochondria was followed by live fluorescence imaging. Marking mitochondria within the cell soma revealed a complete mixing, within 18 hours, of these organelles with mitochondria coming from the surrounding neurites. Fusion of juxtaposed mitochondria was directly observed in neuritic processes at least 200 microns from the cell body. Within 24 hours, photoconverted mitoKaede was dispersed to all of the mitochondria in the portion of neurite under observation. When time lapse imaging over minutes was combined with long-term observation of marked mitochondria, moving organelles that traversed the field of view did not initially contain photoconverted protein, but after several hours organelles in motion contained both fluorescent proteins, coincident with widespread fusion of all of the mitochondria within the length of neurite under observation. These observations suggest that there is a widespread exchange of mitochondrial components throughout a neuron as a result of organelle fusion. PMID:22701641

  2. Extensive fusion of mitochondria in spinal cord motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Owens, Geoffrey C; Walcott, Elisabeth C

    2012-01-01

    The relative roles played by trafficking, fission and fusion in the dynamics of mitochondria in neurons have not been fully elucidated. In the present study, a slow widespread redistribution of mitochondria within cultured spinal cord motor neurons was observed as a result of extensive organelle fusion. Mitochondria were labeled with a photoconvertible fluorescent protein (mitoKaede) that is red-shifted following brief irradiation with blue light. The behavior of these selectively labeled mitochondria was followed by live fluorescence imaging. Marking mitochondria within the cell soma revealed a complete mixing, within 18 hours, of these organelles with mitochondria coming from the surrounding neurites. Fusion of juxtaposed mitochondria was directly observed in neuritic processes at least 200 microns from the cell body. Within 24 hours, photoconverted mitoKaede was dispersed to all of the mitochondria in the portion of neurite under observation. When time lapse imaging over minutes was combined with long-term observation of marked mitochondria, moving organelles that traversed the field of view did not initially contain photoconverted protein, but after several hours organelles in motion contained both fluorescent proteins, coincident with widespread fusion of all of the mitochondria within the length of neurite under observation. These observations suggest that there is a widespread exchange of mitochondrial components throughout a neuron as a result of organelle fusion.

  3. Targeting Motor End Plates for Delivery of Adenoviruses: An Approach to Maximize Uptake and Transduction of Spinal Cord Motor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Tosolini, Andrew Paul; Morris, Renée

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy can take advantage of the skeletal muscles/motor neurons anatomical relationship to restrict gene expression to the spinal cord ventral horn. Furthermore, recombinant adenoviruses are attractive viral-vectors as they permit spatial and temporal modulation of transgene expression. In the literature, however, several inconsistencies exist with regard to the intramuscular delivery parameters of adenoviruses. The present study is an evaluation of the optimal injection sites on skeletal muscle, time course of expression and mice’s age for maximum transgene expression in motor neurons. Targeting motor end plates yielded a 2.5-fold increase in the number of transduced motor neurons compared to injections performed away from this region. Peak adenoviral transgene expression in motor neurons was detected after seven days. Further, greater numbers of transduced motor neurons were found in juvenile (3–7 week old) mice as compared with adults (8+ weeks old). Adenoviral injections produced robust transgene expression in motor neurons and skeletal myofibres. In addition, dendrites of transduced motor neurons were shown to extend well into the white matter where the descending motor pathways are located. These results also provide evidence that intramuscular delivery of adenovirus can be a suitable gene therapy approach to treat spinal cord injury. PMID:27619631

  4. Identification and characterization of a cell surface marker for embryonic rat spinal accessory motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Schubert, W; Kaprielian, Z

    2001-10-22

    The developing mammalian spinal cord contains distinct populations of motor neurons that can be distinguished by their cell body positions, by the expression of specific combinations of regulatory genes, and by the paths that their axons take to exit the central nervous system (CNS). Subclasses of spinal motor neurons are also thought to express specific cell surface proteins that function as receptors which control the guidance of their axons. We identified monoclonal antibody (mAb) SAC1 in a screen aimed at generating markers for specific subsets of neurons/axons in the developing rat spinal cord. During early embryogenesis, mAb SAC1 selectively labels a small subset of Isl1-positive motor neurons located exclusively within cervical segments of the spinal cord. Strikingly, these neurons extend mAb SAC1-positive axons along a dorsally directed trajectory toward the lateral exit points. Consistent with the finding that mAb SAC1 also labels spinal accessory nerves, these observations identify mAb SAC1 as a specific marker of spinal accessory motor neurons/axons. During later stages of embryogenesis, mAb SAC1 is transiently expressed on both dorsally and ventrally projecting spinal motor neurons/axons. Interestingly, mAb SAC1 also labels the notochord and floor plate during most stages of spinal cord development. The mAb SAC1 antigen is a 100-kD glycoprotein that is likely to be the rat homolog of SC1/BEN/DM-GRASP, a homophilic adhesion molecule that mediates axon outgrowth and fasciculation.

  5. Significance of intraoperative motor function monitoring using transcranial electrical motor evoked potentials (MEP) in patients with spinal and cranial lesions near the motor pathways.

    PubMed

    Krammer, Matthias Johannes; Wolf, Stefan; Schul, David Baruch; Gerstner, Werner; Lumenta, Christianto Bernardo

    2009-02-01

    Intraoperative motor evoked potential (MEP) monitoring in patients with spinal and cranial lesions is thought to be a valuable tool for prevention of postoperative motor deficits. Aim of this study was to investigate its diagnostic value in a spinal and a cranial patient group. Ninety-six patients, 31 with spinal and 65 with intracranial lesions, were studied. Transcranial stimulation was performed with a high-frequency electrical train stimulation using two subdermal needle electrodes. MEPs were recorded from the pathology-related muscles. Decreasing amplitudes of 50% or more, increasing stimulus intensities of 20% or more or increased latencies were taken as warning criteria. MEP recording was possible in 90% of the spinal and 98% of the cranial group. With two further exclusions, 28 patients of the spinal and 62 of the cranial group were analyzed. We saw a temporary maximum amplitude reduction of 50% or more and an increase in stimulation intensity of 20% or more in 8 spinal and 29 cranial patients. Five of the spinal and nine of the cranial patients deteriorated in motor function postoperatively. One patient with normal MEP monitoring showed a temporary motor weakness postoperatively. Latencies were normal in all patients. Given both warning criteria, intraoperative MEP changes had a sensitivity of 83%/ 100% and a specificity of 86%/ 62% (spinal/ cranial group). The positive predictive value of MEP changes for postoperative motor function deterioration was 63%/ 31%, and the negative predictive value was 95%/ 100%. Transcranial electrical monitoring of MEP is a practicable and safe method. However, there are many events, which can cause amplitude changes of MEP independent from surgical manipulations. Although sensitivity is high for both groups, this results in a moderate specificity for the cranial group and a low positive predictive value for both groups.

  6. [Vascular and autonomic disorders of the spinal cord in dystopia of the spinal motor segment].

    PubMed

    Gongal'skiĭ, V V; Kuftyreva, T P

    1992-01-01

    Microcirculation disorders may cause functional deviation in gray matter cells of the spinal cord. One of the setting moments of the disorders is the subluxation of a vertebra as a result of the disturbance in carrying ability of the spinal disc in case of spinal osteochondrosis. In this position the soft tissues of the spinal motional well innervated segment are stretched, which induces irritation in the segmental part of the spinal cord including vegetative nervous structures. Subluxation of a vertebra causes changes in the structures and in the microcirculation vessels which grow simultaneously and this permits supposing their interrelation.

  7. The organization of spinal motor neurons in a monotreme is consistent with a six-region schema of the mammalian spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Mitchelle, Amer; Watson, Charles

    2016-09-01

    The motor neurons in the spinal cord of an echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus) have been mapped in Nissl-stained sections from spinal cord segments defined by spinal nerve anatomy. A medial motor column of motor neurons is found at all spinal cord levels, and a hypaxial column is found at most levels. The organization of the motor neuron clusters in the lateral motor column of the brachial (C5 to T3) and crural (L2 to S3) limb enlargements is very similar to the pattern previously revealed by retrograde tracing in placental mammals, and the motor neuron clusters have been tentatively identified according to the muscle groups they are likely to supply. The region separating the two limb enlargements (T4 to L1) contains preganglionic motor neurons that appear to represent the spinal sympathetic outflow. Immediately caudal to the crural limb enlargement is a short column of preganglionic motor neurons (S3 to S4), which it is believed represents the pelvic parasympathetic outflow. The rostral and caudal ends of the spinal cord contain neither a lateral motor column nor a preganglionic column. Branchial motor neurons (which are believed to supply the sternomastoid and trapezius muscles) are present at the lateral margin of the ventral horn in rostral cervical segments (C2-C4). These same segments contain the phrenic nucleus, which belongs to the hypaxial column. The presence or absence of the main spinal motor neuron columns in the different regions echidna spinal cord (and also in that of other amniote vertebrates) provides a basis for dividing the spinal cord into six main regions - prebrachial, brachial, postbrachial, crural, postcrural and caudal. The considerable biological and functional significance of this subdivision pattern is supported by recent studies on spinal cord hox gene expression in chicks and mice. On the other hand, the familiar 'segments' of the spinal cord are defined only by the anatomy of adjacent vertebrae, and are not demarcated by intrinsic gene

  8. Spatiotemporal neuromodulation therapies engaging muscle synergies improve motor control after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Wenger, Nikolaus; Moraud, Eduardo Martin; Gandar, Jerome; Musienko, Pavel; Capogrosso, Marco; Baud, Laetitia; Le Goff, Camille G.; Barraud, Quentin; Pavlova, Natalia; Dominici, Nadia; Minev, Ivan R.; Asboth, Leonie; Hirsch, Arthur; Duis, Simone; Kreider, Julie; Mortera, Andrea; Haverbeck, Oliver; Kraus, Silvio; Schmitz, Felix; DiGiovanna, Jack; van den Brand, Rubia; Bloch, Jocelyne; Detemple, Peter; Lacour, Stéphanie P.; Bézard, Erwan; Micera, Silvestro; Courtine, Grégoire

    2016-01-01

    Electrical neuromodulation of lumbar segments improves motor control after spinal cord injury in animal models and humans. However, the physiological principles underlying the effect of this intervention remain poorly understood, which has limited this therapeutic approach to continuous stimulation applied to restricted spinal cord locations. Here, we developed novel stimulation protocols that reproduce the natural dynamics of motoneuron activation during locomotion. For this, we computed the spatiotemporal activation pattern of muscle synergies during locomotion in healthy rats. Computer simulations identified optimal electrode locations to target each synergy through the recruitment of proprioceptive feedback circuits. This framework steered the design of spatially selective spinal implants and real–time control software that modulate extensor versus flexor synergies with precise temporal resolution. Spatiotemporal neuromodulation therapies improved gait quality, weight–bearing capacities, endurance and skilled locomotion in multiple rodent models of spinal cord injury. These new concepts are directly translatable to strategies to improve motor control in humans. PMID:26779815

  9. Chronic GABAergic blockade in the spinal cord in vivo induces motor alterations and neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Ramírez-Jarquín, Uri Nimrod; Tapia, Ricardo

    2017-05-01

    Inhibitory GABAergic and glycinergic neurotransmission in the spinal cord play a central role in the regulation of neuronal excitability, by maintaining a balance with the glutamate-mediated excitatory transmission. Glutamatergic agonists infusion in the spinal cord induce motor neuron death by excitotoxicity, leading to motor deficits and paralysis, but little is known on the effect of the blockade of inhibitory transmission. In this work we studied the effects of GABAergic and glycinergic blockade, by means of microdialysis perfusion (acute administration) and osmotic minipumps infusion (chronic administration) of GABA and glycine receptors antagonists directly in the lumbar spinal cord. We show that acute glycinergic blockade with strychnine or GABAergic blockade with bicuculline had no significant effects on motor activity and on motor neuron survival. However, chronic bicuculline infusion, but not strychnine, induced ipsilateral gait alterations, phalange flaccidity and significant motor neuron loss, and these effects were prevented by AMPA receptor blockade with CNQX but not by NMDA receptor blockade with MK801. In addition, we demonstrate that the chronic infusion of bicuculline enhanced the excitotoxic effect of AMPA, causing faster bilateral paralysis and increasing motor neuron loss. These findings indicate a relevant role of GABAergic inhibitory circuits in the regulation of motor neuron excitability and suggest that their alterations may be involved in the neurodegeneration processes characteristic of motor neuron diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

  10. Excitability of spinal neural function during motor imagery in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Toshiaki; Bunno, Yoshibumi; Onigata, Chieko; Tani, Makiko; Uragami, Sayuri; Yoshida, Sohei

    2014-01-01

    the median nerve at the wrist in subjects during two motor imagery conditions: holding and not holding the sensor of a pinch meter between the thumb and index finger. Our aim was to determine whether mental simulation without the muscle contraction associated with motion can increase the excitability of spinal neural function in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). F-waves of the left thenar muscles were examined in 10 patients with PD under resting, holding and motor imagery conditions. For the holding condition, the subjects held the sensor of the pinch meter between their thumb and index finger. For the motor imagery conditions, the subjects were asked to imagine a 50% maximal voluntary isometric contraction holding and not holding the sensor of the pinch meter between their thumb and index finger (motor imagery "with"/"without sensor"). Persistence during motor imagery under the "with sensor" condition increased significantly compared with persistence during resting (n=10, z=2.2509, p=0.0244, Wilcoxon test). The F/M amplitude ratio during motor imagery under the "with sensor" condition increased significantly compared with that during resting (n=10, z=2.1915, p=0.0284, Wilcoxon test). Excitability of spinal neural function during motor imagery in Parkinson's disease Motor imagery under the "with the sensor" condition increased excitability of the spinal neural output to the thenar muscles. Because excitability of the spinal neural output to the thenar muscles during motor imagery "with the sensor" was significantly higher than that during resting, we suggest that movement preparation for a motor imagery task is important in patients with PD.

  11. A Review on Locomotor Training after Spinal Cord Injury: Reorganization of Spinal Neuronal Circuits and Recovery of Motor Function

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Locomotor training is a classic rehabilitation approach utilized with the aim of improving sensorimotor function and walking ability in people with spinal cord injury (SCI). Recent studies have provided strong evidence that locomotor training of persons with clinically complete, motor complete, or motor incomplete SCI induces functional reorganization of spinal neuronal networks at multisegmental levels at rest and during assisted stepping. This neuronal reorganization coincides with improvements in motor function and decreased muscle cocontractions. In this review, we will discuss the manner in which spinal neuronal circuits are impaired and the evidence surrounding plasticity of neuronal activity after locomotor training in people with SCI. We conclude that we need to better understand the physiological changes underlying locomotor training, use physiological signals to probe recovery over the course of training, and utilize established and contemporary interventions simultaneously in larger scale research studies. Furthermore, the focus of our research questions needs to change from feasibility and efficacy to the following: what are the physiological mechanisms that make it work and for whom? The aforementioned will enable the scientific and clinical community to develop more effective rehabilitation protocols maximizing sensorimotor function recovery in people with SCI. PMID:27293901

  12. Cellular dissection of the spinal cord motor column by BAC transgenesis and gene trapping in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Asakawa, Kazuhide; Abe, Gembu; Kawakami, Koichi

    2013-01-01

    Bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenesis and gene/enhancer trapping are effective approaches for identification of genetically defined neuronal populations in the central nervous system (CNS). Here, we applied these techniques to zebrafish (Danio rerio) in order to obtain insights into the cellular architecture of the axial motor column in vertebrates. First, by using the BAC for the Mnx class homeodomain protein gene mnr2b/mnx2b, we established the mnGFF7 transgenic line expressing the Gal4FF transcriptional activator in a large part of the motor column. Single cell labeling of Gal4FF-expressing cells in the mnGFF7 line enabled a detailed investigation of the morphological characteristics of individual spinal motoneurons, as well as the overall organization of the motor column in a spinal segment. Secondly, from a large-scale gene trap screen, we identified transgenic lines that marked discrete subpopulations of spinal motoneurons with Gal4FF. Molecular characterization of these lines led to the identification of the ADAMTS3 gene, which encodes an evolutionarily conserved ADAMTS family of peptidases and is dynamically expressed in the ventral spinal cord. The transgenic fish established here, along with the identified gene, should facilitate an understanding of the cellular and molecular architecture of the spinal cord motor column and its connection to muscles in vertebrates.

  13. Memantine elicits spinal blockades of motor function, proprioception, and nociception in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yu-Wen; Chiu, Chong-Chi; Liu, Kuo-Sheng; Hung, Ching-Hsia; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2015-12-01

    Although memantine blocks sodium currents and produces local skin anesthesia, spinal anesthesia with memantine is unknown. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the local anesthetic effect of memantine in spinal anesthesia and its comparison with a widely used local anesthetic lidocaine. After intrathecally injecting the rats with five doses of each drug, the dose-response curves of memantine and lidocaine were constructed. The potencies of the drugs and durations of spinal anesthetic effects on motor function, proprioception, and nociception were compared with those of lidocaine. We showed that memantine produced dose-dependent spinal blockades in motor function, proprioception, and nociception. On a 50% effective dose (ED50 ) basis, the rank of potency was lidocaine greater than memantine (P < 0.05 for the differences). At the equipotent doses (ED25 , ED50 , ED75 ), the block duration produced by memantine was longer than that produced by lidocaine (P < 0.05 for the differences). Memantine, but not lidocaine, displayed more sensory/nociceptive block than motor block. The preclinical data demonstrated that memantine is less potent than lidocaine, whereas memantine produces longer duration of spinal anesthesia than lidocaine. Memantine shows a more sensory-selective action over motor blockade.

  14. An Optogenetic Demonstration of Motor Modularity in the Mammalian Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Caggiano, Vittorio; Cheung, Vincent C. K.; Bizzi, Emilio

    2016-01-01

    Motor modules are neural entities hypothesized to be building blocks of movement construction. How motor modules are underpinned by neural circuits has remained obscured. As a first step towards dissecting these circuits, we optogenetically evoked motor outputs from the lumbosacral spinal cord of two strains of transgenic mice – the Chat, with channelrhodopsin (ChR2) expressed in motoneurons, and the Thy1, expressed in putatively excitatory neurons. Motor output was represented as a spatial field of isometric ankle force. We found that Thy1 force fields were more complex and diverse in structure than Chat fields: the Thy1 fields comprised mostly non-parallel vectors while the Chat fields, mostly parallel vectors. In both, most fields elicited by co-stimulation of two laser beams were well explained by linear combination of the separately-evoked fields. We interpreted the Thy1 force fields as representations of spinal motor modules. Our comparison of the Chat and Thy1 fields allowed us to conclude, with reasonable certainty, that the structure of neuromotor modules originates from excitatory spinal interneurons. Our results not only demonstrate, for the first time using optogenetics, how the spinal modules follow linearity in their combinations, but also provide a reference against which future optogenetic studies of modularity can be compared. PMID:27734925

  15. [The role of spinal motoneurons in the mechanisms of hypogravitational motor syndrome development].

    PubMed

    Islamov, R R; Tiapkina, O V; Nikol'skiĭ, E E; Kozlovskaia, I B; Grigor'ev, A I

    2013-03-01

    Studies results of gravity unloading influence on spinal control system of muscle structure and functions are summarized. It was shown that demyelization of axons due to reduction of genes expression responsible for myelin proteins synthesis, decrease in one of the key enzymes of cholinergic system--cholineacetyltransferase activity, alteration of normal kinetics of quantal and non-quantal neurotransmitter secretion, impaired autoregulation of acetylcholine secretion from motor nerve endings through presynaptic cholinergic receptors, slowing of axonal transport of substances in motor neurons that innervate postural muscles played the important role in the development of hypogravitational motor symptoms. At the same time, the evidences of neuroprotective mechanisms enclosing (increase in heat shock proteins Hsp25 and Hsp70 expression), that hinder apoptosis development in motor neurons and glial cells in the spinal cord under conditions of model hypogravity, were revealed.

  16. Spinal motor and sensory neurons are androgen targets in an acrobatic bird.

    PubMed

    Fuxjager, Matthew J; Schultz, J Douglas; Barske, Julia; Feng, Ni Y; Fusani, Leonida; Mirzatoni, Anahid; Day, Lainy B; Hau, Michaela; Schlinger, Barney A

    2012-08-01

    Sex steroids affect the motivation to court mates, but less is known about how they influence motor movements associated with courtship behavior. Steroidal control of motor function may be especially important for species in which courtship requires superior strength, stamina, and neuromuscular coordination. Here we use the golden-collared manakin (Manacus vitellinus) to examine whether the neuromuscular circuitry that controls motoric aspects of courtship activity is sensitive to androgens. Males of this tropical species attract mates by rapidly jumping among branches in a courtship arena and using their wings to produce loud wing snaps. Testosterone activates this display via the androgen receptor (AR), and past work reveals that manakins injected with radio-labeled T ((3)H-T) accumulate radioactivity in the spinal cord. Thus, we used quantitative PCR to measure AR, estrogen receptor-α (ER-α) subtype, and aromatase (AROM) mRNA in spinal cords of male and female manakins and zebra finches. Expression of AR, but not ER-α or aromatase, was higher throughout the manakin spinal cord compared with the zebra finch. Next, we tested whether AR-expressing skeletal muscles are innervated by motor and sensory neurons that also express AR. To do this, we backfilled spinal neurons by injecting fluorescent tracers into select AR-sensitive wing and leg muscles of wild caught male and female manakins. We then removed these spinal cords and measured AR expression with in situ hybridization. Both sexes showed abundant AR mRNA in the cervical and lumbosacral spinal enlargements as well as in dorsal root ganglia attached to these enlargements. Together our findings suggest that androgens act widely on peripheral motor and sensory circuits in golden-collared manakins to influence wing snapping displays.

  17. Competition with Primary Sensory Afferents Drives Remodeling of Corticospinal Axons in Mature Spinal Motor Circuits

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Yu-Qiu; Zaaimi, Boubker

    2016-01-01

    Injury to the mature motor system drives significant spontaneous axonal sprouting instead of axon regeneration. Knowing the circuit-level determinants of axonal sprouting is important for repairing motor circuits after injury to achieve functional rehabilitation. Competitive interactions are known to shape corticospinal tract axon outgrowth and withdrawal during development. Whether and how competition contributes to reorganization of mature spinal motor circuits is unclear. To study this question, we examined plastic changes in corticospinal axons in response to two complementary proprioceptive afferent manipulations: (1) enhancing proprioceptive afferents activity by electrical stimulation; or (2) diminishing their input by dorsal rootlet rhizotomy. Experiments were conducted in adult rats. Electrical stimulation produced proprioceptive afferent sprouting that was accompanied by significant corticospinal axon withdrawal and a decrease in corticospinal connections on cholinergic interneurons in the medial intermediate zone and C boutons on motoneurons. In contrast, dorsal rootlet rhizotomy led to a significant increase in corticospinal connections, including those on cholinergic interneurons; C bouton density increased correspondingly. Motor cortex-evoked muscle potentials showed parallel changes to those of corticospinal axons, suggesting that reciprocal corticospinal axon changes are functional. Using the two complementary models, we showed that competitive interactions between proprioceptive and corticospinal axons are an important determinant in the organization of mature corticospinal axons and spinal motor circuits. The activity- and synaptic space-dependent properties of the competition enables prediction of the remodeling of spared corticospinal connection and spinal motor circuits after injury and informs the target-specific control of corticospinal connections to promote functional recovery. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Neuroplasticity is limited in maturity

  18. [Lateral motor nucleus in the lumbosacral segment of the spinal cord of the horse].

    PubMed

    Flieger, S; Sławomirski, J; Boratyński, Z; Jastrzebski, M

    1984-01-01

    Two medullae oblongatae of horses were cut into 15 microns cross-sections and stained according to the modified method of Nissel. The lateral motor nucleus lies in the lateral and median part of the ventral column of spinal cord grey matter. It adjoins medially nucleus motorius medialis of the spinal ventral column. Cells of this nucleus occur both along the whole lumbar and sacral segment of the spinal cord. In the lateral motor nucleus three cell groups are distinguished - median, basal and lateral. The latter is divided in some segments into subgroups - dorsal and ventral. Along the nucleus quite numerous constrictions and intervals are found, which are caused by various numbers of cells in particular cross-sections. Nucleus motorius lateralis is formed mainly of large and medium multipolar or single spindle cells.

  19. Optical stimulation for restoration of motor function following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Mallory, Grant W.; Grahn, Peter J.; Hachmann, Jan T.; Lujan, J. Luis; Lee, Kendall H.

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) can be defined as a loss of communication between the brain and the body due to disrupted pathways within the spinal cord. While many promising molecular strategies have emerged to reduce secondary injury and promote axonal regrowth, there is still no effective cure and recovery of function remains limited. Functional electrical stimulation (FES) represents a strategy developed to restore motor function without the need for regenerating severed spinal pathways. Despite its technological success, however, FES has not been widely integrated into the lives of spinal cord injury survivors. In this review, we briefly discuss the limitations of existing FES technologies. Additionally, we discuss how optogenetics, a rapidly evolving technique used primarily to investigate select neuronal populations within the brain, may eventually be used to replace FES as a form of therapy for functional restoration following SCI. PMID:25659246

  20. Excitability of spinal neural function during motor imagery in Parkinson’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Toshiaki; Bunno, Yoshibumi; Onigata, Chieko; Tani, Makiko; Uragami, Sayuri; Yoshida, Sohei

    2014-01-01

    Summary We analyzed thenar muscle F-waves after stimulating the median nerve at the wrist in subjects during two motor imagery conditions: holding and not holding the sensor of a pinch meter between the thumb and index finger. Our aim was to determine whether mental simulation without the muscle contraction associated with motion can increase the excitability of spinal neural function in patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD). F-waves of the left thenar muscles were examined in 10 patients with PD under resting, holding and motor imagery conditions. For the holding condition, the subjects held the sensor of the pinch meter between their thumb and index finger. For the motor imagery conditions, the subjects were asked to imagine a 50% maximal voluntary isometric contraction holding and not holding the sensor of the pinch meter between their thumb and index finger (motor imagery “with”/“without sensor”). Persistence during motor imagery under the “with sensor” condition increased significantly compared with persistence during resting (n=10, z=2.2509, p=0.0244, Wilcoxon test). The F/M amplitude ratio during motor imagery under the “with sensor” condition increased significantly compared with that during resting (n=10, z=2.1915, p=0.0284, Wilcoxon test). Motor imagery under the “with the sensor” condition increased excitability of the spinal neural output to the thenar muscles. Because excitability of the spinal neural output to the thenar muscles during motor imagery “with the sensor” was significantly higher than that during resting, we suggest that movement preparation for a motor imagery task is important in patients with PD. PMID:25764256

  1. Immediate plasticity in the motor pathways after spinal cord hemisection: implications for transcranial magnetic motor-evoked potentials.

    PubMed

    Fujiki, Minoru; Kobayashi, Hidenori; Inoue, Ryo; Ishii, Keisuke

    2004-06-01

    The present study evaluates motor functional recovery after C2 spinal cord hemisection with or without contralateral brachial root transection, which causes a condition that is similar to the crossed phrenic phenomenon on rats. Descending motor pathways, including the reticulospinal extrapyramidal tract and corticospinal pyramidal tracts, were evaluated by transcranial magnetic motor-evoked potentials (mMEPs) and direct cortical electrical motor-evoked potentials (eMEP), respectively. All MEPs recorded from the left forelimb were abolished immediately after the left C2 hemisection. Left mMEPs recovered dramatically immediately after contralateral right brachial root transection. Corticospinal eMEPs never recovered, regardless of transection. The facilitation of mMEPs in animals that had undergone combined contralateral root transection was well correlated with open-field behavioral motor performance. Both electrophysiological and neurological facilitations were significantly attenuated by the selective serotonin synthesis inhibitor para-chlorophenylalanine (p-CPA). These results suggest that serotonergic reticulospinal fibers located contralateral to hemisection contribute to the behavioral and electrophysiological improvement that immediately follows spinal cord injury (SCI).

  2. Modulation of spinal motor output by initial arm postures in anesthetized monkeys.

    PubMed

    Yaguchi, Hiroaki; Takei, Tomohiko; Kowalski, David; Suzuki, Takafumi; Mabuchi, Kunihiko; Seki, Kazuhiko

    2015-04-29

    Proper execution of voluntary movement requires a sensorimotor transformation based on the initial limb state. For example, successfully reaching to a stable target requires the recruitment of different muscle groups depending on limb position at movement initiation. To test whether this transformation could occur at the spinal level, we stimulated the cervical spinal cord of anesthetized monkeys while systematically changing initial posture and examined the modulation of the twitch response induced in the upper limb muscles. In three monkeys, a multichannel microelectrode array was implanted into the C6 segment of the spinal cord and electromyographic electrodes were implanted in 12 limb muscles (five hand, four elbow, and three shoulder muscles). The magnitude and onset latency of the evoked response in each electrode-muscle pair were examined by systematically changing the hand position through nine positions in a horizontal plane with the monkey prone. Among 330 electrode-muscle pairs examined, 61% of pairs exhibited significant modulation of either magnitude or latency of twitch responses across different hand/arm configurations (posture dependency). We found that posture dependency occurred preferentially in the distal rather than proximal muscles and was not affected by the location of the electrode within the stimulated spinal segment. Importantly, this posture dependency was not affected by spinalization at the C2 level. These results suggest that excitability in the cervical spinal cord is affected by initial arm posture through spinal reflex pathways. This posture dependency of spinal motor output could affect voluntary arm movement by adjusting descending motor commands relative to the initial arm posture.

  3. Interactive virtual feedback improves gait motor imagery after spinal cord injury: An exploratory study

    PubMed Central

    Roosink, Meyke; Robitaille, Nicolas; Jackson, Philip L.; Bouyer, Laurent J.; Mercier, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Motor imagery can improve motor function and reduce pain. This is relevant to individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) in whom motor dysfunction and neuropathic pain are prevalent. However, therapy efficacy could be dependent on motor imagery ability, and a clear understanding of how motor imagery might be facilitated is currently lacking. Thus, the aim of the present study was to assess the immediate effects of interactive virtual feedback on motor imagery performance after SCI. Methods: Nine individuals with a traumatic SCI participated in the experiment. Motor imagery tasks consisted of forward (i.e. simpler) and backward (i.e. more complex) walking while receiving interactive versus static virtual feedback. Motor imagery performance (vividness, effort and speed), neuropathic pain intensity and feasibility (immersion, distraction, side-effects) were assessed. Results: During interactive feedback trials, motor imagery vividness and speed were significantly higher and effort was significantly lower as compared static feedback trials. No change in neuropathic pain was observed. Adverse effects were minor, and immersion was reported to be good. Conclusions: This exploratory study showed that interactive virtual walking was feasible and facilitated motor imagery performance. The response to motor imagery interventions after SCI might be improved by using interactive virtual feedback. PMID:26890097

  4. Effect of oscillating electrical field stimulation on motor function recovery and myelin regeneration after spinal cord injury in rats.

    PubMed

    Tian, Da-Sheng; Jing, Jue-Hua; Qian, Jun; Chen, Lei; Zhu, Bin

    2016-05-01

    [Purpose] The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of oscillating electrical field stimulation on motor function recovery and myelin regeneration in rats with spinal cord injury. [Subjects and Methods] A rat model of spinal cord injury was constructed by using the Allen weight-drop method. These rats were randomly divided into normal, spinal cord injury, and spinal cord injury + oscillating electrical field stimulation groups. The experimental group received the intervention with oscillating electrical field stimulation, and the control group received the intervention with an electrical field stimulator without oscillating electrical field stimulation. Each group was then randomly divided into seven subgroups according to observation time (1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12 weeks). Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan score and inclined plate test score evaluation, motor evoked potential detection, and histological observation were performed. [Results] In the first 2 weeks of oscillating electrical field stimulation, the oscillating electrical field stimulation and inclined plate test scores of spinal cord injury group and spinal cord injury + oscillating electrical field stimulation group were not significantly different. In the fourth week, the scores of the spinal cord injury group were significantly lower than those of the spinal cord injury + oscillating electrical field stimulation group. The motor evoked potential incubation period in the spinal cord injury + oscillating electrical field stimulation group at the various time points was shorter than that in the spinal cord injury group. In the sixth week, the relative area of myelin in the spinal cord injury + oscillating electrical field stimulation group was evidently larger than that in the spinal cord injury group. [Conclusion] Oscillating electrical field stimulation could effectively improve spinal cord conduction function and promote motor function recovery in rats with spinal cord injury, as well as promote myelin

  5. Spinal segment-specific transcutaneous stimulation differentially shapes activation pattern among motor pools in humans

    PubMed Central

    Atkinson, Darryn A.; Dy, Christine J.; Gurley, Katelyn M.; Smith, Valerie L.; Angeli, Claudia; Harkema, Susan J.; Edgerton, V. Reggie; Gerasimenko, Yury P.

    2015-01-01

    Transcutaneous and epidural electrical spinal cord stimulation techniques are becoming more valuable as electrophysiological and clinical tools. Recently, we observed selective activation of proximal and distal motor pools during epidural spinal stimulation. In the present study, we hypothesized that the characteristics of recruitment curves obtained from leg muscles will reflect a relative preferential activation of proximal and distal motor pools based on their arrangement along the lumbosacral enlargement. The purpose was to describe the electrophysiological responses to transcutaneous stimulation in leg muscles innervated by motoneurons from different segmental levels. Stimulation delivered along the rostrocaudal axis of the lumbosacral enlargement in the supine position resulted in a selective topographical recruitment of proximal and distal leg muscles, as described by threshold intensity, slope of the recruitment curves, and plateau point intensity and magnitude. Relatively selective recruitment of proximal and distal motor pools can be titrated by optimizing the site and intensity level of stimulation to excite a given combination of motor pools. The slope of the recruitment of particular muscles allows characterization of the properties of afferents projecting to specific motoneuron pools, as well as to the type and size of the motoneurons. The location and intensity of transcutaneous spinal electrical stimulation are critical to target particular neural structures across different motor pools in investigation of specific neuromodulatory effects. Finally, the asymmetry in bilateral evoked potentials is inevitable and can be attributed to both anatomical and functional peculiarities of individual muscles or muscle groups. PMID:25814642

  6. Evolution of EEG Motor Rhythms after Spinal Cord Injury: A Longitudinal Study

    PubMed Central

    López-Larraz, Eduardo; Montesano, Luis; Gil-Agudo, Ángel; Minguez, Javier; Oliviero, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) does not only produce a lack of sensory and motor function caudal to the level of injury, but it also leads to a progressive brain reorganization. Chronic SCI patients attempting to move their affected limbs present a significant reduction of brain activation in the motor cortex, which has been linked to the deafferentation. The aim of this work is to study the evolution of the motor-related brain activity during the first months after SCI. Eighteen subacute SCI patients were recruited to participate in bi-weekly experimental sessions during at least two months. Their EEG was recorded to analyze the temporal evolution of the event-related desynchronization (ERD) over the motor cortex, both during motor attempt and motor imagery of their paralyzed hands. The results show that the α and β ERD evolution after SCI is negatively correlated with the clinical progression of the patients during the first months after the injury. This work provides the first longitudinal study of the event-related desynchronization during the subacute phase of spinal cord injury. Furthermore, our findings reveal a strong association between the ERD changes and the clinical evolution of the patients. These results help to better understand the brain transformation after SCI, which is important to characterize the neuroplasticity mechanisms involved after this lesion and may lead to new strategies for rehabilitation and motor restoration of these patients. PMID:26177457

  7. Abnormal motor phenotype in the SMNΔ7 mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Butchbach, Matthew E. R.; Edwards, Jonathan D.; Burghes, Arthur H. M.

    2009-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is recessive motor neuron disease that affects motor neurons in the anterior horn of the spinal cord. SMA results from the reduction of SMN (survival motor neuron) protein. Even though SMN is ubiquitously expressed, motor neurons are more sensitive to the reduction in SMN than other cell types. We have previously generated mouse models of SMA with varying degrees of clinical severity. So as to more clearly understand the pathogenesis of motor neuron degeneration in SMA, we have characterized the phenotype of the SMNΔ7 SMA mouse which normally lives for 13.6 ± 0.7 days. These mice are smaller than their non-SMA littermates and begin to lose body mass at 10.4 ± 0.4 days. SMNΔ7 SMA mice exhibit impaired responses to surface righting, negative geotaxis and cliff aversion but not to tactile stimulation. Spontaneous motor activity and grip strength are also significantly impaired in SMNΔ7 SMA mice. In summary, we have demonstrated an impairment of neonatal motor responses in SMNΔ7 SMA mice. This phenotype characterization could be used to assess the effectiveness of potential therapies for SMA. PMID:17561409

  8. Treatment of Spinal Epidural Abscess and Predisposing Factors of Motor Weakness: Experience with 48 Patients

    PubMed Central

    Ju, Min-Wook; Kwon, Hyon-Jo; Kim, Seon-Hwan; Koh, Hyeon-Song; Youm, Jin-Young; Song, Shi-Hun

    2015-01-01

    Objective Spinal epidural abscess (SEA) can be fatal if untreated, so early diagnosis and treatment are essential. We conducted a retrospective study to define its clinical features and evaluate the risk factors of motor weakness. Methods We retrospectively analyzed the medical records and images of patients with SEA who had been hospitalized in our institute from January 2005 to June 2012. Pyogenic SEA patients were categorized as patients without motor weakness (Group A) and with motor weakness (Group B). Abscess volume was measured using the Gamma-Plan program. Intervertebral foramen height and posterior disc height were measured to evaluate degree of spinal stenosis. Results Of 48 patients with pyogenic SEA, 33 (68%) were treated surgically, and 15 (32%) were treated with antibiotics. Eleven patients had weakness and abscess volume was unrelated to motor weakness. Old age, 'spare room' (abscess volume subtracted from spinal volume) and intervertebral foramen height and posterior disc height were statistically significant. Among the 48 patients, 43 (85%) had good outcome and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) was the only meaningful prognostic factor (p=0.014). The cut-off value of ESR was 112mm/h with 80% sensitivity and 79% specificity and had borderline significance (p=0.062). Conclusion SEA needs emergent diagnosis and treatment. Motor weakness is the most important factor in treatment decision. By careful image reading, early surgical treatment can be an option for selected patients with severe spinal stenosis for prevent motor weakness. Inflammatory markers, especially ESR, are valuable to identify worsening of SEA. PMID:26512265

  9. Spinal 5-HT7 receptors induce phrenic motor facilitation via EPAC-mTORC1 signaling

    PubMed Central

    Fields, D. P.; Springborn, S. R.

    2015-01-01

    Spinal serotonin type 7 (5-HT7) receptors elicit complex effects on motor activity. Whereas 5-HT7 receptor activation gives rise to long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation (pMF), it also constrains 5-HT2 receptor-induced pMF via “cross-talk inhibition.” We hypothesized that divergent cAMP-dependent signaling pathways give rise to these distinct 5-HT7 receptor actions. Specifically, we hypothesized that protein kinase A (PKA) mediates cross-talk inhibition of 5-HT2 receptor-induced pMF whereas 5-HT7 receptor-induced pMF results from exchange protein activated by cAMP (EPAC) signaling. Anesthetized, paralyzed, and ventilated rats receiving intrathecal (C4) 5-HT7 receptor agonist (AS-19) injections expressed pMF for >90 min, an effect abolished by pretreatment with a selective EPAC inhibitor (ESI-05) but not a selective PKA inhibitor (KT-5720). Furthermore, intrathecal injections of a selective EPAC activator (8-pCPT-2′-Me-cAMP) were sufficient to elicit pMF. Finally, spinal mammalian target of rapamycin complex-1 (mTORC1) inhibition via intrathecal rapamycin abolished 5-HT7 receptor- and EPAC-induced pMF, demonstrating that spinal 5-HT7 receptors elicit pMF by an EPAC-mTORC1 signaling pathway. Thus 5-HT7 receptors elicit and constrain spinal phrenic motor plasticity via distinct signaling mechanisms that diverge at cAMP (EPAC vs. PKA). Selective manipulation of these molecules may enable refined regulation of serotonin-dependent spinal motor plasticity for therapeutic advantage. PMID:26269554

  10. Spinal 5-HT7 receptors induce phrenic motor facilitation via EPAC-mTORC1 signaling.

    PubMed

    Fields, D P; Springborn, S R; Mitchell, G S

    2015-09-01

    Spinal serotonin type 7 (5-HT7) receptors elicit complex effects on motor activity. Whereas 5-HT7 receptor activation gives rise to long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation (pMF), it also constrains 5-HT2 receptor-induced pMF via "cross-talk inhibition." We hypothesized that divergent cAMP-dependent signaling pathways give rise to these distinct 5-HT7 receptor actions. Specifically, we hypothesized that protein kinase A (PKA) mediates cross-talk inhibition of 5-HT2 receptor-induced pMF whereas 5-HT7 receptor-induced pMF results from exchange protein activated by cAMP (EPAC) signaling. Anesthetized, paralyzed, and ventilated rats receiving intrathecal (C4) 5-HT7 receptor agonist (AS-19) injections expressed pMF for >90 min, an effect abolished by pretreatment with a selective EPAC inhibitor (ESI-05) but not a selective PKA inhibitor (KT-5720). Furthermore, intrathecal injections of a selective EPAC activator (8-pCPT-2'-Me-cAMP) were sufficient to elicit pMF. Finally, spinal mammalian target of rapamycin complex-1 (mTORC1) inhibition via intrathecal rapamycin abolished 5-HT7 receptor- and EPAC-induced pMF, demonstrating that spinal 5-HT7 receptors elicit pMF by an EPAC-mTORC1 signaling pathway. Thus 5-HT7 receptors elicit and constrain spinal phrenic motor plasticity via distinct signaling mechanisms that diverge at cAMP (EPAC vs. PKA). Selective manipulation of these molecules may enable refined regulation of serotonin-dependent spinal motor plasticity for therapeutic advantage.

  11. The role of spinal manipulation in addressing disordered sensorimotor integration and altered motor control.

    PubMed

    Haavik, Heidi; Murphy, Bernadette

    2012-10-01

    This review provides an overview of some of the growing body of research on the effects of spinal manipulation on sensory processing, motor output, functional performance and sensorimotor integration. It describes a body of work using somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs), transcranial magnetic nerve stimulation, and electromyographic techniques to demonstrate neurophysiological changes following spinal manipulation. This work contributes to the understanding of how an initial episode(s) of back or neck pain may lead to ongoing changes in input from the spine which over time lead to altered sensorimotor integration of input from the spine and limbs.

  12. Effect of percutaneous stimulation at different spinal levels on the activation of sensory and motor roots.

    PubMed

    Roy, François D; Gibson, Grady; Stein, Richard B

    2012-11-01

    Percutaneous spinal stimulation is a promising new technique for understanding human spinal reflexes and for evaluating the pathophysiology of motor roots. Previous studies have generally stimulated the T11/T12 or T12/L1 vertebral junctions, sites that overlie the lumbosacral enlargement. The present study sought to determine the best location for targeting sensory and motor roots during sitting. We used paired stimuli, 50 ms apart, to distinguish the contribution of the reflex and motor components which make up the root evoked potential. This assumed that post-stimulation attenuation, primarily through homosynaptic depression, would abolish the second potential if it was trans-synaptic in origin. Conversely, successive responses would be unchanged if motor roots were being stimulated. Here, we show that sensory root reflexes were optimally elicited with percutaneous stimulation over the L1-L3 vertebrae. However, the optimal position varied between subjects and depended on the target muscle being studied. A collision test showed that the reflex recorded in pre-tibial flexors was low in amplitude and was prone to crosstalk from neighbouring muscles. In contrast to the reflex response, direct motor root activation was optimal with stimulation over the more caudal L5-S1 vertebrae. The present results support the utility of paired stimulation for evaluating the topographical recruitment of sensory and motor roots to human leg muscles.

  13. GDNF plasma levels in spina bifida: correlation with severity of spinal damage and motor function.

    PubMed

    Chiaretti, Antonio; Rendeli, Claudia; Antonelli, Alessia; Barone, Giuseppe; Focarelli, Benedetta; Tabacco, Fabrizia; Massimi, Luca; Ausili, Emanuele

    2008-12-01

    Glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) is one of several powerful survival factors for spinal motoneurons that play a key role in sprouting, synaptic plasticity, and reorganization after spinal cord damage. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of GDNF in plasma of children with spina bifida (SB) and to determine its correlation with both the severity of spinal cord damage and the motor function of these patients. To measure the GDNF expression, we collected plasma samples from 152 children with SB and in 149 matched controls. Endogenous GDNF levels were quantified using a two-site immuno-enzymatic assay. The statistical analysis was performed using the Mann-Whitney two-tailed two-sample test. In children with SB the mean levels of GDNF (131.2 +/- 69.6 pg/mL) were significantly higher (p < 0.001) with respect to the mean levels of the control group (102.7 +/- 6.8 pg/mL). Moreover, in open SB, the GDNF levels (139.2 +/- 81.1 pg/mL) were significantly higher (p < 0.05) with respect to closed SB (117.2 +/- 41.3 pg/mL). In terms of the motor function of patients, we found that in children with poorer motor function, the GDNF levels (134.5 +/- 67.4 pg/mL) were higher, but not statistically significant (p < 0.1), than in patients with better motor outcome (122.3 +/- 72.2 pg/mL). Our study demonstrates GDNF over-expression in children with SB. This upregulation is significantly associated with the severity of spinal cord damage in SB patients and appears to correlate with poor motor function of children, representing an important biochemical marker of the severity of spine injury.

  14. Trophic effect of olmesartan, a novel AT1R antagonist, on spinal motor neurons in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Iwasaki, Yasuo; Ichikawa, Yasumitsu; Igarashi, Osamu; Kinoshita, Masao; Ikeda, Ken

    2002-07-01

    Olmesartan is a novel compound which has been shown to exhibit various neuropharmacological effects. For the purpose of clarifying the effect of Olmesartan on spinal motor neurons, we studied the following tests. We studied the effect in vitro of Olmesartan on neurite outgrowth and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) activity in primary explant cultures of ventral spinal cord (VSCC) of fetal rats. Olmesartan-treated VSCC, compared with control VSCC, had a significant neurite outgrowth and increased activity of ChAT. The effect was dose-related in neurite outgrowth. However, there was no relationship between activity of ChAT andgiven doses of Olmesartan. We examined in vivo the effect of Olmesartan on axotomized spinal motor neuron death in the rat spinal cord. After post-natal unilateral section of sciatic nerve, there was approximately a 50% survival of motor neurons in the fourth lumbar segment. In comparison with vehicle, intraperitoneal injection of Olmesartan for consecutive 14 days reduced spinal motor neuron death. There was no relationship between number of surviving neurons and doses of Olmesartan. These in vitro and in vivo studies showed that Olmesartan has a neurotrophic effect on spinal motor neurons. Our data suggest a potential therapeutic use of Olmesartan in treating diseases that involve degeneration and death of motor neurons, such as motor neuropathy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

  15. Intraoperative monitoring during decompression of the spinal cord and spinal nerves using transcranial motor-evoked potentials: The law of twenty percent.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Satoshi; Hirao, Jun; Oka, Hidehiro; Akimoto, Jiro; Takanashi, Junko; Yamada, Junichi

    2015-09-01

    Motor-evoked potential (MEP) monitoring was performed during 196 consecutive spinal (79 cervical and 117 lumbar) surgeries for the decompression of compressive spinal and spinal nerve diseases. MEP monitoring in spinal surgery has been considered sensitive to predict postoperative neurological recovery. In this series, transcranial stimulation consisted of trains of five pulses at a constant voltage (200-600 V). For the normalization of MEP, we recorded compound muscle action potentials (CMAP) after peripheral nerve stimulation, usually on the median nerve at the wrist 2 seconds before or after each transcranial stimulation of the motor area, for all operations. The sensitivity and specificity of MEP monitoring was 100% and 97.4%, respectively, or 96.9% with or without CMAP compensation (if the threshold of postoperative motor palsy was defined as 20% relative amplitude rate [RAR]). The mean RAR after CMAP normalization, of the most affected muscle in the patient group with excellent postoperative results (recovery rate of a Japan Orthopedic Association score of more than 50%) was significantly higher than that in the other groups (p=0.0224). All patients with an amplitude increase rate (AIR) with CMAP normalization of more than 20% achieved neurological recovery postoperatively. Our results suggest that if the RAR is more than 20%, postoperative motor palsy can be avoided in spinal surgery. If the AIR with normalization by CMAP after peripheral nerve stimulation is more than 20%, neurological recovery can be expected in spinal surgery.

  16. Neuromodulation of motor-evoked potentials during stepping in spinal rats

    PubMed Central

    Gad, Parag; Lavrov, Igor; Shah, Prithvi; Zhong, Hui; Roy, Roland R.; Gerasimenko, Yury

    2013-01-01

    The rat spinal cord isolated from supraspinal control via a complete low- to midthoracic spinal cord transection produces locomotor-like patterns in the hindlimbs when facilitated pharmacologically and/or by epidural electrical stimulation. To evaluate the role of epidural electrical stimulation in enabling motor control (eEmc) for locomotion and posture, we recorded potentials evoked by epidural spinal cord stimulation in selected hindlimb muscles during stepping and standing in adult spinal rats. We hypothesized that the temporal details of the phase-dependent modulation of these evoked potentials in selected hindlimb muscles while performing a motor task in the unanesthetized state would be predictive of the potential of the spinal circuitries to generate stepping. To test this hypothesis, we characterized soleus and tibialis anterior (TA) muscle responses as middle response (MR; 4–6 ms) or late responses (LRs; >7 ms) during stepping with eEmc. We then compared these responses to the stepping parameters with and without a serotoninergic agonist (quipazine) or a glycinergic blocker (strychnine). Quipazine inhibited the MRs induced by eEmc during nonweight-bearing standing but facilitated locomotion and increased the amplitude and number of LRs induced by eEmc during stepping. Strychnine facilitated stepping and reorganized the LRs pattern in the soleus. The LRs in the TA remained relatively stable at varying loads and speeds during locomotion, whereas the LRs in the soleus were strongly modulated by both of these variables. These data suggest that LRs facilitated electrically and/or pharmacologically are not time-locked to the stimulation pulse but are highly correlated to the stepping patterns of spinal rats. PMID:23761695

  17. Neuromodulation of motor-evoked potentials during stepping in spinal rats.

    PubMed

    Gad, Parag; Lavrov, Igor; Shah, Prithvi; Zhong, Hui; Roy, Roland R; Edgerton, V Reggie; Gerasimenko, Yury

    2013-09-01

    The rat spinal cord isolated from supraspinal control via a complete low- to midthoracic spinal cord transection produces locomotor-like patterns in the hindlimbs when facilitated pharmacologically and/or by epidural electrical stimulation. To evaluate the role of epidural electrical stimulation in enabling motor control (eEmc) for locomotion and posture, we recorded potentials evoked by epidural spinal cord stimulation in selected hindlimb muscles during stepping and standing in adult spinal rats. We hypothesized that the temporal details of the phase-dependent modulation of these evoked potentials in selected hindlimb muscles while performing a motor task in the unanesthetized state would be predictive of the potential of the spinal circuitries to generate stepping. To test this hypothesis, we characterized soleus and tibialis anterior (TA) muscle responses as middle response (MR; 4-6 ms) or late responses (LRs; >7 ms) during stepping with eEmc. We then compared these responses to the stepping parameters with and without a serotoninergic agonist (quipazine) or a glycinergic blocker (strychnine). Quipazine inhibited the MRs induced by eEmc during nonweight-bearing standing but facilitated locomotion and increased the amplitude and number of LRs induced by eEmc during stepping. Strychnine facilitated stepping and reorganized the LRs pattern in the soleus. The LRs in the TA remained relatively stable at varying loads and speeds during locomotion, whereas the LRs in the soleus were strongly modulated by both of these variables. These data suggest that LRs facilitated electrically and/or pharmacologically are not time-locked to the stimulation pulse but are highly correlated to the stepping patterns of spinal rats.

  18. Radial Glia Inhibit Peripheral Glial Infiltration into the Spinal Cord at Motor Exit Point Transition Zones

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Cody J.; Johnson, Kimberly; Welsh, Taylor G.; Barresi, Michael J. F.; Kucenas, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    In the mature vertebrate nervous system, central and peripheral nervous system (CNS and PNS, respectively) GLIA myelinate distinct motor axon domains at the motor exit point transition zone (MEP TZ). How these cells preferentially associate with and myelinate discrete, non-overlapping CNS versus PNS axonal segments, is unknown. Using in vivo imaging and genetic cell ablation in zebrafish, we demonstrate that radial glia restrict migration of PNS glia into the spinal cord during development. Prior to development of radial glial endfeet, peripheral cells freely migrate back and forth across the MEP TZ. However, upon maturation, peripherally located cells never enter the CNS. When we ablate radial glia, peripheral glia ectopically migrate into the spinal cord during developmental stages when they would normally be restricted. These findings demonstrate that radial glia contribute to both CNS and PNS development and control the unidirectional movement of glial cell types across the MEP TZ early in development. PMID:27029762

  19. Motor primitives and synergies in spinal cord and after injury– the current state of play

    PubMed Central

    Giszter, Simon F.; Hart, Corey B.

    2013-01-01

    Modular pattern generator elements, also known as burst synergies or motor primitives, have become a useful and important way of describing motor behavior, albeit controversial. It is suggested that these synergy elements may comprise part of the pattern shaping layers of a McCrea/Rybak two layer pattern generator, as well as being used in other ways in spinal cord. The data supporting modular synergies ranges across species including man and encompasses motor pattern analyses and neural recordings. Recently, synergy persistence and changes following clinical trauma have been presented. These new data underscore the importance of understanding the modular structure of motor behaviors and the underlying circuitry in order to best provide principled therapies and to understand phenomena reported in the clinic. We discuss the evidence and different viewpoints on modularity, the neural underpinnings identified thus far, and possible critical issues for the future of this area. PMID:23531009

  20. IPLEX administration improves motor neuron survival and ameliorates motor functions in a severe mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Murdocca, Michela; Malgieri, Arianna; Luchetti, Andrea; Saieva, Luciano; Dobrowolny, Gabriella; de Leonibus, Elvira; Filareto, Antonio; Quitadamo, Maria Chiara; Novelli, Giuseppe; Musarò, Antonio; Sangiuolo, Federica

    2012-09-25

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder and the first genetic cause of death in childhood. SMA is caused by low levels of survival motor neuron (SMN) protein that induce selective loss of α-motor neurons (MNs) in the spinal cord, resulting in progressive muscle atrophy and consequent respiratory failure. To date, no effective treatment is available to counteract the course of the disease. Among the different therapeutic strategies with potential clinical applications, the evaluation of trophic and/or protective agents able to antagonize MNs degeneration represents an attractive opportunity to develop valid therapies. Here we investigated the effects of IPLEX (recombinant human insulinlike growth factor 1 [rhIGF-1] complexed with recombinant human IGF-1 binding protein 3 [rhIGFBP-3]) on a severe mouse model of SMA. Interestingly, molecular and biochemical analyses of IGF-1 carried out in SMA mice before drug administration revealed marked reductions of IGF-1 circulating levels and hepatic mRNA expression. In this study, we found that perinatal administration of IPLEX, even if does not influence survival and body weight of mice, results in reduced degeneration of MNs, increased muscle fiber size and in amelioration of motor functions in SMA mice. Additionally, we show that phenotypic changes observed are not SMN-dependent, since no significant SMN modification was addressed in treated mice. Collectively, our data indicate IPLEX as a good therapeutic candidate to hinder the progression of the neurodegenerative process in SMA.

  1. Extraction of motor activity from the cervical spinal cord of behaving rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prasad, Abhishek; Sahin, Mesut

    2006-12-01

    Injury at the cervical region of the spinal cord results in the loss of the skeletal muscle control from below the shoulders and hence causes quadriplegia. The brain-computer interface technique is one way of generating a substitute for the lost command signals in these severely paralyzed individuals using the neural signals from the brain. In this study, we are investigating the feasibility of an alternative method where the volitional signals are extracted from the cervical spinal cord above the point of injury. A microelectrode array assembly was implanted chronically at the C5-C6 level of the spinal cord in rats. Neural recordings were made during the face cleaning behavior with forelimbs as this task involves cyclic forelimb movements and does not require any training. The correlation between the volitional motor signals and the elbow movements was studied. Linear regression technique was used to reconstruct the arm movement from the rectified-integrated version of the principal neural components. The results of this study demonstrate the feasibility of extracting the motor signals from the cervical spinal cord and using them for reconstruction of the elbow movements.

  2. Motor Neuron Diseases Accompanying Spinal Stenosis: A Case Study.

    PubMed

    Shin, HyeonJu; Park, Sun Kyung; HaeJin, Suh; Choi, Yun Suk

    2016-03-01

    A 75-year-old man, who was healthy, visited the hospital because of shooting pain and numbness in both lower limbs (right > left). The patient had an L4/5 moderate right foraminal stenosis and right subarticular disc protrusion and received a lumbar epidural block. The patient experienced severe weakness in the right lower limb after 2 days. Lumbar and cervical magnetic resonance images were taken and electromyography and a nerve conduction study were performed to arrive at the diagnosis of a motor neuron disease. The patient expired 4 months later with respiratory failure due to motor neuron disease. This case suggests that any abnormal neurological symptoms that occur after an epidural block should be examined thoroughly via testing and consultations to identify the cause of the symptoms.

  3. Twitch and tetanic properties of human thenar motor units paralyzed by chronic spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Häger-Ross, C K; Klein, C S; Thomas, C K

    2006-07-01

    Little is known about how human motor units respond to chronic paralysis. Our aim was to record surface electromyographic (EMG) signals, twitch forces, and tetanic forces from paralyzed motor units in the thenar muscles of individuals (n = 12) with chronic (1.5-19 yr) cervical spinal cord injury (SCI). Each motor unit was activated by intraneural stimulation of its motor axon using single pulses and trains of pulses at frequencies between 5 and 100 Hz. Paralyzed motor units (n = 48) had small EMGs and weak tetanic forces (n = 32 units) but strong twitch forces, resulting in half-maximal force being achieved at a median of only 8 Hz. The distributions for cumulative twitch and tetanic forces also separated less for paralyzed units than for control units, indicating that increases in stimulation frequency made a smaller relative contribution to the total force output in paralyzed muscles. Paralysis also induced slowing of conduction velocities, twitch contraction times and EMG durations. However, the elevated ratios between the twitch and the tetanic forces, but not contractile speed, correlated significantly with the extent to which unit force summated in response to different frequencies of stimulation. Despite changes in the absolute values of many electrical and mechanical properties of paralyzed motor units, most of the distributions shifted uniformly relative to those of thenar units obtained from control subjects. Thus human thenar muscles paralyzed by SCI retain a population of motor units with heterogeneous contractile properties because chronic paralysis influenced all of the motor units similarly.

  4. Systemic administration of antisense p75(NTR) oligodeoxynucleotides rescues axotomised spinal motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Lowry, K S; Murray, S S; Coulson, E J; Epa, R; Bartlett, P F; Barrett, G; Cheema, S S

    2001-04-01

    The 75 kD low-affinity neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)) is expressed in developing and axotomised spinal motor neurons. There is now convincing evidence that p75(NTR) can, under some circumstances, become cytotoxic and promote neuronal cell death. We report here that a single application of antisense p75(NTR) oligodeoxynucleotides to the proximal nerve stumps of neonatal rats significantly reduces the loss of axotomised motor neurons compared to controls treated with nonsense oligodeoxynucleotides or phosphate-buffered saline. Our investigations also show that daily systemic intraperitoneal injections of antisense p75(NTR) oligodeoxynucleotides for 14 days significantly reduce the loss of axotomised motor neurons compared to controls. Furthermore, we found that systemic delivery over a similar period continues to be effective following axotomy when intraperitoneal injections were 1) administered after a delay of 24 hr, 2) limited to the first 7 days, or 3) administered every third day. In addition, p75(NTR) protein levels were reduced in spinal motor neurons following treatment with antisense p75(NTR) oligodeoxynucleotides. There were also no obvious side effects associated with antisense p75(NTR) oligodeoxynucleotide treatments as determined by behavioural observations and postnatal weight gain. Our findings indicate that antisense-based strategies could be a novel approach for the prevention of motor neuron degeneration associated with injuries or disease.

  5. Motor neurons control blood vessel patterning in the developing spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Himmels, Patricia; Paredes, Isidora; Adler, Heike; Karakatsani, Andromachi; Luck, Robert; Marti, Hugo H.; Ermakova, Olga; Rempel, Eugen; Stoeckli, Esther T.; Ruiz de Almodóvar, Carmen

    2017-01-01

    Formation of a precise vascular network within the central nervous system is of critical importance to assure delivery of oxygen and nutrients and for accurate functionality of neuronal networks. Vascularization of the spinal cord is a highly stereotypical process. However, the guidance cues controlling blood vessel patterning in this organ remain largely unknown. Here we describe a new neuro-vascular communication mechanism that controls vessel guidance in the developing spinal cord. We show that motor neuron columns remain avascular during a developmental time window, despite expressing high levels of the pro-angiogenic vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). We describe that motor neurons express the VEGF trapping receptor sFlt1 via a Neuropilin-1-dependent mechanism. Using a VEGF gain-of-function approach in mice and a motor neuron-specific sFlt1 loss-of-function approach in chicken, we show that motor neurons control blood vessel patterning by an autocrine mechanism that titrates motor neuron-derived VEGF via their own expression of sFlt1. PMID:28262664

  6. Motor recovery and the breathing arm after brachial plexus surgical repairs, including re-implantation of avulsed spinal roots into the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Htut, M; Misra, V P; Anand, P; Birch, R; Carlstedt, T

    2007-04-01

    Forty-four patients with severe traction brachial plexus avulsion injuries were studied following surgical repairs. In eight patients, re-implanting avulsed spinal roots directly to the spinal cord was performed with other repairs and motor recovery in the proximal limb was similar to that achieved by conventional nerve grafts and transfers when assessed using the MRC clinical grades, Narakas scores, EMG and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS). Thirty-four of the 37 patients had co-contractions of agonist and antagonist muscle groups. Spontaneous contractions of limb muscles in synchrony with respiration, the "breathing arm", were noted in 26 of 37 patients: in three patients, the source of the breathing arm was from spinal cord re-connection, providing evidence of regeneration from the CNS to the periphery. Our study shows that re-connection of avulsed spinal roots can produce good motor recovery and provides a clinical model for developing new treatments which may enhance nerve regeneration.

  7. Spinal 5-HT7 receptor activation induces long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, M S; Mitchell, G S

    2011-03-15

    Acute intermittent hypoxia elicits a form of serotonin-dependent respiratory plasticity known as phrenic long term facilitation (pLTF). Episodic spinal serotonin-2 (5-HT2) receptor activation on or near phrenic motor neurons is necessary for pLTF. A hallmark of pLTF is the requirement for serotonin-dependent synthesis of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and activation of its high affinity receptor, TrkB. Activation of spinal Gs protein-coupled adenosine 2A receptors (GsPCRs) elicits a unique form of long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation (PMF), but via unique mechanisms (BDNF independent TrkB trans-activation).We hypothesized that other GsPCRs elicit PMF, specifically serotonin-7 (5-HT7) receptors, which are expressed in phrenic motor neurons. Cervical spinal (C4) injections of a selective 5-HT7 receptor agonist, AS-19 (10 μM, 5 μl; 3 × 5 min), in anaesthetized, vagotomized and ventilated male Sprague-Dawley rats elicited long-lasting PMF (>120 min), an effect prevented by pretreatment with a 5-HT7 receptor antagonist (SB 269970; 5mM, 7 μl).GsPCR activation 'trans-activates'TrkB by increasing synthesis of an immature TrkB isoform. Spinal injection of a TrkB inhibitor (k252a) and siRNAs that prevent TrkB (but not BDNF) mRNA translation both blocked 5-HT7 agonist-induced PMF, confirming a requirement for TrkB synthesis and activity. k252a affected late PMF (≥ 90 min) only. Spinal inhibition of the PI3K/AKT pathway blocked 5-HT7 agonist-induced PMF, whereas MEK/ERK inhibition delayed, but did not block, PMF. An understanding of signalling mechanisms giving rise to PMF may guide development of novel therapeutic strategies to treat ventilatory control disorders associated with respiratory insufficiency, such as spinal injury and motor neuron disease.

  8. Postnatal development of a segmental switch enables corticospinal tract transmission to spinal forelimb motor circuits.

    PubMed

    Chakrabarty, Samit; Martin, John H

    2010-02-10

    Development of skilled movements and the corticospinal tract (CST) begin prenatally and continue postnatally. Because the CST is required for skilled movements in maturity, it is accepted that motor skills cannot occur until the CST develops a mature organization. We recently showed that the CST plays an essential role in postnatal development of interneurons comprising the spinal circuits it engages. We proposed that CST signals are more effectively transmitted to ventral motor circuits after interneuron maturation, thereby enabling expression of CST motor functions, suggesting development of a segmental switch promoting transmission. We tested this by recording CST-evoked focal synaptic potentials, extracellularly, in the cervical enlargement of cats before and after interneuron maturation [postnatal week 5 (PW5) to PW7]. We compared monosynaptic CST amplitude input to segmental circuits with oligosynaptic ventral horn responses, as a measure of CST-evoked segmental response transmission from input to output. The M1 primary motor cortex was unilaterally inactivated between PW5 and PW7 to determine activity dependence. CST interneuron contacts were identified using confocal microscopy. CST terminals contact diverse interneuron classes. CST stimulation strongly activated ventral motor circuits at the ages when both interneurons and CST spinal terminations have developed a mature phenotype, supporting development of segmental transmission of CST signals. CST activity blockade impeded development of effective segmental transmission by the inactivated CST and created a novel path for transmission from the ipsilateral, unaffected, CST. Our findings show that development of segmental CST signal transmission regulates nascent CST motor control functions and provide insight into systems-level mechanisms for protracted motor skill development.

  9. Reorganization and preservation of motor control of the brain in spinal cord injury: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Kokotilo, Kristen J; Eng, Janice J; Curt, Armin

    2009-11-01

    Reorganization of brain function in people with CNS damage has been identified as one of the fundamental mechanisms involved in the recovery of sensorimotor function. Spinal cord injury (SCI) brain mapping studies during motor tasks aim for assessing the reorganization and preservation of brain networks involved in motor control. Revealing the activation of cortical and subcortical brain areas in people with SCI can indicate principal patterns of brain reorganization when the neurotrauma is distal to the brain. This review assessed brain activation after SCI in terms of intensity, volume, and somatotopic localization, as well as preservation of activation during attempted and/or imagined movements. Twenty-five studies meeting the inclusion criteria could be identified in Medline (1980 to January 2008). Relevant characteristics of studies (level of lesion, time after injury, motor task) and mapping techniques varied widely. Changes in brain activation were found in both cortical and subcortical areas of individuals with SCI. In addition, several studies described a shift in the region of brain activation. These patterns appeared to be dynamic and influenced by the level, completeness, and time after injury, as well as extent of clinical recovery. In addition, several aspects of reorganization of brain function following SCI resembled those reported in stroke. This review demonstrates that brain networks involved in different demands of motor control remain responsive even in chronic paralysis. These findings imply that therapeutic strategies aimed at restoring spinal cord function, even in people with chronic SCI, can build on preserved competent brain control.

  10. Prolonged Minocycline Treatment Impairs Motor Neuronal Survival and Glial Function in Organotypic Rat Spinal Cord Cultures

    PubMed Central

    Pinkernelle, Josephine; Fansa, Hisham; Ebmeyer, Uwe; Keilhoff, Gerburg

    2013-01-01

    Background Minocycline, a second-generation tetracycline antibiotic, exhibits anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects in various experimental models of neurological diseases, such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal cord injury. However, conflicting results have prompted a debate regarding the beneficial effects of minocycline. Methods In this study, we analyzed minocycline treatment in organotypic spinal cord cultures of neonatal rats as a model of motor neuron survival and regeneration after injury. Minocycline was administered in 2 different concentrations (10 and 100 µM) at various time points in culture and fixed after 1 week. Results Prolonged minocycline administration decreased the survival of motor neurons in the organotypic cultures. This effect was strongly enhanced with higher concentrations of minocycline. High concentrations of minocycline reduced the number of DAPI-positive cell nuclei in organotypic cultures and simultaneously inhibited microglial activation. Astrocytes, which covered the surface of the control organotypic cultures, revealed a peripheral distribution after early minocycline treatment. Thus, we further analyzed the effects of 100 µM minocycline on the viability and migration ability of dispersed primary glial cell cultures. We found that minocycline reduced cell viability, delayed wound closure in a scratch migration assay and increased connexin 43 protein levels in these cultures. Conclusions The administration of high doses of minocycline was deleterious for motor neuron survival. In addition, it inhibited microglial activation and impaired glial viability and migration. These data suggest that especially high doses of minocycline might have undesired affects in treatment of spinal cord injury. Further experiments are required to determine the conditions for the safe clinical administration of minocycline in spinal cord injured patients. PMID:23967343

  11. Synergistic integration of Netrin and ephrin axon guidance signals by spinal motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Poliak, Sebastian; Morales, Daniel; Croteau, Louis-Philippe; Krawchuk, Dayana; Palmesino, Elena; Morton, Susan; Cloutier, Jean-François; Charron, Frederic; Dalva, Matthew B; Ackerman, Susan L; Kao, Tzu-Jen; Kania, Artur

    2015-12-03

    During neural circuit assembly, axonal growth cones are exposed to multiple guidance signals at trajectory choice points. While axonal responses to individual guidance cues have been extensively studied, less is known about responses to combination of signals and underlying molecular mechanisms. Here, we studied the convergence of signals directing trajectory selection of spinal motor axons entering the limb. We first demonstrate that Netrin-1 attracts and repels distinct motor axon populations, according to their expression of Netrin receptors. Quantitative in vitro assays demonstrate that motor axons synergistically integrate both attractive or repulsive Netrin-1 signals together with repulsive ephrin signals. Our investigations of the mechanism of ephrin-B2 and Netrin-1 integration demonstrate that the Netrin receptor Unc5c and the ephrin receptor EphB2 can form a complex in a ligand-dependent manner and that Netrin-ephrin synergistic growth cones responses involve the potentiation of Src family kinase signaling, a common effector of both pathways.

  12. Selective responses to tonic descending commands by temporal summation in a spinal motor pool

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei-Chun; McLean, David L.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Motor responses of varying intensities rely on descending commands to heterogeneous pools of motoneurons. In vertebrates, numerous sources of descending excitatory input provide systematically more drive to progressively less excitable spinal motoneurons. While this presumably facilitates simultaneous activation of motor pools, it is unclear how selective patterns of recruitment could emerge from inputs weighted this way. Here, using in vivo electrophysiological and imaging approaches in larval zebrafish, we find that, despite weighted excitation, more excitable motoneurons are preferentially activated by a midbrain reticulospinal nucleus, by virtue of longer membrane time constants that facilitate temporal summation of tonic drive. We confirm the utility of this phenomenon by assessing the activity of the midbrain and motoneuron populations during a light-driven behavior. Our findings demonstrate that weighted descending commands can generate selective motor responses by exploiting systematic differences in the biophysical properties of target motoneurons and their relative sensitivity to tonic input. PMID:25066087

  13. Cervical spinal erythropoietin induces phrenic motor facilitation via ERK and Akt signaling

    PubMed Central

    Dale, Erica A.; Satriotomo, Irawan; Mitchell, Gordon S.

    2012-01-01

    Erythropoietin (EPO) is typically known for its role in erythropoiesis, but is also a potent neurotrophic/neuroprotective factor for spinal motor neurons. Another trophic factor regulated by Hypoxia-Inducible Factor-1, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), signals via ERK and Akt activation to elicit long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation (pMF). Since EPO also signals via ERK and Akt activation, we tested the hypothesis that EPO elicits similar pMF. Using retrograde labeling and immunohistochemical techniques, we demonstrate in adult, male, Sprague-Dawley rats that EPO and its receptor, EPO-R, are expressed in identified phrenic motor neurons. Intrathecal EPO at C4 elicits long-lasting pMF; integrated phrenic nerve burst amplitude increased >90 min post-injection (63±12% baseline 90 min post-injection; p<0.001). EPO increased phosphorylation (and presumed activation) of ERK (1.6 fold vs controls; p<0.05) in phrenic motor neurons; EPO also increased pAkt (1.6 fold vs controls; p<0.05). EPO-induced pMF was abolished by the MEK/ERK inhibitor U0126 and the PI3 kinase/Akt inhibitor LY294002, demonstrating that ERK MAP kinases and Akt are both required for EPO-induced pMF. Pre-treatment with U0126 and LY294002 decreased both pERK and pAkt in phrenic motor neurons (p<0.05), indicating a complex interaction between these kinases. We conclude that EPO elicits spinal plasticity in respiratory motor control. Since EPO expression is hypoxia-sensitive, it may play a role in respiratory plasticity in conditions of prolonged or recurrent low oxygen. PMID:22539857

  14. Protective effect of rosemary on acrylamide motor neurotoxicity in spinal cord of rat offspring: postnatal follow-up study

    PubMed Central

    Al-Gholam, Marwa A.; El-Mehi, Abeer E.; El-Barbary, Abd El-Moneum; Fokar, Ahmed Zo El

    2016-01-01

    The direct interactive effects of rosemary and acrylamide on the development of motor neurons in the spinal cord remains unknown. Our goal is to confirm the protective effects of rosemary against motor neuronal degeneration induced by acrylamide in the developing postnatal rat spinal cord using a postnatal rat model. We assigned the offspring of treated female rats into control, rosemary; acrylamide group; and recovery groups. This work depended on clinical, histopathological, morphometrically, immunohistochemical and genetic methods. In the acrylamide group, we observed oxidation, motor neuron degeneration, apoptosis, myelin degeneration, neurofilament reduction, reactive gliosis. Whoever, concomitant rosemary intake and withdrawal of acrylamide modulate these effects. These findings proof that dietary rosemary can directly protect motor neuron against acrylamide toxicity in the mammalian developing spinal cord. PMID:27051566

  15. Protective effect of rosemary on acrylamide motor neurotoxicity in spinal cord of rat offspring: postnatal follow-up study.

    PubMed

    Al-Gholam, Marwa A; Nooh, Hanaa Zakaria; El-Mehi, Abeer E; El-Barbary, Abd El-Moneum; Fokar, Ahmed Zo El

    2016-03-01

    The direct interactive effects of rosemary and acrylamide on the development of motor neurons in the spinal cord remains unknown. Our goal is to confirm the protective effects of rosemary against motor neuronal degeneration induced by acrylamide in the developing postnatal rat spinal cord using a postnatal rat model. We assigned the offspring of treated female rats into control, rosemary; acrylamide group; and recovery groups. This work depended on clinical, histopathological, morphometrically, immunohistochemical and genetic methods. In the acrylamide group, we observed oxidation, motor neuron degeneration, apoptosis, myelin degeneration, neurofilament reduction, reactive gliosis. Whoever, concomitant rosemary intake and withdrawal of acrylamide modulate these effects. These findings proof that dietary rosemary can directly protect motor neuron against acrylamide toxicity in the mammalian developing spinal cord.

  16. Information to cerebellum on spinal motor networks mediated by the dorsal spinocerebellar tract

    PubMed Central

    Stecina, Katinka; Fedirchuk, Brent; Hultborn, Hans

    2013-01-01

    The main objective of this review is to re-examine the type of information transmitted by the dorsal and ventral spinocerebellar tracts (DSCT and VSCT respectively) during rhythmic motor actions such as locomotion. Based on experiments in the 1960s and 1970s, the DSCT was viewed as a relay of peripheral sensory input to the cerebellum in general, and during rhythmic movements such as locomotion and scratch. In contrast, the VSCT was seen as conveying a copy of the output of spinal neuronal circuitry, including those circuits generating rhythmic motor activity (the spinal central pattern generator, CPG). Emerging anatomical and electrophysiological information on the putative subpopulations of DSCT and VSCT neurons suggest differentiated functions for some of the subpopulations. Multiple lines of evidence support the notion that sensory input is not the only source driving DSCT neurons and, overall, there is a greater similarity between DSCT and VSCT activity than previously acknowledged. Indeed the majority of DSCT cells can be driven by spinal CPGs for locomotion and scratch without phasic sensory input. It thus seems natural to propose the possibility that CPG input to some of these neurons may contribute to distinguishing sensory inputs that are a consequence of the active locomotion from those resulting from perturbations in the external world. PMID:23613538

  17. Is spinal muscular atrophy a disease of the motor neurons only: pathogenesis and therapeutic implications?

    PubMed

    Simone, Chiara; Ramirez, Agnese; Bucchia, Monica; Rinchetti, Paola; Rideout, Hardy; Papadimitriou, Dimitra; Re, Diane B; Corti, Stefania

    2016-03-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a genetic neurological disease that causes infant mortality; no effective therapies are currently available. SMA is due to homozygous mutations and/or deletions in the survival motor neuron 1 gene and subsequent reduction of the SMN protein, leading to the death of motor neurons. However, there is increasing evidence that in addition to motor neurons, other cell types are contributing to SMA pathology. In this review, we will discuss the involvement of non-motor neuronal cells, located both inside and outside the central nervous system, in disease onset and progression. Even if SMN restoration in motor neurons is needed, it has been shown that optimal phenotypic amelioration in animal models of SMA requires a more widespread SMN correction. It has been demonstrated that non-motor neuronal cells are also involved in disease pathogenesis and could have important therapeutic implications. For these reasons it will be crucial to take this evidence into account for the clinical translation of the novel therapeutic approaches.

  18. Angiogenic microspheres promote neural regeneration and motor function recovery after spinal cord injury in rats

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Shukui; Yao, Shenglian; Wen, Yujun; Wang, Ying; Wang, Hao; Xu, Qunyuan

    2016-01-01

    This study examined sustained co-delivery of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), angiopoietin-1 and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) encapsulated in angiogenic microspheres. These spheres were delivered to sites of spinal cord contusion injury in rats, and their ability to induce vessel formation, neural regeneration and improve hindlimb motor function was assessed. At 2–8 weeks after spinal cord injury, ELISA-determined levels of VEGF, angiopoietin-1, and bFGF were significantly higher in spinal cord tissues in rats that received angiogenic microspheres than in those that received empty microspheres. Sites of injury in animals that received angiogenic microspheres also contained greater numbers of isolectin B4-binding vessels and cells positive for nestin or β III-tubulin (P < 0.01), significantly more NF-positive and serotonergic fibers, and more MBP-positive mature oligodendrocytes. Animals receiving angiogenic microspheres also suffered significantly less loss of white matter volume. At 10 weeks after injury, open field tests showed that animals that received angiogenic microspheres scored significantly higher on the Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan scale than control animals (P < 0.01). Our results suggest that biodegradable, biocompatible PLGA microspheres can release angiogenic factors in a sustained fashion into sites of spinal cord injury and markedly stimulate angiogenesis and neurogenesis, accelerating recovery of neurologic function. PMID:27641997

  19. Identification of a spinal circuit for light touch and fine motor control

    PubMed Central

    Bourane, Steeve; Grossmann, Katja S.; Britz, Olivier; Dalet, Antoine; Del Barrio, Marta Garcia; Stam, Floor J.; Garcia-Campmany, Lidia; Koch, Stephanie; Goulding, Martyn

    2015-01-01

    Sensory circuits in the dorsal spinal cord integrate and transmit multiple cutaneous sensory modalities including the sense of light touch. Here we identify a population of excitatory interneurons (INs) in the dorsal horn that are important for transmitting innocuous light touch sensation. These neurons express the ROR alpha (RORα) nuclear orphan receptor and are selectively innervated by cutaneous low threshold mechanoreceptors (LTMs). Targeted removal of RORα INs in the dorsal spinal cord leads a marked reduction in behavioral responsiveness to light touch without affecting responses to noxious and itch stimuli. RORα IN-deficient mice also display a selective deficit in corrective foot movements. This phenotype, together with our demonstration that the RORα INs are innervated by corticospinal and vestibulospinal projection neurons, argues that the RORα INs direct corrective reflex movements by integrating touch information with descending motor commands from the cortex and cerebellum. PMID:25635458

  20. Crosstalk between p38, Hsp25 and Akt in spinal motor neurons after sciatic nerve injury

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Murashov, A. K.; Ul Haq, I.; Hill, C.; Park, E.; Smith, M.; Wang, X.; Wang, X.; Goldberg, D. J.; Wolgemuth, D. J.

    2001-01-01

    The p38 stress-activated protein kinase pathway is involved in regulation of phosphorylation of Hsp25, which in turn regulates actin filament dynamic in non-neuronal cells. We report that p38, Hsp25 and Akt signaling pathways were specifically activated in spinal motor neurons after sciatic nerve axotomy. The activation of the p38 kinase was required for induction of Hsp25 expression. Furthermore, Hsp25 formed a complex with Akt, a member of PI-3 kinase pathway that prevents neuronal cell death. Together, our observations implicate Hsp25 as a central player in a complex system of signaling that may both promote regeneration of nerve fibers and prevent neuronal cell death in the injured spinal cord.

  1. Requirement for Dicer in Maintenance of Monosynaptic Sensory-Motor Circuits in the Spinal Cord.

    PubMed

    Imai, Fumiyasu; Chen, Xiaoting; Weirauch, Matthew T; Yoshida, Yutaka

    2016-11-22

    In contrast to our knowledge of mechanisms governing circuit formation, our understanding of how neural circuits are maintained is limited. Here, we show that Dicer, an RNaseIII protein required for processing microRNAs (miRNAs), is essential for maintenance of the spinal monosynaptic stretch reflex circuit in which group Ia proprioceptive sensory neurons form direct connections with motor neurons. In postnatal mice lacking Dicer in proprioceptor sensory neurons, there are no obvious defects in specificity or formation of monosynaptic sensory-motor connections. However, these circuits degrade through synapse loss and retraction of proprioceptive axonal projections from the ventral spinal cord. Peripheral terminals are also impaired without retracting from muscle targets. Interestingly, despite these central and peripheral axonal defects, proprioceptive neurons survive in the absence of Dicer-processed miRNAs. These findings reveal that Dicer, through its production of mature miRNAs, plays a key role in the maintenance of monosynaptic sensory-motor circuits.

  2. BDNF effects on functional recovery across motor behaviors after cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Hernandez-Torres, Vivian; Gransee, Heather M; Mantilla, Carlos B; Wang, Yao; Zhan, Wen-Zhi; Sieck, Gary C

    2017-02-01

    Unilateral C2 cervical spinal cord hemisection (SH) disrupts descending excitatory drive to phrenic motor neurons, thereby paralyzing the ipsilateral diaphragm muscle (DIAm) during ventilatory behaviors. Recovery of rhythmic DIAm activity ipsilateral to injury occurs over time, consistent with neuroplasticity and strengthening of spared synaptic inputs to phrenic motor neurons. Localized intrathecal delivery of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) to phrenic motor neurons after SH enhances recovery of eupneic DIAm activity. However, the impact of SH and BDNF treatment on the full range of DIAm motor behaviors has not been fully characterized. We hypothesized that all DIAm motor behaviors are affected by SH and that intrathecal BDNF enhances the recovery of both ventilatory and higher force, nonventilatory motor behaviors. An intrathecal catheter was placed in adult, male Sprague-Dawley rats at C4 to chronically infuse artificial cerebrospinal fluid (aCSF) or BDNF. DIAm electromyography (EMG) electrodes were implanted bilaterally to record activity across motor behaviors, i.e., eupnea, hypoxia-hypercapnia (10% O2 and 5% CO2), sighs, airway occlusion, and sneezing. After SH, ipsilateral DIAm EMG activity was evident in only 43% of aCSF-treated rats during eupnea, and activity was restored in all rats after BDNF treatment. The amplitude of DIAm EMG (root mean square, RMS) was reduced following SH during eupnea and hypoxia-hypercapnia in aCSF-treated rats, and BDNF treatment promoted recovery in both conditions. The amplitude of DIAm RMS EMG during sighs, airway occlusion, and sneezing was not affected by SH or BDNF treatment. We conclude that the effects of SH and BDNF treatment on DIAm activity depend on motor behavior.

  3. Reorganization and Preservation of Motor Control of the Brain in Spinal Cord Injury: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Kokotilo, Kristen J; Eng, Janice J; Curt, Armin

    2011-01-01

    Reorganization of brain function in people with CNS damage has been identified as one of the fundamental mechanisms involved in the recovery of sensori-motor function. Spinal cord injury (SCI) brain mapping studies during motor tasks aim for assessing the reorganization and preservation of brain networks involved in motor control. Revealing the activation of cortical and sub-cortical brain areas in people with SCI can indicate principal patterns of brain reorganization when the neurotrauma is distal to the brain. This review assessed brain activation after SCI in terms of intensity, volume, and somatotopic localization, as well as preservation of activation during attempted and/or imagined movements. Twenty-five studies meeting the inclusion criteria could be identified in MEDLINE (1980 to January 2008). Relevant characteristics of studies (level of lesion, time after injury, motor task) and mapping techniques varied widely. Changes in brain activation were found in both cortical and subcortical areas of individuals with SCI. In addition, several studies described a shift in the region of brain activation. These patterns appeared to be dynamic and influenced by the level, completeness and time after injury, as well as extent of clinical recovery. In addition, several aspects of reorganization of brain function following SCI resembled those reported in stroke. This review demonstrates that brain networks involved in different demands of motor control remain responsive even in chronic paralysis. These findings imply that therapeutic strategies aiming for restoring spinal cord function even in people with chronic SCI can build on a preserved competent brain control. PMID:19604097

  4. Transmission in Heteronymous Spinal Pathways Is Modified after Stroke and Related to Motor Incoordination

    PubMed Central

    Dyer, Joseph-Omer; Maupas, Eric; de Andrade Melo, Sibele; Bourbonnais, Daniel; Fleury, Jean; Forget, Robert

    2009-01-01

    Changes in reflex spinal pathways after stroke have been shown to affect motor activity in agonist and antagonist muscles acting at the same joint. However, only a few studies have evaluated the heteronymous reflex pathways modulating motoneuronal activity at different joints. This study investigates whether there are changes in the spinal facilitatory and inhibitory pathways linking knee to ankle extensors and if such changes may be related to motor deficits after stroke. The early facilitation and later inhibition of soleus H reflex evoked by the stimulation of femoral nerve at 2 times the motor threshold of the quadriceps were assessed in 15 healthy participants and on the paretic and the non-paretic sides of 15 stroke participants. The relationships between this reflex modulation and the levels of motor recovery, coordination and spasticity were then studied. Results show a significant (Mann-Whitney U; P<0.05) increase in both the peak amplitude (mean±SEM: 80±22% enhancement of the control H reflex) and duration (4.2±0.5 ms) of the facilitation on the paretic side of the stroke individuals compared to their non-paretic side (36±6% and 2.9±0.4 ms) and to the values of the control subjects (33±4% and 2.8±0.4 ms, respectively). Moreover, the later strong inhibition observed in all control subjects was decreased in the stroke subjects. Both the peak amplitude and the duration of the increased facilitation were inversely correlated (Spearman r = −0.65; P = 0.009 and r = −0.67; P = 0.007, respectively) with the level of coordination (LEMOCOT) of the paretic leg. Duration of this facilitation was also correlated (r = −0.58, P = 0.024) with the level of motor recovery (CMSA). These results confirm changes in transmission in heteronymous spinal pathways that are related to motor deficits after stroke. PMID:19122816

  5. Specific Retrograde Transduction of Spinal Motor Neurons Using Lentiviral Vectors Targeted to Presynaptic NMJ Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Eleftheriadou, I; Trabalza, A; Ellison, SM; Gharun, K; Mazarakis, ND

    2014-01-01

    To understand how receptors are involved in neuronal trafficking and to be able to utilize them for specific targeting via the peripheral route would be of great benefit. Here, we describe the generation of novel lentiviral vectors with tropism to motor neurons that were made by coexpressing onto the lentiviral surface a fusogenic glycoprotein (mutated sindbis G) and an antibody against a cell-surface receptor (Thy1.1, p75NTR, or coxsackievirus and adenovirus receptor) on the presynaptic terminal of the neuromuscular junction. These vectors exhibit binding specificity and efficient transduction of receptor positive cell lines and primary motor neurons in vitro. Targeting of each of these receptors conferred to these vectors the capability of being transported retrogradely from the axonal tip, leading to transduction of motor neurons in vitro in compartmented microfluidic cultures. In vivo delivery of coxsackievirus and adenovirus receptor-targeted vectors in leg muscles of mice resulted in predicted patterns of motor neuron labeling in lumbar spinal cord. This opens up the clinical potential of these vectors for minimally invasive administration of central nervous system-targeted therapeutics in motor neuron diseases. PMID:24670531

  6. A hybrid electrical/chemical circuit in the spinal cord generates a transient embryonic motor behavior.

    PubMed

    Knogler, Laura D; Ryan, Joel; Saint-Amant, Louis; Drapeau, Pierre

    2014-07-16

    Spontaneous network activity is a highly stereotyped early feature of developing circuits throughout the nervous system, including in the spinal cord. Spinal locomotor circuits produce a series of behaviors during development before locomotion that reflect the continual integration of spinal neurons into a functional network, but how the circuitry is reconfigured is not understood. The first behavior of the zebrafish embryo (spontaneous coiling) is mediated by an electrical circuit that subsequently generates mature locomotion (swimming) as chemical neurotransmission develops. We describe here a new spontaneous behavior, double coiling, that consists of two alternating contractions of the tail in rapid succession. Double coiling was glutamate-dependent and required descending hindbrain excitation, similar to but preceding swimming, making it a discrete intermediary developmental behavior. At the cellular level, motoneurons had a distinctive glutamate-dependent activity pattern that correlated with double coiling. Two glutamatergic interneurons, CoPAs and CiDs, had different activity profiles during this novel behavior. CoPA neurons failed to show changes in activity patterns during the period in which double coiling appears, whereas CiD neurons developed a glutamate-dependent activity pattern that correlated with double coiling and they innervated motoneurons at that time. Additionally, double coils were modified after pharmacological reduction of glycinergic neurotransmission such that embryos produced three or more rapidly alternating coils. We propose that double coiling behavior represents an important transition of the motor network from an electrically coupled spinal cord circuit that produces simple periodic coils to a spinal network driven by descending chemical neurotransmission, which generates more complex behaviors.

  7. Motor deficits and recovery in rats with unilateral spinal cord hemisection mimic the Brown-Sequard syndrome.

    PubMed

    Filli, Linard; Zörner, Björn; Weinmann, Oliver; Schwab, Martin E

    2011-08-01

    Cervical incomplete spinal cord injuries often lead to severe and persistent impairments of sensorimotor functions and are clinically the most frequent type of spinal cord injury. Understanding the motor impairments and the possible functional recovery of upper and lower extremities is of great importance. Animal models investigating motor dysfunction following cervical spinal cord injury are rare. We analysed the differential spontaneous recovery of fore- and hindlimb locomotion by detailed kinematic analysis in adult rats with unilateral C4/C5 hemisection, a lesion that leads to the Brown-Séquard syndrome in humans. The results showed disproportionately better performance of hindlimb compared with forelimb locomotion; hindlimb locomotion showed substantial recovery, whereas the ipsilesional forelimb remained in a very poor functional state. Such a differential motor recovery pattern is also known to occur in monkeys and in humans after similar spinal cord lesions. On the lesioned side, cortico-, rubro-, vestibulo- and reticulospinal tracts and the important modulatory serotonergic, dopaminergic and noradrenergic fibre systems were interrupted by the lesion. In an attempt to facilitate locomotion, different monoaminergic agonists were injected intrathecally. Injections of specific serotonergic and noradrenergic agonists in the chronic phase after the spinal cord lesion revealed remarkable, although mostly functionally negative, modulations of particular parameters of hindlimb locomotion. In contrast, forelimb locomotion was mostly unresponsive to these agonists. These results, therefore, show fundamental differences between fore- and hindlimb spinal motor circuitries and their functional dependence on remaining descending inputs and exogenous spinal excitation. Understanding these differences may help to develop future therapeutic strategies to improve upper and lower limb function in patients with incomplete cervical spinal cord injuries.

  8. Cell-type-specific miR-431 dysregulation in a motor neuron model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Wertz, Mary H; Winden, Kellen; Neveu, Pierre; Ng, Shi-Yan; Ercan, Ebru; Sahin, Mustafa

    2016-06-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal-recessive pediatric neurodegenerative disease characterized by selective loss of spinal motor neurons. It is caused by mutation in the survival of motor neuron 1, SMN1, gene and leads to loss of function of the full-length SMN protein. microRNAs (miRNAs) are small RNAs that are involved in post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. Prior studies have implicated miRNAs in the pathogenesis of motor neuron disease. We hypothesized that motor neuron-specific miRNA expression changes are involved in their selective vulnerability in SMA. Therefore, we sought to determine the effect of SMN loss on miRNAs and their target mRNAs in spinal motor neurons. We used microarray and RNAseq to profile both miRNA and mRNA expression in primary spinal motor neuron cultures after acute SMN knockdown. By integrating the miRNA:mRNA profiles, a number of dysregulated miRNAs were identified with enrichment in differentially expressed putative mRNA targets. miR-431 expression was highly increased, and a number of its putative mRNA targets were significantly downregulated in motor neurons after SMN loss. Further, we found that miR-431 regulates motor neuron neurite length by targeting several molecules previously identified to play a role in motor neuron axon outgrowth, including chondrolectin. Together, our findings indicate that cell-type-specific dysregulation of miR-431 plays a role in the SMA motor neuron phenotype.

  9. Cure of urinary bladder functions in severe (95%) motoric complete cervical spinal cord injury in human.

    PubMed

    Schalow, G

    2010-01-01

    Severe cervical Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) leads to quadriplegia, and autonomic dysfunctions. Bladder/bowel continence, cardiovascular performance, and breathing are impaired besides movements. Even though there are no fully restorative treatments for SCI, I report about a patient, who suffered a severe cervical, motoric complete SCI, in whom urinary bladder functions were fully repaired by functional and structural repair (limited regeneration of the cord) upon 2.5 years of Coordination Dynamics Therapy (CDT). On the repair of the blood circulation (no occurrence of pressure ulcers any more), breathing and motor functions was reported earlier. The mechanism that underlies this important repair of urinary bladder functions is the learning transfer from movements to bladder functions. The human bladder repair is analyzed at the neuron level, the collective variable level (System Theory of Pattern Formation), the movement, and the clinical diagnostic level.

  10. Pulmonary function in patients with hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy: a comparison of patients with and without spinal deformity.

    PubMed

    Horacek, Ondrej; Chlumsky, Jan; Mazanec, Radim; Kolar, Pavel; Andel, Ross; Kobesova, Alena

    2012-12-01

    We assessed pulmonary function in hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy. Fourteen neuropathy patients without spinal deformity (group 1), 14 with spinal deformity (group 2), and 16 individuals with idiopathic spinal deformity (group 3) matched to group 2 for age, height and Cobb angle, were included. Hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy severity was measured with Charcot-Marie-Tooth Neuropathy Score. All participants exhibited mild decrease in maximal inspiratory pressure at the mouth. One-way analysis of variance yielded significant main effects for lung volumes - slow vital capacity, forced expiratory volume in 1s, and total lung capacity (p's<.01), attributable to greater volumes in group 1 compared to groups with spinal deformity - and transfer factor for carbon monoxide (p=.013), reflecting differences between groups 1 vs. 2. Slow vital capacity and total lung capacity correlated with maximal inspiratory pressure at the mouth in group 2, whereas slow vital capacity correlated with muscle work in group 3 (p's<.05). Decreased lung volume may be due to impaired respiratory muscle strength in hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy with spinal deformity and due to spinal deformity in idiopathic patients.

  11. Effect of hyperbaric oxygen on MMP9/2 expression and motor function in rats with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Hou, Ying-Nuo; Ding, Wen-Yuan; Shen, Yong; Yang, Da-Long; Wang, Lin-Feng; Zhang, Peng

    2015-01-01

    To study the effect of hyperbaric oxygen intervention on the microenvironment of nerve regeneration after spinal cord injury modeling and to explore the possible mechanism of nerve regeneration and functional recovery in rats with spinal cord injury. In 98 adult female SD rats, 90 successful models were obtained, which were divided into sham group, spinal cord injury group and hyperbaric oxygen group using randomized block method, 30/group. Spinal cord injury rat model was established in accordance with the modified Allen method. Motor function was assessed at the time points of before modeling, one day, three days, one week, two weeks, three weeks and four weeks after modeling respectively by BBB rating, inclined plane test and improved Tarlov score. At 3 days after modeling, apoptosis of neuronal cells in spinal cord injury region in experimental group was detected by TUNEL method; gene and protein expression of MMP9/2 in spinal cord injury and surrounding tissues was detected by RT-PCR and Western blot assay. At 4 weeks after modeling, histopathological morphological changes in spinal cord injury were observed by HE staining; fluorogold retrograde tracing was used to observe the regeneration and distribution of spinal cord nerve fibers and axon regeneration was observed by TEM. The three motor function scores in hyperbaric oxygen group at each time point after two weeks of treatment were significantly increased compared with spinal cord injury group (P < 0.05). At 3 d after modeling, apoptosis index in hyperbaric oxygen group were significantly lower than those in spinal cord injury group (P < 0.05). At 72 h after modeling, compared with spinal cord injury group, MMP9/2 gene and protein expression in hyperbaric oxygen group was significantly lower (P < 0.05). At four weeks after modeling, fluorogold positive nerve fibers were the most sham group, followed by hyperbaric oxygen group and spinal cord injury group in order; the differences among the groups were

  12. ALS disrupts spinal motor neuron maturation and aging pathways within gene co-expression networks

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Ritchie; Sances, Samuel; Gowing, Genevieve; Amoroso, Mackenzie Weygandt; O'Rourke, Jacqueline G.; Sahabian, Anais; Wichterle, Hynek; Baloh, Robert H.; Sareen, Dhruv

    2016-01-01

    Modeling Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) with human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) aims to reenact embryogenesis, maturation, and aging of spinal motor neurons (spMNs) in vitro. As the maturity of spMNs grown in vitro compared to spMNs in vivo remains largely unaddressed, it is unclear to what extent this in vitro system captures critical aspects of spMN development and molecular signatures associated with ALS. Here, we compared transcriptomes among iPSC-derived spMNs, fetal, and adult spinal tissues. This approach produced a maturation scale revealing that iPSC-derived spMNs were more similar to fetal spinal tissue than to adult spMNs. Additionally, we resolved gene networks and pathways associated with spMN maturation and aging. These networks enriched for pathogenic familial ALS genetic variants and were disrupted in sporadic ALS spMNs. Altogether, our findings suggest that developing strategies to further mature and age iPSC-derived spMNs will provide more effective iPSC models of ALS pathology. PMID:27428653

  13. Fine motor skill training enhances functional plasticity of the corticospinal tract after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jian; Yang, Xiao-yu; Xia, Wei-wei; Dong, Jian; Yang, Mao-guang; Jiao, Jian-hang

    2016-01-01

    Following central nervous system injury, axonal sprouts form distal to the injury site and extend into the denervated area, reconstructing neural circuits through neural plasticity. How to facilitate this plasticity has become the key to the success of central nervous system repair. It remains controversial whether fine motor skill training contributes to the recovery of neurological function after spinal cord injury. Therefore, we established a rat model of unilateral corticospinal tract injury using a pyramidal tract cutting method. Horizontal ladder crawling and food ball grasping training procedures were conducted 2 weeks before injury and 3 days after injury. The neurological function of rat forelimbs was assessed at 1, 2, 3, 4, and 6 weeks after injury. Axon growth was observed with biotinylated dextran amine anterograde tracing in the healthy corticospinal tract of the denervated area at different time periods. Our results demonstrate that compared with untrained rats, functional recovery was better in the forelimbs and forepaws of trained rats. The number of axons and the expression of growth associated protein 43 were increased at the injury site 3 weeks after corticospinal tract injury. These findings confirm that fine motor skill training promotes central nervous system plasticity in spinal cord injury rats. PMID:28197197

  14. Spinal cord injury affects I-wave facilitation in human motor cortex.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Bathke, Arne C; Orioli, Andrea; Schwenker, Kerstin; Frey, Vanessa; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2015-07-01

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a useful non-invasive approach for studying cortical physiology. To further clarify the mechanisms of cortical reorganization after spinal cord injury (SCI), we used a non-invasive paired TMS protocol for the investigation of the corticospinal I-waves, the so-called I-wave facilitation, in eight patients with cervical SCI. We found that the pattern of I-wave facilitation significantly differs between SCI patients with normal and abnormal central motor conduction (CMCT), and healthy controls. The group with normal CMCT showed increased I-wave facilitation, while the group with abnormal CMCT showed lower I-wave facilitation compared to a control group. The facilitatory I-wave interaction occurs at the level of the motor cortex, and the mechanisms responsible for the production of I-waves are under control of GABA-related inhibition. Therefore, the findings of our small sample preliminary study provide further physiological evidence of increased motor cortical excitability in patients with preserved corticospinal projections. This is possibly due to decreased GABAergic intracortical inhibition. The excitability of networks producing short-interval intracortical facilitation could increase after SCI as a mechanism to enhance activation of residual corticospinal tract pathways and thus compensate for the impaired ability of the motor cortex to generate appropriate voluntary movements. Finally, the I-wave facilitation technique could be used in clinical neurorehabilitation as an additional method of assessing and monitoring function in SCI.

  15. Shaping appropriate locomotive motor output through interlimb neural pathway within spinal cord in humans.

    PubMed

    Kawashima, Noritaka; Nozaki, Daichi; Abe, Masaki O; Nakazawa, Kimitaka

    2008-06-01

    Direct evidence supporting the contribution of upper limb motion on the generation of locomotive motor output in humans is still limited. Here, we aimed to examine the effect of upper limb motion on locomotor-like muscle activities in the lower limb in persons with spinal cord injury (SCI). By imposing passive locomotion-like leg movements, all cervical incomplete (n = 7) and thoracic complete SCI subjects (n = 5) exhibited locomotor-like muscle activity in their paralyzed soleus muscles. Upper limb movements in thoracic complete SCI subjects did not affect the electromyographic (EMG) pattern of the muscle activities. This is quite natural since neural connections in the spinal cord between regions controlling upper and lower limbs were completely lost in these subjects. On the other hand, in cervical incomplete SCI subjects, in whom such neural connections were at least partially preserved, the locomotor-like muscle activity was significantly affected by passively imposed upper limb movements. Specifically, the upper limb movements generally increased the soleus EMG activity during the backward swing phase, which corresponds to the stance phase in normal gait. Although some subjects showed a reduction of the EMG magnitude when arm motion was imposed, this was still consistent with locomotor-like motor output because the reduction of the EMG occurred during the forward swing phase corresponding to the swing phase. The present results indicate that the neural signal induced by the upper limb movements contributes not merely to enhance but also to shape the lower limb locomotive motor output, possibly through interlimb neural pathways. Such neural interaction between upper and lower limb motions could be an underlying neural mechanism of human bipedal locomotion.

  16. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Stuck, Ellen D.; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity. PMID:26668821

  17. The effects of cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation on motor pathways supplying the upper limb in humans

    PubMed Central

    D’Amico, Jessica M.; Butler, Jane E.; Taylor, Janet L.

    2017-01-01

    Non-invasive, weak direct current stimulation can induce changes in excitability of underlying neural tissue. Many studies have used transcranial direct current stimulation to induce changes in the brain, however more recently a number of studies have used transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation to induce changes in the spinal cord. This study further characterises the effects following cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation on motor pathways supplying the upper limb. In Study 1, on two separate days, participants (n = 12, 5 F) received 20 minutes of either real or sham direct current stimulation at 3 mA through electrodes placed in an anterior-posterior configuration over the neck (anode anterior). Biceps brachii, flexor carpi radialis and first dorsal interosseous responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation (motor evoked potentials) and cervicomedullary stimulation (cervicomedullary motor evoked potentials) were measured before and after real or sham stimulation. In Study 2, on two separate days, participants (n = 12, 7 F) received either real or sham direct current stimulation in the same way as for Study 1. Before and after real or sham stimulation, median nerve stimulation elicited M waves and H reflexes in the flexor carpi radialis. H-reflex recruitment curves and homosynaptic depression of the H reflex were assessed. Results show that the effects of real and sham direct current stimulation did not differ for motor evoked potentials or cervicomedullary motor evoked potentials for any muscle, nor for H-reflex recruitment curve parameters or homosynaptic depression. Cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation with the parameters described here does not modify motor responses to corticospinal stimulation nor does it modify H reflexes of the upper limb. These results are important for the emerging field of transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation. PMID:28225813

  18. The effects of cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation on motor pathways supplying the upper limb in humans.

    PubMed

    Dongés, Siobhan C; D'Amico, Jessica M; Butler, Jane E; Taylor, Janet L

    2017-01-01

    Non-invasive, weak direct current stimulation can induce changes in excitability of underlying neural tissue. Many studies have used transcranial direct current stimulation to induce changes in the brain, however more recently a number of studies have used transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation to induce changes in the spinal cord. This study further characterises the effects following cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation on motor pathways supplying the upper limb. In Study 1, on two separate days, participants (n = 12, 5 F) received 20 minutes of either real or sham direct current stimulation at 3 mA through electrodes placed in an anterior-posterior configuration over the neck (anode anterior). Biceps brachii, flexor carpi radialis and first dorsal interosseous responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation (motor evoked potentials) and cervicomedullary stimulation (cervicomedullary motor evoked potentials) were measured before and after real or sham stimulation. In Study 2, on two separate days, participants (n = 12, 7 F) received either real or sham direct current stimulation in the same way as for Study 1. Before and after real or sham stimulation, median nerve stimulation elicited M waves and H reflexes in the flexor carpi radialis. H-reflex recruitment curves and homosynaptic depression of the H reflex were assessed. Results show that the effects of real and sham direct current stimulation did not differ for motor evoked potentials or cervicomedullary motor evoked potentials for any muscle, nor for H-reflex recruitment curve parameters or homosynaptic depression. Cervical transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation with the parameters described here does not modify motor responses to corticospinal stimulation nor does it modify H reflexes of the upper limb. These results are important for the emerging field of transcutaneous spinal direct current stimulation.

  19. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Huie, J Russell; Stuck, Ellen D; Lee, Kuan H; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Beattie, Michael S; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C; Grau, James W; Ferguson, Adam R

    2015-01-01

    Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity.

  20. Simulation system of spinal cord motor nuclei and associated nerves and muscles, in a Web-based architecture.

    PubMed

    Cisi, Rogerio R L; Kohn, André F

    2008-12-01

    A Web-based simulation system of the spinal cord circuitry responsible for muscle control is described. The simulator employs two-compartment motoneuron models for S, FR and FF types, with synaptic inputs acting through conductance variations. Four motoneuron pools with their associated interneurons are represented in the simulator, with the possibility of inclusion of more than 2,000 neurons and 2,000,000 synapses. Each motoneuron action potential is followed, after a conduction delay, by a motor unit potential and a motor unit twitch. The sums of all motor unit potentials and twitches result in the electromyogram (EMG), and the muscle force, respectively. Inputs to the motoneuron pool come from populations of interneurons (Ia reciprocal inhibitory interneurons, Ib interneurons, and Renshaw cells) and from stochastic point processes associated with descending tracts. To simulate human electrophysiological experiments, the simulator incorporates external nerve stimulation with orthodromic and antidromic propagation. This provides the mechanisms for reflex generation and activation of spinal neuronal circuits that modulate the activity of another motoneuron pool (e.g., by reciprocal inhibition). The generation of the H-reflex by the Ia-motoneuron pool system and its modulation by spinal cord interneurons is included in the simulation system. Studies with the simulator may include the statistics of individual motoneuron or interneuron spike trains or the collective effect of a motor nucleus on the dynamics of muscle force control. Properties associated with motor-unit recruitment, motor-unit synchronization, recurrent inhibition and reciprocal inhibition may be investigated.

  1. Mechanism of Forelimb Motor Function Restoration after Cervical Spinal Cord Hemisection in Rats: A Comparison of Juveniles and Adults.

    PubMed

    Hasegawa, Atsushi; Takahashi, Masahito; Satomi, Kazuhiko; Ohne, Hideaki; Takeuchi, Takumi; Sato, Shunsuke; Ichimura, Shoichi

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate forelimb motor function after cervical spinal cord injury in juvenile and adult rats. Both rats received a left segmental hemisection of the spinal cord after C3-C4 laminectomy. Behavioral evaluation of motor function was monitored and assessed using the New Rating Scale (NRS) and Forelimb Locomotor Scale (FLS) and by measuring the range of motion (ROM) of both the elbow and wrist. Complete left forelimb motor paralysis was observed in both rats. The NRS showed motor function recovery restored to 50.2 ± 24.7% in juvenile rats and 34.0 ± 19.8% in adult rats. FLS was 60.4 ± 26.8% in juvenile rats and 46.5 ± 26.9% in adult rats. ROM of the elbow and wrist were 88.9 ± 20.6% and 44.4 ± 24.1% in juvenile rats and 70.0 ± 29.2% and 40.0 ± 21.1% in adult rats. Thus, the NRS and ROM of the elbow showed a significant difference between age groups. These results indicate that left hemisection of the cervical spinal cord was not related to right-sided motor functions. Moreover, while motor paralysis of the left forelimb gradually recovered in both groups, the improvement was greater in juvenile rats.

  2. Templated agarose scaffolds for the support of motor axon regeneration into sites of complete spinal cord transection.

    PubMed

    Gao, Mingyong; Lu, Paul; Bednark, Bridget; Lynam, Dan; Conner, James M; Sakamoto, Jeff; Tuszynski, Mark H

    2013-02-01

    Bioengineered scaffolds have the potential to support and guide injured axons after spinal cord injury, contributing to neural repair. In previous studies we have reported that templated agarose scaffolds can be fabricated into precise linear arrays and implanted into the partially injured spinal cord, organizing growth and enhancing the distance over which local spinal cord axons and ascending sensory axons extend into a lesion site. However, most human injuries are severe, sparing only thin rims of spinal cord tissue in the margins of a lesion site. Accordingly, in the present study we examined whether template agarose scaffolds seeded with bone marrow stromal cells secreting Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) would support regeneration into severe, complete spinal cord transection sites. Moreover, we tested responses of motor axon populations originating from the brainstem. We find that templated agarose scaffolds support motor axon regeneration into a severe spinal cord injury model and organize axons into fascicles of highly linear configuration. BDNF significantly enhances axonal growth. Collectively, these findings support the feasibility of scaffold implantation for enhancing central regeneration after even severe central nervous system injury.

  3. Synergistic integration of Netrin and ephrin axon guidance signals by spinal motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Poliak, Sebastian; Morales, Daniel; Croteau, Louis-Philippe; Krawchuk, Dayana; Palmesino, Elena; Morton, Susan; Cloutier, Jean-François; Charron, Frederic; Dalva, Matthew B; Ackerman, Susan L; Kao, Tzu-Jen; Kania, Artur

    2015-01-01

    During neural circuit assembly, axonal growth cones are exposed to multiple guidance signals at trajectory choice points. While axonal responses to individual guidance cues have been extensively studied, less is known about responses to combination of signals and underlying molecular mechanisms. Here, we studied the convergence of signals directing trajectory selection of spinal motor axons entering the limb. We first demonstrate that Netrin-1 attracts and repels distinct motor axon populations, according to their expression of Netrin receptors. Quantitative in vitro assays demonstrate that motor axons synergistically integrate both attractive or repulsive Netrin-1 signals together with repulsive ephrin signals. Our investigations of the mechanism of ephrin-B2 and Netrin-1 integration demonstrate that the Netrin receptor Unc5c and the ephrin receptor EphB2 can form a complex in a ligand-dependent manner and that Netrin–ephrin synergistic growth cones responses involve the potentiation of Src family kinase signaling, a common effector of both pathways. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.10841.001 PMID:26633881

  4. Alterations in multidimensional motor unit number index of hand muscles after incomplete cervical spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, Le; Li, Xiaoyan; Liu, Jie; Zhou, Ping

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to apply a novel multidimensional motor unit number index (MD-MUNIX) technique to examine hand muscles in patients with incomplete cervical spinal cord injury (SCI). The MD-MUNIX was estimated from the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) and different levels of surface interference pattern electromyogram (EMG) at multiple directions of voluntary isometric muscle contraction. The MD-MUNIX was applied in the first dorsal interosseous (FDI), thenar and hypothenar muscles of SCI (n = 12) and healthy control (n = 12) subjects. The results showed that the SCI subjects had significantly smaller CMAP and MD-MUNIX in all the three examined muscles, compared to those derived from the healthy control subjects. The multidimensional motor unit size index (MD-MUSIX) demonstrated significantly larger values for the FDI and hypothenar muscles in SCI subjects than those from healthy control subjects, whereas the MD-MUSIX enlargement was marginally significant for the thenar muscles. The findings from the MD-MUNIX analyses provide an evidence of motor unit loss in hand muscles of cervical SCI patients, contributing to hand function deterioration. PMID:26005410

  5. eGFP expression under the Uchl1 promoter labels corticospinal motor neurons and a subpopulation of degeneration resistant spinal motor neurons in ALS mouse models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasvoina, Marina V.

    Current understanding of basic cellular and molecular mechanisms for motor neuron vulnerability during motor neuron disease initiation and progression is incomplete. The complex cytoarchitecture and cellular heterogeneity of the cortex and spinal cord greatly impedes our ability to visualize, isolate, and study specific neuron populations in both healthy and diseased states. We generated a novel reporter line, the Uchl1-eGFP mouse, in which cortical and spinal components of motor neuron circuitry are genetically labeled with eGFP under the Uchl1 promoter. A series of cellular and anatomical analyses combined with retrograde labeling, molecular marker expression, and electrophysiology were employed to determine identity of eGFP expressing cells in the motor cortex and the spinal cord of novel Uchl1-eGFP reporter mice. We conclude that eGFP is expressed in corticospinal motor neurons (CSMN) in the motor cortex and a subset of S-type alpha and gamma spinal motor neurons (SMN) in the spinal cord. hSOD1G93A and Alsin-/- mice, mouse models for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), were bred to Uchl1-eGFP reporter mouse line to investigate the pathophysiology and underlying mechanisms of CSMN degeneration in vivo. Evidence suggests early and progressive degeneration of CSMN and SMN in the hSOD1G93A transgenic mice. We show an early increase of autophagosome formation in the apical dendrites of vulnerable CSMN in hSOD1G93A-UeGFP mice, which is localized to the apical dendrites. In addition, labeling S-type alpha and gamma SMN in the hSOD1G93A-UeGFP mice provide a unique opportunity to study basis of their resistance to degeneration. Mice lacking alsin show moderate clinical phenotype and mild CSMN axon degeneration in the spinal cord, which suggests vulnerability of CSMN. Therefore, we investigated the CSMN cellular and axon defects in aged Alsin-/- mice bred to Uchl1-eGFP reporter mouse line. We show that while CSMN are preserved and lack signs of degeneration, CSMN axons

  6. Different phase delays of peripheral input to primate motor cortex and spinal cord promote cancellation at physiological tremor frequencies

    PubMed Central

    Koželj, Saša

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the spinal cord and motor cortex (M1) are partially phase-locked to cycles of physiological tremor, but with opposite phases. Convergence of spinal and cortical activity onto motoneurons may thus produce phase cancellation and a reduction in tremor amplitude. The mechanisms underlying this phase difference are unknown. We investigated coherence between spinal and M1 activity with sensory input. In two anesthetized monkeys, we electrically stimulated the medial, ulnar, deep radial, and superficial radial nerves; stimuli were timed as independent Poisson processes (rate 10 Hz). Single units were recorded from M1 (147 cells) or cervical spinal cord (61 cells). Ninety M1 cells were antidromically identified as pyramidal tract neurons (PTNs); M1 neurons were additionally classified according to M1 subdivision (rostral/caudal, M1r/c). Spike-stimulus coherence analysis revealed significant coupling over a broad range of frequencies, with the strongest coherence at <50 Hz. Delays implied by the slope of the coherence phase-frequency relationship were greater than the response onset latency, reflecting the importance of late response components for the transmission of oscillatory inputs. The spike-stimulus coherence phase over the 6–13 Hz physiological tremor band differed significantly between M1 and spinal cells (phase differences relative to the cord of 2.72 ± 0.29 and 1.72 ± 0.37 radians for PTNs from M1c and M1r, respectively). We conclude that different phases of the response to peripheral input could partially underlie antiphase M1 and spinal cord activity during motor behavior. The coordinated action of spinal and cortical feedback will act to reduce tremulous oscillations, possibly improving the overall stability and precision of motor control. PMID:24572094

  7. Motor Alterations Induced by Chronic 4-Aminopyridine Infusion in the Spinal Cord In vivo: Role of Glutamate and GABA Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Lazo-Gómez, Rafael; Tapia, Ricardo

    2016-01-01

    Motor neuron (MN) degeneration is the pathological hallmark of MN diseases, a group of neurodegenerative disorders clinically manifested as muscle fasciculations and hyperreflexia, followed by paralysis, respiratory failure, and death. Ample evidence supports a role of glutamate-mediated excitotoxicity in motor death. In previous work we showed that stimulation of glutamate release from nerve endings by perfusion of the K+-channel blocker 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) in the rat hippocampus induces seizures and neurodegeneration, and that AMPA infusion in the spinal cord produces paralysis and MN death. On these bases, in this work we have tested the effect of the chronic infusion of 4-AP in the spinal cord, using implanted osmotic minipumps, on motor activity and on MN survival, and the mechanisms underlying this effect. 4-AP produced muscle fasciculations and motor deficits assessed in two motor tests, which start 2–3 h after the implant, which ameliorated spontaneously within 6–7 days, but no neurodegeneration. These effects were prevented by both AMPA and NMDA receptors blockers. The role of GABAA receptors was also explored, and we found that chronic infusion of bicuculline induced moderate MN degeneration and enhanced the hyperexcitation produced by 4-AP. Unexpectedly, the GABAAR agonist muscimol also induced motor deficits and failed to prevent the MN death induced by AMPA. We conclude that motor alterations induced by chronic 4-AP infusion in the spinal cord in vivo is due to ionotropic glutamate receptor overactivation and that blockade of GABAergic neurotransmission induces MN death under chronic conditions. These results shed light on the role of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in the regulation of MN excitability in the spinal cord. PMID:27242406

  8. Collateral development and spinal motor reorganization after nerve injury and repair

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Youlai; Zhang, Peixun; Han, Na; Kou, Yuhui; Yin, Xiaofeng; Jiang, Baoguo

    2016-01-01

    Functional recovery is often unsatisfactory after severe extended nerve defects or proximal nerve trunks injuries repaired by traditional repair methods, as the long regeneration distance for the regenerated axons to reinnervate their original target end-organs. The proximal nerve stump can regenerate with many collaterals that reinnervate the distal stump after peripheral nerve injury, it may be possible to use nearby fewer nerve fibers to repair more nerve fibers at the distal end to shorten the regenerating distance. In this study, the proximal peroneal nerve was used to repair both the distal peroneal and tibial nerve. The number and location of motor neurons in spinal cord as well as functional and morphological recovery were assessed at 2 months, 4 months and 8 months after nerve repair, respectively. Projections from the intact peroneal and tibial nerves were also studied in normal animals. The changes of motor neurons were assessed using the retrograde neurotracers FG and DiI to backlabel motor neurons that regenerate axons into two different pathways. To evaluate the functional recovery, the muscle forces and sciatic function index were examined. The muscles and myelinated axons were assessed using electrophysiology and histology. The results showed that all labeled motor neurons after nerve repair were always confined within the normal peroneal nerve pool and nearly all the distribution of motor neurons labeled via distal different nerves was disorganized as compared to normal group. However, there was a significant decline in the number of double labeled motor neurons and an obvious improvement with respect to the functional and morphological recovery between 2 and 8 months. In addition, the tibial/peroneal motor neuron number ratio at different times was 2.11±0.05, 2.13±0.08, 2.09±0.12, respectively, and was close to normal group (2.21±0.09). Quantitative analysis showed no significant morphological differences between myelinated nerve fibers

  9. Collateral development and spinal motor reorganization after nerve injury and repair.

    PubMed

    Yu, Youlai; Zhang, Peixun; Han, Na; Kou, Yuhui; Yin, Xiaofeng; Jiang, Baoguo

    2016-01-01

    Functional recovery is often unsatisfactory after severe extended nerve defects or proximal nerve trunks injuries repaired by traditional repair methods, as the long regeneration distance for the regenerated axons to reinnervate their original target end-organs. The proximal nerve stump can regenerate with many collaterals that reinnervate the distal stump after peripheral nerve injury, it may be possible to use nearby fewer nerve fibers to repair more nerve fibers at the distal end to shorten the regenerating distance. In this study, the proximal peroneal nerve was used to repair both the distal peroneal and tibial nerve. The number and location of motor neurons in spinal cord as well as functional and morphological recovery were assessed at 2 months, 4 months and 8 months after nerve repair, respectively. Projections from the intact peroneal and tibial nerves were also studied in normal animals. The changes of motor neurons were assessed using the retrograde neurotracers FG and DiI to backlabel motor neurons that regenerate axons into two different pathways. To evaluate the functional recovery, the muscle forces and sciatic function index were examined. The muscles and myelinated axons were assessed using electrophysiology and histology. The results showed that all labeled motor neurons after nerve repair were always confined within the normal peroneal nerve pool and nearly all the distribution of motor neurons labeled via distal different nerves was disorganized as compared to normal group. However, there was a significant decline in the number of double labeled motor neurons and an obvious improvement with respect to the functional and morphological recovery between 2 and 8 months. In addition, the tibial/peroneal motor neuron number ratio at different times was 2.11±0.05, 2.13±0.08, 2.09±0.12, respectively, and was close to normal group (2.21±0.09). Quantitative analysis showed no significant morphological differences between myelinated nerve fibers

  10. Fictive rhythmic motor patterns produced by the tail spinal cord in salamanders.

    PubMed

    Charrier, V; Cabelguen, J-M

    2013-01-01

    Most investigations into the role of the body axis in vertebrate locomotion have focused on the trunk, although in most tetrapods, the tail also plays an active role. In salamanders, the tail contributes to propulsion during swimming and to dynamic balance and maneuverability during terrestrial locomotion. The aim of the present study was to obtain information concerning the neural mechanisms that produce tail muscle contractions during locomotion in the salamander Pleurodeles waltlii. We recorded the ventral root activities in in vitro spinal cord preparations in which locomotor-like activity was induced via bath application of N-methyl-d-aspartate (20μM) and d-serine (10μM). Recordings showed that the tail spinal cord is capable of producing propagated waves of motor activity that alternate between the left and right sides. Lesion experiments further revealed that the tail rhythmogenic network is composed of a double chain of identical hemisegmental oscillators. Finally, using spinal cord preparations bathed in a chamber partitioned into two pools, we revealed efficient short-distance coupling between the trunk and tail networks. Together, our results demonstrate the existence of a pattern generator for rhythmic tail movements in the salamander and show that the global architecture of the tail network is similar to that previously proposed for the mid-trunk locomotor network in the salamander. Our findings further support the view that salamanders can control their trunk and tail independently during stepping movements. The relevance of our results in relation to the generation of tail muscle contractions in freely moving salamanders is discussed.

  11. Fatigue-induced motor cortex excitability changes in subjects with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Brigo, Francesco; Höller, Peter; Christova, Monica; Tezzon, Frediano; Golaszewski, Stefan; Trinka, Eugen

    2013-10-01

    To further investigate the mechanisms of exercise-induced cortical plasticity after spinal cord injury (SCI), the cortical silent period (CoSP) evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) during a fatiguing muscle contraction was evaluated in 5 patients with incomplete cervical SCI and in 5 healthy subjects. The physiological lengthening of CoSP end latency during fatigue was not observed in the SCI patients. This reduced intracortical inhibition, probably secondary to decreased activity of the GABAergic inhibitory interneurons that modulate the corticomotoneuronal output, could represent a 'positive' neuroplastic response in an attempt to compensate for the loss of corticospinal axons. The investigation of motor cortex excitability during fatiguing exercise may shed light on the role of exercise therapy in promoting brain reorganization and functional recovery in humans.

  12. Chronic uranium contamination alters spinal motor neuron integrity via modulation of SMN1 expression and microglia recruitment.

    PubMed

    Saint-Marc, Brice; Elie, Christelle; Manens, Line; Tack, Karine; Benderitter, Marc; Gueguen, Yann; Ibanez, Chrystelle

    2016-07-08

    Consequences of uranium contamination have been extensively studied in brain as cognitive function impairments were observed in rodents. Locomotor disturbances have also been described in contaminated animals. Epidemiological studies have revealed increased risk of motor neuron diseases in veterans potentially exposed to uranium during their military duties. To our knowledge, biological response of spinal cord to uranium contamination has not been studied even though it has a crucial role in locomotion. Four groups of rats were contaminated with increasing concentrations of uranium in their drinking water compared to a control group to study cellular mechanisms involved in locomotor disorders. Nissl staining of spinal cord sections revealed the presence of chromatolytic neurons in the ventral horn. This observation was correlated with a decreased number of motor neurons in the highly contaminated group and a decrease of SMN1 protein expression (Survival of Motor Neuron 1). While contamination impairs motor neuron integrity, an increasing number of microglial cells indicates the trigger of a neuroinflammation process. Potential overexpression of a microglial recruitment chemokine, MCP-1 (Monocyte Chimioattractant Protein 1), by motor neurons themselves could mediate this process. Studies on spinal cord appear to be relevant for risk assessment of population exposed via contaminated food and water.

  13. Brain motor control assessment of upper limb function in patients with spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Zoghi, Maryam; Galea, Mary; Morgan, David

    2016-01-01

    Background The brain motor control assessment (BMCA) for the upper limb has been developed to add resolution to the clinical evaluation in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI). BMCA is a surface electromyography (sEMG)-based measure of motor output from the central nervous system during a variety of reflex and voluntary motor tasks performed under strictly controlled conditions. Method Nine participants were recruited and assessed four times over a period of 1 year in a prospective cohort study design. The sEMG of 15 muscles (7 muscles from each upper limb and rectus abdominis) were recorded throughout the following stages of the BMCA protocol: (i) relaxation, (ii) reinforcement maneuvers, (iii) voluntary tasks, (iv) tendon-tap reflex responses, (v) vibration responses. Results Similarity index (SI) values were significantly lower in the SCI group for unilateral shoulder abduction (P = 0.006) and adduction (P = 0.021), elbow extension (P = 0.038), wrist flexion/extension with palm up (P < 0.001; P < 0.001) and wrist flexion with palm down (P = 0.016). sEMG magnitudes were also significantly lower in the SCI group for wrist flexion/extension with palm up (P < 0.001; P = 0.042). SI changes over time were significant for tasks related to wrist joint (P = 0.002). Conclusion Clinicians who are involved in rehabilitation of patients with SCI can use the BMCA to assess their patients’ motor control abilities and monitor their progression throughout their rehabilitation process. The results of this type of neurophysiological assessment might be useful to tailor therapeutic strategies for each patient. PMID:25582333

  14. A modern neuroscience approach to chronic spinal pain: combining pain neuroscience education with cognition-targeted motor control training.

    PubMed

    Nijs, Jo; Meeus, Mira; Cagnie, Barbara; Roussel, Nathalie A; Dolphens, Mieke; Van Oosterwijck, Jessica; Danneels, Lieven

    2014-05-01

    Chronic spinal pain (CSP) is a severely disabling disorder, including nontraumatic chronic low back and neck pain, failed back surgery, and chronic whiplash-associated disorders. Much of the current therapy is focused on input mechanisms (treating peripheral elements such as muscles and joints) and output mechanisms (addressing motor control), while there is less attention to processing (central) mechanisms. In addition to the compelling evidence for impaired motor control of spinal muscles in patients with CSP, there is increasing evidence that central mechanisms (ie, hyperexcitability of the central nervous system and brain abnormalities) play a role in CSP. Hence, treatments for CSP should address not only peripheral dysfunctions but also the brain. Therefore, a modern neuroscience approach, comprising therapeutic pain neuroscience education followed by cognition-targeted motor control training, is proposed. This perspective article explains why and how such an approach to CSP can be applied in physical therapist practice.

  15. Trunk robot rehabilitation training with active stepping reorganizes and enriches trunk motor cortex representations in spinal transected rats.

    PubMed

    Oza, Chintan S; Giszter, Simon F

    2015-05-06

    Trunk motor control is crucial for postural stability and propulsion after low thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI) in animals and humans. Robotic rehabilitation aimed at trunk shows promise in SCI animal models and patients. However, little is known about the effect of SCI and robot rehabilitation of trunk on cortical motor representations. We previously showed reorganization of trunk motor cortex after adult SCI. Non-stepping training also exacerbated some SCI-driven plastic changes. Here we examine effects of robot rehabilitation that promotes recovery of hindlimb weight support functions on trunk motor cortex representations. Adult rats spinal transected as neonates (NTX rats) at the T9/10 level significantly improve function with our robot rehabilitation paradigm, whereas treadmill-only trained do not. We used intracortical microstimulation to map motor cortex in two NTX groups: (1) treadmill trained (control group); and (2) robot-assisted treadmill trained (improved function group). We found significant robot rehabilitation-driven changes in motor cortex: (1) caudal trunk motor areas expanded; (2) trunk coactivation at cortex sites increased; (3) richness of trunk cortex motor representations, as examined by cumulative entropy and mutual information for different trunk representations, increased; (4) trunk motor representations in the cortex moved toward more normal topography; and (5) trunk and forelimb motor representations that SCI-driven plasticity and compensations had caused to overlap were segregated. We conclude that effective robot rehabilitation training induces significant reorganization of trunk motor cortex and partially reverses some plastic changes that may be adaptive in non-stepping paraplegia after SCI.

  16. Motor function and survival following radiotherapy alone for metastatic epidural spinal cord compression in melanoma patients.

    PubMed

    Huttenlocher, Stefan; Sehmisch, Lena; Rudat, Volker; Rades, Dirk

    2014-12-01

    The major goal of this study was the identification of predictors for motor function and survival after irradiation alone for metastatic epidural spinal cord compression (MESCC) from melanoma. Ten variables (age, gender, performance status, number of involved vertebrae, pre-radiotherapy ambulatory status, further bone metastases, visceral metastases, interval from melanoma diagnosis to MESCC, time developing motor deficits before radiotherapy, fractionation regimen) were investigated for post-radiotherapy motor function, ambulatory status and survival in 27 patients. On multivariate analysis, motor function was significantly associated with time developing motor deficits (P = 0.006). On univariate analysis, post-radiotherapy ambulatory rates were associated with pre-radiotherapy ambulatory status (P < 0.001) and performance status (P = 0.046). Variables having a significant impact on survival in the univariate analysis were performance status (P < 0.001), number of involved vertebrae (P = 0.007), pre-radiotherapy ambulatory status (P = 0.020), further bone metastases (P = 0.023), visceral metastases (P < 0.001), and time developing motor deficits (P = 0.038). On multivariate analysis of survival, the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status (risk ratio [RR] = 4.35; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.04-16.67; P = 0.044) and visceral metastases (RR = 3.70; 95% CI = 1.10-12.50; P = 0.034) remained significant and were included in a survival score. Scoring points were obtained from 6-month survival rates divided by 10. Total scores represented the sum scores of both variables and were 3, 9 or 15 points. Six-month survival rates were 7%, 29% and 100% (P = 0.004). Thus, three predictors for functional outcomes were identified. The newly developed survival score included three prognostic groups. Patients with 3 points may receive 1 × 8 Gy, patients with 9 points 5 × 4 Gy and patients achieving 15 points longer

  17. Motor unit loss estimation by the multipoint incremental MUNE method in children with spinal muscular atrophy--a preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Gawel, Malgorzata; Kostera-Pruszczyk, Anna; Lusakowska, Anna; Jedrzejowska, Maria; Ryniewicz, Barbara; Lipowska, Marta; Gawel, Damian; Kaminska, Anna

    2015-03-01

    Quantitative EMG reflects denervation of muscles after lower motor neuron degeneration in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) but does not reflect actual motor unit loss. The aim of our study was to assess the value of the multipoint incremental motor unit number estimation (MUNE) method in the modification by Shefner in estimating motor unit loss in SMA. The number of motor units, the mean amplitude of an average surface-detected single motor unit potential (SMUP), and the amplitude of compound motor action potentials (CMAP) were estimated in 14 children with SMA in the abductor pollicis brevis (ABP). Significant differences in MUNE values and SMUP and CMAP amplitude were found between the SMA and control groups (P < 0.0001). MUNE values correlated with Hammersmith Functional Motor Scale (HFMS) scores (P < 0.05). Increased SMUP amplitude values correlated with decreased HFMS scores (P < 0.05). The study confirms that MUNE method in the modification by Shefner is a useful tool reflecting motor unit loss in SMA, and it is easy to perform and well tolerated. MUNE and SMUP amplitude seemed to be sensitive parameters reflecting motor dysfunction in SMA but a longitudinal study in a larger number of subjects is needed.

  18. Motor imagery reinforces brain compensation of reach-to-grasp movement after cervical spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Mateo, Sébastien; Di Rienzo, Franck; Bergeron, Vance; Guillot, Aymeric; Collet, Christian; Rode, Gilles

    2015-01-01

    Individuals with cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) that causes tetraplegia are challenged with dramatic sensorimotor deficits. However, certain rehabilitation techniques may significantly enhance their autonomy by restoring reach-to-grasp movements. Among others, evidence of motor imagery (MI) benefits for neurological rehabilitation of upper limb movements is growing. This literature review addresses MI effectiveness during reach-to-grasp rehabilitation after tetraplegia. Among articles from MEDLINE published between 1966 and 2015, we selected ten studies including 34 participants with C4 to C7 tetraplegia and 22 healthy controls published during the last 15 years. We found that MI of possible non-paralyzed movements improved reach-to-grasp performance by: (i) increasing both tenodesis grasp capabilities and muscle strength; (ii) decreasing movement time (MT), and trajectory variability; and (iii) reducing the abnormally increased brain activity. MI can also strengthen motor commands by potentiating recruitment and synchronization of motoneurons, which leads to improved recovery. These improvements reflect brain adaptations induced by MI. Furthermore, MI can be used to control brain-computer interfaces (BCI) that successfully restore grasp capabilities. These results highlight the growing interest for MI and its potential to recover functional grasping in individuals with tetraplegia, and motivate the need for further studies to substantiate it. PMID:26441568

  19. Influence of Previous Comorbidities and Common Complications on Motor Function after Early Surgical Treatment of Patients with Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury.

    PubMed

    Kreinest, Michael; Ludes, Lisa; Biglari, Bahram; Küffer, Maike; Türk, Ansgar; Grützner, Paul A; Matschke, Stefan

    2016-12-15

    The influence of complications and comorbidities on the outcome of patients with traumatic spinal cord injury after early surgery is unclear. The aim of the current study was to analyze the influence of previous comorbidities and common complications on motor function outcome of patients with traumatic spinal cord injury if early surgery was performed. All patients with a traumatic spinal cord injury who were initially surgically treated in our hospital in the period from January 2008 to December 2013 were included in this study. Epidemiological data and previous comorbidities (cardiovascular, pulmonary, metabolic, spinal) were documented. A neurological assessment was performed using the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) score. Retrospectively, patients' personal data (age, gender, comorbidities) and clinical data (complications, ASIA score, motor function) were analyzed statistically. A total of 133 patients met the inclusion criteria. The level of spinal cord injury ranged from C3 to L4. Motor function was improved from 51.5 ± 24.8 to 60.1 ± 25.0 (improvement: 25.7%). The most common complications were urinary tract infection and pneumonia. There is a significant relationship between a lack of previous spinal comorbidities and a better outcome in terms of motor function. No other comorbidities or complications showed any effect on motor function outcome. The current study shows that motor function was able to be improved in patients who were given early surgery after a traumatic spinal cord injury. Common complications as well as previous cardiovascular, pulmonary, and metabolic comorbidities do not impair motor function outcome. The final motor function score is reduced if patients have previous spinal comorbidities.

  20. The cellular mRNA expression of GABA and glutamate receptors in spinal motor neurons of SOD1 mice.

    PubMed

    Petri, S; Schmalbach, S; Grosskreutz, J; Krampfl, K; Grothe, C; Dengler, R; Van Den Bosch, L; Robberecht, W; Bufler, J

    2005-11-15

    ALS is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a selective loss of upper motor neurons in the motor cortex and lower motor neurons in the brain stem and spinal cord. About 10% of ALS cases are familial, in 10-20% of these, mutations in the gene coding for superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) can be detected. Overexpression of mutated SOD1 in mice created animal models which clinically resemble ALS. Abnormalities in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission presumably contribute to the selective motor neuron damage in ALS. By in situ hybridization histochemistry (ISH), we investigated the spinal mRNA expression of the GABAA and AMPA type glutamate receptor subunits at different disease stages on spinal cord sections of mutant SOD1 mice and control animals overexpressing wild-type SOD1 aged 40, 80, 120 days and at disease end-stage, i.e. around 140 days) (n=5, respectively). We detected a slight but statistically significant decrease of the AMPA receptor subunits GluR3 and GluR4 only in end stage disease animals.

  1. Contact-mediated inhibition between oligodendrocyte progenitor cells and motor exit point glia establishes the spinal cord transition zone.

    PubMed

    Smith, Cody J; Morris, Angela D; Welsh, Taylor G; Kucenas, Sarah

    2014-09-01

    Rapid conduction of action potentials along motor axons requires that oligodendrocytes and Schwann cells myelinate distinct central and peripheral nervous system (CNS and PNS) domains along the same axon. Despite the importance of this arrangement for nervous system function, the mechanisms that establish and maintain this precise glial segregation at the motor exit point (MEP) transition zone are unknown. Using in vivo time-lapse imaging in zebrafish, we observed that prior to myelination, oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) extend processes into the periphery via the MEP and immediately upon contact with spinal motor root glia retract back into the spinal cord. Characterization of the peripheral cell responsible for repelling OPC processes revealed that it was a novel, CNS-derived population of glia we propose calling MEP glia. Ablation of MEP glia resulted in the absence of myelinating glia along spinal motor root axons and an immediate breach of the MEP by OPCs. Taken together, our results identify a novel population of CNS-derived peripheral glia located at the MEP that selectively restrict the migration of OPCs into the periphery via contact-mediated inhibition.

  2. Coordinated motor activity in simulated spinal networks emerges from simple biologically plausible rules of connectivity.

    PubMed

    Dale, Nicholas

    2003-01-01

    The spinal motor circuits of the Xenopus embryo have been simulated in a 400-neuron network. To explore the consequences of differing patterns of synaptic connectivity within the network for the generation of the motor rhythm, a system of biologically plausible rules was devised to control synapse formation by three parameters. Each neuron had an intrinsic probability of synapse formation (P(soma), specified by a space constant lambda) that was a monotonically decreasing function of its soma location in the rostro-caudal axis of the simulated network. The neurons had rostral and caudal going axons of specified length (L(axon)) associated with a probability of synapse formation (P(axon)). The final probability of synapse formation was the product of P(soma) and P(axon). Realistic coordinated activity only occurred when L(axon) and the probabilities of interconnection were sufficiently high. Increasing the values of the three network parameters reduced the burst duration, cycle period, and rostro-caudal delay and increased the reliability with which the network functioned as measured by the coefficient of variance of these parameters. Whereas both L(axon) and P(axon) had powerful and consistent effects on network output, the effects of lambda on burst duration and rostro-caudal delay were more variable and depended on the values of the other two parameters. This network model can reproduce the rostro-caudal coordination of swimming without using coupled oscillator theory. The changes in network connectivity and resulting changes in activity explored by the model mimic the development of the motor pattern for swimming in the real embryo.

  3. The development of hindlimb motor activity studied in the isolated spinal cord of the chick embryo.

    PubMed

    O'Donovan, M J; Landmesser, L

    1987-10-01

    The development of hindlimb motor activity was studied in an isolated preparation of the chick spinal cord. The motor output from lumbosacral segments was characterized by recording the pattern of ventral root and muscle nerve discharge in 6-14-d-old embryos. In addition, the synaptic drive underlying motoneuron activity was monitored electrotonically from the ventral roots. Spontaneous motor activity consisted of recurring episodes of cyclical motoneuron discharge. During development, both the number of cycles in each episode and the intensity of discharge in each cycle progressively increased. Monophasic, positive ventral root potentials accompanied each cycle of motoneuron discharge. Prior to the innervation of hindlimb muscles at stage 26, ventral root discharge was barely detectable despite the presence of large ventral root potentials. Following hindlimb muscle innervation, each cycle of activity was initiated by a brief, intense discharge that coincided with the rising phase of the ventral root potential. In embryos older than stage 30, the initial discharge was followed, after a delay, by a more prolonged discharge. The duration of ventral root potentials was shortest in the stage 26 embryos, but was similar in embryos at stage 29 and older. The developmental changes in the coordination of antagonist activity were documented by recording the pattern of discharge in sartorius (flexor) and caudilioflexorius (extensor) muscle nerves between stage 30 and stage 36. At stage 30 both sets of motoneurons were coactivated during the brief discharge that initiated each cycle. By stage 31 a second discharge occurred in each cycle. The second discharge was delayed in flexor, but not in extensor, motoneurons, which led to an alternating pattern of activity.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  4. Non-Aggregating Tau Phosphorylation by Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 5 Contributes to Motor Neuron Degeneration in Spinal Muscular Atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Nimrod; Feng, Zhihua; Edens, Brittany M.; Yang, Ben; Shi, Han; Sze, Christie C.; Hong, Benjamin Taige; Su, Susan C.; Cantu, Jorge A.; Topczewski, Jacek; Crawford, Thomas O.; Ko, Chien-Ping; Sumner, Charlotte J.; Ma, Long

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the leading inherited cause of infant mortality, remain largely unknown. Many studies have established the importance of hyperphosphorylation of the microtubule-associated protein tau in various neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. However, tau phosphorylation in SMA pathogenesis has yet to be investigated. Here we show that tau phosphorylation on serine 202 (S202) and threonine 205 (T205) is increased significantly in SMA motor neurons using two SMA mouse models and human SMA patient spinal cord samples. Interestingly, phosphorylated tau does not form aggregates in motor neurons or neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), even at late stages of SMA disease, distinguishing it from other tauopathies. Hyperphosphorylation of tau on S202 and T205 is mediated by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) in SMA disease condition, because tau phosphorylation at these sites is significantly reduced in Cdk5 knock-out mice; genetic knock-out of Cdk5 activating subunit p35 in an SMA mouse model also leads to reduced tau phosphorylation on S202 and T205 in the SMA;p35−/− compound mutant mice. In addition, expression of the phosphorylation-deficient tauS202A,T205A mutant alleviates motor neuron defects in a zebrafish SMA model in vivo and mouse motor neuron degeneration in culture, whereas expression of phosphorylation-mimetic tauS202E,T205E promotes motor neuron defects. More importantly, genetic knock-out of tau in SMA mice rescues synapse stripping on motor neurons, NMJ denervation, and motor neuron degeneration in vivo. Altogether, our findings suggest a novel mechanism for SMA pathogenesis in which hyperphosphorylation of non-aggregating tau by Cdk5 contributes to motor neuron degeneration. PMID:25878277

  5. Improved Gait Speed After Robot-Assisted Gait Training in Patients With Motor Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury: A Preliminary Study

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the clinical features that could serve as predictive factors for improvement in gait speed after robotic treatment. Methods A total of 29 patients with motor incomplete spinal cord injury received 4-week robot-assisted gait training (RAGT) on the Lokomat (Hocoma AG, Volketswil, Switzerland) for 30 minutes, once a day, 5 times a week, for a total of 20 sessions. All subjects were evaluated for general characteristics, the 10-Meter Walk Test (10MWT), the Lower Extremity Motor Score (LEMS), the Functional Ambulatory Category (FAC), the Walking Index for Spinal Cord Injury version II (WISCI-II), the Berg Balance Scale (BBS), and the Spinal Cord Independence Measure version III (SCIM-III) every 0, and 4 weeks. After all the interventions, subjects were stratified using the 10MWT score at 4 weeks into improved group and non-improved group for statistical analysis. Results The improved group had younger age and shorter disease duration than the non-improved group. All subjects with the American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale level C (AIS-C) tetraplegia belonged to the non-improved group, while most subjects with AIS-C paraplegia, AIS-D tetraplegia, and AIS-D paraplegia belonged to the improved group. The improved group showed greater baseline lower extremity strength, balance, and daily living function than the non-improved group. Conclusion Assessment of SCIM-III, BBS, and trunk control, in addition to LEMS, have potential for predicting the effects of robotic treatment in patients with motor incomplete spinal cord injury. PMID:28289633

  6. Organization of motor pools supplying the cervical musculature in a cryptodyran turtle, Pseudemys scripta elegans. I. Dorsal and ventral motor nuclei of the cervical spinal cord and muscles supplied by a single motor nucleus.

    PubMed

    Yeow, M B; Peterson, E H

    1986-01-08

    In this and the accompanying paper (Yeow and Peterson, '86) we characterize motor nuclei of the cervical spinal cord in Pseudemys scripta and the motor pools of eight cervical muscles. We have identified three motor nuclei that supply the cervical musculature by using serial reconstructions of Nissl-stained spinal cords cut in three cardinal planes, and in experimental cases in which horseradish peroxidase (HRP) was applied to individual neck muscles. These nuclei are named according to their position as visualized in the transverse plane: dorsal, ventral, and medial. A fourth (ventrolateral) motor nucleus was never labelled following application of HRP to the cervical musculature and presumably innervates the forelimbs. The dorsal motor nucleus occupies the mid-dorsal to dorsolateral ventral horn of C1 and C2. It is composed of at least two morphological groups of motor neurons; one of these is a population of very large, fusiform profiles with transversely oriented dendrites that is found primarily in C1. The ventral motor nucleus occupies the tip of the ventral horn from C1 to C8. Its cells are significantly smaller and more numerous in rostral than in caudal cervical segments. In Nissl material, ventral nuclear profiles show little tendency to cluster into subgroups, but experimental cases suggest that there is some spatial dissociation of different motor pools within the ventral nucleus. The medial motor nucleus is described in the accompanying paper together with the motor pools of three cervical muscles that it supplies. Having identified the cervical motor nuclei we then used retrograde transport of HRP to characterize the motor pools of individual cervical muscles. Two superficial ventral muscles (mm. coracohyoideus and plastro-squamosus) are supplied by dorsal nuclear cells. M. coracohyoideus motor neurons are significantly larger than those of m. plastrosquamosus and the very large, fusiform cell type is relatively more numerous in the m. coracohyoideus

  7. Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry based Molecular Histology of Human Spinal Cord Tissue and Motor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hanrieder, Jörg; Malmberg, Per; Lindberg, Olle R.; Fletcher, John S.; Ewing, Andrew G.

    2013-01-01

    Secondary ion mass spectrometry is a powerful method for imaging biological samples with high spatial resolution. Whole section ToF SIMS scans and multivariate data analysis have been performed on human spinal cord in order to delineate anatomical regions of interest based on their chemical distribution pattern. ToF SIMS analysis of thoracic spinal cord sections was performed at 5µm resolution within 2 hours. Multivariate image analysis by means of principal component analysis and maximum auto correlation factor analysis resulted in detection of more than 400 m/z peaks that were found to be significantly changed. Here, the results show characteristic biochemical distributions that are well in line with major histological regions, including grey and white matter. As an approach for iterative segmentation, we further evaluated previously outlined regions of interest as identified by multivariate image analysis. Here, further discrimination of the grey matter into ventral, lateral and dorsal neuroanatomical regions was observed. TOF SIMS imaging has been carried out at submicron resolution obtaining localization and characterization of spinal motor neurons based on their chemical fingerprint, including neurotransmitter precursors that serve as molecular indicators for motor neuron integrity. Thus, TOF SIMS can be used as an approach for chemical histology and pathology. SIMS holds immense potential for investigating the subcellular mechanisms underlying spinal cord related diseases including chronic pain and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. PMID:23947367

  8. Sensory neurons do not induce motor neuron loss in a human stem cell model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Schwab, Andrew J; Ebert, Allison D

    2014-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder leading to paralysis and early death due to reduced SMN protein. It is unclear why there is such a profound motor neuron loss, but recent evidence from fly and mouse studies indicate that cells comprising the whole sensory-motor circuit may contribute to motor neuron dysfunction and loss. Here, we used induced pluripotent stem cells derived from SMA patients to test whether sensory neurons directly contribute to motor neuron loss. We generated sensory neurons from SMA induced pluripotent stem cells and found no difference in neuron generation or survival, although there was a reduced calcium response to depolarizing stimuli. Using co-culture of SMA induced pluripotent stem cell derived sensory neurons with control induced pluripotent stem cell derived motor neurons, we found no significant reduction in motor neuron number or glutamate transporter boutons on motor neuron cell bodies or neurites. We conclude that SMA sensory neurons do not overtly contribute to motor neuron loss in this human stem cell system.

  9. X-linked spinal muscular atrophy in mice caused by autonomous loss of ATP7A in the motor neuron

    PubMed Central

    Hodgkinson, Victoria L.; Dale, Jeffery M.; Garcia, Michael L.; Weisman, Gary A.; Lee, Jaekwon; Gitlin, Jonathan D.; Petris, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    ATP7A is a copper transporting P-type ATPase that is essential for cellular copper homeostasis. Loss-of-function mutations in the ATP7A gene result in Menkes disease, a fatal neurodegenerative disorder resulting in seizures, hypotonia, and failure to thrive due to systemic copper deficiency. Most recently, rare missense mutations in ATP7A that do not impact systemic copper homeostasis have been shown to cause X-linked Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 3 (SMAX3), a distal hereditary motor neuropathy. An understanding of the mechanistic and pathophysiological basis of SMAX3 is currently lacking, in part because the disease-causing mutations have been shown to confer both loss- and gain-of-function properties to ATP7A, and because there is currently no animal model of the disease. In this study, the Atp7a gene was specifically deleted in the motor neurons of mice resulting in a degenerative phenotype consistent with the clinical features in affected patients with SMAX3, including the progressive deterioration of gait, age-dependent muscle atrophy, denervation of neuromuscular junctions, and a loss of motor neuron cell bodies. Taken together these data reveal autonomous requirements for ATP7A that reveal essential roles for copper in the maintenance and function of the motor neuron, and suggest that SMAX3 is caused by a loss of ATP7A function that specifically impacts in the spinal motor neuron. PMID:25639447

  10. Role of energy metabolic deficits and oxidative stress in excitotoxic spinal motor neuron degeneration in vivo.

    PubMed

    Santa-Cruz, Luz Diana; Tapia, Ricardo

    2014-03-12

    MN (motor neuron) death in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis may be mediated by glutamatergic excitotoxicity. Previously, our group showed that the microdialysis perfusion of AMPA (α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate) in the rat lumbar spinal cord induced MN death and permanent paralysis within 12 h after the experiment. Here, we studied the involvement of energy metabolic deficiencies and of oxidative stress in this MN degeneration, by testing the neuroprotective effect of various energy metabolic substrates and antioxidants. Pyruvate, lactate, β-hydroxybutyrate, α-ketobutyrate and creatine reduced MN loss by 50-65%, preserved motor function and completely prevented the paralysis. Ascorbate, glutathione and glutathione ethyl ester weakly protected against motor deficits and reduced MN death by only 30-40%. Reactive oxygen species formation and 3-nitrotyrosine immunoreactivity were studied 1.5-2 h after AMPA perfusion, during the initial MN degenerating process, and no changes were observed. We conclude that mitochondrial energy deficiency plays a crucial role in this excitotoxic spinal MN degeneration, whereas oxidative stress seems a less relevant mechanism. Interestingly, we observed a clear correlation between the alterations of motor function and the number of damaged MNs, suggesting that there is a threshold of about 50% in the number of healthy MNs necessary to preserve motor function.

  11. X-linked spinal muscular atrophy in mice caused by autonomous loss of ATP7A in the motor neuron.

    PubMed

    Hodgkinson, Victoria L; Dale, Jeffery M; Garcia, Michael L; Weisman, Gary A; Lee, Jaekwon; Gitlin, Jonathan D; Petris, Michael J

    2015-06-01

    ATP7A is a copper-transporting P-type ATPase that is essential for cellular copper homeostasis. Loss-of-function mutations in the ATP7A gene result in Menkes disease, a fatal neurodegenerative disorder resulting in seizures, hypotonia and failure to thrive, due to systemic copper deficiency. Most recently, rare missense mutations in ATP7A that do not impact systemic copper homeostasis have been shown to cause X-linked spinal muscular atrophy type 3 (SMAX3), a distal hereditary motor neuropathy. An understanding of the mechanistic and pathophysiological basis of SMAX3 is currently lacking, in part because the disease-causing mutations have been shown to confer both loss- and gain-of-function properties to ATP7A, and because there is currently no animal model of the disease. In this study, the Atp7a gene was specifically deleted in the motor neurons of mice, resulting in a degenerative phenotype consistent with the clinical features in affected patients with SMAX3, including the progressive deterioration of gait, age-dependent muscle atrophy, denervation of neuromuscular junctions and a loss of motor neuron cell bodies. Taken together, these data reveal autonomous requirements for ATP7A that reveal essential roles for copper in the maintenance and function of the motor neuron, and suggest that SMAX3 is caused by a loss of ATP7A function that specifically impacts the spinal motor neuron.

  12. Changes in GABAA receptor subunit gamma2 in extensor and flexor motoneurons and astrocytes after spinal cord transection and motor training

    PubMed Central

    Khristy, Windyanne; Ali, Noore J.; Bravo, Arlene B.; de Leon, Ray; Roy, Roland R.; Zhong, Hui; London, Nik J. L.; Edgerton, V. Reggie; Tillakaratne, Niranjala J. K.

    2009-01-01

    GABA signaling plays an important role in the spinal cord response to injury and subsequent motor training. Since benzodiazepines are commonly used to treat muscle spasticity in spinal cord injured subjects and the γ2 subunit of the GABAA receptor is necessary for benzodiazepine binding, this subunit may be an important factor modulating sensorimotor function after an injury. Changes in γ2 levels in muscle-specific motoneurons and surrounding astrocytes were determined ~3 months after a complete mid-thoracic spinal cord transection at P5 in non-trained and in step-trained spinal rats. Soleus (ankle extensor) and tibialis anterior (TA, ankle flexor) motor pools were identified using retrograde labeling via intramuscular injections of Fast Blue or Fluoro Gold, respectively. Lumbar spinal cord sections showed γ2 immunostaining in both soleus and TA motoneurons and astrocytes. γ2 immunoreactivity on the soma of soleus and TA motoneurons in spinal rats was differentially modulated. Compared to intact rats, spinal rats had higher levels of γ2 in TA, and lower levels in soleus motoneurons. Step training restored GABAA γ2 levels towards control values in motoneuronal pools of both muscles. In contrast, the γ2 levels were elevated in surrounding astrocytes of both motor pools in spinal rats, and step training had no further effect. Thus, motor training had a specific effect on those neurons that were directly involved with the motor task. Since the γ2 subunit is involved with GABAA receptor trafficking and synaptic clustering, it appears that this subunit could be an important component of the activity-dependent response of the spinal cord after a spinal injury. PMID:19358834

  13. Optical Imaging of the Motor Cortex Following Antidromic Activation of the Corticospinal Tract after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Kyung H.; Kim, Un J.; Park, Se W.; Park, Yong G.; Lee, Bae H.

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) disrupts neuronal networks of ascending and descending tracts at the site of injury, leading to a loss of motor function. Restoration and new circuit formation are important components of the recovery process, which involves collateral sprouting of injured and uninjured fibers. The present study was conducted to determine cortical responses to antidromic stimulation of the corticospinal tracts, to compare changes in the reorganization of neural pathways within normal and spinal cord-injured rats, and to elucidate differences in spatiotemporal activity patterns of the natural progression and reorganization of neural pathways in normal and SCI animals using optical imaging. Optical signals were recorded from the motor cortex in response to electrical stimulation of the ventral horn of the L1 spinal cord. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were evaluated to demonstrate endogenous recovery of physiological functions after SCI. A significantly shorter N1 peak latency and broader activation in the MEP optical recordings were observed at 4 weeks after SCI, compared to 1 week after SCI. Spatiotemporal patterns in the cerebral cortex differed depending on functional recovery. In the present study, optical imaging was found to be useful in revealing functional changes and may reflect conditions of reorganization and/or changes in surviving neurons after SCI.

  14. Spinal vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and erythropoietin (EPO) induced phrenic motor facilitation after repetitive acute intermittent hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Dale, Erica A; Mitchell, Gordon S

    2013-02-01

    Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and erythropoietin (EPO) exert neurotrophic and neuroprotective effects in the CNS. We recently demonstrated that VEGF, EPO and their receptors (VEGF-R2, EPO-R) are expressed in phrenic motor neurons, and that cervical spinal VEGF-R2 and EPO-R activation elicit long-lasting phrenic motor facilitation (pMF). Since VEGF, VEGF-R, EPO, and EPO-R are hypoxia-regulated genes, and repetitive exposure to acute intermittent hypoxia (rAIH) up-regulates these molecules in phrenic motor neurons, we tested the hypothesis that 4 weeks of rAIH (10 episodes per day, 3 days per week) enhances VEGF- or EPO-induced pMF. We confirm that cervical spinal VEGF and EPO injections elicit pMF. However, neither VEGF- nor EPO-induced pMF was affected by rAIH pre-conditioning (4 wks). Although our data confirm that spinal VEGF and EPO may play an important role in respiratory plasticity, we provide no evidence that rAIH amplifies their impact. Further experiments with more robust protocols are warranted.

  15. Intrathecal chlorprothixene, cis(z)-flupenthixol, chlorpromazine and fluphenazine for prolonged spinal blockades of sensory and motor functions in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yu-Wen; Chu, Chin-Chen; Chen, Yu-Chung; Leung, Yuk-Man; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2012-10-15

    The aim of this study was to examine whether thioxanthine-type antipsychotics (chlorprothixene and cis(z)-flupenthixol) and phenothiazine-type antipsychotics (chlorpromazine and fluphenazine) produced spinal anesthesia. Using a rat model of intrathecal injection, we evaluated spinal anesthesia of antipsychotic drugs (chlorprothixene, cis(z)-flupenthixol, chlorpromazine, and fluphenazine) and bupivacaine, a known local anesthetic. At a same dose of 2.31 μmol/kg, chlorprothixene had the most potent spinal blockades (P<0.001) and the longest duration of action (P<0.001) of motor function and nociception among those antipsychotic drugs. On the 50% effective dose (ED(50)) basis, the ranks of potencies were chlorprothixene=bupivacaine>cis(z)-flupenthixol>chlorpromazine>fluphenazine (P<0.01 for the differences) in dose-response studies. At an equianesthetic basis (ED(25), ED(50), and ED(75)), the spinal block duration caused by chlorprothixene, cis(z)-flupenthixol, chlorpromazine or fluphenazine was longer than that caused by bupivacaine (P<0.05). These results showed that chlorprothixene produced a similar potency and longer duration of spinal anesthesia than did bupivacaine, whereas several other antipsychotics produced less potency than did bupivacaine.

  16. Maternal Care Effects on the Development of a Sexually Dimorphic Motor System: The Role of Spinal Oxytocin

    PubMed Central

    Lenz, Kathryn M.; Sengelaub, Dale R.

    2010-01-01

    Maternal licking in rats affects the development of the spinal nucleus of the bulbocavernosus (SNB), a sexually dimorphic motor nucleus that controls penile reflexes involved with copulation. Reduced maternal licking results in decreased motoneuron number, size, and dendritic length in the adult SNB, as well as deficits in adult male copulatory behavior. Our previous findings that licking-like tactile stimulation influences SNB dendritic development and upregulates Fos expression in the lumbosacral spinal cord suggest that afferent signaling is changed by differences in maternal stimulation. Oxytocin afferents from the hypothalamus are a possible candidate, given previous research that has shown oxytocin is released following sensory stimulation, oxytocin modulates excitability in the spinal cord, and is a pro-erectile modulator of male sex behavior. In this experiment, we used immunofluorescence and immediate early gene analysis to assess whether licking-like tactile stimulation of the perineum activated parvocellular oxytocinergic neurons in the hypothalamus in neonates. We also used enzyme immunoassay to determine whether this same stroking stimulation produced an increase in spinal oxytocin levels. We found that stroking increased Fos immunolabeling in small oxytocin-positive cells in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus, in comparison to unstroked or handled control pups. In addition, sixty seconds of licking-like perineal stimulation produced a transient 89% increase in oxytocin levels in the lumbosacral spinal cord. Together, these results suggest that oxytocin afferent activity may contribute to the effects of early maternal care on the masculinization of the SNB and resultant male copulatory behavior. PMID:20688065

  17. p53 Regulates the neuronal intrinsic and extrinsic responses affecting the recovery of motor function following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Floriddia, Elisa M; Rathore, Khizr I; Tedeschi, Andrea; Quadrato, Giorgia; Wuttke, Anja; Lueckmann, Jan-Matthis; Kigerl, Kristina A; Popovich, Phillip G; Di Giovanni, Simone

    2012-10-03

    Following spinal trauma, the limited physiological axonal sprouting that contributes to partial recovery of function is dependent upon the intrinsic properties of neurons as well as the inhibitory glial environment. The transcription factor p53 is involved in DNA repair, cell cycle, cell survival, and axonal outgrowth, suggesting p53 as key modifier of axonal and glial responses influencing functional recovery following spinal injury. Indeed, in a spinal cord dorsal hemisection injury model, we observed a significant impairment in locomotor recovery in p53(-/-) versus wild-type mice. p53(-/-) spinal cords showed an increased number of activated microglia/macrophages and a larger scar at the lesion site. Loss- and gain-of-function experiments suggested p53 as a direct regulator of microglia/macrophages proliferation. At the axonal level, p53(-/-) mice showed a more pronounced dieback of the corticospinal tract (CST) and a decreased sprouting capacity of both CST and spinal serotoninergic fibers. In vivo expression of p53 in the sensorimotor cortex rescued and enhanced the sprouting potential of the CST in p53(-/-) mice, while, similarly, p53 expression in p53(-/-) cultured cortical neurons rescued a defect in neurite outgrowth, suggesting a direct role for p53 in regulating the intrinsic sprouting ability of CNS neurons. In conclusion, we show that p53 plays an important regulatory role at both extrinsic and intrinsic levels affecting the recovery of motor function following spinal cord injury. Therefore, we propose p53 as a novel potential multilevel therapeutic target for spinal cord injury.

  18. Isoflurane, But Not the Nonimmobilizers F6 and F8, Inhibits Rat Spinal Cord Motor Neuron CaV1 Calcium Currents

    PubMed Central

    Recio-Pinto, Esperanza; Montoya-Gacharna, Jose V.; Xu, Fang; Blanck, Thomas J.J.

    2015-01-01

    Background Volatile anesthetics decrease Ca2+ entry through voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels. Ca2+ influences neurotransmitter release and neuronal excitability. Because volatile anesthetics act specifically on the spinal cord to produce immobility, we examined the effect of isoflurane and the nonimmobilizers F6 (1, 2- dichlorohexafluorocyclobutane) and F8 (2, 3- dichlorooctafluorobutane) on CaV1 and CaV2 Ca2+ channels in spinal cord motor neurons and dorsal root ganglion neurons. Methods Using patch clamping, we compared the effects of isoflurane with those of F6 and F8 on CaV1 and CaV2 channels in isolated, cultured adult rat spinal cord motor neurons and on CaV1 and CaV2 channels in adult rat dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons. Results In spinal cord motor neurons, isoflurane, but not F6 or F8, inhibited currents through CaV1 channels. Isoflurane and at least one of the nonimmobilizers inhibited currents through CaV1 and CaV2 channels in dorsal root ganglion neurons and Cav2 in spinal cord motor neurons Conclusion The findings that isoflurane, but not nonimmobilizers, inhibited CaV1 Ca2+ channels in spinal cord motor neurons are consistent with the notion that spinal cord motor neurons might mediate isoflurane-induced immobility. Additional studies are required to examine whether inhibition of CaV1 calcium currents in spinal cord motor neurons are sufficient, or whether actions on other channels/proteins also contribute to isoflurane-induced immobility. PMID:26702867

  19. Degeneration of Phrenic Motor Neurons Induces Long-Term Diaphragm Deficits following Mid-Cervical Spinal Contusion in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Nicaise, Charles; Putatunda, Rajarshi; Hala, Tamara J.; Regan, Kathleen A.; Frank, David M.; Brion, Jean-Pierre; Leroy, Karelle; Pochet, Roland; Wright, Megan C.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract A primary cause of morbidity and mortality following cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) is respiratory compromise, regardless of the level of trauma. In particular, SCI at mid-cervical regions targets degeneration of both descending bulbospinal respiratory axons and cell bodies of phrenic motor neurons, resulting in deficits in the function of the diaphragm, the primary muscle of inspiration. Contusion-type trauma to the cervical spinal cord is one of the most common forms of human SCI; however, few studies have evaluated mid-cervical contusion in animal models or characterized consequent histopathological and functional effects of degeneration of phrenic motor neuron–diaphragm circuitry. We have generated a mouse model of cervical contusion SCI that unilaterally targets both C4 and C5 levels, the location of the phrenic motor neuron pool, and have examined histological and functional outcomes for up to 6 weeks post-injury. We report that phrenic motor neuron loss in cervical spinal cord, phrenic nerve axonal degeneration, and denervation at diaphragm neuromuscular junctions (NMJ) resulted in compromised ipsilateral diaphragm function, as demonstrated by persistent reduction in diaphragm compound muscle action potential amplitudes following phrenic nerve stimulation and abnormalities in spontaneous diaphragm electromyography (EMG) recordings. This injury paradigm is reproducible, does not require ventilatory assistance, and provides proof-of-principle that generation of unilateral cervical contusion is a feasible strategy for modeling diaphragmatic/respiratory deficits in mice. This study and its accompanying analyses pave the way for using transgenic mouse technology to explore the function of specific genes in the pathophysiology of phrenic motor neuron degeneration and respiratory dysfunction following cervical SCI. PMID:23176637

  20. The response to paired motor cortical stimuli is abolished at a spinal level during human muscle fatigue.

    PubMed

    McNeil, Chris J; Martin, Peter G; Gandevia, Simon C; Taylor, Janet L

    2009-12-01

    During maximal exercise, supraspinal fatigue contributes significantly to the decline in muscle performance but little is known about intracortical inhibition during such contractions. Long-interval inhibition is produced by a conditioning motor cortical stimulus delivered via transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) 50-200 ms prior to a second test stimulus. We aimed to delineate changes in this inhibition during a sustained maximal voluntary contraction (MVC). Eight subjects performed a 2 min MVC of elbow flexors. Single test and paired (conditioning-test interval of 100 ms) stimuli were delivered via TMS over the motor cortex every 7-8 s throughout the effort and during intermittent MVCs in the recovery period. To determine the role of spinal mechanisms, the protocol was repeated but the TMS test stimulus was replaced by cervicomedullary stimulation which activates the corticospinal tract. TMS motor evoked potentials (MEPs) and cervicomedullary motor evoked potentials (CMEPs) were recorded from biceps brachii. Unconditioned MEPs increased progressively with fatigue, whereas CMEPs increased initially but returned to the control value in the final 40 s of contraction. In contrast, both conditioned MEPs and CMEPs decreased rapidly with fatigue and were virtually abolished within 30 s. In recovery, unconditioned responses required <30 s but conditioned MEPs and CMEPs required 90 s to return to control levels. Thus, long-interval inhibition increased markedly as fatigue progressed. Contrary to expectations, subcortically evoked CMEPs were inhibited as much as MEPs. This new phenomenon was also observed in the first dorsal interosseous muscle. Tested with a high intensity conditioning stimulus during a fatiguing maximal effort, long-interval inhibition of MEPs was increased primarily by spinal rather than motor cortical mechanisms. The spinal mechanisms exposed here may contribute to the development of central fatigue in human muscles.

  1. Keratan Sulfate Regulates the Switch from Motor Neuron to Oligodendrocyte Generation During Development of the Mouse Spinal Cord.

    PubMed

    Hashimoto, Hirokazu; Ishino, Yugo; Jiang, Wen; Yoshimura, Takeshi; Takeda-Uchimura, Yoshiko; Uchimura, Kenji; Kadomatsu, Kenji; Ikenaka, Kazuhiro

    2016-02-01

    Keratan sulfate (KS) is a sulfated glycosaminoglycan and has been shown to bind to sonic hedgehog (Shh), which act as a morphogen to regulate the embryonic spinal cord development. We found highly sulfated KS was present in the floor plate (including lateral floor plate) and the notochord . This expression colocalized with Shh expression. To understand the roles of KS, we analyzed the embryonic spinal cord of GlcNAc6ST-1, KS chain synthesizing enzyme, knock-out (KO) mice. At E12.5, the pMN domain, whose formation is controlled by Shh signaling, became shifted ventrally in GlcNAc6ST-1 KO mice. In addition, the expression patterns of Patched1 and Gli1, two Shh signaling reporter genes, differed between wild type (WT) and GlcNAc6ST-1 KO mice at E12.5. Next, we focused on cell types generated from the pMN domain; namely, motor neurons and subsequently oligodendrocytes. The number of PDGFRα(+) [a marker for oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs)] cells was low in the E12.5 mutant spinal cord, while motor neuron production was increased. Thus the switch from motor neuron generation to OPC generation was delayed in the pMN domain. Furthermore, we investigated the cause for this delayed switch in the pMN domain. The number of Olig2, Nkx2.2 double-positive cells was less in GlcNAc6ST-1 KO mice than in WT mice. In contrast, the number of Olig2, Neurogenin2 (Ngn2) double-positive cells related to the motor neuron specification was significantly greater in the KO mice. These results indicate that KS is important for the late phase Shh signaling and contributes to motor neuron to OPC generation switch.

  2. Endolysosomal Deficits Augment Mitochondria Pathology in Spinal Motor Neurons of Asymptomatic fALS Mice

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Yuxiang; Zhou, Bing; Lin, Mei-Yao; Wang, Shiwei; Foust, Kevin D.; Sheng, Zu-Hang

    2015-01-01

    One pathological hallmark in ALS motor neurons (MNs) is axonal accumulation of damaged mitochondria. A fundamental question remains: does reduced degradation of those mitochondria by impaired autophagy-lysosomal system contribute to mitochondrial pathology? Here, we reveal MN-targeted progressive lysosomal deficits accompanied by impaired autophagic degradation beginning at asymptomatic stages in fALS-linked hSOD1G93A mice. Lysosomal deficits result in accumulation of autophagic vacuoles engulfing damaged mitochondria along MN axons. Live imaging of spinal MNs from the adult disease mice demonstrates impaired dynein-driven retrograde transport of late endosomes (LEs). Expressing dynein-adaptor snapin reverses transport defects by competing with hSOD1G93A for binding dynein, thus rescuing autophagy-lysosomal deficits, enhancing mitochondria turnover, improving MN survival, and ameliorating the disease phenotype in hSOD1G93A mice. Our study provides a new mechanistic link for hSOD1G93A-mediated impairment of LE transport to autophagy-lysosome deficits and mitochondria pathology. Understanding these early pathological events benefits development of new therapeutic interventions for fALS-linked MN degeneration. PMID:26182418

  3. Delta-opioid receptor (DOR) activation prolongs respiratory motor output during oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) in neonatal rat spinal cord in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Sara M. F.; Johnson, Stephen M.

    2011-01-01

    Delta opioid receptor (DOR) activation protects the adult mammalian brain during oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD), but it is not known whether neonatal spinal motor circuits are also protected. Also, it is unclear whether the timing of spinal DOR activation relative to spinal OGD is important for neuroprotection. Thus, a split-bath in vitro neonatal rat brainstem/spinal cord preparation was used to record spontaneous respiratory motor output from cervical (C4-C5) and thoracic (T5-T6) ventral spinal roots while exposing only the spinal cord to OGD solution (0 mM glucose, bubbled with 95% N2 / 5% CO2) or DOR agonist drugs (DADLE, DPDPE). Spinal OGD solution application caused respiratory motor output frequency and amplitude to decrease until all activity was abolished (i.e., end-point times) after 25.9 ± 1.4 min (cervical) and 25.2 ± 1.4 min (thoracic). Spinal DOR activation via DPDPE (1.0 μM) prior-to and during spinal OGD increased cervical and thoracic end-point times to 35-48 min. Spinal DADLE or DPDPE (1.0 μM) application 15 min following spinal OGD onset increased cervical and thoracic end-point times to 36-45 min. Brief spinal DPDPE (1.0 μM) application for 10 min at 25 min before spinal OGD onset increased cervical and thoracic end-point times to 41-46 min. Overall, the selective DOR agonist, DPDPE, was more effective at increasing end-point times than DADLE. Naltrindole (DOR antagonist; 10 μM) pretreatment blocked DPDPE-dependent increase in end-point times, suggesting that DOR activation was required. Spinal naloxone (1.0 μM) application before and during spinal OGD also increased end-point times to 31-33 min, but end-point times were not altered by MOR activation or DOR activation/MOR blockade, indicating that there are complex interactions between OGD and opioid signaling pathways. These data suggest DOR activation before, during, and after spinal OGD protects central motor networks and may provide neuroprotection during unpredictable perinatal

  4. Reorganization of Cajal bodies and nucleolar targeting of coilin in motor neurons of type I spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Tapia, Olga; Bengoechea, Rocío; Palanca, Ana; Arteaga, Rosa; Val-Bernal, J Fernando; Tizzano, Eduardo F; Berciano, María T; Lafarga, Miguel

    2012-05-01

    Type I spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder caused by loss or mutations of the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene. The reduction in SMN protein levels in SMA leads to degeneration and death of motor neurons. In this study, we have analyzed the nuclear reorganization of Cajal bodies, PML bodies and nucleoli in type I SMA motor neurons with homozygous deletion of exons 7 and 8 of the SMN1 gene. Western blot analysis is is revealed a marked reduction of SMN levels compared to the control sample. Using a neuronal dissociation procedure to perform a careful immunocytochemical and quantitative analysis of nuclear bodies, we demonstrated a severe decrease in the mean number of Cajal bodies per neuron and in the proportion of motor neurons containing these structures in type I SMA. Moreover, most Cajal bodies fail to recruit SMN and spliceosomal snRNPs, but contain the proteasome activator PA28, a molecular marker associated with the cellular stress response. Neuronal stress in SMA motor neurons also increases PML body number. The existence of chromatolysis and eccentric nuclei in SMA motor neurons correlates with Cajal body disruption and nucleolar relocalization of coil in, a Cajal body marker. Our results indicate that the Cajal body is a pathophysiological target in type I SMA motor neurons. They also suggest the Cajal body-dependent dysfunction of snRNP biogenesis and, therefore, pre-mRNA splicing in these neurons seems to be an essential component for SMA pathogenesis.

  5. PlexinA3 restricts spinal exit points and branching of trunk motor nerves in embryonic zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Feldner, Julia; Reimer, Michell M; Schweitzer, Jörn; Wendik, Björn; Meyer, Dirk; Becker, Thomas; Becker, Catherina G

    2007-05-02

    The pioneering primary motor axons in the zebrafish trunk are guided by multiple cues along their pathways. Plexins are receptor components for semaphorins that influence motor axon growth and path finding. We cloned plexinA3 in zebrafish and localized plexinA3 mRNA in primary motor neurons during axon outgrowth. Antisense morpholino knock-down led to substantial errors in motor axon growth. Errors comprised aberrant branching of primary motor nerves as well as additional exit points of axons from the spinal cord. Excessively branched and supernumerary nerves were found in both ventral and dorsal pathways of motor axons. The trunk environment and several other types of axons, including trigeminal axons, were not detectably affected by plexinA3 knock-down. RNA overexpression rescued all morpholino effects. Synergistic effects of combined morpholino injections indicate interactions of plexinA3 with semaphorin3A homologs. Thus, plexinA3 is a crucial receptor for axon guidance cues in primary motor neurons.

  6. Defects in Neuromuscular Transmission May Underlie Motor Dysfunction in Spinal and Bulbar Muscular Atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Youfen; Halievski, Katherine; Henley, Casey; Atchison, William D.; Katsuno, Masahisa; Adachi, Hiroaki; Sobue, Gen; Breedlove, S. Marc

    2016-01-01

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) in men is an androgen-dependent neuromuscular disease caused by expanded CAG repeats in the androgen receptor (AR). Whether muscle or motor neuron dysfunction or both underlies motor impairment in SBMA is unknown. Muscles of SBMA mice show significant contractile dysfunction, implicating them as a likely source of motor dysfunction, but whether disease also impairs neuromuscular transmission is an open question. Thus, we examined synaptic function in three well-studied SBMA mouse models—the AR97Q, knock-in (KI), and myogenic141 models—by recording in vitro miniature and evoked end-plate potentials (MEPPs and EPPs, respectively) intracellularly from adult muscle fibers. We found striking defects in neuromuscular transmission suggesting that toxic AR in SBMA impairs both presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. Notably, SBMA causes neuromuscular synapses to become weak and muscles to become hyperexcitable in all three models. Presynaptic defects included deficits in quantal content, reduced size of the readily releasable pool, and impaired short-term facilitation. Postsynaptic defects included prolonged decay times for both MEPPs and EPPs, marked resistance to μ-conotoxin (a sodium channel blocker), and enhanced membrane excitability. Quantitative PCR revealed robust upregulation of mRNAs encoding neonatal isoforms of the AChR (γ-subunit) and the voltage-gated sodium channel (NaV1.5) in diseased adult muscles of all three models, consistent with the observed slowing of synaptic potentials and resistance to μ-conotoxin. These findings suggest that muscles of SBMA patients regress to an immature state that impairs neuromuscular function. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT We have discovered that SBMA is accompanied by marked defects in neuromuscular synaptic transmission involving both presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms. For three different mouse models, we find that diseased synapses are weak, having reduced quantal content

  7. In vitro methods for the analysis of motor function in the developing spinal cord of the chick embryo.

    PubMed

    O'Donovan, M J

    1987-10-01

    The isolated spinal cord of the chick embryo spontaneously generates episodes of motor activity in vitro that can be recorded from muscle nerves and ventral roots. In vitro systems provide stable conditions for intra- and extra-cellular recordings and enable pharmacological and ionic manipulations of the neuronal environment. Studies of motor activity generated by isolated spinal cord have revealed the existence of co-ordinated motor output from early in development, in which antagonist motoneurons alternate in their activity and synergists are co-active. Intra-cellular recordings from single neurons and electronic recordings from muscle nerves have provided insight into the mechanism of flexor and extensor alternation. These studies have revealed that flexor and extensor motoneurons receive a similar de-polarization during each cycle of motor activity, but that the two classes of motoneuron process the de-polarization differently. Flexors fire late in each cycle whereas extensors fire early, which leads to a pattern of alternation. The cellular mechanisms responsible for the differences in the firing behavior of flexor and extensor motoneurons are currently being investigated using techniques that are only possible using the in vitro preparation.

  8. Severe motor neuron degeneration in the spinal cord of the Tg2576 mouse model of Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Seo, Ji-Seon; Leem, Yea-Hyun; Lee, Kang-Woo; Kim, Seung-Woo; Lee, Ja-Kyeong; Han, Pyung-Lim

    2010-01-01

    The transgenic mouse Tg2576 is widely used as a murine model of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and exhibits plaque pathogenesis in the brain and progressive memory impairments. Here we report that Tg2576 mice also have severe spinal cord deficits. At 10 months of age, Tg2576 mice showed a severe defect in the hindlimb extension reflex test and abnormal body trembling and hindlimb tremors when suspended by the tail. The frequency and severity of these abnormalities were overt at 10 months of age and became gradually worsened. On the foot-printing analysis, Tg2576 mice had shorter and narrower strides than the non-transgenic control. Histological analyses showed that neuronal cells including cholinergic neurons in the lumbar cord of Tg2576 mice were severely reduced in number. At 16 months of age, Tg2576 mice showed high levels of amyloid-beta accumulation in the spinal cord. Consistent with this, Tg2576 mice showed that lipid peroxidation levels were increased and mitochondrial metabolic activity were significantly reduced in the spinal cord. Administration of curcumin, a natural compound that has antioxidant properties, notably reversed motor function deficits of Tg2576 mice. The enhanced lipid peroxidation and neuronal loss in the lumbar cord was also partially suppressed by curcumin. Electron microscopic analysis revealed that the sciatic nerve fibers were severely reduced in number and were demyelinated in Tg2576 mice, which were partially rescued by curcumin. These results showed that Tg2576 mice display severe degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord and associated motor function deficits.

  9. Time-related changes of motor unit properties in the rat medial gastrocnemius muscle after the spinal cord injury. II. Effects of a spinal cord hemisection.

    PubMed

    Celichowski, Jan; Kryściak, Katarzyna; Krutki, Piotr; Majczyński, Henryk; Górska, Teresa; Sławińska, Urszula

    2010-06-01

    The contractile properties of motor units (MUs) were investigated in the medial gastrocnemius (MG) muscle in rats after the spinal cord hemisection at a low thoracic level. Hemisected animals were divided into 4 groups: 14, 30, 90 and 180 days after injury. Intact rats formed a control group. The mass of the MG muscle did not change significantly after spinal cord hemisection, hind limb locomotor pattern was almost unchanged starting from two weeks after injury, but contractile properties of MUs were however altered. Contraction time (CT) and half-relaxation time (HRT) of MUs were prolonged in all investigated groups of hemisected rats. The twitch-to-tetanus ratio (Tw/Tet) of fast MUs after the spinal cord hemisection increased. For slow MUs Tw/Tet values did not change in the early stage after the injury, but significantly decreased in rats 90 and 180 days after hemisection. As a result of hemisection the fatigue resistance especially of slow and fast resistant MU types was reduced, as well as fatigue index (Fat I) calculated for the whole examined population of MUs decreased progressively with the time. After spinal cord hemisection a reduced number of fast MUs presented the sag at frequencies 30 and 40 Hz, however more of them revealed sag in 20 Hz tetanus in comparison to control group. Due to considerable changes in twitch contraction time and disappearance of sag effect in unfused tetani of some MUs in hemisected animals, the classification of MUs in all groups of rats was based on the 20 Hz tetanus index (20 Hz Tet I) but not on the standard criteria usually applied for MUs classification. MU type differentiations demonstrated some clear changes in MG muscle composition in hemisected animals consisting of an increase in the proportion of slow MUs (likely due to an increased participation of the studied muscle in tonic antigravity activity) together with an increase in the percentage of fast fatigable MUs.

  10. The role of the ipsilateral primary motor cortex in movement control after spinal cord injury: a TMS study.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Höller, Peter; Thon, Natasha; Thomschewski, Aljoscha; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2013-09-27

    Previous neuroimaging studies raised the hypothesis that enhanced activity in the ipsilateral motor cortex (M1) plays a contributing role in the compensation for the motor deficits resulting from a spinal cord injury (SCI). However, it is still unknown whether the activity in the ipsilateral M1 directly contributes to movement performance after SCI. To address this question, we evaluated in five subjects with chronic incomplete cervical SCI the effects of suprathreshold transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to both hemispheres when a movement of the right and left hand was performed separately in the setting of a simple reaction time. We found that stimulation of each hemisphere resulted in delayed simple reaction times in the contralateral but not in the ipsilateral hand. These observations provide the first direct evidence in humans that the ipsilateral M1 did not contribute significantly to motor task performance after SCI.

  11. Identification of gangliosides recognized by IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibodies in bovine spinal motor neurons and motor nerves.

    PubMed

    Yoshino, Hiide; Ariga, Toshio; Suzuki, Akemi; Yu, Robert K; Miyatake, Tadashi

    2008-08-28

    The presence of immunoglobulin G (IgG)-type antibodies to the ganglioside, N-acetylgalactosaminyl GD1a (GalNAc-GD1a), is closely associated with the pure motor type of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). In the present study, we isolated disialogangliosides from the motor neurons and motor nerves of bovine spinal cords by DEAE-Sephadex column chromatography. The disialoganglioside fraction contained GD1a, GD2, GD1b, and three gangliosides, designated X1, X2 and X3. Serum from a patient with axonal GBS with IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibody yielded positive immunostaining with X1, X2, and X3. When isolated by preparative thin-layer chromatography (TLC), X1 migrated at the same position as GalNAc-GD1a from Tay-Sachs brain, suggesting that X1 is GalNAc-GD1a containing N-acetylneuraminic acid (NeuAc). TLC of isolated X2 revealed that it migrated between GD1a and GD2. On the other hand, X3 had a migratory rate on TLC between and GD1b and GT1b. Since both X2 and X3 were recognized by IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibody, the results suggest that X2 is a GalNAc-GD1a species containing a mixture containing a NeuAc-and an N-glycolylneuraminic acid (NeuGc) species, and X3 is a GalNAc-GD1a species with two NeuGc. This evidence indicating the specific localization of GalNAc-GD1a and its isomers in spinal motor neurons should be useful in elucidating the pathogenic role of IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibody in pure motor-type GBS.

  12. The effects of excitatory amino acids and their antagonists on the generation of motor activity in the isolated chick spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Barry, M J; O'Donovan, M J

    1987-12-01

    We have investigated the action of excitatory amino acids and their antagonists on spontaneous motor activity produced by an isolated preparation of the chick lumbosacral cord. Bath application of N-methyl-DL-aspartic acid (NMDA) or D-glutamate increased the occurrence and duration of spontaneous episodes of motor activity. Both NMDA-induced and spontaneous activity were reversibly inhibited by several excitatory amino acid antagonists including 2-amino-5-phosphono valeric acid and gamma-D-glutamyl glycine in a dose-dependent manner. These results suggest that motor activity in the chick spinal cord may be regulated by the release of endogenous excitatory amino acids from spinal interneurons.

  13. A Simple Experimentally Based Model Using Proprioceptive Regulation of Motor Primitives Captures Adjusted Trajectory Formation in Spinal Frogs

    PubMed Central

    Kargo, William J.; Ramakrishnan, Arun; Hart, Corey B.; Rome, Lawrence C.

    2010-01-01

    Spinal circuits may organize trajectories using pattern generators and synergies. In frogs, prior work supports fixed-duration pulses of fixed composition synergies, forming primitives. In wiping behaviors, spinal frogs adjust their motor activity according to the starting limb position and generate fairly straight and accurate isochronous trajectories across the workspace. To test whether a compact description using primitives modulated by proprioceptive feedback could reproduce such trajectory formation, we built a biomechanical model based on physiological data. We recorded from hindlimb muscle spindles to evaluate possible proprioceptive input. As movement was initiated, early skeletofusimotor activity enhanced many muscle spindles firing rates. Before movement began, a rapid estimate of the limb position from simple combinations of spindle rates was possible. Three primitives were used in the model with muscle compositions based on those observed in frogs. Our simulations showed that simple gain and phase shifts of primitives based on published feedback mechanisms could generate accurate isochronous trajectories and motor patterns that matched those observed. Although on-line feedback effects were omitted from the model after movement onset, our primitive-based model reproduced the wiping behavior across a range of starting positions. Without modifications from proprioceptive feedback, the model behaviors missed the target in a manner similar to that in deafferented frogs. These data show how early proprioception might be used to make a simple estimate initial limb state and to implicitly plan a movement using observed spinal motor primitives. Simulations showed that choice of synergy composition played a role in this simplicity. To generate froglike trajectories, a hip flexor synergy without sartorius required motor patterns with more proprioceptive knee flexor control than did patterns built with a more natural synergy including sartorius. Such synergy

  14. [Calculation of the strain-deformation condition of the spinal motor segment during loading].

    PubMed

    Chumachenko, E N; Logashina, I V

    2014-01-01

    A mathematical model is proposed to analyze the spinal strain-deformation condition resulting from axial and lateral g-loads generated by changes in the gravity field and/or pilot's maneuvering high-performance aircraft. The solution algorithm takes into account changes in the intervertebral disk pressure and the fibrous ring shape at the time of close-to-critical g values. Calculation of the spinal strain-deformation condition was implemented by the instrumentality of computer system SPLEN (KOMMEK ltd., Russia). Analysis of the spinal strain-deformation condition was made for 2 types of external loads, i.e. normal and unilateral with a bending moment. Maximum permissible loads on a spinal segment were evaluated, as well as distribution of strain intensity, mean strains, spinal deformation and destruction field was described. The constructed computer models could be used as a basis for developing a technique of predicting characteristic spinal injuries in consequence of specific extreme loads and pathologies.

  15. Reflex conditioning: A new strategy for improving motor function after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiang Yang; Chen, Yi; Wang, Yu; Thompson, Aiko; Carp, Jonathan S.; Segal, Richard L.; Wolpaw, Jonathan R.

    2010-01-01

    Spinal reflex conditioning changes reflex size, induces spinal cord plasticity, and modifies locomotion. Appropriate reflex conditioning can improve walking in rats after spinal cord injury (SCI). Reflex conditioning offers a new therapeutic strategy for restoring function in people with SCI. This approach can address the specific deficits of individuals with SCI by targeting specific reflex pathways for increased or decreased responsiveness. In addition, once clinically significant regeneration can be achieved, reflex conditioning could provide a means of re-educating the newly (and probably imperfectly) reconnected spinal cord. PMID:20590534

  16. Correlation of insulin resistance and motor function in spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Nakatsuji, Hideaki; Araki, Amane; Hashizume, Atsushi; Hijikata, Yasuhiro; Yamada, Shinichiro; Inagaki, Tomonori; Suzuki, Keisuke; Banno, Haruhiko; Suga, Noriaki; Okada, Yohei; Ohyama, Manabu; Nakagawa, Tohru; Kishida, Ken; Funahashi, Tohru; Shimomura, Iichiro; Okano, Hideyuki; Katsuno, Masahisa; Sobue, Gen

    2017-02-22

    This study aimed to evaluate various metabolic parameters in patients with spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA), to investigate the association between those indices and disease severity, and to explore the underlying molecular pathogenesis. We compared the degree of obesity, metabolic parameters, and blood pressure in 55 genetically confirmed SBMA patients against those in 483 age- and sex-matched healthy control. In SBMA patients, we investigated the correlation between these factors and motor functional indices. SBMA patients had lower body mass index, blood glucose, and Hemoglobin A1c, but higher blood pressure, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR, a marker of insulin resistance), total cholesterol, and adiponectin levels than the control subjects. There were no differences in visceral fat areas, high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C), or triglyceride levels in two groups. Revised amyotrophic lateral sclerosis functional rating scale (ALSFRS-R) correlated positively with HDL-C, but negatively with HOMA-IR. Through stepwise multiple regression analysis, we identified HOMA-IR as a significant metabolic determinant of ALSFRS-R. In biochemical analysis, we found that decreased expressions of insulin receptors, insulin receptor substrate-1 and insulin receptor-β, in autopsied muscles and fibroblasts of SBMA patients. This study demonstrates that SBMA patients have insulin resistance, which is associated with the disease severity. The expressions of insulin receptors are attenuated in the skeletal muscle of SBMA, providing a possible pathomechanism of metabolic alterations. These findings suggested that insulin resistance is a metabolic index reflecting disease severity and pathogenesis as well as a potential therapeutic target for SBMA.

  17. A 3D map of the hindlimb motor representation in the lumbar spinal cord in Sprague Dawley rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borrell, Jordan A.; Frost, Shawn B.; Peterson, Jeremy; Nudo, Randolph J.

    2017-02-01

    Objective. Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating neurological trauma with a prevalence of about 282 000 people living with an SCI in the United States in 2016. Advances in neuromodulatory devices hold promise for restoring function by incorporating the delivery of electrical current directly into the spinal cord grey matter via intraspinal microstimulation (ISMS). In such designs, detailed topographic maps of spinal cord outputs are needed to determine ISMS locations for eliciting hindlimb movements. The primary goal of the present study was to derive a topographic map of functional motor outputs in the lumbar spinal cord to hindlimb skeletal muscles as defined by ISMS in a rat model. Approach. Experiments were carried out in nine healthy, adult, male, Sprague Dawley rats. After a laminectomy of the T13-L1 vertebrae and removal of the dura mater, a four-shank, 16-channel microelectrode array was inserted along a 3D (200 µm) stimulation grid. Trains of three biphasic current pulses were used to determine evoked movements and electromyographic (EMG) activity. Via fine wire EMG electrodes, stimulus-triggered averaging (StTA) was used on rectified EMG data to determine response latency. Main results. Hindlimb movements were elicited at a median current intensity of 6 µA, and thresholds were significantly lower in ventrolateral sites. Movements typically consisted of whole leg, hip, knee, ankle, toe, and trunk movements. Hip movements dominated rostral to the T13 vertebral segment, knee movements were evoked at the T13-L1 vertebral junction, while ankle and digit movements were found near the rostral L1 vertebra. Whole leg movements spanned the entire rostrocaudal region explored, while trunk movements dominated medially. StTAs of EMG activity demonstrated a latency of ~4 ms. Significance. The derived motor map provides insight into the parameters needed for future neuromodulatory devices.

  18. Efficacy of QuadroPulse rTMS for improving motor function after spinal cord injury: Three case studies

    PubMed Central

    Alexeeva, Natalia

    2016-01-01

    Context/objective To examine the effects of repetitive QuadroPulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMSQP) on hand/leg function after spinal cord injury (SCI). Design Interventional proof-of-concept study. Setting University laboratory. Participants Three adult subjects with cervical SCI. Interventions Repeated trains of magnetic stimuli were applied to the motor cortical hand/leg area. Several exploratory single-day rTMSQP protocols were examined. Ultimately we settled on a protocol using three 5-day trials of (1) rTMSQP only; (2) exercise only (targeting hand or leg function); and (3) rTMSQP combined with exercise. Outcome measures Hand motor function was assessed by Purdue Pegboard and Complete Minnesota Dexterity tests. Walking function was based on treadmill walking and the Timed Up and Go test. Electromyographic recordings were used for neurophysiological testing of cortical (by single- and double-pulse TMS) and spinal (via tendon taps and electrical nerve stimulation) excitability. Results Single-day rTMSQP application had no clear effect in the 2 subjects whose hand function was targeted, but improved walking speed in the person targeted for walking, accompanied by increased cortical excitability and reduced spinal excitability. All 3 subjects showed functional improvement following the 5-day rTMSQP intervention, an effect being even more pronounced after the five-day combined rTMSQP + exercise sessions. There were no rTMSQP-associated adverse effects. Conclusion Our findings suggest a functional benefit of motor cortical rTMSQP after SCI. The effect of rTMSQP appears to be augmented when stimulation is accompanied by targeted exercises, warranting expansion of this pilot study to a larger subject population. PMID:25437531

  19. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Functioning at Discharge and Follow-Up Among Patients With Motor Complete Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Fyffe, Denise C.; Deutsch, Anne; Botticello, Amanda L.; Kirshblum, Steven; Ottenbacher, Kenneth J.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To examine racial and ethnic differences in self-care and mobility outcomes for persons with a motor complete, traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) at discharge and 1-year follow-up. Design Retrospective cohort study. Setting Sixteen rehabilitation centers contributing to the Spinal Cord Injury Model Systems (SCIMS) database. Participants Adults with traumatic, motor complete SCI (N=1766; American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale grade A or B) enrolled in the SCIMS between 2000 and 2011. Selected cases had complete self-reported data on race and ethnicity (non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black, or Hispanic) and motor FIM scores assessed at inpatient rehabilitation admission, discharge, and 1-year follow-up. Interventions Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures Functional outcomes were measured by FIM self-care and mobility scores on a 1 to 7 FIM scale, at discharge and 1-year follow-up. Results Multiple regression models stratified by neurologic category and adjusted for sociodemographic and injury characteristics assessed racial and ethnic group differences in FIM self-care and mobility change scores at discharge and 1-year follow-up. At discharge, non-Hispanic black participants with tetraplegia and paraplegia had significantly poorer gains in FIM self-care and mobility scores relative to non-Hispanic white and Hispanic participants. At 1-year follow-up, similar FIM self-care and mobility change scores were found across racial and ethnic groups within each neurologic category. Conclusions Non-Hispanic white and Hispanic participants had comparatively more improvement in self-care and mobility during inpatient rehabilitation compared with non-Hispanic black participants. At 1-year follow-up, no differences in self-care and mobility outcomes were observed across racial and ethnic groups. Additional research is needed to identify potential modifiable factors that may contribute to racially and ethnically different patterns of functional outcomes

  20. Safe transcranial electric stimulation motor evoked potential monitoring during posterior spinal fusion in two patients with cochlear implants.

    PubMed

    Yellin, Joseph L; Wiggins, Cheryl R; Franco, Alier J; Sankar, Wudbhav N

    2016-08-01

    Transcranial electric stimulation (TES) motor evoked potentials (MEPs) have become a regular part of intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring (IONM) for posterior spinal fusion (PSF) surgery. Almost all of the relative contraindications to TES have come and gone. One exception is in the case of patients with a cochlear implant (CI). Herein we illustrate two cases of pediatric patients with CIs who underwent PSF using TES MEPs as part of IONM. In both instances the patients displayed no untoward effects from TES, and post-operatively both CIs were intact and functioning as they were prior to surgery.

  1. Bulbospinal inhibition of PAD elicited by stimulation of afferent and motor axons in the isolated frog spinal cord and brainstem.

    PubMed

    González, H; Jiménez, I; Rudomin, P

    1992-01-01

    1. In the isolated spinal cord and brainstem of the frog, stimulation of the brainstem (BS) with trains of 3-4 pulses at 60-400 Hz produced dorsal root potentials (DRPs). The lowest threshold sites eliciting DRPs were located at the level of the obex up to about 2.5 mm rostrally, 0.5-1.2 mm laterally, between 0.5 and 1.6 mm depth. This region corresponds to the bulbar reticular formation (RF). 2. Stimulation of the RF with strengths below those required to produce DRPs, very effectively inhibited the DRPs produced by stimulation of a neighboring dorsal root (DR-DRPs) as well as the DRPs produced by antidromic stimulation of the central end of motor nerves (VR-DRPs). The inhibition was detectable 20 ms after the first pulse of the conditioning train, attained maximal values between 50 and 100 ms and lasted more than 250 ms. 3. Stimulation of the bulbar RF increased the negative response (N1 response) produced in the motor pool by antidromic activation of motoneurons. The time course of the facilitation of the N1 response resembled that of the reticularly-induced inhibition of the VR-DRPs and DR-DRPs. 4. The present series of observations supports the existence of reticulo-spinal pathways that are able to inhibit the depolarization elicited in afferent fibers by stimulation of other afferent fibers or by antidromic activation of motor axons. This inhibition appears to be exerted on the PAD mediating interneurons and is envisaged as playing an important role in motor control.

  2. Mutations in the RNA exosome component gene EXOSC3 cause pontocerebellar hypoplasia and spinal motor neuron degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Jijun; Yourshaw, Michael; Mamsa, Hafsa; Rudnik-Schöneborn, Sabine; Menezes, Manoj P.; Hong, Ji Eun; Leong, Derek W.; Senderek, Jan; Salman, Michael S.; Chitayat, David; Seeman, Pavel; von Moers, Arpad; Graul-Neumann, Luitgard; Kornberg, Andrew J.; Castro-Gago, Manuel; Sobrido, María-Jesús; Sanefuji, Masafumi; Shieh, Perry B.; Salamon, Noriko; Kim, Ronald C.; Vinters, Harry V.; Chen, Zugen; Zerres, Klaus; Ryan, Monique M.; Nelson, Stanley F.; Jen, Joanna C.

    2012-01-01

    RNA exosomes are multi-subunit complexes conserved throughout evolution1 and emerging as the major cellular machinery for processing, surveillance, and turnover of a diverse spectrum of coding and non-coding RNA substrates essential for viability2. By exome sequencing, we discovered recessive mutations in exosome component 3 (EXOSC3) in four siblings with infantile spinal motor neuron disease, cerebellar atrophy, progressive microcephaly, and profound global developmental delay, consistent with pontocerebellar hypoplasia type 1 [PCH1; OMIM 607596]3–6. We identified mutations in EXOSC3 in an additional 8 of 12 families with PCH1. Morpholino knockdown of exosc3 in zebrafish embryos caused embryonic maldevelopment with small brain and poor motility, reminiscent of human clinical features and largely rescued by coinjected wildtype but not mutant exosc3 mRNA. These findings represent the first example of an RNA exosome gene responsible for a human disease and further implicate dysregulation of RNA processing in cerebellar and spinal motor neuron maldevelopment and degeneration. PMID:22544365

  3. Muscle expression of mutant androgen receptor accounts for systemic and motor neuron disease phenotypes in spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Cortes, Constanza J; Ling, Shuo-Chien; Guo, Ling T; Hung, Gene; Tsunemi, Taiji; Ly, Linda; Tokunaga, Seiya; Lopez, Edith; Sopher, Bryce L; Bennett, C Frank; Shelton, G Diane; Cleveland, Don W; La Spada, Albert R

    2014-04-16

    X-linked spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) is characterized by adult-onset muscle weakness and lower motor neuron degeneration. SBMA is caused by CAG-polyglutamine (polyQ) repeat expansions in the androgen receptor (AR) gene. Pathological findings include motor neuron loss, with polyQ-AR accumulation in intranuclear inclusions. SBMA patients exhibit myopathic features, suggesting a role for muscle in disease pathogenesis. To determine the contribution of muscle, we developed a BAC mouse model featuring a floxed first exon to permit cell-type-specific excision of human AR121Q. BAC fxAR121 mice develop systemic and neuromuscular phenotypes, including shortened survival. After validating termination of AR121 expression and full rescue with ubiquitous Cre, we crossed BAC fxAR121 mice with Human Skeletal Actin-Cre mice. Muscle-specific excision prevented weight loss, motor phenotypes, muscle pathology, and motor neuronopathy and dramatically extended survival. Our results reveal a crucial role for muscle expression of polyQ-AR in SBMA and suggest muscle-directed therapies as effective treatments.

  4. A Systematic Review of Experimental Strategies Aimed at Improving Motor Function after Acute and Chronic Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Gomes-Osman, Joyce; Cortes, Mar; Guest, James

    2016-01-01

    Abstract While various approaches have been proposed in clinical trials aimed at improving motor function after spinal cord injury in humans, there is still limited information regarding the scope, methodological quality, and evidence associated with single-intervention and multi-intervention approaches. A systematic review performed using the PubMed search engine and the key words “spinal cord injury motor recovery” identified 1973 records, of which 39 were selected (18 from the search records and 21 from reference list inspection). Study phase (clinicaltrials.org criteria) and methodological quality (Cochrane criteria) were assessed. Studies included proposed a broad range of single-intervention (encompassing cell therapies, pharmacology, electrical stimulation, rehabilitation) (encompassing cell therapies, pharmacology, electrical stimulation, rehabilitation) and multi-intervention approaches (that combined more than one strategy). The highest evidence level was for Phase III studies supporting the role of multi-intervention approaches that contained a rehabilitation component. Quality appraisal revealed that the percentage of selected studies classified with high risk of bias by Cochrane criteria was as follows: random sequence generation = 64%; allocation concealment = 77%; blinding of participants and personnel = 69%; blinding of outcome assessment = 64%; attrition = 44%; selective reporting = 44%. The current literature contains a high proportion of studies with a limited ability to measure efficacy in a valid manner because of low methodological strength in all items of the Cochrane risk of bias assessment. Recommendations to decrease bias are discussed and include increased methodological rigor in the study design and recruitment of study participants, and the use of electrophysiological and imaging measures that can assess functional integrity of the spinal cord (and may be sufficiently sensitive to detect changes that occur in

  5. Analysis of motor fibers in the communicating branch between the cervical nerves and the spinal accessory nerve to innervate trapezius in the rat.

    PubMed

    Yan, Jun; Hitomi, Jiro

    2006-11-01

    The communicating branch between the ventral rami of cervical nerves and the spinal accessory nerve (SAN) has been reported to also send motor fibers to supply the trapezius. However, the motor fiber type of the communicating branch and its peripheral distribution are still unclear. To determine the fiber elements within the branch and its peripheral distribution of the motor fibers in the trapezius, the anterograde tracing method was used in this study. The results show that a few a motor end plates from the communicating branch were observed on the extrafusal fibers, while in the muscle spindle the motor elements from the communicating branch were distributed to the polar portions of the intrafusal fibers. These results indicated that the motor fibers passing through the communicating branch to supply the trapezius are mainly y motor fibers, with some a motor fibers. Moreover, the a and y motor fibers from the communicating branch were observed in the clavotrapezius, acromiotrapezius and the rostral part of spinotrapezius. These findings also correlate with the clinical observation indicating that even when the spinal accessory nerve is injured, the trapezius is still capable of slight movement.

  6. Surgical and conservative methods for restoring impaired motor function - facial nerve, spinal accessory nerve, hypoglossal nerve (not including vagal nerve or swallowing)

    PubMed Central

    Laskawi, R.; Rohrbach, S.

    2005-01-01

    The present review gives a survey of rehabilitative measures for disorders of the motor function of the mimetic muscles (facial nerve), and muscles innervated by the spinal accessory and hypoglossal nerves. The dysfunction can present either as paralysis or hyperkinesis (hyperkinesia). Conservative and surgical treatment options aimed at restoring normal motor function and correcting the movement disorders are described. Static reanimation techniques are not dealt with. The final section describes the use of botulinum toxin in the therapy of dysphagia. PMID:22073058

  7. Descending motor pathways and cortical physiology after spinal cord injury assessed by transcranial magnetic stimulation: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Brigo, Francesco; Orioli, Andrea; Tezzon, Frediano; Schwenker, Kerstin; Christova, Monica; Golaszewski, Stefan; Trinka, Eugen

    2015-09-04

    We performed here a systematic review of the studies using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) as a research and clinical tool in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI). Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by TMS represent a highly accurate diagnostic test that can supplement clinical examination and neuroimaging findings in the assessment of SCI functional level. MEPs allows to monitor the changes in motor function and evaluate the effects of the different therapeutic approaches. Moreover, TMS represents a useful non-invasive approach for studying cortical physiology, and may be helpful in elucidating the pathophysiological mechanisms of brain reorganization after SCI. Measures of motor cortex reactivity, e.g., the short interval intracortical inhibition and the cortical silent period, seem to point to an increased cortical excitability. However, the results of TMS studies are sometimes contradictory or divergent, and should be replicated in a larger sample of subjects. Understanding the functional changes at brain level and defining their effects on clinical outcome is of crucial importance for development of evidence-based rehabilitation therapy. TMS techniques may help in identifying neurophysiological biomarkers that can reliably assess the extent of neural damage, elucidate the mechanisms of neural repair, predict clinical outcome, and identify therapeutic targets. Some researchers have begun to therapeutically use repetitive TMS (rTMS) in patients with SCI. Initial studies revealed that rTMS can induce acute and short duration beneficial effects especially on spasticity and neuropathic pain, but the evidence is to date still very preliminary and well-designed clinical trials are warranted. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Spinal cord injury.

  8. Augmentation of motor evoked potentials using multi-train transcranial electrical stimulation in intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring during spinal surgery.

    PubMed

    Tsutsui, Shunji; Iwasaki, Hiroshi; Yamada, Hiroshi; Hashizume, Hiroshi; Minamide, Akihito; Nakagawa, Yukihiro; Nishi, Hideto; Yoshida, Munehito

    2015-02-01

    Transcranial motor evoked potentials (TcMEPs) are widely used to monitor motor function during spinal surgery. Improvements in transcranial stimulation techniques and general anesthesia have made it possible to record reliable and reproducible potentials. However, TcMEPs are much smaller in amplitude compared with compound muscle action potentials (CMAPs) evoked by maximal peripheral nerve stimulation. In this study, multi-train transcranial electrical stimulation (mt-TES) was introduced to enhance TcMEPs, and the optimal setting of mt-TES was investigated. In 30 patients undergoing surgical correction of spinal deformities (4 males and 26 females with normal motor status; age range 11-75 years), TcMEPs from the abductor hallucis (AH) and quadriceps femoris (QF) were analyzed. A multipulse (train) stimulus with an individual pulse width of 0.5 ms and an inter-pulse interval of 2 ms was delivered repeatedly (2-7 times) at different rates (2, 5, and 10 Hz). TcMEP amplitudes increased with the number of train stimuli for AH, with the strongest facilitation observed at 5 Hz. The response amplitude increased 6.1 times on average compared with single-train transcranial electrical stimulation (st-TES). This trend was also observed in the QF. No adverse events (e.g., seizures, cardiac arrhythmias, scalp burns, accidental injury resulting from patient movement) were observed in any patients. Although several facilitative techniques using central or peripheral stimuli, preceding transcranial electrical stimulation, have been recently employed to augment TcMEPs during surgery, responses are still much smaller than CMAPs. Changing from conventional st-TES to mt-TES has potential to greatly enhance TcMEP responses.

  9. Copy Number Variations in the Survival Motor Neuron Genes: Implications for Spinal Muscular Atrophy and Other Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Butchbach, Matthew E. R.

    2016-01-01

    Proximal spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a leading genetic cause of infant death worldwide, is an early-onset, autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of spinal α-motor neurons. This loss of α-motor neurons is associated with muscle weakness and atrophy. SMA can be classified into five clinical grades based on age of onset and severity of the disease. Regardless of clinical grade, proximal SMA results from the loss or mutation of SMN1 (survival motor neuron 1) on chromosome 5q13. In humans a large tandem chromosomal duplication has lead to a second copy of the SMN gene locus known as SMN2. SMN2 is distinguishable from SMN1 by a single nucleotide difference that disrupts an exonic splice enhancer in exon 7. As a result, most of SMN2 mRNAs lack exon 7 (SMNΔ7) and produce a protein that is both unstable and less than fully functional. Although only 10–20% of the SMN2 gene product is fully functional, increased genomic copies of SMN2 inversely correlates with disease severity among individuals with SMA. Because SMN2 copy number influences disease severity in SMA, there is prognostic value in accurate measurement of SMN2 copy number from patients being evaluated for SMA. This prognostic value is especially important given that SMN2 copy number is now being used as an inclusion criterion for SMA clinical trials. In addition to SMA, copy number variations (CNVs) in the SMN genes can affect the clinical severity of other neurological disorders including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and progressive muscular atrophy (PMA). This review will discuss how SMN1 and SMN2 CNVs are detected and why accurate measurement of SMN1 and SMN2 copy numbers is relevant for SMA and other neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27014701

  10. Reflex wind-up in early chronic spinal injury: plasticity of motor outputs.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Michael D; Frigon, Alain; Hurteau, Marie-France; Cain, Charlette; Heckman, Charles J

    2017-03-01

    In this study we evaluate temporal summation (wind-up) of reflexes in select distal and proximal hindlimb muscles in response to repeated stimuli of the distal tibial or superficial peroneal nerves in cats 1 month following complete spinal transection. This report is a continuation of our companion paper on reflex wind-up in the intact and acutely spinalized cat. To evaluate reflex wind-up in both studies we recorded EMG signals from the following left hindlimb muscles: lateral gastrocnemius (LG), tibialis anterior (TA), semitendinosus (ST) and sartorius (Srt) in response to 10 electrical pulses to the tibial or superficial peroneal nerves. Two distinct components of the reflex responses were considered, a short latency compound action potential (CAP) and a longer duration bout of sustained activity (SA). These two response types were shown to be differentially modified by acute spinal injury in our companion paper (Frigon, Johnson et al. 2012). We show that these responses exhibit continued plasticity during the 1-month recovery period following acute spinalization. During this early chronic phase, wind-up of SA responses returned to pre-injury levels in one muscle, the ST, but remained depressed in all other muscles tested. In contrast CAP response amplitudes, which were initially potentiated following acute transection, returned to pre-injury levels in all muscles except for Srt, which continued to show marked increase. These findings illustrate that spinal elements exhibit considerable plasticity during the recovery process following spinal injury and highlight the importance of considering SA and CAP responses as distinct phenomena with unique underlying neural mechanisms.

  11. Incidence and pattern of traumatic spinal fractures and associated spinal cord injury resulting from motor vehicle collisions in China over 11 years: An observational study.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hongwei; Liu, Xinwei; Zhao, Yiwen; Ou, Lan; Zhou, Yue; Li, Changqing; Liu, Jun; Chen, Yu; Yu, Hailong; Wang, Qi; Han, Jianda; Xiang, Liangbi

    2016-10-01

    To investigate the incidence and pattern of traumatic spinal fractures (TSFs) and associated spinal cord injury (SCI) resulting from motor vehicle collisions (MVCs).This was a cross-sectional study. We retrospectively reviewed 698 patients with TSFs resulting from MVCs admitted to our university-affiliated hospitals from 2001 to 2011. The incidence and pattern were summarized with respect to different age groups, fracture levels, and the role of patients.There were 464 males (66.5%) and 234 females (33.5%) aged 40.5 ± 13.8 years old. The most common roles of patients in MVCs were car drivers (189, 27.1%), pedestrians hurt by a car (155, 22.2%), and car passengers (145, 20.8%). The most common fracture levels were L1 (n = 198, 19.2%) and T12 (n = 116, 11.3%), followed by C2 (n = 86, 8.3%). A total of 298 (42.7%) patients suffered a spinal cord injury. The frequencies of SCIs decreased from 53.1% to 24.6% with increasing age. The patients in the 20 to 39 age group (45.3% of all patients) had the largest sex ratio (2.4) and highest frequency of complete SCIs (19.3%) and complications (3.2%). Motorcycle drivers had the youngest mean age (35.7 ± 10.2), largest sex ratio (10.4), and highest frequency of SCIs (56.0%) and complications (4.4%). Motorcycle passengers had the highest frequency of complete SCI (22.7%) and ASOIs (45.5%) and the largest mean injury severity scoring (ISS) (18.9 ± 9.6). The most common fracture levels of motorcycle drivers were C3-C7, while that of others were T11-L2.The most common role of patients who sustained TSFs were car drivers who were 20 to 39 years old. Motorcycle drivers had the highest frequency of SCIs and complications. Motorcycle passengers had the highest frequency of complete SCIs and ASOIs and the largest ISS. Therefore, we should pay more attention to MVC patients, especially car drivers and motorcycle drivers and passengers.

  12. Incidence and pattern of traumatic spinal fractures and associated spinal cord injury resulting from motor vehicle collisions in China over 11 years

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hongwei; Liu, Xinwei; Zhao, Yiwen; Ou, Lan; Zhou, Yue; Li, Changqing; Liu, Jun; Chen, Yu; Yu, Hailong; Wang, Qi; Han, Jianda; Xiang, Liangbi

    2016-01-01

    Abstract To investigate the incidence and pattern of traumatic spinal fractures (TSFs) and associated spinal cord injury (SCI) resulting from motor vehicle collisions (MVCs). This was a cross-sectional study. We retrospectively reviewed 698 patients with TSFs resulting from MVCs admitted to our university-affiliated hospitals from 2001 to 2011. The incidence and pattern were summarized with respect to different age groups, fracture levels, and the role of patients. There were 464 males (66.5%) and 234 females (33.5%) aged 40.5 ± 13.8 years old. The most common roles of patients in MVCs were car drivers (189, 27.1%), pedestrians hurt by a car (155, 22.2%), and car passengers (145, 20.8%). The most common fracture levels were L1 (n = 198, 19.2%) and T12 (n = 116, 11.3%), followed by C2 (n = 86, 8.3%). A total of 298 (42.7%) patients suffered a spinal cord injury. The frequencies of SCIs decreased from 53.1% to 24.6% with increasing age. The patients in the 20 to 39 age group (45.3% of all patients) had the largest sex ratio (2.4) and highest frequency of complete SCIs (19.3%) and complications (3.2%). Motorcycle drivers had the youngest mean age (35.7 ± 10.2), largest sex ratio (10.4), and highest frequency of SCIs (56.0%) and complications (4.4%). Motorcycle passengers had the highest frequency of complete SCI (22.7%) and ASOIs (45.5%) and the largest mean injury severity scoring (ISS) (18.9 ± 9.6). The most common fracture levels of motorcycle drivers were C3–C7, while that of others were T11–L2. The most common role of patients who sustained TSFs were car drivers who were 20 to 39 years old. Motorcycle drivers had the highest frequency of SCIs and complications. Motorcycle passengers had the highest frequency of complete SCIs and ASOIs and the largest ISS. Therefore, we should pay more attention to MVC patients, especially car drivers and motorcycle drivers and passengers. PMID:27787384

  13. The contractile properties of the medial gastrocnemius motor units innervated by L4 and L5 spinal nerves in the rat.

    PubMed

    Celichowski, Jan; Taborowska, Malwina

    2011-01-01

    When a muscle innervation originates from more than one spinal cord segment, the injury of one of the respective ventral roots evokes an overload, and alters the activity and properties of the remaining motor units. However, it is not well documented if the three types of motor units are equally represented within the innervating ventral roots. Single motor units in the rat medial gastrocnemius muscle were studied and their contractile properties as well as distribution of different types of motor units belonging to subpopulations innervated by axons in L4 and L5 ventral roots were analyzed. The composition of the three physiological types of motor units in the two subpopulations was similar. Force parameters were similar for motor units belonging to the two subpopulations. However, the twitch time parameters were slightly longer in L4 in comparison to L5 motor units although the difference was significant only for fast resistant to fatigue motor units. The force-frequency relationships in the two subpopulations of motor units were not different. Concluding, the two subpopulations of motor units in the studied muscle differ in the number of motor units, but contain similar proportions of the three physiological types of these units and their contractile properties are similar. Therefore, the injury of one ventral root evokes various degrees of muscle denervation, but is non-selective in relation to the three types of motor units.

  14. Spinal muscular atrophy phenotype is ameliorated in human motor neurons by SMN increase via different novel RNA therapeutic approaches.

    PubMed

    Nizzardo, Monica; Simone, Chiara; Dametti, Sara; Salani, Sabrina; Ulzi, Gianna; Pagliarani, Serena; Rizzo, Federica; Frattini, Emanuele; Pagani, Franco; Bresolin, Nereo; Comi, Giacomo; Corti, Stefania

    2015-06-30

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a primary genetic cause of infant mortality due to mutations in the Survival Motor Neuron (SMN) 1 gene. No cure is available. Antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) aimed at increasing SMN levels from the paralogous SMN2 gene represent a possible therapeutic strategy. Here, we tested in SMA human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and iPSC-differentiated motor neurons, three different RNA approaches based on morpholino antisense targeting of the ISSN-1, exon-specific U1 small nuclear RNA (ExSpeU1), and Transcription Activator-Like Effector-Transcription Factor (TALE-TF). All strategies act modulating SMN2 RNA: ASO affects exon 7 splicing, TALE-TF increase SMN2 RNA acting on the promoter, while ExSpeU1 improves pre-mRNA processing. These approaches induced up-regulation of full-length SMN mRNA and differentially affected the Delta-7 isoform: ASO reduced this isoform, while ExSpeU1 and TALE-TF increased it. All approaches upregulate the SMN protein and significantly improve the in vitro SMA motor neurons survival. Thus, these findings demonstrate that therapeutic tools that act on SMN2 RNA are able to rescue the SMA disease phenotype. Our data confirm the feasibility of SMA iPSCs as in vitro disease models and we propose novel RNA approaches as potential therapeutic strategies for treating SMA and other genetic neurological disorders.

  15. Increases in vocalization and motor reflex thresholds are influenced by the site of morphine microinjection: comparisons following administration into the periaqueductal gray, ventral medulla, and spinal subarachnoid space.

    PubMed

    Borszcz, G S

    1995-06-01

    The relative influence of morphine microinjected into the periaqueductal gray, ventral medulla (nucleus raphé magnus or nucleus reticularis gigantocellularis), or spinal subarachnoid space on the thresholds of responses organized at spinal (spinal motor reflexes, SMRs), medullary (vocalizations elicited during shock, VDSs), and rhinencephalic-diencephalic (vocalization after discharges, VADs) levels of the neuraxis was assessed. Dose-dependent increases in response thresholds differed with the site of morphine injection. These results indicate that the mu-opiate-receptor-linked systems in the mesencephalon, medulla, and spinal cord exert differential antinociceptive effects on pain behaviors organized at different levels of the neuraxis. A hypothesis is offered regarding the mechanisms through which morphine inhibits nociceptive transmission through various levels of the CNS. VADs are promoted as a model system for analyzing the affective-motivational dimension of the pain experience.

  16. Effect of dexmedetomidine-etomidate-fentanyl combined anesthesia on somatosensory- and motor-evoked potentials in patients undergoing spinal surgery.

    PubMed

    Lin, Sheng; Dai, Na; Cheng, Zhengyan; Shao, Wei; Fu, Zhijian

    2014-05-01

    This aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of dexmedetomidine (DEX) on the intraoperative monitoring of somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) and motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) in patients undergoing spinal surgery. A total of 36 patients who received spinal surgery under general anesthesia were randomly divided into two groups (n=18 per group), group C, the test group and group D, the control group, and these groups were subjected to a matching anesthesia induction. In brief, the anesthesia was administered via injection of etomidate and fentanyl; once the patients were unconscious, a laryngeal mask airway (LMA) was inserted, SEPs and MEPs were monitored and the collected data were considered to be basic data. Cisatracurium was subsequently injected and an endotracheal tube (7#) was inserted to replace the LMA. The following procedures were conducted for anesthesia maintenance: Group C, the anesthesia was maintained via target-controlled infusion of etomidate and intermittent injection of fentanyl; and group D, DEX (0.5 μg/kg) was injected over a duration of 10 min and then pumped at a rate of 0.5 μg/kg/h. In the two groups, all of the other drugs used were the same and a muscle relaxant was not administered. The bispectral index was maintained between 45 and 55 during surgery, and the SEPs and MEPs were monitored continuously until the surgery was completed. No significant difference in duration and amplitude of the SEPs (P15-N20) was identified between group C and D (P>0.05). Furthermore, the MEPs were monitored in the two groups at specific durations and no significant difference was observed between the two groups (P>0.05). The SEPs and MEPs were maintained in the patients who were administered with the DEX-etomidate-fentanyl combined anesthesia during spinal surgery.

  17. Discovery and Optimization of Small Molecule Splicing Modifiers of Survival Motor Neuron 2 as a Treatment for Spinal Muscular Atrophy.

    PubMed

    Woll, Matthew G; Qi, Hongyan; Turpoff, Anthony; Zhang, Nanjing; Zhang, Xiaoyan; Chen, Guangming; Li, Chunshi; Huang, Song; Yang, Tianle; Moon, Young-Choon; Lee, Chang-Sun; Choi, Soongyu; Almstead, Neil G; Naryshkin, Nikolai A; Dakka, Amal; Narasimhan, Jana; Gabbeta, Vijayalakshmi; Welch, Ellen; Zhao, Xin; Risher, Nicole; Sheedy, Josephine; Weetall, Marla; Karp, Gary M

    2016-07-14

    The underlying cause of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a deficiency of the survival motor neuron (SMN) protein. Starting from hits identified in a high-throughput screening campaign and through structure-activity relationship investigations, we have developed small molecules that potently shift the alternative splicing of the SMN2 exon 7, resulting in increased production of the full-length SMN mRNA and protein. Three novel chemical series, represented by compounds 9, 14, and 20, have been optimized to increase the level of SMN protein by >50% in SMA patient-derived fibroblasts at concentrations of <160 nM. Daily administration of these compounds to severe SMA Δ7 mice results in an increased production of SMN protein in disease-relevant tissues and a significant increase in median survival time in a dose-dependent manner. Our work supports the development of an orally administered small molecule for the treatment of patients with SMA.

  18. Changes in the Neurochemical Composition of Motor Neurons of the Spinal Cord in Mice under Conditions of Space Flight.

    PubMed

    Porseva, V V; Shilkin, V V; Strelkov, A A; Krasnov, I B; Masliukov, P M

    2017-01-01

    Expression of choline acetyltransferase, 200-kDa neurofilament protein, 28-kDa calbindin, neuronal NO synthase, caspase 3, and Ki-67 in the motor neurons of spinal cord segments T3-T5 in male C57Bl/6 mice after 30-day space flight in the Bion-M1 biosatellite was studied by immunohistochemical methods. Under conditions space flight, the size of motoneurons increased, the number of neurons containing choline acetyltransferase and neurofilaments, decreased, and the number of calbindin-positive neurons increased; motoneurons, expressing neuronal NO synthase and caspase 3 appeared, while Ki-67 was not detected. Fragmentation of neurons with the formation structures similar to apoptotic (residual) bodies was observed in individual caspase 3-positive motoneurons.

  19. Confirmation of the spinal motor neuron gene 2 (SMN2) copy numbers by real-time PCR.

    PubMed

    Wieme, Maamouri-Hicheri; Monia Ben, Hammer; Yosr, Bouhlal; Sihem, Souilem; Nawel, Toumi; Ines, Manai-Azizi; Wajdi, Bennour; Najla, Khmiri; Houda, Nahdi; Faycal, Hentati; Rim, Amouri

    2012-09-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disease caused by mutation or deletion of the survival motor neuron gene 1 (SMN1). SMN2, a copy gene, influences the severity of SMA and may be used in somatic gene therapy of patients with SMA in the future. The SMA carrier analysis developed at the Institute of Medical Genetics, Catholic University (Rome), on the Applied Biosystems real-time PCR instruments by Dr Danilo Tiziano and his group, provides a robust workflow to evaluate SMA carrier status. In this study, the SMN2 copy number was confirmed on 22 patients by developing our own assay on the basis of a relative real-time PCR system using the 7500 Fast Real-Time PCR System.

  20. The astrocytic transporter SLC7A10 (Asc-1) mediates glycinergic inhibition of spinal cord motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ehmsen, Jeffrey T.; Liu, Yong; Wang, Yue; Paladugu, Nikhil; Johnson, Anna E.; Rothstein, Jeffrey D.; du Lac, Sascha; Mattson, Mark P.; Höke, Ahmet

    2016-01-01

    SLC7A10 (Asc-1) is a sodium-independent amino acid transporter known to facilitate transport of a number of amino acids including glycine, L-serine, L-alanine, and L-cysteine, as well as their D-enantiomers. It has been described as a neuronal transporter with a primary role related to modulation of excitatory glutamatergic neurotransmission. We find that SLC7A10 is substantially enriched in a subset of astrocytes of the caudal brain and spinal cord in a distribution corresponding with high densities of glycinergic inhibitory synapses. Accordingly, we find that spinal cord glycine levels are significantly reduced in Slc7a10-null mice and spontaneous glycinergic postsynaptic currents in motor neurons show substantially diminished amplitudes, demonstrating an essential role for SLC7A10 in glycinergic inhibitory function in the central nervous system. These observations establish the etiology of sustained myoclonus (sudden involuntary muscle movements) and early postnatal lethality characteristic of Slc7a10-null mice, and implicate SLC7A10 as a candidate gene and auto-antibody target in human hyperekplexia and stiff person syndrome, respectively. PMID:27759100

  1. Convection enhanced drug delivery of BDNF through a microcannula in a rodent model to strengthen connectivity of a peripheral motor nerve bridge model to bypass spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Martin Bauknight, W; Chakrabarty, Samit; Hwang, Brian Y; Malone, Hani R; Joshi, Shailendra; Bruce, Jeffrey N; Sander Connolly, E; Winfree, Christopher J; Cunningham, Miles G; Martin, John H; Haque, Raqeeb

    2012-04-01

    Models employing peripheral nerve to bypass spinal cord injury (SCI), although highly promising, may benefit from improved nerve regeneration and motor bridge connectivity. Recent studies have demonstrated that neuronal growth factor-induced enhancement of endogenous neurorestoration may improve neuronal connectivity after severe neurologic injury, particularly if delivered intraparenchymally with zero-order kinetics. We sought to investigate the effect of convection-enhanced delivery of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a neuronal growth factor, on the connectivity of a peripheral motor-nerve bridge in a rodent model using electrophysiology and immunohistochemistry (IHC). Spinal cords of 29 female rats were hemisected at the L1 level. Ipsilateral T13 peripheral nerves were dissected from their muscular targets distally, while maintaining their connections with the spinal cord, and inserted caudal to the injury site to establish the nerve bridge. A microcannula attached to a six-week mini-osmotic pump was used to deliver either BDNF (n=12), saline (n=14), or fluorescein dye (n=3) directly into the spinal cord parenchyma between the site of nerve insertion and hemisection to a depth of 2mm into the area of the lateral motor pool. After four weeks, gastrocnemius muscle activation was assessed electromyographically in five animals from each group. Spinal cords were harvested and analyzed with IHC for cannula-associated injury, and nerve regeneration. Strength of motor bridge connection was illustrated by electrophysiology data. Intraspinal BDNF levels were measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. IHC revealed increased intraparenchymal BDNF concentration at the nerve bridge insertion site with evidence of minimal trauma from cannulation. BDNF infusion resulted in stronger connections between bridge nerves and spinal motor axons. Bridge nerve electrical stimulation in BDNF-treated rats evoked hind leg electromyogram responses of shorter latency and

  2. Inosine Enhances Axon Sprouting and Motor Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Daniel; Zai, Laila; Liang, Peng; Schaffling, Colleen; Ahlborn, David; Benowitz, Larry I.

    2013-01-01

    Although corticospinal tract axons cannot regenerate long distances after spinal cord injury, they are able to sprout collateral branches rostral to an injury site that can help form compensatory circuits in cases of incomplete lesions. We show here that inosine enhances the formation of compensatory circuits after a dorsal hemisection of the thoracic spinal cord in mature rats and improves coordinated limb use. Inosine is a naturally occurring metabolite of adenosine that crosses the cell membrane and, in neurons, activates Mst3b, a protein kinase that is part of a signal transduction pathway that regulates axon outgrowth. Compared to saline-treated controls, rats with dorsal hemisections that were treated with inosine showed three times as many synaptic contacts between corticospinal tract collaterals and long propriospinal interneurons that project from the cervical cord to the lumbar level. Inosine-treated rats also showed stronger serotonergic reinnervation of the lumbar cord than saline-treated controls, and performed well above controls in both open-field testing and a horizontal ladder rung-walking test. Inosine was equally effective whether delivered intracranially or intravenously, and has been shown to be safe for other indications in humans. Thus, inosine might be a useful therapeutic for improving outcome after spinal cord injury. PMID:24312612

  3. Riluzole promotes motor and respiratory recovery associated with enhanced neuronal survival and function following high cervical spinal hemisection.

    PubMed

    Satkunendrarajah, K; Nassiri, F; Karadimas, S K; Lip, A; Yao, G; Fehlings, M G

    2016-02-01

    Cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) can result in devastating functional deficits that involve the respiratory and hand function. The mammalian spinal cord has limited ability to regenerate and restore meaningful functional recovery following SCI. Riluzole, 2-amino-6-trifluoromethoxybenzothiazole, an anti-glutamatergic drug has been shown to reduce excitotoxicity and confer neuroprotection at the site of injury following experimental SCI. Based on promising preclinical studies, riluzole is currently under Phase III clinical trial for the treatment of SCI (ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT01597518). Riluzole's anti-glutamatergic role has the potential to regulate neuronal function and provide neuroprotection and influence glutamatergic connections distal to the initial injury leading to enhanced functional recovery following SCI. In order to investigate this novel role of riluzole we used a high cervical hemisection model of SCI, which interrupts all descending input to motoneurons innervating the ipsilateral forelimb and diaphragm muscles. Following C2 spinal cord hemisection, animals were placed into one of two groups: one group received riluzole (8 mg/kg) 1 h after injury and every 12 h thereafter for 7 days at 6 mg/kg, while the second group of injured rats received vehicle solution for the same duration of time. A third group of sham injured rats underwent a C2 laminectomy without hemisection and served as uninjured control rats. Interestingly, this study reports a significant loss of motoneurons within the cervical spinal cord caudal to C2 hemisection injury. Disruption of descending input led to a decrease in glutamatergic synapses and motoneurons caudal to the injury while riluzole treatment significantly limited this decline. Functionally, Hoffmann reflex recordings revealed an increase in the excitability of the remaining ipsilateral cervical motoneurons and significant improvements in skilled and unskilled forelimb function and respiratory motor function in the

  4. Study of Effect of Salvianolic Acid B on Motor Function Recovery in Rats with Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Xun, Chong; Hu, Yang; Lu, Ming; Wang, Shouyu

    2014-01-01

    In this study effect of salvianolic acid B was observed on motor function recovery of rats with spinal cord injury. 50 rats were selected and after inducing SCI their recovery under controlled conditions was studied using Sal B and PBS (as control). Both compounds were introduced intraperitoneally in respective groups of traumatic rats at the same time intervals for 28 days. It was observed that Sal B introduced at 5  mg/kg/day resulted in better motor function recovery. BBB score was recorded which increased significantly along with the reduction in cavity area observed by bright field microscopy of tissues, that is, from 1 to 10 and from 0.20 ± 0.05 mm2 to 0.10 ± 0.03 mm2, in Sal B treated group, respectively, compared to PBS group. Statistical analysis was carried out using SPSS software (SPSS, Chicago, IL, USA), values were expressed as mean ± SEM, and P value <0.01 was considered significant. Effect of Sal B on expression of NF-kB p65 and IkBα was studied and OD values of densitometry of western blots were taken. MPO activity was also studied. It was observed that treatment of Sal B significantly reduced the expression of both compounds in Sal B treated group as compared to control group after 28 days of treatment. PMID:24757683

  5. Intraoperative Motor-Evoked Potential Disappearance versus Amplitude-Decrement Alarm Criteria During Cervical Spinal Surgery: A Long-Term Prognosis

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Dong-Gun; Choi, Young-Doo; Jin, Seung-Hyun; Kim, Chi Heon; Lee, Kwang-Woo; Park, Kyung Seok

    2017-01-01

    Background and Purpose We studied the clinical significance of amplitude-reduction and disappearance alarm criteria for transcranial electric muscle motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) during cervical spinal surgery according to different lesion locations [intramedullary (IM) vs. nonintramedullary (NIM)] by evaluating the long-term postoperative motor status. Methods In total, 723 patients were retrospectively dichotomized into the IM and NIM groups. Each limb was analyzed respectively. One hundred and sixteen limbs from 30 patients with IM tumors and 2,761 limbs from 693 patients without IM tumors were enrolled. Postoperative motor deficits were assessed up to 6 months after surgery. Results At the end of surgery, 61 limbs (2.2%) in the NIM group and 14 limbs (12.1%) in the IM group showed MEP amplitudes that had decreased to below 50% of baseline, with 13 of the NIM limbs (21.3%) and 2 of the IM limbs (14.3%) showing MEP disappearance. Thirteen NIM limbs (0.5%) and 5 IM limbs (4.3%) showed postoperative motor deficits. The criterion for disappearance showed a lower sensitivity for the immediate motor deficit than did the criterion for amplitude decrement in both the IM and NIM groups. However, the disappearance criterion showed the same sensitivity as the 70%-decrement criterion in IM (100%) and NIM (83%) surgeries for the motor deficit at 6 months after surgery. Moreover, it has the highest specificity for the motor deficits among diverse alarm criteria, from 24 hours to 6 months after surgery, in both the IM and NIM groups. Conclusions The MEP disappearance alarm criterion had a high specificity in predicting the long-term prognosis after cervical spinal surgery. However, because it can have a low sensitivity in predicting an immediate postoperative deficit, combining different MEP alarm criteria according to the aim of specific instances of cervical spinal surgery is likely to be useful in practical intraoperative monitoring. PMID:27730765

  6. The influence of time from injury to surgery on motor recovery and length of hospital stay in acute traumatic spinal cord injury: an observational Canadian cohort study.

    PubMed

    Dvorak, Marcel F; Noonan, Vanessa K; Fallah, Nader; Fisher, Charles G; Finkelstein, Joel; Kwon, Brian K; Rivers, Carly S; Ahn, Henry; Paquet, Jérôme; Tsai, Eve C; Townson, Andrea; Attabib, Najmedden; Bailey, Christopher S; Christie, Sean D; Drew, Brian; Fourney, Daryl R; Fox, Richard; Hurlbert, R John; Johnson, Michael G; Linassi, A G; Parent, Stefan; Fehlings, Michael G

    2015-05-01

    To determine the influence of time from injury to surgery on neurological recovery and length of stay (LOS) in an observational cohort of individuals with traumatic spinal cord injury (tSCI), we analyzed the baseline and follow-up motor scores of participants in the Rick Hansen Spinal Cord Injury Registry to specifically assess the effect of an early (less than 24 h from injury) surgical procedure on motor recovery and on LOS. One thousand four hundred and ten patients who sustained acute tSCIs with baseline American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale (AIS) grades A, B, C, or D and were treated surgically were analyzed to determine the effect of the timing of surgery (24, 48, or 72 h from injury) on motor recovery and LOS. Depending on the distribution of data, we used different types of generalized linear models, including multiple linear regression, gamma regression, and negative binomial regression. Persons with incomplete AIS B, C, and D injuries from C2 to L2 demonstrated motor recovery improvement of an additional 6.3 motor points (SE=2.8 p<0.03) when they underwent surgical treatment within 24 h from the time of injury, compared with those who had surgery later than 24 h post-injury. This beneficial effect of early surgery on motor recovery was not seen in the patients with AIS A complete SCI. AIS A and B patients who received early surgery experienced shorter hospital LOS. While the issues of when to perform surgery and what specific operation to perform remain controversial, this work provides evidence that for an incomplete acute tSCI in the cervical, thoracic, or thoracolumbar spine, surgery performed within 24 h from injury improves motor neurological recovery. Early surgery also reduces LOS.

  7. Lentivirus-mediated inhibition of tumour necrosis factor-α improves motor function associated with PRDX6 in spinal cord contusion rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiao; Shi, Lan-lan; Gao, Xia; Jiang, Di; Zhong, Zhan-qiong; Zeng, Xi; Rao, Ying; Hu, Xi; Li, Tian-zhi; Li, Xiu-juan; Li, Lei; Chen, Jian-min; Xia, Qingjie; Wang, Ting-hua

    2015-02-16

    The recovery of motor function in rats is inhibited following contusion spinal cord injury (cSCI). However, the mechanism of tumour necrosis factor α (TNF-α) in motor function after cSCI associated with peroxiredoxin 6 (PRDX6) remains unknown. We randomly divided rats into four groups: sham, cSCI, vector and lentivirus mediating TNF-α RNA interference (TNF-α-RNAi-LV) group. The Basso, Beattie, Bresnahan (BBB) scale was used to evaluate motor function. Real-time quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) and western blotting were used to detect the expression of TNF-α and PRDX6, which were located in neurons using immunohistochemistry (IHC) and immunofluorescence. Subsequently, lentiviral-mediated TNF-α was used to determine the role of TNF-αand the relationship of PRDX6 and TNF-α in cSCI. After cSCI, the motor capability of hind limbs disappeared and was followed by recovery of function. IHC analysis indicated that TNF-α and PRDX6 were primarily located in spinal cord neurons. TNF-α interference significantly improved neural behaviour and increased expression of PRDX6. Our study suggests that inhibition of TNF-α can promote the recovery of motor function. The underlying mechanism of TNF-α-promoted motor function may be connected with the up-regulation of PRDX6. This provides a new strategy or target for the clinical treatment of SCI in future.

  8. Bog bilberry anthocyanin extract improves motor functional recovery by multifaceted effects in spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Ma, Chuan; Rong, Wei; Jing, Hao; Hu, Xing; Liu, Xiaoguang; Jiang, Liang; Wei, Feng; Liu, Zhongjun

    2012-12-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the therapeutic efficiency of bog bilberry anthocyanin extract (BBAE) treatment starting 1 d after spinal cord injury (SCI) in rats and to investigate the underlying mechanism. The BBAE contained cyanidin-3-glucoside, malvidin-3-galactoside and malvidin-3-glucoside. SCI models were induced using the weight-drop method in Sprague-Dawley rats and additionally with sham group (laminectomy only). The animals were divided into four groups: vehicle-treated group; 10 mg/kg BBAE-treated group; 20 mg/kg BBAE-treated group; sham group. BBAE-treated or vehicle-treated group was administered orally at one day after SCI and then daily for 8 weeks. Locomotor functional recovery was assessed during the 8 weeks post operation period by performing a Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor score test. At the end of study, the animals were killed, and 1.5 cm segments of spinal cord encompassing the injury site were removed for immunohistochemistry, histopathological and western blotting analysis. Immunohistochemistry for GFAP, aggrecan, neurocan and NeuN was used to assess the degree of astrocytic glial scar formation and neuron survival. Immunohistochemistry and western blotting analysis for TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β was used to evaluate the anti-inflammation effect of BBAE. To evaluate its inhibition effect on the astrocytes, we performed the MTT assay and immunohistochemistry for Ki67 in vitro. Results show that the BBAE-treated animals showed significantly better locomotor functional recovery, neuron death and smaller glial scar formation after spinal cord injury in vivo. In addition, BBAE administration could inhibit astrocyte proliferation in vivo and vitro. Therefore, BBAE may be useful as a promising therapeutic agent for SCI.

  9. Role of Direct vs. Indirect Pathways from the Motor Cortex to Spinal Motoneurons in the Control of Hand Dexterity

    PubMed Central

    Isa, Tadashi; Kinoshita, Masaharu; Nishimura, Yukio

    2013-01-01

    Evolutionally, development of the direct connection from the motor cortex to spinal motoneurons [corticomotoneuronal (CM) pathway] parallels the ability of hand dexterity. Damage to the corticofugal fibers in higher primates resulted in deficit of fractionated digit movements. Based on such observations, it was generally believed that the CM pathway plays a critical role in the control of hand dexterity. On the other hand, a number of “phylogenetically older” indirect pathways from the motor cortex to motoneurons still exist in primates. The indirect pathways are mediated by intercalated neurons such as segmental interneurons (sINs), propriospinal neurons (PNs) reticulospinal neurons (RSNs), or rubrospinal neurons (RuSNs). However, their contribution to hand dexterity remains elusive. Lesion of the brainstem pyramid sparing the transmission through the RuSNs and RSNs, resulted in permanent deficit of fractionated digit movements in macaque monkeys. On the other hand, in our recent study, after lesion of the dorsolateral funiculus (DLF) at the C5 segment, which removed the lateral corticospinal tract (l-CST) including the CM pathway and the transmission through sINs and RuSNs but spared the processing through the PNs and RSNs, fractionated digit movements recovered within several weeks. These results suggest that the PNs can be involved in the recovery of fractionated digit movements, but the RSNs and RuSNs have less capacity in this regard. However, on closer inspection, it was found that the activation pattern of hand and arm muscles considerably changed after the C5 lesion, suggesting limitation of PNs for the compensation of hand dexterity. Altogether, it is suggested that PNs, RSNs RuSNs, and the CM pathway (plus sINs) make a different contribution to the hand dexterity and appearance of motor deficit of the hand dexterity caused by damage to the corticofugal fibers and potential of recovery varies depending on the rostrocaudal level of the lesion. PMID

  10. Lognormal firing rate distribution reveals prominent fluctuation–driven regime in spinal motor networks

    PubMed Central

    Petersen, Peter C; Berg, Rune W

    2016-01-01

    When spinal circuits generate rhythmic movements it is important that the neuronal activity remains within stable bounds to avoid saturation and to preserve responsiveness. Here, we simultaneously record from hundreds of neurons in lumbar spinal circuits of turtles and establish the neuronal fraction that operates within either a ‘mean-driven’ or a ‘fluctuation–driven’ regime. Fluctuation-driven neurons have a ‘supralinear’ input-output curve, which enhances sensitivity, whereas the mean-driven regime reduces sensitivity. We find a rich diversity of firing rates across the neuronal population as reflected in a lognormal distribution and demonstrate that half of the neurons spend at least 50 % of the time in the ‘fluctuation–driven’ regime regardless of behavior. Because of the disparity in input–output properties for these two regimes, this fraction may reflect a fine trade–off between stability and sensitivity in order to maintain flexibility across behaviors. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.18805.001 PMID:27782883

  11. G-protein-coupled receptor 30-mediated antiapoptotic effect of estrogen on spinal motor neurons following injury and its underlying mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jingyu; Hu, Rong; Ge, Hongfei; Duanmu, Wangsheng; Li, Yuhong; Xue, Xingseng; Hu, Shengli; Feng, Hua

    2015-08-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) may result in severe dysfunction of motor neurons. G-protein-coupled receptor 30 (GPR30) expression in the motor neurons of the ventral horn of the spinal cord mediates neuroprotection through estrogen signaling. The present study explored the antiapoptotic effect of estrogen, mediated by GPR30 following SCI, and the mechanisms underlying this effect. Spinal motor neurons from rats were cultured in vitro in order to establish cell models of oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD). The effects of estrogen, the estrogen agonist, G1, and the estrogen inhibitor, G15, on motor neurons were observed using MTT assays. The effects of E2, G1 and G15 on spinal motor neuron apoptosis following OGD, were detected using flow cytometry. The role of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/protein kinase B (PI3K/Akt) inhibitor, LY294002, was also determined using flow cytometry. Rat SCI models were established. E2, G1 and E2+LY294002 were administered in vivo. Motor function was scored at 3, 7, 14, 21 and 28 d following injury, using Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan (BBB) standards. Cell activity in the estrogen and G1 groups was higher than that in the solvent group, whereas cell activity in the E2+G15 group was lower than that in the E2 group (P<0.05). Following OGD, the proportion of apoptotic cells significantly increased (P<0.05). The proportion in the estrogen group was significantly lower than that in the solvent group, whereas the proportion of apoptotic cells in the E2+G15 and E2+LY294002 groups was higher than that in the E2 group (P<0.05). Treatment with E2 and G1 led to upregulation of P-Akt expression in normal cells and post-OGD cells. The BBB scores of rats in the E2 and G1 groups were higher than those in the placebo group (P<0.05). The BBB scores of the E2+LY294002 group were lower than those of the E2 group (P<0.05). Estrogen thus appears to exert a protective effect on spinal motor neurons following OGD, via GPR30. The PI3K/Akt pathway may be one of those

  12. Robotically assisted treadmill exercise training for improving peak fitness in chronic motor incomplete spinal cord injury: A randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Scott, William; York, Henry; Theyagaraj, Melita; Price-Miller, Naomi; McQuaid, Jean; Eyvazzadeh, Megan; Ivey, Frederick M.; Macko, Richard F.

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess the effectiveness of robotically assisted body weight supported treadmill training (RABWSTT) for improving cardiovascular fitness in chronic motor incomplete spinal cord injury (CMISCI). Design Pilot prospective randomized, controlled clinical trial. Setting Outpatient rehabilitation specialty hospital. Participants Eighteen individuals with CMISCI with American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) level between C4 and L2 and at least one-year post injury. Interventions CMISCI participants were randomized to RABWSTT or a home stretching program (HSP) three times per week for three months. Those in the home stretching group were crossed over to three months of RABWSTT following completion of the initial three month phase. Outcome measures Peak oxygen consumption (peak VO2) was measured during both robotic treadmill walking and arm cycle ergometry: twice at baseline, once at six weeks (mid-training) and twice at three months (post-training). Peak VO2 values were normalized for body mass. Results The RABWSTT group improved peak VO2 by 12.3% during robotic treadmill walking (20.2 ± 7.4 to 22.7 ± 7.5 ml/kg/min, P = 0.018), compared to a non-significant 3.9% within group change observed in HSP controls (P = 0.37). Neither group displayed a significant change in peak VO2 during arm cycle ergometry (RABWSTT, 8.5% (P = 0.25); HSP, 1.76% (P = 0.72)). A repeated measures analysis showed statistically significant differences between treatments for peak VO2 during both robotic treadmill walking (P = 0.002) and arm cycle ergometry (P = 0.001). Conclusion RABWSTT is an effective intervention model for improving peak fitness levels assessed during robotic treadmill walking in persons with CMISCI. PMID:25520035

  13. Quadri-Pulse Theta Burst Stimulation using Ultra-High Frequency Bursts - A New Protocol to Induce Changes in Cortico-Spinal Excitability in Human Motor Cortex.

    PubMed

    Jung, Nikolai H; Gleich, Bernhard; Gattinger, Norbert; Hoess, Catrina; Haug, Carolin; Siebner, Hartwig R; Mall, Volker

    2016-01-01

    Patterned transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) such as theta burst stimulation (TBS) or quadri-pulse stimulation (QPS) can induce changes in cortico-spinal excitability, commonly referred to as long-term potentiation (LTP)-like and long-term depression (LTD)-like effects in human motor cortex (M1). Here, we aimed to test the plasticity-inducing capabilities of a novel protocol that merged TBS and QPS. 360 bursts of quadri-pulse TBS (qTBS) were continuously given to M1 at 90% of active motor threshold (1440 full-sine pulses). In a first experiment, stimulation frequency of each burst was set to 666 Hz to mimic the rhythmicity of the descending cortico-spinal volleys that are elicited by TMS (i.e., I-wave periodicity). In a second experiment, burst frequency was set to 200 Hz to maximize postsynaptic Ca2+ influx using a temporal pattern unrelated to I-wave periodicity. The second phase of sinusoidal TMS pulses elicited either a posterior-anterior (PA) or anterior-posterior (AP) directed current in M1. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were recorded before and after qTBS to probe changes in cortico-spinal excitability. PA-qTBS at 666 Hz caused a decrease in PA-MEP amplitudes, whereas AP-qTBS at 666 Hz induced an increase in mean AP-MEP amplitudes. At a burst frequency of 200 Hz, PA-qTBS and AP-qTBS produced an increase in cortico-spinal excitability outlasting for at least 60 minutes in PA- and AP-MEP amplitudes, respectively. Continuous qTBS at 666 Hz or 200 Hz can induce lasting changes in cortico-spinal excitability. Induced current direction in the brain appears to be relevant when qTBS targets I-wave periodicity, corroborating that high-fidelity spike timing mechanisms are critical for inducing bi-directional plasticity in human M1.

  14. Novel concept of motor functional analysis for spinal cord injury in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Shinozaki, Munehisa; Takahashi, Yuichiro; Mukaino, Masahiko; Saito, Nobuhito; Toyama, Yoshiaki; Okano, Hideyuki; Nakamura, Masaya

    2011-01-01

    In basic research on spinal cord injury (SCI), behavioral evaluation of the SCI animal model is critical. However, it is difficult to accurately evaluate function in the mouse SCI model due to the small size of mice. Although the open-field scoring scale is an outstanding appraisal method, supplementary objective tests are required. Using a compact SCANET system, in which a mouse carries out free movement for 5 min, we developed a novel method to detect locomotor ability. A SCANET system samples the horizontal coordinates of a mouse every 0.1 s, and both the speed and acceleration of its motion are calculated at each moment. It was found that the maximum speed and acceleration of motion over 5 min varied by injury severity. Moreover, these values were significantly correlated with open-field scores. The maximum speed and acceleration of SCI model mice using a SCANET system are objective, easy to obtain, and reproducible for evaluating locomotive function.

  15. [Effect of fenibut on the GABA B receptors of the spinal motor neurons].

    PubMed

    Abramets, I I; Komissarov, I V

    1985-06-01

    It has been established in experiments on the isolated spinal cord of 7-14-day-old rats that the GABAB-mimetic phenibut (10(-5)--10(-4) M) elicits a slow-developing depolarization of motoneurons, suppression of spontaneous activity and polysynaptic reflex discharges of motoneurons, recorded from the ventral roots. Administered under the same conditions GABA produces de- and hyperpolarization of motoneurons. The depolarization of motoneurons elicited by phenibut and GABA is not reversed by picrotoxin in contradistinction to the GABA-induced hyperpolarization of motoneurons, being associated with a direct action of the GABA-mimetics on postsynaptic GABAB receptors of motoneurons. Diazepam (10(-9)--10(-6) M) potentiates the effects of phenibut supposedly via benzodiazepine receptors bound with GABAA receptors (an independent interaction).

  16. Repeated Baclofen treatment ameliorates motor dysfunction, suppresses reflex activity and decreases the expression of signaling proteins in reticular nuclei and lumbar motoneurons after spinal trauma in rats.

    PubMed

    Kucharíková, Andrea; Schreiberová, Andrea; Závodská, Monika; Gedrová, Štefánia; Hricová, Ľudmila; Pavel, Jaroslav; Gálik, Ján; Maršala, Martin; Lukáčová, Nadežda

    2014-03-01

    The interruption of supraspinal input to the spinal cord leads to motor dysfunction and the development of spasticity. Clinical studies have shown that Baclofen (a GABAB agonist), while effective in modulating spasticity is associated with side-effects and the development of tolerance. The aim of the present study was to assess if discontinued Baclofen treatment and its repeated application leads antispasticity effects, and whether such changes affect neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) in the brainstem, nNOS and parvalbumin (PV) in lumbar α-motoneurons and glial fibrillary acidic protein in the ventral horn of the spinal cord. Adult male Wistar rats were exposed to Th9 spinal cord transection. Baclofen (30mg/b.w.) diluted in drinking water, was administered for 6 days, starting at week 1 after injury and then repeated till week 4 after injury. The behavior of the animals was tested (tail-flick test, BBB locomotor score) from 1 to 8 weeks. Our results clearly indicate the role of nitric oxide, produced by nNOS in the initiation and the maintenance of spasticity states 1, 6 and 8 weeks after spinal trauma. A considerable decrease of nNOS staining after Baclofen treatment correlates with improvement of motor dysfunction. The findings also show that parvalbumin and astrocytes participate in the regulation of ion concentrations in the sub-acute phase after the injury.

  17. Feasibility of visual instrumented movement feedback therapy in individuals with motor incomplete spinal cord injury walking on a treadmill

    PubMed Central

    Schließmann, Daniel; Schuld, Christian; Schneiders, Matthias; Derlien, Steffen; Glöckner, Maria; Gladow, Till; Weidner, Norbert; Rupp, Rüdiger

    2014-01-01

    Background: Incomplete spinal cord injury (iSCI) leads to motor and sensory deficits. Even in ambulatory persons with good motor function an impaired proprioception may result in an insecure gait. Limited internal afferent feedback (FB) can be compensated by provision of external FB by therapists or technical systems. Progress in computational power of motion analysis systems allows for implementation of instrumented real-time FB. The aim of this study was to test if individuals with iSCI can normalize their gait kinematics during FB and more importantly maintain an improvement after therapy. Methods: Individuals with chronic iSCI had to complete 6 days (1 day per week) of treadmill-based FB training with a 2 weeks pause after 3 days of training. Each day consists of an initial gait analysis followed by 2 blocks with FB/no-FB. During FB the deviation of the mean knee angle during swing from a speed matched reference (norm distance, ND) is visualized as a number. The task consists of lowering the ND, which was updated after every stride. Prior to the tests in patients the in-house developed FB implementation was tested in healthy subjects with an artificial movement task. Results: Four of five study participants benefited from FB in the short and medium term. Decrease of mean ND was highest during the first 3 sessions (from 3.93 ± 1.54 to 2.18 ± 1.04). After the pause mean ND stayed in the same range than before. In the last 3 sessions the mean ND decreased slower (2.40 ± 1.18 to 2.20 ± 0.90). Direct influences of FB ranged from 60 to 15% of reduction in mean ND compared to initial gait analysis and from 20 to 1% compared to no-FB sessions. Conclusions: Instrumented kinematic real-time FB may serve as an effective adjunct to established gait therapies in normalizing the gait pattern after incomplete spinal cord injury. Further studies with larger patient groups need to prove long term learning and the successful transfer of newly acquired skills to activities of

  18. Intermittent fasting in mice does not improve hindlimb motor performance after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Streijger, Femke; Plunet, Ward T; Plemel, Jason Ryan; Lam, Clarrie K; Liu, Jie; Tetzlaff, Wolfram

    2011-06-01

    Previously, we reported that every-other-day-fasting (EODF) in Sprague-Dawley rats initiated after cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) effectively promoted functional recovery, reduced lesion size, and enhanced sprouting of the corticospinal tract. More recently, we also showed improved behavioral recovery with EODF after a moderate thoracic contusion injury in rats. In order to make use of transgenic mouse models to study molecular mechanisms of EODF, we tested here whether this intermittent fasting regimen was also beneficial in mice after SCI. Starting after SCI, C57BL/6 mice were fed a standard rodent chow diet either with unrestricted access or feeding every other day. Over a 14-week post-injury period, we assessed hindlimb locomotor function with the Basso Mouse Scale (BMS) open-field test and horizontal ladder, and the spinal cords were evaluated histologically to measure white and grey matter sparing. EODF resulted in an overall caloric restriction of 20% compared to animals fed ad libitum (AL). The EODF-treated animals exhibited a ∼ 14% reduction in body weight compared to AL mice, and never recovered to their pre-operative body weight. In contrast to rats on an intermittent fasting regimen, mice exhibited no increase in blood ketone bodies by the end of the second, third, and fourth day of fasting. EODF had no beneficial effect on tissue sparing and failed to improve behavioral recovery of hindlimb function. Hence this observation stands in stark contrast to our earlier observations in Sprague-Dawley rats. This is likely due to the difference in the metabolic response to intermittent fasting as evidenced by different ketone levels during the first week of the EODF regimen.

  19. Ketogenic Diet Improves Forelimb Motor Function after Spinal Cord Injury in Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Streijger, Femke; Plunet, Ward T.; Lee, Jae H. T.; Liu, Jie; Lam, Clarrie K.; Park, Soeyun; Hilton, Brett J.; Fransen, Bas L.; Matheson, Keely A. J.; Assinck, Peggy; Kwon, Brian K.; Tetzlaff, Wolfram

    2013-01-01

    High fat, low carbohydrate ketogenic diets (KD) are validated non-pharmacological treatments for some forms of drug-resistant epilepsy. Ketones reduce neuronal excitation and promote neuroprotection. Here, we investigated the efficacy of KD as a treatment for acute cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) in rats. Starting 4 hours following C5 hemi-contusion injury animals were fed either a standard carbohydrate based diet or a KD formulation with lipid to carbohydrate plus protein ratio of 3:1. The forelimb functional recovery was evaluated for 14 weeks, followed by quantitative histopathology. Post-injury 3:1 KD treatment resulted in increased usage and range of motion of the affected forepaw. Furthermore, KD improved pellet retrieval with recovery of wrist and digit movements. Importantly, after returning to a standard diet after 12 weeks of KD treatment, the improved forelimb function remained stable. Histologically, the spinal cords of KD treated animals displayed smaller lesion areas and more grey matter sparing. In addition, KD treatment increased the number of glucose transporter-1 positive blood vessels in the lesion penumbra and monocarboxylate transporter-1 (MCT1) expression. Pharmacological inhibition of MCTs with 4-CIN (α-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamate) prevented the KD-induced neuroprotection after SCI, In conclusion, post-injury KD effectively promotes functional recovery and is neuroprotective after cervical SCI. These beneficial effects require the function of monocarboxylate transporters responsible for ketone uptake and link the observed neuroprotection directly to the function of ketones, which are known to exert neuroprotection by multiple mechanisms. Our data suggest that current clinical nutritional guidelines, which include relatively high carbohydrate contents, should be revisited. PMID:24223849

  20. Using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation to Evaluate the Motor Pathways After an Intraoperative Spinal Cord Injury and to Predict the Recovery of Intraoperative Transcranial Electrical Motor Evoked Potentials: A Case Report.

    PubMed

    Grover, Helen J; Thornton, Rachel; Lutchman, Lennel N; Blake, Julian C

    2016-06-01

    The authors report a case of unilateral loss of intraoperative transcranial electrical motor evoked potentials (TES MEP) associated with a spinal cord injury during scoliosis correction and the subsequent use of extraoperative transcranial magnetic stimulation to monitor the recovery of spinal cord function. The authors demonstrate the absence of TES MEPs and absent transcranial magnetic stimulation responses in the immediate postoperative period, and document the partial recovery of transcranial magnetic stimulation responses, which corresponded to partial recovery of TES MEPs. Intraoperative TES MEPs were enhanced using spatial facilitation technique, which enabled the patient to undergo further surgery to stabilize the spine and correct her scoliosis. This case report supports evidence of the use of extraoperative transcranial magnetic stimulation to predict the presence of intraoperative TES responses and demonstrates the usefulness of spatial facilitation to monitor TES MEPs in a patient with a preexisting spinal cord injury.

  1. The effect of Bobath approach on the excitability of the spinal alpha motor neurones in stroke patients with muscle spasticity.

    PubMed

    Ansari, N N; Naghdi, S

    2007-01-01

    A clinical study was performed to evaluate the efficacy of the Bobath approach on the excitability of the spinal alpha motor neurones in patients with poststroke spasticity. Ten subjects ranging in age from 37 through 76 years (average 60 years) with ankle plantarflexor spasticity secondary to a stroke were recruited and completed the trial. They had physiotherapy according to Bobath concept for ten treatment sessions, three days per week. Two repeated measures, one before and another after treatment, were taken to quantify clinical efficacy. The effect of this type of therapy on the excitability of alpha motor neurones (aMN) was assessed by measuring the latency of the Hoffmann reflex (H-reflex) and the Hmax/Mmax ratio. The original Ashworth scale and ankle range of motion were also measured. The mean HmaxlMmax ratio on the affected side at baseline was high in the study patients. However, there were no statistically significant differences in the HmaxlMmax ratio or in the H-reflex latency between the baseline values and those recorded after therapy intervention. Before treatment, the HmaxlMmax ratio was significantly higher in the affected side than in the unaffected side. However, it was similar at both sides after treatment. Following treatment, the significant reduction in spasticity was clinically detected as measured with the original Ashworth scale. The ankle joint active and passive range of motion was significantly increased. In conclusion, Bobath therapy had a statistically significant effect on the excitability of the aMN in the affected side compared to the unaffected side in stroke patients with muscle spasticity.

  2. Substantially elevating the levels of αB-crystallin in spinal motor neurons of mutant SOD1 mice does not significantly delay paralysis or attenuate mutant protein aggregation.

    PubMed

    Xu, Guilian; Fromholt, Susan; Ayers, Jacob I; Brown, Hilda; Siemienski, Zoe; Crosby, Keith W; Mayer, Christopher A; Janus, Christopher; Borchelt, David R

    2015-05-01

    There has been great interest in enhancing endogenous protein maintenance pathways such as the heat-shock chaperone response, as it is postulated that enhancing clearance of misfolded proteins could have beneficial disease modifying effects in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other neurodegenerative disorders. In cultured cell models of mutant SOD1 aggregation, co-expression of αB-crystallin (αB-crys) has been shown to inhibit the formation of detergent-insoluble forms of mutant protein. Here, we describe the generation of a new line of transgenic mice that express αB-crys at > 6-fold the normal level in spinal cord, with robust increases in immunoreactivity throughout the spinal cord grey matter and, specifically, in spinal motor neurons. Surprisingly, spinal cords of mice expressing αB-crys alone contained 20% more motor neurons per section than littermate controls. Raising αB-crys by these levels in mice transgenic for either G93A or L126Z mutant SOD1 had no effect on the age at which paralysis developed. In the G93A mice, which showed the most robust degree of motor neuron loss, the number of these cells declined by the same proportion as in mice expressing the mutant SOD1 alone. In paralyzed bigenic mice, the levels of detergent-insoluble, misfolded, mutant SOD1 were similar to those of mice expressing mutant SOD1 alone. These findings indicate that raising the levels of αB-crys in spinal motor neurons by 6-fold does not produce the therapeutic effects predicted by cell culture models of mutant SOD1 aggregation. Enhancing the protein chaperone function may present a therapeutic approach to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis caused by mutations in SOD1, and other neurodegenerative disorders characterized by cytosolic protein aggregation. Previous studies in cell models suggested that the chaperone known as αB-crystallin (αB-crys) can prevent mutant SOD1 aggregation. We report that transgenic expression of αB-crys at > 6-fold the normal level in spinal

  3. Amelioration of motor/sensory dysfunction and spasticity in a rat model of acute lumbar spinal cord injury by human neural stem cell transplantation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Intraspinal grafting of human neural stem cells represents a promising approach to promote recovery of function after spinal trauma. Such a treatment may serve to: I) provide trophic support to improve survival of host neurons; II) improve the structural integrity of the spinal parenchyma by reducing syringomyelia and scarring in trauma-injured regions; and III) provide neuronal populations to potentially form relays with host axons, segmental interneurons, and/or α-motoneurons. Here we characterized the effect of intraspinal grafting of clinical grade human fetal spinal cord-derived neural stem cells (HSSC) on the recovery of neurological function in a rat model of acute lumbar (L3) compression injury. Methods Three-month-old female Sprague–Dawley rats received L3 spinal compression injury. Three days post-injury, animals were randomized and received intraspinal injections of either HSSC, media-only, or no injections. All animals were immunosuppressed with tacrolimus, mycophenolate mofetil, and methylprednisolone acetate from the day of cell grafting and survived for eight weeks. Motor and sensory dysfunction were periodically assessed using open field locomotion scoring, thermal/tactile pain/escape thresholds and myogenic motor evoked potentials. The presence of spasticity was measured by gastrocnemius muscle resistance and electromyography response during computer-controlled ankle rotation. At the end-point, gait (CatWalk), ladder climbing, and single frame analyses were also assessed. Syrinx size, spinal cord dimensions, and extent of scarring were measured by magnetic resonance imaging. Differentiation and integration of grafted cells in the host tissue were validated with immunofluorescence staining using human-specific antibodies. Results Intraspinal grafting of HSSC led to a progressive and significant improvement in lower extremity paw placement, amelioration of spasticity, and normalization in thermal and tactile pain/escape thresholds at

  4. [Sanger sequencing for the diagnosis of spinal muscular atrophy patients with survival motor neuron gene 1 compound heterozygous mutation].

    PubMed

    Yang, L; Cao, Y Y; Qu, Y J; Bai, J L; Wang, H; Jin, Y W; Han, Y L; Song, F

    2017-02-14

    Objective: To detect the subtle variant of survival motor neuron gene 1(SMN1) by Sanger sequencing, and to assess the value of Sanger sequencing for the diagnosis of spinal muscular atrophy(SMA) with compound heterozygous mutation of SMN1. Methods: Fifty-two patients suspected SMA were recruited by the Capital Institute of Pediatrics from Jan.2014 to June.2016. PCR was used for amplifying exon7 of SMN1 and SMN2 in 52 patients. Natural different base peaks on the sequencing chromatogram in the SMN1 and SMN2 within the amplified segments were identified with Sanger DNA sequencing to detect the homozygous deletion or heterozygous deletion of SMN1. Then we screened the SMN1 subtle variants in heterozygous deletion patients by genomic Sanger sequencing for the other SMN exons. At last, multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification(MLPA) was carried out to confirm the results of SMN1 heterozygous deletion, and T-A cloning confirmed the subtle variants were located in SMN1. Results: Forty-seven of 52 cases were homozygous deletion of SMN1, while 5 cases were heterozygous deletion which were confirmed by MLPA.Then, by genomic and T-A cloning sequencing, five SMN1 subtle mutations were separately identified in 5 cases of heterozygous deletion. Conclusion: Sanger sequencing is an effective method for the clinical diagnosis of compound heterozygous mutation of SMN1, and is meaningful for improving genetic diagnosis rate of SMA.

  5. Contractile dysfunction in muscle may underlie androgen-dependent motor dysfunction in spinal bulbar muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Oki, Kentaro; Halievski, Katherine; Vicente, Laura; Xu, Youfen; Zeolla, Donald; Poort, Jessica; Katsuno, Masahisa; Adachi, Hiroaki; Sobue, Gen; Wiseman, Robert W; Breedlove, S Marc; Jordan, Cynthia L

    2015-04-01

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) is characterized by progressive muscle weakness linked to a polyglutamine expansion in the androgen receptor (AR). Current evidence indicates that mutant AR causes SBMA by acting in muscle to perturb its function. However, information about how muscle function is impaired is scant. One fundamental question is whether the intrinsic strength of muscles, an attribute of muscle independent of its mass, is affected. In the current study, we assess the contractile properties of hindlimb muscles in vitro from chronically diseased males of three different SBMA mouse models: a transgenic (Tg) model that broadly expresses a full-length human AR with 97 CAGs (97Q), a knock-in (KI) model that expresses a humanized AR containing a CAG expansion in the first exon, and a Tg myogenic model that overexpresses wild-type AR only in skeletal muscle fibers. We found that hindlimb muscles in the two Tg models (97Q and myogenic) showed marked losses in their intrinsic strength and resistance to fatigue, but were minimally affected in KI males. However, diseased muscles of all three models showed symptoms consistent with myotonic dystrophy type 1, namely, reduced resting membrane potential and deficits in chloride channel mRNA. These data indicate that muscle dysfunction is a core feature of SBMA caused by at least some of the same pathogenic mechanisms as myotonic dystrophy. Thus mechanisms controlling muscle function per se independent of mass are prime targets for SBMA therapeutics.

  6. Trophic and proliferative effects of Shh on motor neurons in embryonic spinal cord culture from wildtype and G93A SOD1 mice

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The developmental morphogen sonic hedgehog (Shh) may continue to play a trophic role in the support of terminally-differentiated motor neurons, of potential relevance to motor neuron disease. In addition, it may support the proliferation and differentiation of endogenous stem cells along motor neuronal lineages. As such, we have examined the trophic and proliferative effects of Shh supplementation or Shh antagonism in embryonic spinal cord cell cultures derived from wildtype or G93A SOD1 mice, a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Results Shh supported survival, and stimulated growth of motor neurons, neurite outgrowth, and neurosphere formation in primary culture derived from both G93A SOD1 and WT mice. Shh increased the percentage of ciliated motor neurons, especially in G93A SOD1 culture. Shh-treated cultures showed increased neuronal proliferation compared to controls and especially cyclopamine treated cultures, from G93A SOD1 and WT mice. Moreover, Shh enhanced cell survival and differentiation of motor neuron precursors in WT culture. Conclusions Shh is neurotrophic to motor neurons and has mitogenic effects in WT and mSOD1 G93A culture in vitro. PMID:24119209

  7. Xenotransplantation of embryonic stem cell-derived motor neurons into the developing chick spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Wichterle, Hynek; Peljto, Mirza; Nedelec, Stephane

    2009-01-01

    A growing number of specific cell types have been successfully derived from embryonic stem cells (ES cells), including a variety of neural cells. In vitro generated cells need to be extensively characterized to establish functional equivalency with their in vivo counterparts. The ultimate test for the ability of ES cell-derived neurons to functionally integrate into neural networks is transplantation into the developing central nervous system, a challenging technique limited by the poor accessibility of mammalian embryos. Here we describe xenotransplantation of mouse embryonic stem cell-derived motor neurons into the developing chick neural tube as an alternative for testing the ability of in vitro generated neurons to survive, integrate, extend axons, and form appropriate synaptic contacts with functionally relevant targets in vivo. Similar methods can be adapted to study functionality of other mammalian cells, including derivatives of human ES cells.

  8. Elucidation of target muscle and detailed development of dorsal motor neurons in chick embryo spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Nobumi; Homma, Shunsaku; Okada, Tomoaki; Masuda, Tomoyuki; Sato, Noboru; Nishiyama, Keiji; Sakuma, Chie; Shimada, Takako; Yaginuma, Hiroyuki

    2013-09-01

    The avian cervical spinal cord includes motoneurons (MNs) that send their axons through the dorsal roots. They have been called dorsal motoneurons (dMNs) and assumed to correspond to MNs of the accessory nerve that innervate the cucullaris muscle (SAN-MNs). However, their target muscles have not been elucidated to date. The present study sought to determine the targets and the specific combination of transcription factors expressed by dMNs and SAN-MNs and to describe the detailed development of dMNs. Experiments with tracing techniques confirmed that axons of dMNs innervated the cucullaris muscle. Retrogradely labeled dMNs were distributed in the ventral horn of C3 and more caudal segments. In most cases, some dMNs were also observed in the C2 segment. It was also demonstrated that SAN-MNs existed in the ventral horn of the C1-2 segments and the adjacent caudal hindbrain. Both SAN-MNs and dMNs expressed Isl1 but did not express Isl2, MNR2, or Lhx3. Rather, these MNs expressed Phox2b, a marker for branchial motoneurons (brMNs), although the intensity of expression was weaker. Dorsal MNs and SAN-MNs were derived from the Nkx2.2-positive precursor domain and migrated dorsally. Dorsal MNs remain in the ventral domain of the neural tube, unlike brMNs in the brainstem. These results indicate that dMNs and SAN-MNs belong to a common MN population innervating the cucullaris muscle and also suggest that they are similar to brMNs of the brainstem, although there are differences in Phox2b expression and in the final location of each population. J. Comp. Neurol. 521: 2987-3002, 2013. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Genetics Home Reference: spinal muscular atrophy

    MedlinePlus

    ... by a loss of specialized nerve cells, called motor neurons , in the spinal cord and the part ... the spinal cord ( the brainstem ). The loss of motor neurons leads to weakness and wasting ( atrophy ) of ...

  10. Effect of low-energy extracorporeal shock wave on vascular regeneration after spinal cord injury and the recovery of motor function

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lei; Jiang, Yuquan; Jiang, Zheng; Han, Lizhang

    2016-01-01

    Background Latest studies show that low-energy extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) can upregulate levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). VEGF can ease nervous tissue harm after spinal cord injury (SCI). This study aims to explore whether low-energy ESWT can promote expression of VEGF, protect nervous tissue after SCI, and improve motor function. Methods Ninety adult female rats were divided into the following groups: Group A (simple laminectomy), Group B (laminectomy and low-energy ESWT), Group C (spinal cord injury), and Group D (spinal cord injury and low-energy ESWT). Impinger was used to cause thoracic spinal cord injury. Low-energy ESWT was applied as treatment after injury three times a week, for 3 weeks. After SCI, the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) scale was used to evaluate motor function over a period of 42 days at different time points. Hematoxylin and eosin (HE) staining was used to evaluate nerve tissue injury. Neuronal nuclear antigen (NeuN) staining was also used to evaluate loss of neurons. Polymerase chain reaction was used to detect messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of VEGF and its receptor fms-like tyrosine kinase 1 (Flt-1). Immunostaining was used to evaluate VEGF protein expression level in myeloid tissue. Results BBB scores of Groups A and B showed no significant result related to dyskinesia. HE and NeuN staining indicated that only using low-energy ESWT could not cause damage of nervous tissue in Group B. Recovery of motor function at 7, 35, and 42 days after SCI in Group D was better than that in Group C (P<0.05). Compared with Group C, number of NeuN-positive cells at 42 days after SCI increased significantly (P<0.05). The mRNA levels of VEGF and Flt-1 and VEGF expression at 7 days after SCI in Group D were significantly higher than those in Group C (P<0.05). Conclusion Low-energy ESWT promotes expression of VEGF, decreases secondary damage of nerve tissue, and improves recovery of motor function. It can be regarded as

  11. The Extract of Roots of Sophora flavescens Enhances the Recovery of Motor Function by Axonal Growth in Mice with a Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Tanabe, Norio; Kuboyama, Tomoharu; Kazuma, Kohei; Konno, Katsuhiro; Tohda, Chihiro

    2016-01-01

    Although axonal extension to reconstruct spinal tracts should be effective for restoring function after spinal cord injury (SCI), chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan (CSPG) levels increase at spinal cord lesion sites, and inhibit axonal regrowth. In this study, we found that the water extract of roots of Sophora flavescens extended the axons of mouse cortical neurons, even on a CSPG-coated surface. Consecutive oral administrations of S. flavescens extract to SCI mice for 31 days increased the density of 5-HT-positive axons at the lesion site and improved the motor function. Further, the active constituents in the S. flavescens extract were identified. The water and alkaloid fractions of the S. flavescens extract each exhibited axonal extension activity in vitro. LC/MS analysis revealed that these fractions mainly contain matrine and/or oxymatrine, which are well-known major compounds in S. flavescens. Matrine and oxymatrine promoted axonal extension on the CSPG-coated surface. This study is the first to demonstrate that S. flavescens extract, matrine, and oxymatrine enhance axonal growth in vitro, even on a CSPG-coated surface, and that S. flavescens extract improves motor function and increases axonal density in SCI mice. PMID:26834638

  12. Characterization of Thoracic Motor and Sensory Neurons and Spinal Nerve Roots in Canine Degenerative Myelopathy, a Potential Disease Model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, Brandie R.; Coates, Joan R.; Johnson, Gayle C.; Shelton, G. Diane; Katz, Martin L.

    2014-01-01

    Canine Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) is a progressive adult-onset multisystem degenerative disease with many features in common with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). As with some forms of ALS, DM is associated with mutations in superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1). Clinical signs include general proprioceptive ataxia and spastic upper motor neuron paresis in pelvic limbs, which progress to flaccid tetraplegia and dysphagia. The purpose of this study was to characterize DM as a potential disease model for ALS. We previously reported that intercostal muscle atrophy develops in dogs with advanced stage DM. To determine if other components of the thoracic motor unit (MU) also demonstrated morphological changes consistent with dysfunction, histopathologic and morphometric analyses were conducted on thoracic spinal motor neurons (MN) and dorsal root ganglia (DRG), and in motor and sensory nerve root axons from DM-affected Boxers and Pembroke Welsh Corgis (PWCs). No alterations in MNs, or motor root axons were observed in either breed. However, advanced stage PWCs exhibited significant losses of sensory root axons, and numerous DRG sensory neurons displayed evidence of degeneration. These results indicate that intercostal muscle atrophy in DM is not preceded by physical loss of the motor neurons innervating these muscles, or of their axons. Axonal loss in thoracic sensory roots and sensory nerve death suggest sensory involvement may play an important role in DM disease progression. Further analysis of the mechanisms responsible for these morphological findings would aid in the development of therapeutic intervention for DM and some forms of ALS. PMID:24375814

  13. Characterization of thoracic motor and sensory neurons and spinal nerve roots in canine degenerative myelopathy, a potential disease model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Brandie R; Coates, Joan R; Johnson, Gayle C; Shelton, G Diane; Katz, Martin L

    2014-04-01

    Canine degenerative myelopathy (DM) is a progressive, adult-onset, multisystem degenerative disease with many features in common with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). As with some forms of ALS, DM is associated with mutations in superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1). Clinical signs include general proprioceptive ataxia and spastic upper motor neuron paresis in pelvic limbs, which progress to flaccid tetraplegia and dysphagia. The purpose of this study was to characterize DM as a potential disease model for ALS. We previously reported that intercostal muscle atrophy develops in dogs with advanced-stage DM. To determine whether other components of the thoracic motor unit (MU) also demonstrated morphological changes consistent with dysfunction, histopathologic and morphometric analyses were conducted on thoracic spinal motor neurons (MNs) and dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and in motor and sensory nerve root axons from DM-affected boxers and Pembroke Welsh corgis (PWCs). No alterations in MNs or motor root axons were observed in either breed. However, advanced-stage PWCs exhibited significant losses of sensory root axons, and numerous DRG sensory neurons displayed evidence of degeneration. These results indicate that intercostal muscle atrophy in DM is not preceded by physical loss of the motor neurons innervating these muscles, nor of their axons. Axonal loss in thoracic sensory roots and sensory neuron death suggest that sensory involvement may play an important role in DM disease progression. Further analysis of the mechanisms responsible for these morphological findings would aid in the development of therapeutic intervention for DM and some forms of ALS.

  14. Third-Degree Hindpaw Burn Injury Induced Apoptosis of Lumbar Spinal Cord Ventral Horn Motor Neurons and Sciatic Nerve and Muscle Atrophy in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Sheng-Hua; Cheng, Kuang-I; Chai, Chee-Yin; Yeh, Jwu-Lai; Wu, Tai-Cheng; Kwan, Aij-Lie

    2015-01-01

    Background. Severe burns result in hypercatabolic state and concomitant muscle atrophy that persists for several months, thereby limiting patient recovery. However, the effects of burns on the corresponding spinal dermatome remain unknown. This study aimed to investigate whether burns induce apoptosis of spinal cord ventral horn motor neurons (VHMNs) and consequently cause skeletal muscle wasting. Methods. Third-degree hindpaw burn injury with 1% total body surface area (TBSA) rats were euthanized 4 and 8 weeks after burn injury. The apoptosis profiles in the ventral horns of the lumbar spinal cords, sciatic nerves, and gastrocnemius muscles were examined. The Schwann cells in the sciatic nerve were marked with S100. The gastrocnemius muscles were harvested to measure the denervation atrophy. Result. The VHMNs apoptosis in the spinal cord was observed after inducing third-degree burns in the hindpaw. The S100 and TUNEL double-positive cells in the sciatic nerve increased significantly after the burn injury. Gastrocnemius muscle apoptosis and denervation atrophy area increased significantly after the burn injury. Conclusion. Local hindpaw burn induces apoptosis in VHMNs and Schwann cells in sciatic nerve, which causes corresponding gastrocnemius muscle denervation atrophy. Our results provided an animal model to evaluate burn-induced muscle wasting, and elucidate the underlying mechanisms. PMID:25695065

  15. Motor activity in the isolated spinal cord of the chick embryo: synaptic drive and firing pattern of single motoneurons.

    PubMed

    O'Donovan, M J

    1989-03-01

    The cellular mechanisms underlying embryonic motility were investigated using intracellular recording from motoneurons and electrotonic recording from muscle nerves during motor activity generated by an isolated spinal cord preparation of 12- to 15-d-old chick embryos. DC-coupled recordings from sartorius (a flexor) and femorotibialis (an extensor) muscle nerves revealed that both sets of motoneurons were depolarized at the same time in each cycle even when the motoneurons fired out of phase. Sartorius motoneurons fired briefly on the rising phase of the depolarization and then stopped firing before discharging a second burst of spikes as the depolarization decayed. By contrast, femorotibialis motoneurons fired at the peak of their depolarization, which was coincident with the interruption in sartorius activity. Intracellular recordings from antidromically identified motoneurons confirmed that flexor and extensor motoneurons were depolarized at the same time during each cycle of activity. The discharge of femorotibialis motoneurons, and others presumed to be extensors, followed changes in membrane potential so that maximal firing occurred during peak depolarization. The relationship between discharge and membrane potential was different in sartorius motoneurons (and in others presumed to be flexors) because they fired briefly on the rising phase of the depolarization and then stopped firing during peak depolarization. In some of these cells firing resumed as the membrane potential decayed back to rest. Intracellular injection of depolarizing current into sartorius motoneurons during motor activity reversed the direction of the membrane potential change from depolarizing to hyperpolarizing during the pause in sartorius discharge. In addition, the discharge evoked by the depolarizing current was blocked during the reversed part of the synaptic potential revealing its inhibitory nature. The occurrence of the IPSP was accompanied by a large reduction in motoneuronal

  16. Molecular Genetic Analysis of Survival Motor Neuron Gene in 460 Turkish Cases with Suspicious Spinal Muscular Atrophy Disease

    PubMed Central

    RASHNONEJAD, Afrooz; ONAY, Huseyin; ATIK, Tahir; ATAN SAHIN, Ozlem; GOKBEN, Sarenur; TEKGUL, Hasan; OZKINAY, Ferda

    2016-01-01

    Objective To describe 12 yr experience of molecular genetic diagnosis of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) in 460 cases of Turkish patients. Materials & Methods A retrospective analysis was performed on data from 460 cases, referred to Medical Genetics Laboratory, Ege University’s Hospital, Izmir, Turkey, prediagnosed as SMA or with family history of SMA between 2003 and 2014. The PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) and the Multiplex ligation–dependent probe amplification (MLPA) analysis were performed to detect the survival motor neuron (SMN)1 deletions and to estimate SMN1 and SMN2 gene copy numbers. Results Using PCR-RFLP test, 159 of 324 postnatal and 18 of 77 prenatal cases were detected to have SMN1 deletions. From positive samples, 88.13% had a homozygous deletion in both exon 7 and exon 8 of SMN1. Using MLPA, 54.5% of families revealed heterozygous deletions of SMN1, and 2 or 3 copies of SMN2, suggesting a healthy SMA carrier. Among patients referred for SMA testing, the annual percentage of patients diagnosed as SMA has decreased gradually from 90.62% (2003) down to 20.83% (2014). Conclusion Although PCR-RFLP method is a reliable test for SMA screening, MLPA is a necessary additional test and provide relevant data for genetic counseling of families having previously affected child. The gradual decrease in the percentage of patients molecularly diagnosed as SMA shows that clinicians have begun to use genetic tests in the differential diagnosis of muscular atrophies. Cost and availability of these genetic tests has greatly attributed to their use. PMID:27843464

  17. Intrathecal infusion of BMAA induces selective motor neuron damage and astrogliosis in the ventral horn of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Hong Z.; Yu, Stephen; Hsu, Cheng-I; Liu, Joe; Acab, Allan; Wu, Richard; Tao, Anna; Chiang, Benjamin J.; Weiss, John H.

    2014-01-01

    The neurotoxin beta-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) was first identified as a “toxin of interest” in regard to the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis–Parkinsonism Dementia Complex of Guam (ALS/PDC); studies in recent years highlighting widespread environmental sources of BMAA exposure and providing new clues to toxic mechanisms have suggested possible relevance to sporadic ALS as well. However, despite clear evidence of uptake into tissues and a range of toxic effects in cells and animals, an animal model in which BMAA induces a neurodegenerative picture resembling ALS is lacking, possibly in part reflecting limited understanding of critical factors pertaining to its absorption, biodistribution and metabolism. To bypass some of these issues and ensure delivery to a key site of disease pathology, we examined effects of prolonged (30 day) intrathecal infusion in wild type (WT) rats, and rats harboring the familial ALS associated G93A SOD1 mutation, over an age range (80±2 to 110±2 days) during which the G93A rats are developing disease pathology yet remain asymptomatic. The BMAA exposures induced changes that in many ways resembles those seen in the G93A rats, with degenerative changes in ventral horn motor neurons (MNs) with relatively little dorsal horn pathology, marked ventral horn astrogliosis and increased 3-nitrotyrosine labeling in and surrounding MNs, a loss of labeling for the astrocytic glutamate transporter, GLT-1, surrounding MNs, and mild accumulation and aggregation of TDP-43 in the cytosol of some injured and degenerating MNs. Thus, prolonged intrathecal infusion of BMAA can reproduce a picture in spinal cord incorporating many of the pathological hallmarks of diverse forms of human ALS, including substantial restriction of overt pathological changes to the ventral horn, consistent with the possibility that environmental BMAA exposure could be a risk factor and/or contributor to some human disease. PMID:24918341

  18. Intrathecal infusion of BMAA induces selective motor neuron damage and astrogliosis in the ventral horn of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Yin, Hong Z; Yu, Stephen; Hsu, Cheng-I; Liu, Joe; Acab, Allan; Wu, Richard; Tao, Anna; Chiang, Benjamin J; Weiss, John H

    2014-11-01

    The neurotoxin beta-N-methylamino-l-alanine (BMAA) was first identified as a "toxin of interest" in regard to the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-Parkinsonism Dementia Complex of Guam (ALS/PDC); studies in recent years highlighting widespread environmental sources of BMAA exposure and providing new clues to toxic mechanisms have suggested possible relevance to sporadic ALS as well. However, despite clear evidence of uptake into tissues and a range of toxic effects in cells and animals, an animal model in which BMAA induces a neurodegenerative picture resembling ALS is lacking, possibly in part reflecting limited understanding of critical factors pertaining to its absorption, biodistribution and metabolism. To bypass some of these issues and ensure delivery to a key site of disease pathology, we examined effects of prolonged (30day) intrathecal infusion in wild type (WT) rats, and rats harboring the familial ALS associated G93A SOD1 mutation, over an age range (80±2 to 110±2days) during which the G93A rats are developing disease pathology yet remain asymptomatic. The BMAA exposures induced changes that in many ways resemble those seen in the G93A rats, with degenerative changes in ventral horn motor neurons (MNs) with relatively little dorsal horn pathology, marked ventral horn astrogliosis and increased 3-nitrotyrosine labeling in and surrounding MNs, a loss of labeling for the astrocytic glutamate transporter, GLT-1, surrounding MNs, and mild accumulation and aggregation of TDP-43 in the cytosol of some injured and degenerating MNs. Thus, prolonged intrathecal infusion of BMAA can reproduce a picture in spinal cord incorporating many of the pathological hallmarks of diverse forms of human ALS, including substantial restriction of overt pathological changes to the ventral horn, consistent with the possibility that environmental BMAA exposure could be a risk factor and/or contributor to some human disease.

  19. Spinal Cord Stimulation for Vegetative State and Minimally Conscious State: Changes in Consciousness Level and Motor Function.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Takamitsu; Watanabe, Mitsuru; Obuchi, Toshiki; Kobayashi, Kazutaka; Oshima, Hideki; Fukaya, Chikashi; Yoshino, Atsuo

    2017-01-01

    Twenty-one vegetative state (VS) patients and 10 minimally conscious state (MCS) patients were treated by spinal cord stimulation (SCS) following an electrophysiological evaluation 3 months or more after the onset of brain injury.A flexible four-contact cylindrical electrode was inserted into the epidural space of the cervical vertebrae, and placed at cervical levels C2-C4. Five-hertz stimulation was applied for 5 min every 30 min during the daytime at an intensity that produced muscle twitches of the upper extremities.Both the fifth wave in the auditory brainstem response (ABR) and N20 in the somatosensory evoked potential (SEP) were detected in 8 of the 21 VS patients and 9 of the 10 MCS patients. Of the 3 VS patients and 7 MCS patients who recovered following SCS therapy, all showed a preserved fifth wave in the ABR and N20 in the SEP, and all had received SCS therapy within 9 months after the onset of brain injury. Although the 3 patients who recovered from VS remained in a bedridden state, all 7 patients who recovered from MCS were able to emerge from the bedridden state within 12 months after the start of SCS.Five-hertz cervical SCS caused increased cerebral blood flow (CBF) and induced muscle twitches of the upper extremities, and MCS patients showed a remarkable recovery of consciousness and motor function in the upper extremities compared with the lower extremities. This SCS method could be a new neuromodulation and neurorehabilitation technique, and MCS patients may be good candidates for SCS therapy.

  20. Differential screening of mutated SOD1 transgenic mice reveals early up-regulation of a fast axonal transport component in spinal cord motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Dupuis, L; de Tapia, M; René, F; Lutz-Bucher, B; Gordon, J W; Mercken, L; Pradier, L; Loeffler, J P

    2000-08-01

    In the present study we analyze the molecular mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration in familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS). For this, we used a transgenic mouse model expressing the Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) gene with a Gly(86) to Arg (G86R) mutation equivalent to that found in a subset of human FALS. Using an optimized suppression subtractive hybridization method, a cDNA specifically up-regulated during the asymptomatic phase in the lumbar spinal cord of G86R mice was identified by sequence analysis as the KIF3-associated protein (KAP3), a regulator of fast axonal transport. RT-PCR analysis revealed that KAP3 induction was an early event arising long before axonal degeneration. Immunohistochemical studies further revealed that KAP3 protein predominantly accumulates in large motor neurons of the ventral spinal cord. We further demonstrated that KAP3 up-regulation occurs independent of any change in the other components of the kinesin II complex. However, since the ubiquitous KIF1A motor is up-regulated, our results show an early and complex rearrangement of the fast axonal transport machinery in the course of FALS pathology.

  1. AMPA receptor activation, but not the accumulation of endogenous extracellular glutamate, induces paralysis and motor neuron death in rat spinal cord in vivo.

    PubMed

    Corona, Juan Carlos; Tapia, Ricardo

    2004-05-01

    The mechanisms of motor neuron (MN) degeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are unknown, but glutamate-mediated excitotoxicity may be involved. To examine directly this idea in vivo, we have used microdialysis in the rat lumbar spinal cord and showed that four- to fivefold increases in the concentration of endogenous extracellular glutamate during at least 1 h, by perfusion with the glutamate transport inhibitor L-2,4-trans-pyrrolidine-dicarboxylate, elicited no motor alterations or MN damage. Stimulation of glutamate release with 4-aminopyridine induced transitory ipsilateral hindlimb muscular twitches but no MN damage. In contrast, perfusion of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate (AMPA) did not modify glutamate levels but produced intense muscular spasms, followed by ipsilateral permanent hindlimb paralysis and a remarkable loss of MNs. These effects of AMPA were prevented by co-perfusion with the AMPA receptor antagonist 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoyl-benzo(F)quinoxaline. Perfusion with NMDA or kainate produced no motor effects or MN damage. Thus, the elevation of endogenous extracellular glutamate in vivo due to blockade of its transport is innocuous for spinal MNs. Because this resistance is observed under the same experimental conditions in which MNs are highly vulnerable to AMPA, these results indicate that excitotoxicity due to this mechanism might not be an important factor in the pathogenesis of ALS.

  2. Quadri-Pulse Theta Burst Stimulation using Ultra-High Frequency Bursts – A New Protocol to Induce Changes in Cortico-Spinal Excitability in Human Motor Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Nikolai H.; Gleich, Bernhard; Gattinger, Norbert; Hoess, Catrina; Haug, Carolin; Siebner, Hartwig R.; Mall, Volker

    2016-01-01

    Patterned transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) such as theta burst stimulation (TBS) or quadri-pulse stimulation (QPS) can induce changes in cortico-spinal excitability, commonly referred to as long-term potentiation (LTP)-like and long-term depression (LTD)-like effects in human motor cortex (M1). Here, we aimed to test the plasticity-inducing capabilities of a novel protocol that merged TBS and QPS. 360 bursts of quadri-pulse TBS (qTBS) were continuously given to M1 at 90% of active motor threshold (1440 full-sine pulses). In a first experiment, stimulation frequency of each burst was set to 666 Hz to mimic the rhythmicity of the descending cortico-spinal volleys that are elicited by TMS (i.e., I-wave periodicity). In a second experiment, burst frequency was set to 200 Hz to maximize postsynaptic Ca2+ influx using a temporal pattern unrelated to I-wave periodicity. The second phase of sinusoidal TMS pulses elicited either a posterior-anterior (PA) or anterior-posterior (AP) directed current in M1. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were recorded before and after qTBS to probe changes in cortico-spinal excitability. PA-qTBS at 666 Hz caused a decrease in PA-MEP amplitudes, whereas AP-qTBS at 666 Hz induced an increase in mean AP-MEP amplitudes. At a burst frequency of 200 Hz, PA-qTBS and AP-qTBS produced an increase in cortico-spinal excitability outlasting for at least 60 minutes in PA- and AP-MEP amplitudes, respectively. Continuous qTBS at 666 Hz or 200 Hz can induce lasting changes in cortico-spinal excitability. Induced current direction in the brain appears to be relevant when qTBS targets I-wave periodicity, corroborating that high-fidelity spike timing mechanisms are critical for inducing bi-directional plasticity in human M1. PMID:27977758

  3. Weather, geography, and vehicle-related hyperthermia in children.

    PubMed

    Grundstein, Andrew; Null, Jan; Meentemeyer, Vernon

    2011-01-01

    Vehicle-related hyperthermia is an unfortunate tragedy that leads to the accidental deaths of children each year. This research utilizes the most extensive dataset of child vehicle-related hyperthermia deaths in the United States, including 414 deaths between 1998 and 2008. Deaths follow a seasonal pattern, with a peak in July and no deaths in December or January. Also, deaths occurred over a wide range of temperature and radiation levels and across virtually all regions, although most of them took place across the southern United States. In particular, the Phoenix, Houston, Dallas, and Las Vegas metropolitan areas had the greatest number of deaths. We utilize our vehicle hyperthermia index (vhi) to compare expected deaths versus actual deaths in a metropolitan area, based on the number of children in the area who are under the age of five and on the frequency of hot days in the area. The vhi indicates that the Memphis, West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, and Las Vegas metropolitan areas are the most dangerous places for vehicle-related hyperthermia. We conclude by discussing several recommendations with public health policy implications.

  4. Clonidine, an alpha-2 adrenoceptor agonist relieves mechanical allodynia in oxaliplatin-induced neuropathic mice; potentiation by spinal p38 MAPK inhibition without motor dysfunction and hypotension.

    PubMed

    Yeo, Ji-Hee; Yoon, Seo-Yeon; Kim, Sol-Ji; Oh, Seog-Bae; Lee, Jang-Hern; Beitz, Alvin J; Roh, Dae-Hyun

    2016-05-15

    Cancer chemotherapy with platinum-based antineoplastic agents including oxaliplatin frequently results in a debilitating and painful peripheral neuropathy. We evaluated the antinociceptive effects of the alpha-2 adrenoceptor agonist, clonidine on oxaliplatin-induced neuropathic pain. Specifically, we determined if (i) the intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of clonidine reduces mechanical allodynia in mice with an oxaliplatin-induced neuropathy and (ii) concurrent inhibition of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activity by the p38 MAPK inhibitor SB203580 enhances clonidine's antiallodynic effect. Clonidine (0.01-0.1 mg kg(-1), i.p.), with or without SB203580(1-10 nmol, intrathecal) was administered two weeks after oxaliplatin injection(10 mg kg(-1), i.p.) to mice. Mechanical withdrawal threshold, motor coordination and blood pressure were measured. Postmortem expression of p38 MAPK and ERK as well as their phosphorylated forms(p-p38 and p-ERK) were quantified 30 min or 4 hr after drug injection in the spinal cord dorsal horn of treated and control mice. Clonidine dose-dependently reduced oxaliplatin-induced mechanical allodynia and spinal p-p38 MAPK expression, but not p-ERK. At 0.1 mg kg(-1), clonidine also impaired motor coordination and decreased blood pressure. A 10 nmol dose of SB203580 alone significantly reduced mechanical allodynia and p-p38 MAPK expression, while a subeffective dose(3 nmol) potentiated the antiallodynic effect of 0.03 mg kg(-1) clonidine and reduced the increased p-p38 MAPK. Coadministration of SB203580 and 0.03 mg kg(-1) clonidine decreased allodynia similar to that of 0.10 mg kg(-1) clonidine, but without significant motor or vascular effects. These findings demonstrate that clonidine treatment reduces oxaliplatin-induced mechanical allodynia. The concurrent administration of SB203580 reduces the dosage requirements for clonidine, thereby alleviating allodynia without producing undesirable motor or cardiovascular effects.

  5. Intermittent hypoxia promotes recovery of respiratory motor function in spinal cord-injured mice depleted of serotonin in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Komnenov, Dragana; Solarewicz, Julia Z; Afzal, Fareeza; Nantwi, Kwaku D; Kuhn, Donald M; Mateika, Jason H

    2016-08-01

    We examined the effect of repeated daily exposure to intermittent hypoxia (IH) on the recovery of respiratory and limb motor function in mice genetically depleted of central nervous system serotonin. Electroencephalography, diaphragm activity, ventilation, core body temperature, and limb mobility were measured in spontaneously breathing wild-type (Tph2(+/+)) and tryptophan hydroxylase 2 knockout (Tph2(-/-)) mice. Following a C2 hemisection, the mice were exposed daily to IH (i.e., twelve 4-min episodes of 10% oxygen interspersed with 4-min normoxic periods followed by a 90-min end-recovery period) or normoxia (i.e., sham protocol, 21% oxygen) for 10 consecutive days. Diaphragm activity recovered to prehemisection levels in the Tph2(+/+) and Tph2(-/-) mice following exposure to IH but not normoxia [Tph2(+/+) 1.3 ± 0.2 (SE) vs. 0.3 ± 0.2; Tph2(-/-) 1.06 ± 0.1 vs. 0.3 ± 0.1, standardized to prehemisection values, P < 0.01]. Likewise, recovery of tidal volume and breathing frequency was evident, although breathing frequency values did not return to prehemisection levels within the time frame of the protocol. Partial recovery of limb motor function was also evident 2 wk after spinal cord hemisection. However, recovery was not dependent on IH or the presence of serotonin in the central nervous system. We conclude that IH promotes recovery of respiratory function but not basic motor tasks. Moreover, we conclude that spontaneous or treatment-induced recovery of respiratory and motor limb function is not dependent on serotonin in the central nervous system in a mouse model of spinal cord injury.

  6. Effect of Epidural stimulation of the lumbosacral spinal cord on voluntary movement, standing, and assisted stepping after motor complete paraplegia: a case study

    PubMed Central

    Harkema, Susan; Gerasimenko, Yury; Hodes, Jonathan; Burdick, Joel; Angeli, Claudia; Chen, Yangsheng; Ferreira, Christie; Willhite, Andrea; Rejc, Enrico; Grossman, Robert G.; Edgerton, V. Reggie

    2011-01-01

    Summary Background Repeated periods of stimulation of the spinal cord and training seems to have amplified the ability to consciously control movement. Methods An individual three years post C7-T1 subluxation presented with a complete loss of clinically detectable voluntary motor function and partial preservation of sensation below the T1 cord segment. Following 170 locomotor training sessions, a 16-electrode array was surgically placed on the dura (L1-S1 cord segments) to allow for chronic electrical stimulation. After implantation and throughout stand retraining with epidural stimulation, 29 experiments were performed. Extensive stimulation combinations and parameters were tested to achieve standing and stepping. Findings Epidural stimulation enabled the human lumbosacral spinal circuitry to dynamically elicit full weight-bearing standing with assistance provided only for balance for 4·25 minutes in a subject with a clinically motor complete SCI. This occurred when using stimulation at parameters optimized for standing while providing bilateral load-bearing proprioceptive input. Locomotor-like patterns were also observed when stimulation parameters were optimized for stepping. In addition, seven months after implantation, the subject recovered supraspinal control of certain leg movements, but only during epidural stimulation. Interpretation Even after a severe low cervical spinal injury, the neural networks remaining within the lumbosacral segments can be reactivated into functional states so that it can recognize specific details of ensembles of sensory input to the extent that it can serve as the source of neural control. In addition, newly formed supraspinal input to this same lumbosacral segments can re-emerge as another source of control. Task specific training with epidural stimulation may have reactivated previously silent spared neural circuits or promoted plasticity. This suggests that these interventions could be a viable clinical approach for

  7. Production of high quality brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and tropomyosin receptor kinase B (TrkB) RNA from isolated populations of rat spinal cord motor neurons obtained by Laser Capture Microdissection (LCM).

    PubMed

    Mehta, Prachi; Premkumar, Brian; Morris, Renée

    2016-08-03

    The mammalian central nervous system (CNS) is composed of multiple cellular elements, making it challenging to segregate one particular cell type to study their gene expression profile. For instance, as motor neurons represent only 5-10% of the total cell population of the spinal cord, meaningful transcriptional analysis on these neurons is almost impossible to achieve from homogenized spinal cord tissue. A major challenge faced by scientists is to obtain good quality RNA from small amounts of starting material. In this paper, we used Laser Capture Microdissection (LCM) techniques to identify and isolate spinal cord motor neurons. The present analysis revealed that perfusion with paraformaldehyde (PFA) does not alter RNA quality. RNA integrity numbers (RINs) of tissue samples from rubrospinal tract (RST)-transected, intact spinal cord or from whole spinal cord homogenate were all above 8, which indicates intact, high-quality RNA. Levels of mRNA for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) or for its tropomyosin receptor kinase B (TrkB) were not affected by rubrospinal tract (RST) transection, a surgical procedure that deprive motor neurons from one of their main supraspinal input. The isolation of pure populations of neurons with LCM techniques allows for robust transcriptional characterization that cannot be achieved with spinal cord homogenates. Such preparations of pure population of motor neurons will provide valuable tools to advance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying spinal cord injury and neuromuscular diseases. In the near future, LCM techniques might be instrumental to the success of gene therapy for these debilitating conditions.

  8. Restoration of motor function following spinal cord injury via optimal control of intraspinal microstimulation: toward a next generation closed-loop neural prosthesis

    PubMed Central

    Grahn, Peter J.; Mallory, Grant W.; Berry, B. Michael; Hachmann, Jan T.; Lobel, Darlene A.; Lujan, J. Luis

    2014-01-01

    Movement is planned and coordinated by the brain and carried out by contracting muscles acting on specific joints. Motor commands initiated in the brain travel through descending pathways in the spinal cord to effector motor neurons before reaching target muscles. Damage to these pathways by spinal cord injury (SCI) can result in paralysis below the injury level. However, the planning and coordination centers of the brain, as well as peripheral nerves and the muscles that they act upon, remain functional. Neuroprosthetic devices can restore motor function following SCI by direct electrical stimulation of the neuromuscular system. Unfortunately, conventional neuroprosthetic techniques are limited by a myriad of factors that include, but are not limited to, a lack of characterization of non-linear input/output system dynamics, mechanical coupling, limited number of degrees of freedom, high power consumption, large device size, and rapid onset of muscle fatigue. Wireless multi-channel closed-loop neuroprostheses that integrate command signals from the brain with sensor-based feedback from the environment and the system's state offer the possibility of increasing device performance, ultimately improving quality of life for people with SCI. In this manuscript, we review neuroprosthetic technology for improving functional restoration following SCI and describe brain-machine interfaces suitable for control of neuroprosthetic systems with multiple degrees of freedom. Additionally, we discuss novel stimulation paradigms that can improve synergy with higher planning centers and improve fatigue-resistant activation of paralyzed muscles. In the near future, integration of these technologies will provide SCI survivors with versatile closed-loop neuroprosthetic systems for restoring function to paralyzed muscles. PMID:25278830

  9. The effects of gallamine on field and dorsal root potentials produced by antidromic stimulation of motor fibres in the frog spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Galindo, J; Rudomin, P

    1978-05-12

    The effects of gallamine on the intraspinal field potentials and the dorsal root potentials produced by antidromic stimulation of motor fibres were studied in the isolated frog spinal cord preparation. After gallamine (10-(3) M), the duration of the negative field potential produced by antidromic activation of motoneurons (N1 response) was increased often without changing its amplitude. This resulted in an increased passive spread of the antidromic action potential towards the dorsal dendritic regions, where afferent fibres terminate. In the untreated spinal cord, stimulation of motor axons produced a late negative dorsal root potential (VR-DRP) which was depressed after gallamine administration. Abolition of the VR-DRP was frequently associated with the appearance of a short latency, conducted response, in the dorsal roots (EVR-DRP). The earliest component of the EVR-DRP had a latency ranging between 0.5 and 2.5 ms measured after the peak of the N1 response recorded at the motor nucleus. Such a brief latency of the EVR-DRP suggests that this response results from electrical interaction between motoneurons and afferent fibres. After gallamine, the primary afferent depolarization produced by orthodromic stimulation of sensory nerves facilitates the EVR-DRP without necessarily increasing the amplitude or duration of the N1 response. Also, gallamine appears to increase directly the excitability of the afferent fibre terminal arborizations. The nature of the electrical interaction between motoneuron dendrites and afferent fibre terminal arborizations is discussed in terms of two hypotheses: interaction by current flows and by electrical coupling.

  10. The Golgi apparatus of spinal cord motor neurons in transgenic mice expressing mutant Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase becomes fragmented in early, preclinical stages of the disease.

    PubMed Central

    Mourelatos, Z; Gonatas, N K; Stieber, A; Gurney, M E; Dal Canto, M C

    1996-01-01

    Dominant mutations of the SOD1 gene encoding Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase have been found in members of certain families with familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). To better understand the contribution of SOD1 mutations in the pathogenesis of familial ALS, we developed transgenic mice expressing one of the mutations found in familial ALS. These animals display clinical and pathological features closely resembling human ALS. Early changes observed in these animals were intra-axonal and dendritic vacuoles due to dilatation of the endoplasmic reticulum and vacuolar degeneration of mitochondria. We have reported that the Golgi apparatus of spinal cord motor neurons in patients with sporadic ALS is fragmented and atrophic. In this study we show that spinal cord motor neurons of transgenic mice for an SOD1 mutation display a lesion of the Golgi apparatus identical to that found in humans with sporadic ALS. In these mice, the stacks of the cisternae of the fragmented Golgi apparatus are shorter than in the normal organelle, and there is a reduction in Golgi-associated vesicles and adjacent cisternae of the rough endoplasmic reticulum. Furthermore, the fragmentation of the Golgi apparatus occurs in an early, presymptomatic stage and usually precedes the development of the vacuolar changes. Transgenic mice overexpressing the wild-type human superoxide dismutase are normal. In familial ALS, an early lesion of the Golgi apparatus of motor neurons may have adverse functional effects, because newly synthesized proteins destined for fast axoplasmic transport pass through the Golgi apparatus. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 PMID:8643599

  11. Closed-loop afferent electrical stimulation for recovery of hand function in individuals with motor incomplete spinal injury: early clinical results.

    PubMed

    Schildt, Christopher J; Thomas, Sarah H; Powell, Elizabeth S; Sawaki, Lumy; Sunderam, Sridhar

    2016-08-01

    Afferent electrical stimulation is known to augment the effect of rehabilitative therapy through use-dependent cortical plasticity. Experiments pairing transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) have shown a timing-dependent effect on motor evoked potential (MEP) amplitude suggesting that PNS applied in closed-loop (CL) mode could augment this effect through positive reinforcement. We present early results from a clinical trial in which an EEG brain-machine interface (BMI) was used to apply PNS to two subjects in response to motor intent detected from sensorimotor cortex in a cue-driven hand grip task. Both subjects had stable incomplete cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) with impaired upper limb function commensurate with the injury level. Twelve sessions of CL-PNS applied over a 4-6 week period yielded results suggesting improved hand grip strength and increased task-related modulation of the EEG in one hand of both subjects, and increased TMS-measured motor map area in one. These observations suggest that rehabilitation using such interactive therapies could benefit affected individuals.

  12. Truncated TrkB.T1-mediated astrocyte dysfunction contributes to impaired motor function and neuropathic pain after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Matyas, Jessica J; O'Driscoll, Cliona M; Yu, Laina; Coll-Miro, Marina; Daugherty, Sean; Renn, Cynthia L; Faden, Alan I; Dorsey, Susan G; Wu, Junfang

    2017-03-07

    Following spinal cord injury (SCI), astrocytes demonstrate long-lasting reactive changes, which are associated with the persistence of neuropathic pain and motor dysfunction. We previously demonstrated that up-regulation of trkB.T1, a truncated isoform of the Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) receptor, contributes to gliosis after SCI, but little is known about the effects of TrkB.T1 on the function of astrocytes. As trkB.T1 is the sole isoform of trkB receptors expressed on astrocytes, we examined the function of trkB.T1-driven astrocytes in vitro and in vivo Immunohistochemistry showed that trkB.T1(+) cells were significantly up-regulated 7 days post-injury, with sustained elevation in white matter through 8 weeks. The latter increase was predominantly found in astrocytes. TrkB.T1 was also highly expressed by neurons and microglia/macrophages at 7 days post-injury and declined by 8 weeks. RNA sequencing of cultured astrocytes derived from trkB.T1(+/+) (WT) and trkB.T1(-/-) (KO) mice revealed down-regulation of migration and proliferation pathways in KO astrocytes. KO astrocytes also exhibited slower migration/proliferation in vitro in response to FBS or BDNF as compared to WT astrocytes. Reduced proliferation of astrocytes was also confirmed after SCI in astrocyte specific trkB.T1 KO mice; these animals also showed reduced hyperpathic responses, utilizing mechanical allodynia and pain-related measurements on the CatWalk, along with improved motor coordination. Together, our data indicate that trkB.T1 in astrocytes contributes to neuropathic pain and neurological dysfunction following SCI, suggesting that trkB.T1 may provide a novel therapeutic target for SCI.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENTNeuropathic pain after spinal cord injury (SCI) may in part be caused by up-regulation of the BDNF receptor trkB.T1- the only isoform of trkB receptors that is expressed on astrocytes. Here, we showed that trkB.T1 is significantly increased in the injured mouse spinal cord, where

  13. Exposure to ELF- magnetic field promotes restoration of sensori-motor functions in adult rats with hemisection of thoracic spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Das, Suman; Kumar, Suneel; Jain, Suman; Avelev, Valery D; Mathur, Rashmi

    2012-09-01

    Clinically effective modalities of treatment for spinal cord injury (SCI) still remain unsatisfactory and are largely invasive in nature. There are reports of accelerated regeneration in injured peripheral nerves by extremely low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic field (ELF-EMF) in the rat. In the present study, the effect of (50 Hz), low-intensity (17.96 μT) magnetic field (MF) exposure of rats after-hemisection of T13 spinal cord (hSCI) was investigated on sensori-motor and locomotor functions. Rats were divided into hSCI (sham-exposed) and hSCI+MF (MF: 2 h/d X 6 weeks) groups. Besides their general conditions, locomotor function by Basso, Beattie, and Brenahan (BBB) score; motor responses to noxious stimuli by threshold of tail flick (TTF), simple vocalization (TSV), tail flick latency (TFL), and neuronal excitability by H-reflex were noted. It is found that, in the hSCI+MF group, a statistically significant improvement over the hSCI control group was noted in BBB score from post-SCI wk2 and TFL and TTF by post-hSCI wk1 and wk3, respectively. Correspondingly, TSV gradually restored by post-hSCI wk5.The threshold of H-reflex was reduced on ipsilateral side vs. contralateral side in hSCI and hSCI+MF group. A complete bladder control was dramatically restored on post-hSCI day4 (vs. day7 of hSCI group) and the survival rate was 100% in the hSCI+MF group (vs. 90% of hSCI group). The results of our study suggest that extremely low-frequency (50 Hz), low-intensity (17.96 μT) MF exposure for 2 h/d x 6wks promotes recovery of sensori-motor behavior including locomotion and bladder control both in terms of temporal pattern and magnitude in hemisection injury of (T13) spinal cord rats.

  14. Conditional Sox9 ablation reduces chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan levels and improves motor function following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    McKillop, William M; Dragan, Magdalena; Schedl, Andreas; Brown, Arthur

    2013-02-01

    Chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs) found in perineuronal nets and in the glial scar after spinal cord injury have been shown to inhibit axonal growth and plasticity. Since we have previously identified SOX9 as a transcription factor that upregulates the expression of a battery of genes associated with glial scar formation in primary astrocyte cultures, we predicted that conditional Sox9 ablation would result in reduced CSPG expression after spinal cord injury and that this would lead to increased neuroplasticity and improved locomotor recovery. Control and Sox9 conditional knock-out mice were subject to a 70 kdyne contusion spinal cord injury at thoracic level 9. One week after injury, Sox9 conditional knock-out mice expressed reduced levels of CSPG biosynthetic enzymes (Xt-1 and C4st), CSPG core proteins (brevican, neurocan, and aggrecan), collagens 2a1 and 4a1, and Gfap, a marker of astrocyte activation, in the injured spinal cord compared with controls. These changes in gene expression were accompanied by improved hind limb function and locomotor recovery as evaluated by the Basso Mouse Scale (BMS) and rodent activity boxes. Histological assessments confirmed reduced CSPG deposition and collagenous scarring at the lesion of Sox9 conditional knock-out mice, and demonstrated increased neurofilament-positive fibers in the lesion penumbra and increased serotonin immunoreactivity caudal to the site of injury. These results suggest that SOX9 inhibition is a potential strategy for the treatment of SCI.

  15. The effect of treadmill training on motor recovery after a partial spinal cord compression-injury in the adult rat.

    PubMed

    Multon, Sylvie; Franzen, Rachelle; Poirrier, Anne-Lise; Scholtes, Felix; Schoenen, Jean

    2003-08-01

    Locomotor training on a treadmill is a therapeutic strategy used for several years in human paraplegics in whom it was shown to improve functional recovery mainly after incomplete spinal cord lesions. The precise mechanisms underlying its effects are not known. Experimental studies in adult animals were chiefly performed after complete spinal transections. The objective of this experiment was to assess the effects of early treadmill training on recovery of spontaneous walking capacity after a partial spinal cord lesion in adult rats. Following a compression-injury by a subdurally inflated microballoon, seven rats were trained daily on a treadmill with a body weight support system, whereas six other animals were used as controls and only handled. Spontaneous walking ability in an open field was compared weekly between both groups by two blinded observers, using the Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor rating scale. Mean BBB score during 12 weeks was globally significantly greater in the treadmill-trained animals than in the control group, the benefit of training appearing as early as the 2nd week. At week 7, locomotor recovery reached a plateau in both animal groups, but remained superior in trained rats. Daily treadmill training started early after a partial spinal cord lesion in adult rats, which accelerates recovery of locomotion and produces a long-term benefit. These findings in an animal model mimicking the closed spinal cord injury occurring in most human paraplegics are useful for future studies of optimal locomotor training programs, their neurobiologic mechanisms, and their combination with other treatment strategies.

  16. Spinal Headaches

    MedlinePlus

    ... undergo a spinal tap (lumbar puncture) or spinal anesthesia. Both procedures require a puncture of the tough ... is withdrawn from your spinal canal. During spinal anesthesia, medication is injected into your spinal canal to ...

  17. Motor imagery-induced EEG patterns in individuals with spinal cord injury and their impact on brain-computer interface accuracy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller-Putz, G. R.; Daly, I.; Kaiser, V.

    2014-06-01

    Objective. Assimilating the diagnosis complete spinal cord injury (SCI) takes time and is not easy, as patients know that there is no ‘cure' at the present time. Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) can facilitate daily living. However, inter-subject variability demands measurements with potential user groups and an understanding of how they differ to healthy users BCIs are more commonly tested with. Thus, a three-class motor imagery (MI) screening (left hand, right hand, feet) was performed with a group of 10 able-bodied and 16 complete spinal-cord-injured people (paraplegics, tetraplegics) with the objective of determining what differences were present between the user groups and how they would impact upon the ability of these user groups to interact with a BCI. Approach. Electrophysiological differences between patient groups and healthy users are measured in terms of sensorimotor rhythm deflections from baseline during MI, electroencephalogram microstate scalp maps and strengths of inter-channel phase synchronization. Additionally, using a common spatial pattern algorithm and a linear discriminant analysis classifier, the classification accuracy was calculated and compared between groups. Main results. It is seen that both patient groups (tetraplegic and paraplegic) have some significant differences in event-related desynchronization strengths, exhibit significant increases in synchronization and reach significantly lower accuracies (mean (M) = 66.1%) than the group of healthy subjects (M = 85.1%). Significance. The results demonstrate significant differences in electrophysiological correlates of motor control between healthy individuals and those individuals who stand to benefit most from BCI technology (individuals with SCI). They highlight the difficulty in directly translating results from healthy subjects to participants with SCI and the challenges that, therefore, arise in providing BCIs to such individuals.

  18. Systemic, postsymptomatic antisense oligonucleotide rescues motor unit maturation delay in a new mouse model for type II/III spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Bogdanik, Laurent P.; Osborne, Melissa A.; Davis, Crystal; Martin, Whitney P.; Austin, Andrew; Rigo, Frank; Bennett, C. Frank; Lutz, Cathleen M.

    2015-01-01

    Clinical presentation of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) ranges from a neonatal-onset, very severe disease to an adult-onset, milder form. SMA is caused by the mutation of the Survival Motor Neuron 1 (SMN1) gene, and prognosis inversely correlates with the number of copies of the SMN2 gene, a human-specific homolog of SMN1. Despite progress in identifying potential therapies for the treatment of SMA, many questions remain including how late after onset treatments can still be effective and what the target tissues should be. These questions can be addressed in part with preclinical animal models; however, modeling the array of SMA severities in the mouse, which lacks SMN2, has proven challenging. We created a new mouse model for the intermediate forms of SMA presenting with a delay in neuromuscular junction maturation and a decrease in the number of functional motor units, all relevant to the clinical presentation of the disease. Using this new model, in combination with clinical electrophysiology methods, we found that administering systemically SMN-restoring antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) at the age of onset can extend survival and rescue the neurological phenotypes. Furthermore, these effects were also achieved by administration of the ASOs late after onset, independent of the restoration of SMN in the spinal cord. Thus, by adding to the limited repertoire of existing mouse models for type II/III SMA, we demonstrate that ASO therapy can be effective even when administered after onset of the neurological symptoms, in young adult mice, and without being delivered into the central nervous system. PMID:26460027

  19. Sclerostin antibody preserves the morphology and structure of osteocytes and blocks the severe skeletal deterioration after motor-complete spinal cord injury in rats.

    PubMed

    Qin, Weiping; Li, Xiaodong; Peng, Yuanzhen; Harlow, Lauren M; Ren, Yinshi; Wu, Yingjie; Li, Jiliang; Qin, Yiwen; Sun, Jie; Zheng, Shijia; Brown, Tom; Feng, Jian Q; Ke, Hua Zhu; Bauman, William A; Cardozo, Christopher C

    2015-11-01

    Unloading, neural lesions, and hormonal disorders after acute motor-complete spinal cord injury (SCI) cause one of the most severe forms of bone loss, a condition that has been refractory to available interventions tested to date. Thus, these features related to acute SCI provide a unique opportunity to study complex bone problems, potential efficacious interventions, and mechanisms of action that are associated with these dramatic pathological changes. This study was designed to explore the therapeutic potential of sclerostin antibody (Scl-Ab) in a rat model of bone loss after motor-complete SCI, and to investigate mechanisms underlying bone loss and Scl-Ab action. SCI rats were administered Scl-Ab (25 mg/kg/week) or vehicle beginning 7 days after injury then weekly for 7 weeks. SCI resulted in significant decreases in bone mineral density (-25%) and trabecular bone volume (-67%) at the distal femur; Scl-Ab completely prevented these deteriorations of bone in SCI rats, concurrent with markedly increased bone formation. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that SCI reduced numbers of osteocytes and dendrites concomitant with a morphology change from a spindle to round shape; Scl-Ab corrected these abnormalities in osteocytes. In ex vivo cultures of bone marrow cells, Scl-Ab inhibited osteoclastogenesis, and promoted osteoblastogenesis accompanied by increases in mRNA levels of LRP5, osteoprotegerin (OPG), and the OPG/RANKL ratio, and a decrease in DKK1 mRNA. Our findings provide the first evidence that robust bone loss after acute motor-complete SCI can be blocked by Scl-Ab, at least in part, through the preservation of osteocyte morphology and structure and related bone remodeling. Our findings support the inhibition of sclerostin as a promising approach to mitigate the striking bone loss that ensues after acute motor-complete SCI, and perhaps other conditions associated with disuse osteoporosis as a consequence of neurological disorders.

  20. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-related VAPB P56S mutation differentially affects the function and survival of corticospinal and spinal motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Aliaga, Leonardo; Lai, Chen; Yu, Jia; Chub, Nikolai; Shim, Hoon; Sun, Lixin; Xie, Chengsong; Yang, Wan-Jou; Lin, Xian; O'Donovan, Michael J; Cai, Huaibin

    2013-11-01

    The substitution of Proline with Serine at residue 56 (P56S) of vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein B (VAPB) has been linked to an atypical autosomal dominant form of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis 8 (ALS8). To investigate the pathogenic mechanism of P56S VAPB in ALS, we generated transgenic (Tg) mice that heterologously express human wild-type (WT) and P56S VAPB under the control of a pan-neuronal promoter Thy1.2. While WT VAPB Tg mice did not exhibit any overt motor behavioral phenotypes, P56S VAPB Tg mice developed progressive hyperactivities and other motor abnormalities. VAPB protein was accumulated as large punctate in the soma and proximal dendrites of both corticospinal motor neurons (CSMNs) and spinal motor neurons (SMNs) in P56S VAPB Tg mice. Concomitantly, a significant increase of endoplasmic reticulum stress and unfolded protein response and the resulting up-regulation of pro-apoptotic factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein homologous protein expression were observed in the CSMNs and SMNs of P56S VAPB Tg mice. However, only a progressive loss of CSMNs but not SMNs was found in P56S VAPB Tg mice. In SMNs, P56S VAPB promoted a rather selective translocation of VAPB protein onto the postsynaptic site of C-boutons that altered the morphology of C-boutons and impaired the spontaneous rhythmic discharges of SMNs. Therefore, these findings provide new pathophysiological mechanisms of P56S VAPB that differentially affect the function and survival of CSMNs and SMNs in ALS8.

  1. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-related VAPB P56S mutation differentially affects the function and survival of corticospinal and spinal motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Aliaga, Leonardo; Lai, Chen; Yu, Jia; Chub, Nikolai; Shim, Hoon; Sun, Lixin; Xie, Chengsong; Yang, Wan-Jou; Lin, Xian; O'Donovan, Michael J.; Cai, Huaibin

    2013-01-01

    The substitution of Proline with Serine at residue 56 (P56S) of vesicle-associated membrane protein-associated protein B (VAPB) has been linked to an atypical autosomal dominant form of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis 8 (ALS8). To investigate the pathogenic mechanism of P56S VAPB in ALS, we generated transgenic (Tg) mice that heterologously express human wild-type (WT) and P56S VAPB under the control of a pan-neuronal promoter Thy1.2. While WT VAPB Tg mice did not exhibit any overt motor behavioral phenotypes, P56S VAPB Tg mice developed progressive hyperactivities and other motor abnormalities. VAPB protein was accumulated as large punctate in the soma and proximal dendrites of both corticospinal motor neurons (CSMNs) and spinal motor neurons (SMNs) in P56S VAPB Tg mice. Concomitantly, a significant increase of endoplasmic reticulum stress and unfolded protein response and the resulting up-regulation of pro-apoptotic factor CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein homologous protein expression were observed in the CSMNs and SMNs of P56S VAPB Tg mice. However, only a progressive loss of CSMNs but not SMNs was found in P56S VAPB Tg mice. In SMNs, P56S VAPB promoted a rather selective translocation of VAPB protein onto the postsynaptic site of C-boutons that altered the morphology of C-boutons and impaired the spontaneous rhythmic discharges of SMNs. Therefore, these findings provide new pathophysiological mechanisms of P56S VAPB that differentially affect the function and survival of CSMNs and SMNs in ALS8. PMID:23771029

  2. A high-fat jelly diet restores bioenergetic balance and extends lifespan in the presence of motor dysfunction and lumbar spinal cord motor neuron loss in TDP-43A315T mutant C57BL6/J mice

    PubMed Central

    Coughlan, Karen S.; Halang, Luise; Woods, Ina

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Transgenic transactivation response DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43) mice expressing the A315T mutation under control of the murine prion promoter progressively develop motor function deficits and are considered a new model for the study of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); however, premature sudden death resulting from intestinal obstruction halts disease phenotype progression in 100% of C57BL6/J congenic TDP-43A315T mice. Similar to our recent results in SOD1G93A mice, TDP-43A315T mice fed a standard pellet diet showed increased 5′ adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activation at postnatal day (P)80, indicating elevated energetic stress during disease progression. We therefore investigated the effects of a high-fat jelly diet on bioenergetic status and lifespan in TDP-43A315T mice. In contrast to standard pellet-fed mice, mice fed high-fat jelly showed no difference in AMPK activation up to P120 and decreased phosphorylation of acetly-CoA carboxylase (ACC) at early-stage time points. Exposure to a high-fat jelly diet prevented sudden death and extended survival, allowing development of a motor neuron disease phenotype with significantly decreased body weight from P80 onward that was characterised by deficits in Rotarod abilities and stride length measurements. Development of this phenotype was associated with a significant motor neuron loss as assessed by Nissl staining in the lumbar spinal cord. Our work suggests that a high-fat jelly diet improves the pre-clinical utility of the TDP-43A315T model by extending lifespan and allowing the motor neuron disease phenotype to progress, and indicates the potential benefit of this diet in TDP-43-associated ALS. PMID:27491077

  3. A high-fat jelly diet restores bioenergetic balance and extends lifespan in the presence of motor dysfunction and lumbar spinal cord motor neuron loss in TDP-43A315T mutant C57BL6/J mice.

    PubMed

    Coughlan, Karen S; Halang, Luise; Woods, Ina; Prehn, Jochen H M

    2016-09-01

    Transgenic transactivation response DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43) mice expressing the A315T mutation under control of the murine prion promoter progressively develop motor function deficits and are considered a new model for the study of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); however, premature sudden death resulting from intestinal obstruction halts disease phenotype progression in 100% of C57BL6/J congenic TDP-43(A315T) mice. Similar to our recent results in SOD1(G93A) mice, TDP-43(A315T) mice fed a standard pellet diet showed increased 5' adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activation at postnatal day (P)80, indicating elevated energetic stress during disease progression. We therefore investigated the effects of a high-fat jelly diet on bioenergetic status and lifespan in TDP-43(A315T) mice. In contrast to standard pellet-fed mice, mice fed high-fat jelly showed no difference in AMPK activation up to P120 and decreased phosphorylation of acetly-CoA carboxylase (ACC) at early-stage time points. Exposure to a high-fat jelly diet prevented sudden death and extended survival, allowing development of a motor neuron disease phenotype with significantly decreased body weight from P80 onward that was characterised by deficits in Rotarod abilities and stride length measurements. Development of this phenotype was associated with a significant motor neuron loss as assessed by Nissl staining in the lumbar spinal cord. Our work suggests that a high-fat jelly diet improves the pre-clinical utility of the TDP-43(A315T) model by extending lifespan and allowing the motor neuron disease phenotype to progress, and indicates the potential benefit of this diet in TDP-43-associated ALS.

  4. Brain motor system function in a patient with complete spinal cord injury following extensive brain-computer interface training.

    PubMed

    Enzinger, Christian; Ropele, Stefan; Fazekas, Franz; Loitfelder, Marisa; Gorani, Faton; Seifert, Thomas; Reiter, Gudrun; Neuper, Christa; Pfurtscheller, Gert; Müller-Putz, Gernot

    2008-09-01

    Although several features of brain motor function appear to be preserved even in chronic complete SCI, previous functional MRI (fMRI) studies have also identified significant derangements such as a strongly reduced volume of activation, a poor modulation of function and abnormal activation patterns. It might be speculated that extensive motor imagery training may serve to prevent such abnormalities. We here report on a unique patient with a complete traumatic SCI below C5 who learned to elicit electroencephalographic signals beta-bursts in the midline region upon imagination of foot movements. This enabled him to use a neuroprosthesis and to "walk from thought" in a virtual environment via a brain-computer interface (BCI). We here used fMRI at 3T during imagined hand and foot movements to investigate the effects of motor imagery via persistent BCI training over 8 years on brain motor function and compared these findings to a group of five untrained healthy age-matched volunteers during executed and imagined movements. We observed robust primary sensorimotor cortex (SMC) activity in expected somatotopy in the tetraplegic patient upon movement imagination while such activation was absent in healthy untrained controls. Sensorimotor network activation with motor imagery in the patient (including SMC contralateral to and the cerebellum ipsilateral to the imagined side of movement as well as supplementary motor areas) was very similar to the pattern observed with actual movement in the controls. We interpret our findings as evidence that BCI training as a conduit of motor imagery training may assist in maintaining access to SMC in largely preserved somatopy despite complete deafferentation.

  5. Tetraplegia or paraplegia with brachial diparesis? What is the most appropriate designation for the motor deficit in patients with lower cervical spinal cord injury?

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Nicandro; Figueiredo, Iara Eberhard; Resnick, Daniel

    2013-02-01

    The authors seek to clarify the nomenclature used to describe cervical spinal cord injuries, particularly the use of the terms "tetraplegia", "quadriplegia", "quadriparesis", "tetraparesis", "incomplete quadriplegia" or "incomplete tetraplegia" when applied to patients with lower cervical cord injuries. A review of the origin of the terms and nomenclature used currently to describe the neurological status of patients with SCI in the literature was performed. The terms "tetraplegia", "quadriplegia", "quadriparesis", "tetraparesis", "incomplete quadriplegia" or "incomplete tetraplegia" have been used very often to describe patients with complete lower cervical SCI despite the fact that the clinical scenario is all the same for most of these patients. Most of these patients have total loss of the motor voluntary movements of their lower trunk and inferior limbs, and partial impairment of movement of their superior limbs, preserving many motor functions of the proximal muscles of their arms (superior limbs). A potentially better descriptive term may be "paraplegia with brachial diparesis". In using the most appropriate terminology, the patients with lower cervical SCI currently referred as presenting with "tetraplegia", "quadriplegia", "quadriparesis", "tetraparesis", "incomplete quadriplegia" or "incomplete tetraplegia", might be better described as having "paraplegia with brachial diparesis".

  6. Developmental localization of calcitonin gene-related peptide in dorsal sensory axons and ventral motor neurons of mouse cervical spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jeongtae; Sunagawa, Masanobu; Kobayashi, Shiori; Shin, Taekyun; Takayama, Chitoshi

    2016-04-01

    Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) is a 37-amino-acid neuropeptide, synthesized by alternative splicing of calcitonin gene mRNA. CGRP is characteristically distributed in the nervous system, and its function varies depending on where it is expressed. To reveal developmental formation of the CGRP network and its function in neuronal maturation, we examined the immunohistochemical localization of CGRP in the developing mouse cervical spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion. CGRP immunolabeling (IL) was first detected in motor neurons on E13, and in ascending axons of the posterior funiculus and DRG neurons on E14. CGRP-positive sensory axon fibers entered Laminae I and II on E16, and Laminae I through IV on E18. The intensity of the CGRP-IL gradually increased in both ventral and dorsal horns during embryonic development, but markedly decreased in the ventral horn after birth. These results suggest that CGRP is expressed several days after neuronal settling and entry of sensory fibers, and that the CGRP network is formed in chronological and sequential order. Furthermore, because CGRP is markedly expressed in motor neurons when axons are vastly extending and innervating targets, CGRP may also be involved in axonal elongation and synapse formation during normal development.

  7. Trunk and shoulder kinematic and kinetic and electromyographic adaptations to slope increase during motorized treadmill propulsion among manual wheelchair users with a spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Gagnon, Dany; Babineau, Annie-Claude; Champagne, Audrey; Desroches, Guillaume; Aissaoui, Rachid

    2015-01-01

    The main objective was to quantify the effects of five different slopes on trunk and shoulder kinematics as well as shoulder kinetic and muscular demands during manual wheelchair (MWC) propulsion on a motorized treadmill. Eighteen participants with spinal cord injury propelled their MWC at a self-selected constant speed on a motorized treadmill set at different slopes (0°, 2.7°, 3.6°, 4.8°, and 7.1°). Trunk and upper limb movements were recorded with a motion analysis system. Net shoulder joint moments were computed with the forces applied to the handrims measured with an instrumented wheel. To quantify muscular demand, the electromyographic activity (EMG) of the pectoralis major (clavicular and sternal portions) and deltoid (anterior and posterior fibers) was recorded during the experimental tasks and normalized against maximum EMG values obtained during static contractions. Overall, forward trunk flexion and shoulder flexion increased as the slope became steeper, whereas shoulder flexion, adduction, and internal rotation moments along with the muscular demand also increased as the slope became steeper. The results confirm that forward trunk flexion and shoulder flexion movement amplitudes, along with shoulder mechanical and muscular demands, generally increase when the slope of the treadmill increases despite some similarities between the 2.7° to 3.6° and 3.6° to 4.8° slope increments.

  8. Effect of motor imagery on excitability of spinal neural function and its impact on the accuracy of movement-considering the point at which subjects subjectively determine the 50%MVC point.

    PubMed

    Fukumoto, Yuki; Bunno, Yoshibumi; Suzuki, Toshiaki

    2016-12-01

    [Purpose] This study aimed to examine the effect of motor imagery on the accuracy of motion and the excitability of spinal neural function. [Subjects and Methods] Thirty healthy volunteers (males, 15; females, 15; mean age, 20.3 ± 1.0 years) were recruited. F-waves was recorded at rest, while holding a sensor, and while using motor imagery. Next, subjects learned 50% maximum voluntary contraction. The pinch force was measured without visual feedback before and after motor imagery. F-waves were analyzed with respect to persistence and the F/M amplitude ratio. Correction time and coefficient of variation were calculated from the pinch force. [Results] Persistence and F/M amplitude ratio ware significantly higher in the holding sensor and motor imagery conditions than in the resting condition. In addition, persistence under motor imagery was significantly higher than that in the holding sensor condition. No significant differences were observed in relative values of correction time and coefficient of variation between the two pinch action conditions. The pinch force in task 2 approximated a more authentic 50%MVC than that in task 1. [Conclusion] Motor imagery increases the excitability of spinal neural function, suggesting that it also affects accurate control of muscle force.

  9. Effect of motor imagery on excitability of spinal neural function and its impact on the accuracy of movement-considering the point at which subjects subjectively determine the 50%MVC point

    PubMed Central

    Fukumoto, Yuki; Bunno, Yoshibumi; Suzuki, Toshiaki

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] This study aimed to examine the effect of motor imagery on the accuracy of motion and the excitability of spinal neural function. [Subjects and Methods] Thirty healthy volunteers (males, 15; females, 15; mean age, 20.3 ± 1.0 years) were recruited. F-waves was recorded at rest, while holding a sensor, and while using motor imagery. Next, subjects learned 50% maximum voluntary contraction. The pinch force was measured without visual feedback before and after motor imagery. F-waves were analyzed with respect to persistence and the F/M amplitude ratio. Correction time and coefficient of variation were calculated from the pinch force. [Results] Persistence and F/M amplitude ratio ware significantly higher in the holding sensor and motor imagery conditions than in the resting condition. In addition, persistence under motor imagery was significantly higher than that in the holding sensor condition. No significant differences were observed in relative values of correction time and coefficient of variation between the two pinch action conditions. The pinch force in task 2 approximated a more authentic 50%MVC than that in task 1. [Conclusion] Motor imagery increases the excitability of spinal neural function, suggesting that it also affects accurate control of muscle force. PMID:28174464

  10. Ligation of mouse L4 and L5 spinal nerves produces robust allodynia without major motor function deficit.

    PubMed

    Ye, Gui-Lan; Savelieva, Katerina V; Vogel, Peter; Baker, Kevin B; Mason, Sara; Lanthorn, Thomas H; Rajan, Indrani

    2015-01-01

    Spinal nerve L5/L6 ligation (SNL) in rats has become the standard for mechanistic studies of peripheral neuropathy and screening for novel analgesics. Conventional SNL in our hybrid mice resulted in a wide range of allodynia. Anatomical evaluation indicated that a variable number of lumbar vertebrae existed, resulting in L4/L5 or L5/L6 being ligated. Surprisingly, L4/L5 ligation did not result in ipsilateral hind limb paralysis and produced robust allodynia. Following a recent report that the mouse L4 neural segment is homologous with rat L5 we generated L4, L5 or both L4 and L5 (L4/L5) ligations in C57 mice after establishing a modified set of surgical landmarks. In contrast to rats, L4 ligation in these mice did not result in hind limb paralysis. Robust allodynia was observed in all three ligation groups. Nerve degeneration confirmed that L4 and L5, respectively, are primary contributors to the tibial and sural branches of the sciatic nerve in mice. A larger von Frey sensitive area reflected the wider distribution of Wallerian degeneration in the hindlimb of L4- compared to L5-ligated mice. Ligation of mouse L4 and L5 spinal nerves produces consistent, robust neuropathic pain behaviors and is suitable as a model for investigating mechanisms of neuropathic pain and for testing of novel analgesics. Gabapentin, used as a validation drug in neuropathic pain models and as a reference compound for novel analgesics, significantly reduced allodynia in the mice tested (L4/L5 ligations). Given the ease of surgery, robust allodynia, and larger von Frey sensitive area, we conclude that combined ligation of spinal nerves L4 and L5 optimizes the SNL model in mice.

  11. Spinal cordectomy: A new hope for morbid spinal conditions.

    PubMed

    Konar, Subhas K; Maiti, Tanmoy K; Bir, Shyamal C; Nanda, Anil

    2017-01-01

    A spinal cordectomy is a treatment option for several disorders of the spinal cord like post-traumatic syringomyelia, spinal cord tumor and myelomeningocele. We have done a systematic analysis of all reported cases of spinal cordectomy to investigate the possible outcomes and complications. A PubMed search was performed for literature published from 1949 to 2015 with search words "spinal cordectomy", "spinal cord transection" and "cordectomy for malignant spinal cord tumors" to select articles containing information about the indication, outcome and complication of spinal cordectomy performed for diverse etiologies. Spinal cordectomy was performed for post-traumatic syrinx (76 cases), SPAM (2 cases), Central pain of spinal cord origin (22 cases), Spasticity (8 cases), Spinal tumors (16 cases) and Myelomeningocele (30 cases). Among the 76 cases, 60 cases fulfilled the inclusion criteria for our outcome analysis in terms of improvement, stabilization or deterioration after spinal cordectomy. The results showed 78.3% excellent improvement, 13.4% stable and 8.3% (5 cases) deterioration. The reported causes of failure of spinal cordectomy for post-traumatic syrinx were scarring of a proximal stump and severe arachnoid adhesion. Sixteen cases of spinal cordectomy related with spinal cord tumors have been reported. Also reported were seven cases of GBM, two cases of AA and one each case of anaplastic tanycytic ependymoma, schwanoma, neurofibroma, atypical meningioma and malignant ganglioglioma. Cordectomy shouldbe strongly considered in patients having malignant spinal cord tumors with complete motor loss and sensory loss below the level of the lesion as a means of preventing the spread of disease from the original tumor focus. Spinal cordectomy is a treatment option with a good outcome for post-traumatic spinal morbidity, spinal cord tumors and myelomeningocele. However, since it is an invasive and irreversible procedure, it is only considered when other options have

  12. Primary afferent terminals acting as excitatory interneurons contribute to spontaneous motor activities in the immature spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Bos, Rémi; Brocard, Frédéric; Vinay, Laurent

    2011-07-13

    Patterned, spontaneous activity plays a critical role in the development of neuronal networks. A robust spontaneous activity is observed in vitro in spinal cord preparations isolated from immature rats. The rhythmic ventral root discharges rely mainly on the depolarizing/excitatory action of GABA and glycine early during development, whereas at later stages glutamate drive is primarily responsible for the rhythmic activity and GABA/glycine are thought to play an inhibitory role. However, rhythmic discharges mediated by the activation of GABA(A) receptors are recorded from dorsal roots (DRs). In the present study, we used the in vitro spinal cord preparation of neonatal rats to identify the relationship between discharges that are conducted antidromically along DRs and the spontaneous activity recorded from lumbar motoneurons. We show that discharges in DRs precede those in ventral roots and that primary afferent depolarizations (PADs) start earlier than EPSPs in motoneurons. EPSP-triggered averaging revealed that the action potentials propagate not only antidromically in the DR but also centrally and trigger EPSPs in motoneurons. Potentiating GABAergic antidromic discharges by diazepam increased the EPSPs recorded from motoneurons; conversely, blocking DR bursts markedly reduced these EPSPs. High intracellular concentrations of chloride are maintained in primary afferent terminals by the sodium-potassium-chloride cotransporter NKCC1. Blocking these cotransporters by bumetanide decreased both dorsal and ventral root discharges. We conclude that primary afferent fibers act as excitatory interneurons and that GABA, through PADs reaching firing threshold, is still playing a key role in promoting spontaneous activity in neonates.

  13. Emergency department visits for motor vehicle traffic injuries: United States, 2010-2011.

    PubMed

    Albert, Michael; McCaig, Linda F

    2015-01-01

    Data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2010-2011. In 2010-2011, the emergency department (ED) visit rate for motor vehicle traffic injuries was highest among persons aged 16-24 years. The rates declined with age after 16-24, with rates for those aged 0-15 similar to those 65 and over. The overall ED visit rate for motor vehicle traffic injuries was higher among non-Hispanic black persons compared with non-Hispanic white and Hispanic persons. Imaging services were ordered or provided at 70.2% of ED visits for motor vehicle traffic injuries, which was higher than for other injury-related ED visits (55.9%). About one-half of ED visits for motor vehicle traffic injuries had a primary diagnosis of sprains and strains of the neck and back, contusion with intact skin surface, or spinal disorders. In spite of improvements in motor vehicle safety in recent years, motor vehicle crashes remain a major source of morbidity and mortality in the United States (1-3). Motor vehicle-related deaths and injuries also result in substantial economic and societal costs related to medical care and lost productivity (4). This report describes the rates and characteristics of emergency department (ED) visits for motor vehicle traffic injuries during 2010-2011 based on nationally representative data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS).

  14. The release of acetylcholine from the spinal cord of the cat by antidromic stimulation of motor nerves

    PubMed Central

    Kuno, M.; Rudomin, P.

    1966-01-01

    1. ACh was measured in the effluent from the perfused lumbosacral cord of the cat with or without stimulation of the central ends of the cut left sciatic and femoral nerves after section of the left dorsal roots. 2. In about 30% of the preparations ACh was obtained in the samples collected at rest (average 3·3 ng/min); the amount of ACh release was increased 1·3-9 times by stimulation of the peripheral nerves. The average amount of ACh collected during stimulation of the peripheral nerves at 5/sec was 6·9 ng/min. Antidromic motor nerve impulses responsible for the ACh release were likely to be only those in alpha motor fibres. 3. There was a depression in ACh release/stimulus as the stimulus frequency was increased more than 10/sec. Such changes in ACh release with various stimulus frequencies were correlated with depression in the response of Renshaw cells to excitation through motor-axon collaterals. 4. Amounts of ACh release during stimulation of the peripheral nerves at 5/sec were significantly increased for 1 or 2 min after a short tetanic stimulation of the nerves. 5. Intravenous injection of dihydro-β-erythroidine did not reduce the amount of ACh release produced by stimulation of the peripheral nerves. 6. It is concluded that antidromic impulses in alpha motor fibres liberate ACh from the presynaptic terminals at the central synapses on Renshaw cells. PMID:5972160

  15. The release of acetylcholine from the spinal cord of the cat by antidromic stimulation of motor nerves.

    PubMed

    Kuno, M; Rudomin, P

    1966-11-01

    1. ACh was measured in the effluent from the perfused lumbosacral cord of the cat with or without stimulation of the central ends of the cut left sciatic and femoral nerves after section of the left dorsal roots.2. In about 30% of the preparations ACh was obtained in the samples collected at rest (average 3.3 ng/min); the amount of ACh release was increased 1.3-9 times by stimulation of the peripheral nerves. The average amount of ACh collected during stimulation of the peripheral nerves at 5/sec was 6.9 ng/min. Antidromic motor nerve impulses responsible for the ACh release were likely to be only those in alpha motor fibres.3. There was a depression in ACh release/stimulus as the stimulus frequency was increased more than 10/sec. Such changes in ACh release with various stimulus frequencies were correlated with depression in the response of Renshaw cells to excitation through motor-axon collaterals.4. Amounts of ACh release during stimulation of the peripheral nerves at 5/sec were significantly increased for 1 or 2 min after a short tetanic stimulation of the nerves.5. Intravenous injection of dihydro-beta-erythroidine did not reduce the amount of ACh release produced by stimulation of the peripheral nerves.6. It is concluded that antidromic impulses in alpha motor fibres liberate ACh from the presynaptic terminals at the central synapses on Renshaw cells.

  16. Differences in bone mineral density, markers of bone turnover and extracellular matrix and daily life muscular activity among patients with recent motor-incomplete versus motor-complete spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kostovski, E; Hjeltnes, N; Eriksen, E F; Kolset, S O; Iversen, P O

    2015-02-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) leads to severe bone loss, but the associated mechanisms are poorly described in incomplete SCI individuals. The purpose of the study is to compare alterations in bone mineral density (BMD) and serum biomarkers of bone turnover in recent motor-incomplete to -complete SCI men, as well as to describe their physical activity and spasticity. We studied 31 men with acute SCI. Whole-body DXA scans, serum biomarkers and self-reported activity and spasticity were examined 1 and/or 3 and 12 months after the injury. We observed a decrease in proximal femur BMD (p < 0.02) in both the groups. Serum phosphate and carboxy-terminal-collagen crosslinks were significantly lower in motor-incomplete versus complete SCI men, whereas albumin-corrected Ca(2+) (p = 0.02) were lower only 3 months after injury. When data from all 31 SCI participants were pooled, we observed increased serum matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) and tissue inhibitors of MMP-2 (TIMP-2) (p < 0.02) whereas TIMP-1 decreased (p = 0.03). BMD correlated positively with self-reported activity (r = 0.59, p = 0.04) and negatively with spasticity (r = 0.74, p = 0.02) 12 months after injury. As a summary, men with motor-incomplete SCI developed significant proximal femur bone loss 12 months after injury and exhibited increased bone resorption throughout the first year after the injury. Compared with complete SCI men, incomplete SCI men show attenuated bone resorption. Our pooled data show increased turnover of extracellular matrix after injury and that increased exercise before and after injury correlated with reduced bone loss.

  17. Evaluation of muscle strength and motor abilities in children with type II and III spinal muscle atrophy treated with valproic acid

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder that affects the motoneurons of the spinal anterior horn, resulting in hypotonia and muscle weakness. The disease is caused by deletion or mutation in the telomeric copy of SMN gene (SMN1) and clinical severity is in part determined by the copy number of the centromeric copy of the SMN gene (SMN2). The SMN2 mRNA lacks exon 7, resulting in a production of lower amounts of the full-length SMN protein. Knowledge of the molecular mechanism of diseases has led to the discovery of drugs capable of increasing SMN protein level through activation of SMN2 gene. One of these drugs is the valproic acid (VPA), a histone deacetylase inhibitor. Methods Twenty-two patients with type II and III SMA, aged between 2 and 18 years, were treated with VPA and were evaluated five times during a one-year period using the Manual Muscle Test (Medical Research Council scale-MRC), the Hammersmith Functional Motor Scale (HFMS), and the Barthel Index. Results After 12 months of therapy, the patients did not gain muscle strength. The group of children with SMA type II presented a significant gain in HFMS scores during the treatment. This improvement was not observed in the group of type III patients. The analysis of the HFMS scores during the treatment period in the groups of patients younger and older than 6 years of age did not show any significant result. There was an improvement of the daily activities at the end of the VPA treatment period. Conclusion Treatment of SMA patients with VPA may be a potential alternative to alleviate the progression of the disease. Trial Registration ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT01033331 PMID:21435220

  18. Use of an arm weight-bearing combined with upper-limb reaching apparatus to facilitate motor paralysis recovery in an incomplete spinal cord injury patient: a single case report

    PubMed Central

    Hoei, Takashi; Kawahira, Kazumi; Fukuda, Hidefumi; Sihgenobu, Keizo; Shimodozono, Megumi; Ogura, Tadashi

    2017-01-01

    [Purpose] Training using an arm weight-bearing device combined with upper-limb reaching apparatus to facilitate motor paralysis recovery, named the “Reaching Robot”, as well as Repetitive Facilitation Exercise were applied to a patient with severe impairment of the shoulder and elbow due to incomplete spinal cord injury and the effects were examined. [Subjects and Methods] A 66-year-old man with incomplete spinal cord injury participated in an upper extremity rehabilitation program involving a Reaching Robot. The program was comprised of active motor suspension, continuous low amplitude neuromuscular electrical stimulation and functional vibratory stimulation, as well as Repetitive Facilitation Exercise combined with continuous low amplitude neuromuscular electrical stimulation. This protocol used a crossover design following an A1-B1-A2-B2. “A” consisted of 2 weeks of Repetitive Facilitation Exercise, and “B” consisted of 2 weeks of Reaching Robot training. [Results] Improvements were observed after all sessions. Active range of motion for shoulder flexion improved after 2 weeks of Reaching Robot sessions only. There were no adverse events. [Conclusion] Reaching Robot training for severe paretic upper-extremity after incomplete spinal cord injury was a safe and effective treatment. Reaching Robot training may be useful for rehabilitation of paretic upper-extremity after incomplete spinal cord injury. PMID:28210068

  19. A functional model and simulation of spinal motor pools and intrafascicular recordings of motoneuron activity in peripheral nerve

    PubMed Central

    Abdelghani, Mohamed N.; Abbas, James J.; Horch, Kenneth W.; Jung, Ranu

    2014-01-01

    Decoding motor intent from recorded neural signals is essential for the development of effective neural-controlled prostheses. To facilitate the development of online decoding algorithms we have developed a software platform to simulate neural motor signals recorded with peripheral nerve electrodes, such as longitudinal intrafascicular electrodes (LIFEs). The simulator uses stored motor intent signals to drive a pool of simulated motoneurons with various spike shapes, recruitment characteristics, and firing frequencies. Each electrode records a weighted sum of a subset of simulated motoneuron activity patterns. As designed, the simulator facilitates development of a suite of test scenarios that would not be possible with actual data sets because, unlike with actual recordings, in the simulator the individual contributions to the simulated composite recordings are known and can be methodically varied across a set of simulation runs. In this manner, the simulation tool is suitable for iterative development of real-time decoding algorithms prior to definitive evaluation in amputee subjects with implanted electrodes. The simulation tool was used to produce data sets that demonstrate its ability to capture some features of neural recordings that pose challenges for decoding algorithms. PMID:25452711

  20. Firing patterns and functional roles of different classes of spinal afferents in rectal nerves during colonic migrating motor complexes in mouse colon.

    PubMed

    Zagorodnyuk, Vladimir P; Kyloh, Melinda; Brookes, Simon J; Nicholas, Sarah J; Spencer, Nick J

    2012-08-01

    The functional role of the different classes of visceral afferents that innervate the large intestine is poorly understood. Recent evidence suggests that low-threshold, wide-dynamic-range rectal afferents play an important role in the detection and transmission of visceral pain induced by noxious colorectal distension in mice. However, it is not clear which classes of spinal afferents are activated during naturally occurring colonic motor patterns or during intense contractions of the gut smooth muscle. We developed an in vitro colorectum preparation to test how the major classes of rectal afferents are activated during spontaneous colonic migrating motor complex (CMMC) or pharmacologically induced contraction. During CMMCs, circular muscle contractions increased firing in low-threshold, wide-dynamic-range muscular afferents and muscular-mucosal afferents, which generated a mean firing rate of 1.53 ± 0.23 Hz (n = 8) under isotonic conditions and 2.52 ± 0.36 Hz (n = 17) under isometric conditions. These low-threshold rectal afferents were reliably activated by low levels of circumferential stretch induced by increases in length (1-2 mm) or load (1-3 g). In a small proportion of cases (5 of 34 units), some low-threshold muscular and muscular-mucosal afferents decreased their firing rate during the peak of the CMMC contractions. High-threshold afferents were never activated during spontaneous CMMC contractions or tonic contractions induced by bethanechol (100 μM). High-threshold rectal afferents were only activated by intense levels of circumferential stretch (10-20 g). These results show that, in the rectal nerves of mice, low-threshold, wide-dynamic-range muscular and muscular-mucosal afferents are excited during contraction of the circular muscle that occurs during spontaneous CMMCs. No activation of high-threshold rectal afferents was detected during CMMCs or intense contractile activity in naïve mouse colorectum.

  1. Conditional genetic deletion of PTEN after a spinal cord injury enhances regenerative growth of CST axons and motor function recovery in mice.

    PubMed

    Danilov, Camelia A; Steward, Oswald

    2015-04-01

    Previous studies indicate that conditional genetic deletion of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) in neonatal mice enhances the ability of axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury (SCI) in adults. Here, we assessed whether deleting PTEN in adult neurons post-SCI is also effective, and whether enhanced regenerative growth is accompanied by enhanced recovery of voluntary motor function. PTEN(loxP/loxP) mice received moderate contusion injuries at cervical level 5 (C5). One group received unilateral injections of adeno-associated virus expressing CRE (AAV-CRE) into the sensorimotor cortex; controls received a vector expressing green fluorescent protein (AAV-GFP) or injuries only (no vector injections). Forelimb function was tested for 14weeks post-SCI using a grip strength meter (GSM) and a hanging task. The corticospinal tract (CST) was traced by injecting mini-ruby BDA into the sensorimotor cortex. Forelimb gripping ability was severely impaired immediately post-SCI but recovered slowly over time. The extent of recovery was significantly greater in PTEN-deleted mice in comparison to either the AAV-GFP group or the injury only group. BDA tract tracing revealed significantly higher numbers of BDA-labeled axons in caudal segments in the PTEN-deleted group compared to control groups. In addition, in the PTEN-deleted group, there were exuberant collaterals extending from the main tract rostral to the lesion and into and around the scar tissue at the injury site. These results indicate that PTEN deletion in adult mice shortly post-SCI can enhance regenerative growth of CST axons and forelimb motor function recovery.

  2. Conditional genetic deletion of PTEN after a spinal cord injury enhances regenerative growth of CST axons and motor function recovery in mice

    PubMed Central

    Danilov, Camelia A.; Steward, Oswald

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies indicate that conditional genetic deletion of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) in neonatal mice enhances the ability of axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury (SCI) in adults. Here, we assessed whether deleting PTEN in adult neurons post-SCI is also effective, and whether enhanced regenerative growth is accompanied by enhanced recovery of voluntary motor function. PTENloxP/loxP mice received moderate contusion injuries at cervical level 5 (C5). One group received unilateral injections of adeno-associated virus expressing CRE (AAV-CRE) into the sensorimotor cortex; controls received a vector expressing green fluorescent protein (AAV-GFP) or injuries only (no vector injections). Forelimb function was tested for 14 weeks post-SCI using a grip strength meter (GSM) and a hanging task. The corticospinal tract (CST) was traced by injecting mini-ruby BDA into the sensorimotor cortex. Forelimb gripping ability was severely impaired immediately post-SCI but recovered slowly over time. The extent of recovery was significantly greater in PTEN-deleted mice in comparison to either the AAV-GFP group or the injury only group. BDA tract tracing revealed significantly higher numbers of BDA-labeled axons in caudal segments in the PTEN-deleted group compared to control groups. In addition, in the PTEN-deleted group, there were exuberant collaterals extending from the main tract rostral to the lesion, into and around the scar tissue at the injury site. These results indicate that PTEN deletion in adult mice shortly post-SCI can enhance regenerative growth of CST axons and forelimb motor function recovery. PMID:25704959

  3. Mature adipocyte-derived cells, dedifferentiated fat cells (DFAT), promoted functional recovery from spinal cord injury-induced motor dysfunction in rats.

    PubMed

    Ohta, Yuki; Takenaga, Mitsuko; Tokura, Yukie; Hamaguchi, Akemi; Matsumoto, Taro; Kano, Koichiro; Mugishima, Hideo; Okano, Hideyuki; Igarashi, Rie

    2008-01-01

    Transplantation of mature adipocyte-derived cells (dedifferentiated fat cells) led to marked functional recovery from spinal cord injury (SCI)-induced motor dysfunction in rats. When mature adipocytes were isolated from rat adipose tissue and grown in ceiling culture, transformation into fibroblast-like cells without lipid droplets occurred. These fibroblast-like cells, termed dedifferentiated fat cells (DFAT), could proliferate and could also differentiate back into adipocytes. DFAT expressed neural markers such as nestin, betaIII tubulin, and GFAP. Allografting of DFAT into SCI-induced rats led to significant recovery from hindlimb dysfunction. Grafted cells were detected at the injection site, and some of these cells expressed betaIII tubulin. DFAT expressed neurotrophic factors such as BDNF and GDNF prior to transplantation, and grafted cells were also positive for these factors. Therefore, these neurotrophic factors derived from grafted DFAT might have contributed to the promotion of functional recovery. These findings also suggest that mature adipocytes could become a new source for cell replacement therapy to treat central nervous system disorders.

  4. Overview of Spinal Cord Disorders

    MedlinePlus

    ... cord consists of gray matter shaped like a butterfly: The front "wings" (anterior or motor horns) contain ... In the center of the spinal cord, a butterfly-shaped area of gray matter helps relay impulses ...

  5. Spinal Stenosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... center of the column of bones (vertebral or spinal column) through which the spinal cord and nerve roots ... be acquired at birth. Poor alignment of the spinal column when a vertebra slips forward onto the one ...

  6. Columbia SMA Project: A Randomized, Control Trial of the Effects of Exercise on Motor Function and Strength in Patients With Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-06-01

    www.CQillmbiasma.org No. 1994 ?. 2 Musc::ular Dystrophy Assoc1at1on (hUAJ Clinic Spinal Muscular Atrophy Clinical (SMA) Research Center Nan<:y E. Strauss, M.D...3 ~ COLUMBIA UNIVERSIT~ 0 ~ Muscutar Dystrophy Association (MDA) Clinic \\WI M C Spinal Muscular Atrophy Clinical {SMA) - EDICAL ENTER Research...9lu mbi~_rlli:’U~t9 0000000000 p.1 Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Clinic Spinal Muscular Atrophy Clinical (SMA) Research Center Nancy E

  7. Changes in the Expression of FUS/TLS in Spinal Cords of SOD1 G93A Transgenic Mice and Correlation with Motor-Neuron Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jiao; Lu, Yi; Liang, Huiting; Tang, Chunyan; Zhu, Lei; Zhang, Jie; Xu, Renshi

    2016-01-01

    In order to searching the possible pathogenesis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), we examined the expression and distribution of FUS/TLS protein in the different anatomic regions, segments and neural cells of adult spinal cord at the different stages of the SOD1 wild-type and G93A transgenic mice using the fluorescent immunohistochemistry. Result revealed that, in the SOD1 wild-type mice, the FUS/TLS expression almost wasn't detected. However, in the SOD1 G93A mice, the FUS/TLS expression in the white matter was significantly more than that in the gray matter. In the white matter, the FUS/TLS expression in the anterior funiculus was more than that in the lateral funiculus more than that in the posterior funiculus. In the gray matter, the FUS/TLS expression in the ventral horn was more than that surrounding the central canal more than that in the dorsal horn. The FUS/TLS expression in the thoracic segment was more than that in the cervical segment more than that in the lumbar segment. Almost all FUS/TLS expressed in the nuclear of the GFAP positive cell at the onset stage, but it expressed in both the nuclear and the cytoplasm of the GFAP positive cell at the progression stage, almost didn't detected FUS/TLS expression in the NeuN and Oligo positive cells. The FUS/TLS expression was positively correlated with the neuron death. Our data suggested that the expressive increase and mislocalization of FUS/TLS in the astrocyte cell might cause the motor neuron degenerative death in the SOD1 G93A transgenic mice. PMID:27766033

  8. Retraining the injured spinal cord

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgerton, V. R.; Leon, R. D.; Harkema, S. J.; Hodgson, J. A.; London, N.; Reinkensmeyer, D. J.; Roy, R. R.; Talmadge, R. J.; Tillakaratne, N. J.; Timoszyk, W.; Tobin, A.

    2001-01-01

    The present review presents a series of concepts that may be useful in developing rehabilitative strategies to enhance recovery of posture and locomotion following spinal cord injury. First, the loss of supraspinal input results in a marked change in the functional efficacy of the remaining synapses and neurons of intraspinal and peripheral afferent (dorsal root ganglion) origin. Second, following a complete transection the lumbrosacral spinal cord can recover greater levels of motor performance if it has been exposed to the afferent and intraspinal activation patterns that are associated with standing and stepping. Third, the spinal cord can more readily reacquire the ability to stand and step following spinal cord transection with repetitive exposure to standing and stepping. Fourth, robotic assistive devices can be used to guide the kinematics of the limbs and thus expose the spinal cord to the new normal activity patterns associated with a particular motor task following spinal cord injury. In addition, such robotic assistive devices can provide immediate quantification of the limb kinematics. Fifth, the behavioural and physiological effects of spinal cord transection are reflected in adaptations in most, if not all, neurotransmitter systems in the lumbosacral spinal cord. Evidence is presented that both the GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory systems are up-regulated following complete spinal cord transection and that step training results in some aspects of these transmitter systems being down-regulated towards control levels. These concepts and observations demonstrate that (a) the spinal cord can interpret complex afferent information and generate the appropriate motor task; and (b) motor ability can be defined to a large degree by training.

  9. The Cerebellum in Maintenance of a Motor Skill: A Hierarchy of Brain and Spinal Cord Plasticity Underlies H-Reflex Conditioning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolpaw, Jonathan R.; Chen, Xiang Yang

    2006-01-01

    Operant conditioning of the H-reflex, the electrical analog of the spinal stretch reflex, is a simple model of skill acquisition and involves plasticity in the spinal cord. Previous work showed that the cerebellum is essential for down-conditioning the H-reflex. This study asks whether the cerebellum is also essential for maintaining…

  10. Quantitative Evaluation of 3D Mouse Behaviors and Motor Function in the Open-Field after Spinal Cord Injury Using Markerless Motion Tracking

    PubMed Central

    Sheets, Alison L.; Lai, Po-Lun; Fisher, Lesley C.; Basso, D. Michele

    2013-01-01

    Thousands of scientists strive to identify cellular mechanisms that could lead to breakthroughs in developing ameliorative treatments for debilitating neural and muscular conditions such as spinal cord injury (SCI). Most studies use rodent models to test hypotheses, and these are all limited by the methods available to evaluate animal motor function. This study’s goal was to develop a behavioral and locomotor assessment system in a murine model of SCI that enables quantitative kinematic measurements to be made automatically in the open-field by applying markerless motion tracking approaches. Three-dimensional movements of eight naïve, five mild, five moderate, and four severe SCI mice were recorded using 10 cameras (100 Hz). Background subtraction was used in each video frame to identify the animal’s silhouette, and the 3D shape at each time was reconstructed using shape-from-silhouette. The reconstructed volume was divided into front and back halves using k-means clustering. The animal’s front Center of Volume (CoV) height and whole-body CoV speed were calculated and used to automatically classify animal behaviors including directed locomotion, exploratory locomotion, meandering, standing, and rearing. More detailed analyses of CoV height, speed, and lateral deviation during directed locomotion revealed behavioral differences and functional impairments in animals with mild, moderate, and severe SCI when compared with naïve animals. Naïve animals displayed the widest variety of behaviors including rearing and crossing the center of the open-field, the fastest speeds, and tallest rear CoV heights. SCI reduced the range of behaviors, and decreased speed (r = .70 p<.005) and rear CoV height (r = .65 p<.01) were significantly correlated with greater lesion size. This markerless tracking approach is a first step toward fundamentally changing how rodent movement studies are conducted. By providing scientists with sensitive, quantitative measurement

  11. Hybrid survival motor neuron genes in patients with autosomal recessive spinal muscular atrophy: New insights into molecular mechanisms responsible for the disease

    SciTech Connect

    Hahnen, E.; Schoenling, J.; Zerres, K.

    1996-11-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a frequent autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disorder leading to weakness and atrophy of voluntary muscles. The survival motor-neuron gene (SMN), a strong candidate for SMA, is present in two highly homologous copies (telSMN and cenSMN) within the SMA region. Only five nucleotide differences within the region between intron 6 and exon 8 distinguish these homologues. Independent of the severity of the disease, 90%-98% of all SMA patients carry homozygous deletions in telSMN, affecting either exon 7 or both exons 7 and 8. We present the molecular analysis of 42 SMA patients who carry homozygous deletions of telSMN exon 7 but not of exon 8. The question arises whether in these cases the telSMN is truncated upstream of exon 8 or whether hybrid SMN genes exist that are composed of centromeric and telomeric sequences. By a simple PCR-based assay we demonstrate that in each case the remaining telSMN exon 8 is part of a hybrid SMN gene. Sequencing of cloned hybrid SMN genes from seven patients revealed the same composition in all but two patients: the base-pair differences in introns 6 and 7 and exon 7 are of centromeric origin whereas exon 8 is of telomeric origin. Nonetheless, haplotype analysis with polymorphic multicopy markers, Ag1-CA and C212, localized at the 5{prime} end of the SMN genes, suggests different mechanisms of occurrence, unequal rearrangements, and gene conversion involving both copies of the SMN genes. In approximately half of all patients, we identified a consensus haplotype, suggesting a common origin. Interestingly, we identified a putative recombination hot spot represented by recombination-simulating elements (TGGGG and TGAGGT) in exon 8 that is homologous to the human deletion-hot spot consensus sequence in the immunoglobulin switch region, the {alpha}-globin cluster, and the polymerase {alpha} arrest sites. This may explain why independent hybrid SMN genes show identical sequences. 35 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  12. [Changes in the excitability of the spinal motor neurons during sessions of functional biocontrol in patients with different forms of infantile cerebral palsy].

    PubMed

    Bogdanov, O V; Sheliakin, A M; Pinchuk, D Iu; Pisar'kova, E V

    1993-01-01

    Excitability changes at the segmentary level of the spine were examined during functional bioregulation sessions administered to patients with various forms of infantile cerebral paralysis (spastic diplegia, spastic hemiparesis) by recording N- and M-responses of musculus soleus and musculus gastrocnemius medial head. Neurophysiologic disorders were revealed at the spinal level depending on the disease form. The authors suppose that presynaptic inhibition is to a greater measure impaired in spastic hemiparesis, whereas spastic diplegia is associated with more extensive involvement even of spinal inhibitory mechanisms proper. Sessions of functional bioregulation resulted in clinical improvement and in development of a trend to normalization of spinal reflectory excitability. Such changes were recorded in musculus soleus of children with spastic diplegia and in gastrocnemius muscle median head of those with spastic hemiparesis. Possible effects of directed afferent currents on structure and function of supraspinal systems regulating spinal mechanisms activity are discussed.

  13. Spinal Stenosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the open spaces within your spine, which can put pressure on ... stenosis, doctors may recommend surgery to create additional space for the spinal cord or nerves. Many people ...

  14. Spinal stenosis

    MedlinePlus

    ... stenosis; Foraminal spinal stenosis; Degenerative spine disease; Back pain - spinal stenosis; Low back pain - stenosis; LBP - stenosis ... involve both legs. Symptoms include: Numbness , cramping, or pain in the back, buttocks, thighs, or calves, or ...

  15. Spinal injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... and drive. Do not dive into pools, lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water, particularly if you cannot determine the depth of the ... Central nervous system Spinal cord injury Spinal anatomy Two person roll - ...

  16. Spinal Myoclonus After Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Calancie, Blair

    2006-01-01

    Background/Objective: In the course of examining spinal motor function in many hundreds of people with traumatic spinal cord injury, we encountered 6 individuals who developed involuntary and rhythmic contractions in muscles of their legs. Although there are many reports of unusual muscle activation patterns associated with different forms of myoclonus, we believe that certain aspects of the patterns seen with these 6 subjects have not been previously reported. These patterns share many features with those associated with a spinal central pattern generator for walking. Methods: Subjects in this case series had a history of chronic injury to the cervical spinal cord, resulting in either complete (ASIA A; n = 4) or incomplete (ASIA D; n = 2) quadriplegia. We used multi-channel electromyography recordings of trunk and leg muscles of each subject to document muscle activation patterns associated with different postures and as influenced by a variety of sensory stimuli. Results: Involuntary contractions spanned multiple leg muscles bilaterally, sometimes including weak abdominal contractions. Contractions were smooth and graded and were highly reproducible in rate for a given subject (contraction rates were 0.3–0.5 Hz). These movements did not resemble the brief rapid contractions (ie, "jerks") ascribed to some forms of spinal myoclonus. For all subjects, the onset of involuntary muscle contraction was dependent upon hip angle; contractions did not occur unless the hips (and knees) were extended (ie, subjects were supine). In the 4 ASIA A subjects, contractions occurred simultaneously in all muscles (agonists and antagonists) bilaterally. In sharp contrast, contractions in the 2 ASIA D subjects were reciprocal between agonists and antagonists within a limb and alternated between limbs, such that movements in these 2 subjects looked just like repetitive stepping. Finally, each of the 6 subjects had a distinct pathology of their spinal cord, nerve roots, distal trunk

  17. Muscles in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy show profound defects in neuromuscular development even in the absence of failure in neuromuscular transmission or loss of motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Lee, Young Il; Mikesh, Michelle; Smith, Ian; Rimer, Mendell; Thompson, Wesley

    2011-08-15

    A mouse model of the devastating human disease "spinal muscular atrophy" (SMA) was used to investigate the severe muscle weakness and spasticity that precede the death of these animals near the end of the 2nd postnatal week. Counts of motor units to the soleus muscle as well as of axons in the soleus muscle nerve showed no loss of motor neurons. Similarly, neither immunostaining of neuromuscular junctions nor the measurement of the tension generated by nerve stimulation gave evidence of any significant impairment in neuromuscular transmission, even when animals were maintained up to 5days longer via a supplementary diet. However, the muscles were clearly weaker, generating less than half their normal tension. Weakness in 3 muscles examined in the study appears due to a severe but uniform reduction in muscle fiber size. The size reduction results from a failure of muscle fibers to grow during early postnatal development and, in soleus, to a reduction in number of fibers generated. Neuromuscular development is severely delayed in these mutant animals: expression of myosin heavy chain isoforms, the elimination of polyneuronal innervation, the maturation in the shape of the AChR plaque, the arrival of SCs at the junctions and their coverage of the nerve terminal, the development of junctional folds. Thus, if SMA in this particular mouse is a disease of motor neurons, it can act in a manner that does not result in their death or disconnection from their targets but nonetheless alters many aspects of neuromuscular development.

  18. Muscles in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy show profound defects in neuromuscular development even in the absence of failure in neuromuscular transmission or loss of motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young il; Mikesh, Michelle; Smith, Ian; Rimer, Mendell; Thompson, Wesley

    2011-01-01

    A mouse model of the devastating human disease "spinal muscular atrophy" (SMA) was used to investigate the severe muscle weakness and spasticity that precedes the death of these animals near the end of the 2nd postnatal week. Counts of motor units to the soleus muscle as well as of axons in the soleus muscle nerve showed no loss of motor neurons. Similarly, neither immunostaining of neuromuscular junctions nor the measurement of the tension generated by nerve stimulation gave evidence of any significant impairment in neuromuscular transmission, even when animals were maintained up to 5 days longer via a supplementary diet. However, the muscles were clearly weaker, generating less than half their normal tension. Weakness in 3 muscles examined in the study appears due to a severe but uniform reduction in muscle fiber size. The size reduction results from a failure of muscle fibers to grow during early postnatal development and, in soleus, to a reduction in number of fibers generated. Neuromuscular development is severely delayed in these mutant animals: expression of myosin heavy chain isoforms, the elimination of polyneuronal innervation, the maturation in the shape of the AChR plaque, the arrival of SCs at the junctions and their coverage of the nerve terminal, the development of junctional folds. Thus, if SMA in this particular mouse is a disease of motor neurons, it can act in a manner that does not result in their death or disconnection from their targets but nonetheless alters many aspects of neuromuscular development. PMID:21658376

  19. Intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring in spinal surgery

    PubMed Central

    Park, Jong-Hwa; Hyun, Seung-Jae

    2015-01-01

    Recently, many surgeons have been using intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring (IOM) in spinal surgery to reduce the incidence of postoperative neurological complications, including level of the spinal cord, cauda equina and nerve root. Several established technologies are available and combined motor and somatosensory evoked potentials are considered mandatory for practical and successful IOM. Spinal cord evoked potentials are elicited compound potentials recorded over the spinal cord. Electrical stimulation is provoked on the dorsal spinal cord from an epidural electrode. Somatosensory evoked potentials assess the functional integrity of sensory pathways from the peripheral nerve through the dorsal column and to the sensory cortex. For identification of the physiological midline, the dorsal column mapping technique can be used. It is helpful for reducing the postoperative morbidity associated with dorsal column dysfunction when distortion of the normal spinal cord anatomy caused by an intramedullary cord lesion results in confusion in localizing the midline for the myelotomy. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) consist of spinal, neurogenic and muscle MEPs. MEPs allow selective and specific assessment of the functional integrity of descending motor pathways, from the motor cortex to peripheral muscles. Spinal surgeons should understand the concept of the monitoring techniques and interpret monitoring records adequately to use IOM for the decision making during the surgery for safe surgery and a favorable surgical outcome. PMID:26380823

  20. Constituent ratio of motor fibers from the C5-C7 spinal nerves in the radial nerve is greater in pup rats than in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Nie, Mingbo; Chen, Liang; Gu, Yudong

    2012-06-01

    Clinically, injuries of C5-C7 of the brachial plexus cause falling of the wrist and fingers in infants but not in adults unless 4 consecutive spinal nerves are injured. The purpose of this study was to compare the constituent difference of spinal nerves in the radial nerve between pup and adult rats.A group of 16 pup rats and a group of 16 adult rats were each divided into 2 groups of 8 (P1 and A1 groups, C5-C6 were divided; P2 and A2 groups, C5-C7 were divided]). A nerve conduction study and histological examination were performed to evaluate radial nerve innervation to the extensor digitorum communis muscle after dividing the spinal nerves. Retrograde tracing with 5% cholera toxin B for anterior horn motoneurons of the spinal cord innervating the radial nerve was performed in 8 pup rats and 8 adult rats. Results showed that the division of C5-C7 caused more significant damage to radial nerve innervation to the extensor digitorum communis in pups than in adults, although the division of C5-C6 did not. In pups, the percentages (median with interquartile) of anterior horn motoneurons of the spinal cord innervating the radial nerve were 36.4 (28.3-38.5) in C5-C6, 28.1 (24.5-32.5) in C7, and 37.5 (36.5-39.3) in C8-T1. In adults, they were 24.2 (23.6-27.8) in C5-C6, 21.8 (19.5-26.3) in C7, and 50.7 (48.7-55.5) C8-T1.This study implies that C7 innervation in the radial nerve in humans may be more critical to the function of this nerve in infants than in adults.

  1. AAVshRNA-Mediated Suppression of PTEN in Adult Rats in Combination with Salmon Fibrin Administration Enables Regenerative Growth of Corticospinal Axons and Enhances Recovery of Voluntary Motor Function after Cervical Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Conditional genetic deletion of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) in the sensorimotor cortex of neonatal mice enables regeneration of corticospinal tract (CST) axons after spinal cord injury (SCI). The present study addresses three questions: (1) whether PTEN knockdown in adult rats by nongenetic techniques enables CST regeneration, (2) whether interventions to enable CST regeneration enhance recovery of voluntary motor function, and (3) whether delivery of salmon fibrin into the injury site further enhances CST regeneration and motor recovery. Adult rats were trained in a staircase-reaching task and then received either intracortical injections of AAVshPTEN to delete PTEN or a control vector expressing shRNA for luciferase (AAVshLuc). Rats then received cervical dorsal hemisection injuries and salmon fibrin was injected into the injury site in half the rats, yielding four groups (AAVshPTEN, AAVshLuc, AAVshPTEN + fibrin, and AAVshLuc + fibrin). Forepaw function was assessed for 10 weeks after injury and CST axons were traced by injecting biotin-conjugated dextran amine into the sensorimotor cortex. Rats that received AAVshPTEN alone did not exhibit improved motor function, whereas rats that received AAVshPTEN and salmon fibrin had significantly higher forelimb-reaching scores. Tract tracing revealed that CST axons extended farther caudally in the group that received AAVshPTEN and salmon fibrin versus other groups. There were no significant differences in lesion size between the groups. Together, these data suggest that the combination of PTEN deletion and salmon fibrin injection into the lesion can significantly improve voluntary motor function after SCI by enabling regenerative growth of CST axons. PMID:25057197

  2. AAVshRNA-mediated suppression of PTEN in adult rats in combination with salmon fibrin administration enables regenerative growth of corticospinal axons and enhances recovery of voluntary motor function after cervical spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Lewandowski, Gail; Steward, Oswald

    2014-07-23

    Conditional genetic deletion of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) in the sensorimotor cortex of neonatal mice enables regeneration of corticospinal tract (CST) axons after spinal cord injury (SCI). The present study addresses three questions: (1) whether PTEN knockdown in adult rats by nongenetic techniques enables CST regeneration, (2) whether interventions to enable CST regeneration enhance recovery of voluntary motor function, and (3) whether delivery of salmon fibrin into the injury site further enhances CST regeneration and motor recovery. Adult rats were trained in a staircase-reaching task and then received either intracortical injections of AAVshPTEN to delete PTEN or a control vector expressing shRNA for luciferase (AAVshLuc). Rats then received cervical dorsal hemisection injuries and salmon fibrin was injected into the injury site in half the rats, yielding four groups (AAVshPTEN, AAVshLuc, AAVshPTEN + fibrin, and AAVshLuc + fibrin). Forepaw function was assessed for 10 weeks after injury and CST axons were traced by injecting biotin-conjugated dextran amine into the sensorimotor cortex. Rats that received AAVshPTEN alone did not exhibit improved motor function, whereas rats that received AAVshPTEN and salmon fibrin had significantly higher forelimb-reaching scores. Tract tracing revealed that CST axons extended farther caudally in the group that received AAVshPTEN and salmon fibrin versus other groups. There were no significant differences in lesion size between the groups. Together, these data suggest that the combination of PTEN deletion and salmon fibrin injection into the lesion can significantly improve voluntary motor function after SCI by enabling regenerative growth of CST axons.

  3. Spinal infections.

    PubMed

    Tay, Bobby K-B; Deckey, Jeffrey; Hu, Serena S

    2002-01-01

    Spinal infections can occur in a variety of clinical situations. Their presentation ranges from the infant with diskitis who is unwilling to crawl or walk to the adult who develops an infection after a spinal procedure. The most common types of spinal infections are hematogenous bacterial or fungal infections, pediatric diskitis, epidural abscess, and postoperative infections. Prompt and accurate diagnosis of spinal infections, the cornerstone of treatment, requires a high index of suspicion in at-risk patients and the appropriate evaluation to identify the organism and determine the extent of infection. Neurologic function and spinal stability also should be carefully evaluated. The goals of therapy should include eradicating the infection, relieving pain, preserving or restoring neurologic function, improving nutrition, and maintaining spinal stability.

  4. Spinal brucellosis.

    PubMed

    Tali, E Turgut; Koc, A Murat; Oner, A Yusuf

    2015-05-01

    Spinal involvement in human brucellosis is a common condition and a significant cause of morbidity and mortality, particularly in endemic areas, because it is often associated with therapeutic failure. Most chronic brucellosis cases are the result of inadequate treatment of the initial episode. Recognition of spinal brucellosis is challenging. Early diagnosis is important to ensure proper treatment and decrease morbidity and mortality. Radiologic evaluation has gained importance in diagnosis and treatment planning, including interventional procedures and monitoring of all spinal infections.

  5. Genetics of Pediatric-Onset Motor Neuron and Neuromuscular Diseases

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2015-08-24

    Spinal Muscular Atrophy; Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease; Muscular Dystrophy; Spinal Muscular Atrophy With Respiratory Distress 1; Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis; Motor Neuron Disease; Neuromuscular Disease; Peroneal Muscular Atrophy; Fragile X Syndrome

  6. Electrical stimulation and motor recovery.

    PubMed

    Young, Wise

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, several investigators have successfully regenerated axons in animal spinal cords without locomotor recovery. One explanation is that the animals were not trained to use the regenerated connections. Intensive locomotor training improves walking recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI) in people, and >90% of people with incomplete SCI recover walking with training. Although the optimal timing, duration, intensity, and type of locomotor training are still controversial, many investigators have reported beneficial effects of training on locomotor function. The mechanisms by which training improves recovery are not clear, but an attractive theory is available. In 1949, Donald Hebb proposed a famous rule that has been paraphrased as "neurons that fire together, wire together." This rule provided a theoretical basis for a widely accepted theory that homosynaptic and heterosynaptic activity facilitate synaptic formation and consolidation. In addition, the lumbar spinal cord has a locomotor center, called the central pattern generator (CPG), which can be activated nonspecifically with electrical stimulation or neurotransmitters to produce walking. The CPG is an obvious target to reconnect after SCI. Stimulating motor cortex, spinal cord, or peripheral nerves can modulate lumbar spinal cord excitability. Motor cortex stimulation causes long-term changes in spinal reflexes and synapses, increases sprouting of the corticospinal tract, and restores skilled forelimb function in rats. Long used to treat chronic pain, motor cortex stimuli modify lumbar spinal network excitability and improve lower extremity motor scores in humans. Similarly, epidural spinal cord stimulation has long been used to treat pain and spasticity. Subthreshold epidural stimulation reduces the threshold for locomotor activity. In 2011, Harkema et al. reported lumbosacral epidural stimulation restores motor control in chronic motor complete patients. Peripheral nerve or functional electrical

  7. Central pattern generators of the mammalian spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Frigon, Alain

    2012-02-01

    Neuronal networks within the spinal cord of mammals are responsible for generating various rhythmic movements, such as walking, running, swimming, and scratching. The ability to generate multiple rhythmic movements highlights the complexity and flexibility of the mammalian spinal circuitry. The present review describes features of some rhythmic motor behaviors generated by the mammalian spinal cord and discusses how the spinal circuitry is able to produce different rhythmic movements with their own sets of goals and demands.

  8. Spinal reflexes in brain death.

    PubMed

    Beckmann, Yesim; Çiftçi, Yeliz; Incesu, Tülay Kurt; Seçil, Yaprak; Akhan, Galip

    2014-12-01

    Spontaneous and reflex movements have been described in brain death and these unusual movements might cause uncertainties in diagnosis. In this study we evaluated the presence of spinal reflexes in patients who fulfilled the criteria for brain death. Thirty-two (22 %) of 144 patients presented unexpected motor movements spontaneously or during examinations. These patients exhibited the following signs: undulating toe, increased deep tendon reflexes, plantar responses, Lazarus sign, flexion-withdrawal reflex, facial myokymia, neck-arm flexion, finger jerks and fasciculations. In comparison, there were no significant differences in age, sex, etiology of brain death and hemodynamic laboratory findings in patients with and without reflex motor movement. Spinal reflexes should be well recognized by physicians and it should be born in mind that brain death can be determined in the presence of spinal reflexes.

  9. Spinal cord ischemia secondary to hypovolemic shock.

    PubMed

    Oh, Jacob Yl; Kapoor, Siddhant; Koh, Roy Km; Yang, Eugene Wr; Hee, Hwan-Tak

    2014-12-01

    A 44-year-old male presented with symptoms of spinal cord compression secondary to metastatic prostate cancer. An urgent decompression at the cervical-thoracic region was performed, and there were no complications intraoperatively. Three hours postoperatively, the patient developed acute bilateral lower-limb paralysis (motor grade 0). Clinically, he was in class 3 hypovolemic shock. An urgent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed, showing no epidural hematoma. He was managed aggressively with medical therapy to improve his spinal cord perfusion. The patient improved significantly, and after one week, he was able to regain most of his motor functions. Although not commonly reported, spinal cord ischemia post-surgery should be recognized early, especially in the presence of hypovolemic shock. MRI should be performed to exclude other potential causes of compression. Spinal cord ischemia needs to be managed aggressively with medical treatment to improve spinal cord perfusion. The prognosis depends on the severity of deficits, and is usually favorable.

  10. Placebo-controlled study of rTMS combined with Lokomat(®) gait training for treatment in subjects with motor incomplete spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Kumru, Hatice; Benito-Penalva, Jesus; Valls-Sole, Josep; Murillo, Narda; Tormos, Josep M; Flores, Cecilia; Vidal, Joan

    2016-12-01

    High-frequency rTMS combined with gait training improves lower extremity motor score (LEMS) and gait velocity in SCI subjects who are able to walk over ground. The aim of this study was to optimize the functional outcome in early phases of gait rehabilitation in SCI using rTMS as an additional treatment to physical therapy. The present study included 31 motor incomplete SCI subjects randomized to receive real or sham rTMS, just before Lokomat gait training (15 subjects for real, 16 for sham rTMS). rTMS consisted of one daily session for 20 days over vertex (at 20 Hz). The subjects were evaluated using modified Ashworth scale (MAS) for spasticity, upper and lower extremity motor score (UEMS and LEMS, respectively), ten meters walking test (10MWT) and Walking Index for SCI (WISCI-II) for gait at baseline, after last rTMS session, and during follow-up. UEMS and LEMS improved significantly after last session in both groups and during follow-up period. The improvement was greater in real than in sham rTMS group. At follow-up, 71.4 % of the subjects after real rTMS and 40 % of the subjects after sham rTMS could perform 10MWT without significant differences in gait velocity, cadence, step length and WISCI-II between both groups. We conclude that 20 sessions of daily high-frequency rTMS combined with Lokomat gait training can lead to clinical improvement of gait in motor incomplete SCI. Such combined treatment improved motor strength in lower extremity in incomplete SCI subjects and in upper extremity in those with cervical SCI.

  11. Risk of fatal rollover in utility vehicles relative to static stability.

    PubMed

    Robertson, L S

    1989-03-01

    The risk of fatal rollover of utility vehicles per 100,000 registered vehicles relative to cars during 1982-87 was strongly correlated to the static stability of the vehicles. Distance between the center of the tires divided by twice the height of center of gravity explained 62 per cent of the variation in fatal rollover rates where rollover was the first harmful event. Statistical controls for 20 major risk factors indicated no correlations that would deflate the correlation between stability and rollover. Low stability utility vehicles roll over more often on the road suggesting that the lateral force of turning is often the tipping force.

  12. Rehabilitation in spinal infection diseases

    PubMed Central

    Nas, Kemal; Karakoç, Mehmet; Aydın, Abdulkadir; Öneş, Kadriye

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord infections were the diseases defined by Hypocrite yet the absence of modern medicine and there was not a real protocol in rehabilitation although there were many aspects in surgical treatment options. The patients whether surgically or conservatively treated had a lot of neurological, motor, and sensory disturbances. Our clinic has quite experience from our previous researchs. Unfortunately, serious spinal cord infections are still present in our region. In these patients the basic rehabilitation approaches during early, pre-operation, post-operation period and in the home environment will provide significant contributions to improve the patients’ sensory and motor skills, develop the balance and proriocaption, increase the independence of patients in daily living activities and minimize the assistance of other people. There is limited information in the literature related with the nature of the rehabilitation programmes to be applied for patients with spinal infections. The aim of this review is to share our clinic experience and summarise the publications about spinal infection rehabilitation. There are very few studies about the rehabilitation of spinal infections. There are still not enough studies about planning and performing rehabilitation programs in these patients. Therefore, a comprehensive rehabilitation programme during the hospitalisation and home periods is emphasised in order to provide optimal management and prevent further disability. PMID:25621205

  13. Rehabilitation in spinal infection diseases.

    PubMed

    Nas, Kemal; Karakoç, Mehmet; Aydın, Abdulkadir; Öneş, Kadriye

    2015-01-18

    Spinal cord infections were the diseases defined by Hypocrite yet the absence of modern medicine and there was not a real protocol in rehabilitation although there were many aspects in surgical treatment options. The patients whether surgically or conservatively treated had a lot of neurological, motor, and sensory disturbances. Our clinic has quite experience from our previous researchs. Unfortunately, serious spinal cord infections are still present in our region. In these patients the basic rehabilitation approaches during early, pre-operation, post-operation period and in the home environment will provide significant contributions to improve the patients' sensory and motor skills, develop the balance and proriocaption, increase the independence of patients in daily living activities and minimize the assistance of other people. There is limited information in the literature related with the nature of the rehabilitation programmes to be applied for patients with spinal infections. The aim of this review is to share our clinic experience and summarise the publications about spinal infection rehabilitation. There are very few studies about the rehabilitation of spinal infections. There are still not enough studies about planning and performing rehabilitation programs in these patients. Therefore, a comprehensive rehabilitation programme during the hospitalisation and home periods is emphasised in order to provide optimal management and prevent further disability.

  14. Spinal Fusion

    MedlinePlus

    ... concept of fusion is similar to that of welding in industry. Spinal fusion surgery, however, does not ... bone taken from the patient has a long history of use and results in predictable healing. Autograft ...

  15. Spinal tumor

    MedlinePlus

    ... Livingstone; 2014:chap 49. Read More Brain tumor - children Hodgkin lymphoma Metastasis Spinal cord trauma Review Date 8/15/2016 Updated by: Todd Gersten, MD, Hematology/Oncology, Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute, Wellington, FL. Review ...

  16. Spinal Infections

    MedlinePlus

    ... spinal infection include fever, chills, headache, neck stiffness, pain, wound redness and tenderness, and wound drainage. In some cases, patients may notice new weakness, numbness or tingling sensations in the arms and/or legs. The symptoms ...

  17. Lewis, Fischer 344, and Sprague-Dawley Rats Display Differences in Lipid Peroxidation, Motor Recovery, and Rubrospinal Tract Preservation after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Mestre, Humberto; Ramirez, Manuel; Garcia, Elisa; Martiñón, Susana; Cruz, Yolanda; Campos, Maria G.; Ibarra, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    The rat is the most common animal model for the preclinical validation of neuroprotective therapies in spinal cord injury (SCI). Lipid peroxidation (LP) is a hallmark of the damage triggered after SCI. Free radicals react with fatty acids causing cellular and membrane disruption. LP accounts for a considerable amount of neuronal cell death after SCI. To better understand the implications of inbred and outbred rat strain selection on preclinical SCI research, we evaluated LP after laminectomy sham surgery and a severe contusion of the T9 spinal cord in female Sprague-Dawley (SPD), Lewis (LEW), and Fischer 344 (F344) rats. Further analysis included locomotor recovery using the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) scale and retrograde rubrospinal tract tracing. LEW had the highest levels of LP products 72 h after sham surgery and SCI, significantly different from both F344 and SPD. SPD rats had the fastest functional recovery and highest BBB scores; these were not significantly different to F344. However, LEW rats achieved the lowest BBB scores throughout the 2-month follow-up, yielding significant differences when compared to SPD and F344. To see if the improvement in locomotion was secondary to an increase in axon survival, we evaluated rubrospinal neurons (RSNs) via retrograde labeling of the rubrospinal tract and quantified cells at the red nuclei. The highest numbers of RSNs were observed in SPD rats then F344; the lowest counts were seen in LEW rats. The BBB scores significantly correlated with the amount of positively stained RSN in the red nuclei. It is critical to identify interstrain variations as a potential confound in preclinical research. Multi-strain validation of neuroprotective therapies may increase chances of successful translation. PMID:26029162

  18. Connexin36 in gap junctions forming electrical synapses between motoneurons in sexually dimorphic motor nuclei in spinal cord of rat and mouse

    PubMed Central

    Bautista, W.; Nagy, J. I.

    2014-01-01

    Pools of motoneurons in lumbar spinal cord innervate sexually dimorphic perineal musculature and are themselves sexually dimorphic, displaying differences in numbers and size in male vs. female rodents. In two of these pools, the dorsomedial nucleus (DMN) and the dorsolateral nucleus (DLN), dimorphic motoneurons are intermixed with non-dimorphic neurons innervating anal and external urethral sphincter (EUS) muscles. As motoneurons in these nuclei are reportedly linked by gap junctions, we examined immunofluorescence labelling for the gap junction-forming protein connexin36 (Cx36) in male and female mouse and rat. Fluorescent Cx36-puncta occurred in distinctly greater abundance in the DMN and DLN of male rodents than observed in other spinal cord regions. These puncta were localized to motoneuron somata, proximal dendrites and neuronal appositions, and were distributed either as isolated or large patches of puncta. In both rat and mouse, Cx36-puncta were associated with nearly all (> 94%) DMN and DLN motoneurons. The density of Cx36-puncta increased dramatically from postnatal day 9 to 15, unlike developmental decreases of these puncta observed in other CNS regions. In females, Cx36-puncta in DLN was similar to that in males, but was sparse in the DMN. In EGFP-Cx36 transgenic mice, motoneurons in the DMN and DLN were intensely labelled for EGFP reporter in males, but less so in females. The results indicate the presence of Cx36-containing gap junctions in the sexually dimorphic DMN and DLN of male as well as female rodents, suggesting coupling of not only sexually dimorphic but also non-dimorphic motoneurons in these nuclei. PMID:24304165

  19. Spinal deformity.

    PubMed

    Bunnell, W P

    1986-12-01

    Spinal deformity is a relatively common disorder, particularly in teenage girls. Early detection is possible by a simple, quick visual inspection that should be a standard part of the routine examination of all preteen and teenage patients. Follow-up observation will reveal those curvatures that are progressive and permit orthotic treatment to prevent further increase in the deformity. Spinal fusion offers correction and stabilization of more severe degrees of scoliosis.

  20. Motor conduction block and high titres of anti-GM1 ganglioside antibodies: pathological evidence of a motor neuropathy in a patient with lower motor neuron syndrome.

    PubMed Central

    Adams, D; Kuntzer, T; Steck, A J; Lobrinus, A; Janzer, R C; Regli, F

    1993-01-01

    A patient with a progressive lower motor neuron syndrome and neurophysiological evidence of motor axon loss, multifocal proximal motor nerve conduction block, and high titres of anti-ganglioside GM1 antibodies. Neuropathological findings included a predominantly proximal motor radiculoneuropathy with multifocal IgG and IgM deposits on nerve fibres associated with a loss of spinal motor neurons. These findings support an autoimmune origin of this lower motor neuron syndrome with retrograde degeneration of spinal motor neurons and severe neurogenic muscular atrophy. Images PMID:8410039

  1. Spatiotemporal correlation of spinal network dynamics underlying spasms in chronic spinalized mice

    PubMed Central

    Bellardita, Carmelo; Caggiano, Vittorio; Leiras, Roberto; Caldeira, Vanessa; Fuchs, Andrea; Bouvier, Julien; Löw, Peter; Kiehn, Ole

    2017-01-01

    Spasms after spinal cord injury (SCI) are debilitating involuntary muscle contractions that have been associated with increased motor neuron excitability and decreased inhibition. However, whether spasms involve activation of premotor spinal excitatory neuronal circuits is unknown. Here we use mouse genetics, electrophysiology, imaging and optogenetics to directly target major classes of spinal interneurons as well as motor neurons during spasms in a mouse model of chronic SCI. We find that assemblies of excitatory spinal interneurons are recruited by sensory input into functional circuits to generate persistent neural activity, which interacts with both the graded expression of plateau potentials in motor neurons to generate spasms, and inhibitory interneurons to curtail them. Our study reveals hitherto unrecognized neuronal mechanisms for the generation of persistent neural activity under pathophysiological conditions, opening up new targets for treatment of muscle spasms after SCI. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.23011.001 PMID:28191872

  2. Spinal fusion - series (image)

    MedlinePlus

    ... vertebrae are the bones that make up the spinal column, which surrounds and protects the spinal cord. The ... cushions between vertebrae, and absorb energy while the spinal column flexes, extends, and twists. Nerves from the spinal ...

  3. Spinal Cord Tumor

    MedlinePlus

    Spinal cord tumor Overview By Mayo Clinic Staff A spinal tumor is a growth that develops within your ... as vertebral tumors. Tumors that begin within the spinal cord itself are called spinal cord tumors. There are ...

  4. Isolated in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations remain important tools in respiratory neurobiology.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Stephen M; Turner, Sara M; Huxtable, Adrianne G; Ben-Mabrouk, Faiza

    2012-01-15

    Isolated in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations are used extensively in respiratory neurobiology because the respiratory network in the pons and medulla is intact, monosynaptic descending inputs to spinal motoneurons can be activated, brainstem and spinal cord tissue can be bathed with different solutions, and the responses of cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spinal motoneurons to experimental perturbations can be compared. The caveats and limitations of in vitro brainstem-spinal cord preparations are well-documented. However, isolated brainstem-spinal cords are still valuable experimental preparations that can be used to study neuronal connectivity within the brainstem, development of motor networks with lethal genetic mutations, deleterious effects of pathological drugs and conditions, respiratory spinal motor plasticity, and interactions with other motor behaviors. Our goal is to show how isolated brainstem-spinal cord preparations still have a lot to offer scientifically and experimentally to address questions within and outside the field of respiratory neurobiology.

  5. [The use micro-polarization in spinal cord lesions].

    PubMed

    Sheliakin, A M; Preobrazhenskaia, I G; Komantsev, V N; Makarovskiĭ, A N; Bogdanov, O V

    1998-01-01

    Transdermal micropolarization of the spinal cord was made in patients with consequences of the spinal cord injury or tuberculous spondylitis. Changes in clinical and electrophysiologic status were evaluated. It was found that local direct current through dermal electrodes promotes an improvement of both motor and autonomic functions in such patients. This corresponded to a positive dynamics both of the spinal cord state and cardiac activity. Possible mechanisms of influence of the direct current on the spinal cord as well as perspectives of application of micropolarization in spinal cord's damage are outlined.

  6. Abnormal mitochondrial transport and morphology as early pathological changes in human models of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Xu, Chong-Chong; Denton, Kyle R; Wang, Zhi-Bo; Zhang, Xiaoqing; Li, Xue-Jun

    2016-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), characterized by specific degeneration of spinal motor neurons, is caused by mutations in the survival of motor neuron 1, telomeric (SMN1) gene and subsequent decreased levels of functional SMN. How the deficiency of SMN, a ubiquitously expressed protein, leads to spinal motor neuron-specific degeneration in individuals affected by SMA remains unknown. In this study, we examined the role of SMN in mitochondrial axonal transport and morphology in human motor neurons by generating SMA type 1 patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and differentiating these cells into spinal motor neurons. The initial specification of spinal motor neurons was not affected, but these SMA spinal motor neurons specifically degenerated following long-term culture. Moreover, at an early stage in SMA spinal motor neurons, but not in SMA forebrain neurons, the number of mitochondria, mitochondrial area and mitochondrial transport were significantly reduced in axons. Knocking down of SMN expression led to similar mitochondrial defects in spinal motor neurons derived from human embryonic stem cells, confirming that SMN deficiency results in impaired mitochondrial dynamics. Finally, the application of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) mitigated the impairment in mitochondrial transport and morphology and rescued motor neuron degeneration in SMA long-term cultures. Furthermore, NAC ameliorated the reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential in SMA spinal motor neurons, suggesting that NAC might rescue apoptosis and motor neuron degeneration by improving mitochondrial health. Overall, our data demonstrate that SMN deficiency results in abnormal mitochondrial transport and morphology and a subsequent reduction in mitochondrial health, which are implicated in the specific degeneration of spinal motor neurons in SMA.

  7. Prediction of isometric motor tasks and effort levels based on high-density EMG in patients with incomplete spinal cord injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jordanić, Mislav; Rojas-Martínez, Mónica; Mañanas, Miguel Angel; Francesc Alonso, Joan

    2016-08-01

    Objective. The development of modern assistive and rehabilitation devices requires reliable and easy-to-use methods to extract neural information for control of devices. Group-specific pattern recognition identifiers are influenced by inter-subject variability. Based on high-density EMG (HD-EMG) maps, our research group has already shown that inter-subject muscle activation patterns exist in a population of healthy subjects. The aim of this paper is to analyze muscle activation patterns associated with four tasks (flexion/extension of the elbow, and supination/pronation of the forearm) at three different effort levels in a group of patients with incomplete Spinal Cord Injury (iSCI). Approach. Muscle activation patterns were evaluated by the automatic identification of these four isometric tasks along with the identification of levels of voluntary contractions. Two types of classifiers were considered in the identification: linear discriminant analysis and support vector machine. Main results. Results show that performance of classification increases when combining features extracted from intensity and spatial information of HD-EMG maps (accuracy = 97.5%). Moreover, when compared to a population with injuries at different levels, a lower variability between activation maps was obtained within a group of patients with similar injury suggesting stronger task-specific and effort-level-specific co-activation patterns, which enable better prediction results. Significance. Despite the challenge of identifying both the four tasks and the three effort levels in patients with iSCI, promising results were obtained which support the use of HD-EMG features for providing useful information regarding motion and force intention.

  8. Electrical stimulation modulates Wnt signaling and regulates genes for the motor endplate and calcium binding in muscle of rats with spinal cord transection

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Spinal cord injury (SCI) results in muscle atrophy and a shift of slow oxidative to fast glycolytic fibers. Electrical stimulation (ES) at least partially restores muscle mass and fiber type distribution. The objective of this study was to was to characterize the early molecular adaptations that occur in rat soleus muscle after initiating isometric resistance exercise by ES for one hour per day for 1, 3 or 7 days when ES was begun 16 weeks after SCI. Additionally, changes in mRNA levels after ES were compared with those induced in soleus at the same time points after gastrocnemius tenotomy (GA). Results ES increased expression of Hey1 and Pitx2 suggesting increased Notch and Wnt signaling, respectively, but did not normalize RCAN1.4, a measure of calcineurin/NFAT signaling, or PGC-1ß mRNA levels. ES increased PGC-1α expression but not that of slow myofibrillar genes. Microarray analysis showed that after ES, genes coding for calcium binding proteins and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors were increased, and the expression of genes involved in blood vessel formation and morphogenesis was altered. Of the 165 genes altered by ES only 16 were also differentially expressed after GA, of which 12 were altered in the same direction by ES and GA. In contrast to ES, GA induced expression of genes related to oxidative phosphorylation. Conclusions Notch and Wnt signaling may be involved in ES-induced increases in the mass of paralyzed muscle. Molecular adaptations of paralyzed soleus to resistance exercise are delayed or defective compared to normally innervated muscle. PMID:23914941

  9. Spinal cord transection in the larval zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Briona, Lisa K; Dorsky, Richard I

    2014-05-21

    Mammals fail in sensory and motor recovery following spinal cord injury due to lack of axonal regrowth below the level of injury as well as an inability to reinitiate spinal neurogenesis. However, some anamniotes including the zebrafish Danio rerio exhibit both sensory and functional recovery even after complete transection of the spinal cord. The adult zebrafish is an established model organism for studying regeneration following spinal cord injury, with sensory and motor recovery by 6 weeks post-injury. To take advantage of in vivo analysis of the regenerative process available in the transparent larval zebrafish as well as genetic tools not accessible in the adult, we use the larval zebrafish to study regeneration after spinal cord transection. Here we demonstrate a method for reproducibly and verifiably transecting the larval spinal cord. After transection, our data shows sensory recovery beginning at 2 days post-injury (dpi), with the C-bend movement detectable by 3 dpi and resumption of free swimming by 5 dpi. Thus we propose the larval zebrafish as a companion tool to the adult zebrafish for the study of recovery after spinal cord injury.

  10. Choline acetyltransferase expression does not identify early pathogenic events in fetal SMA spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Soler-Botija, Carolina; Cuscó, Ivón; López, Eva; Clua, Agustín; Gich, Ignasi; Baiget, Montserrat; Ferrer, Isidre; Tizzano, Eduardo F

    2005-03-01

    We investigated the expression of choline acetyltransferase, a specific marker for cholinergic neurons, in control and spinal muscular atrophy fetuses and newborns. By immunoblot we observed at 12 and 15 weeks a similar pattern of choline acetyltransferase expression in spinal muscular atrophy with respect to controls, although at 22 weeks this expression was reduced, probably due to a smaller number of motor neurons in the spinal muscular atrophy spinal cord. By immunohistochemistry, the counting of positive and negative motor neurons for choline acetyltransferase immunostaining in control and spinal muscular atrophy fetuses showed a similar proportion at all stages analyzed. The choline acetyltransferase-negative motor neurons were of similar appearance in both groups. After birth, chromatolytic motor neurons were detected in spinal muscular atrophy, all of which were choline acetyltransferase-negative. Our results in spinal muscular atrophy fetuses indicate that choline acetyltransferase immunostaining does not identify early events in neuronal pathogenesis and suggest that the spinal muscular atrophy surviving motor neurons may not be dysfunctional during this period. Furthermore, spinal muscular atrophy choline acetyltransferase-negative motor neurons showed detectable pathological changes only after birth, indicating that choline acetyltransferase is a late marker for motor neuron degeneration and not a primary contributing factor in this process.

  11. Aquatic Therapy for a Child with Type III Spinal Muscular Atrophy: A Case Report

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salem, Yasser; Gropack, Stacy Jaffee

    2010-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a neuromuscular disorder characterized by degeneration of alpha motor neurons. This case report describes an aquatic therapy program and the outcomes for a 3-year-old girl with type III SMA. Motor skills were examined using the 88-item Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM), the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales…

  12. Vehicle related factors that influence injury outcome in head-on collisions.

    PubMed

    Blum, Jeremy J; Scullion, Paul; Morgan, Richard M; Digges, Kennerly; Kan, Cing-Dao; Park, Shinhee; Bae, Hanil

    2008-10-01

    This study specifically investigated a range of vehicle-related factors that are associated with a lower risk of serious or fatal injury to a belted driver in a head-on collision. This analysis investigated a range of structural characteristics, quantities that describes the physical features of a passenger vehicle, e.g., stiffness or frontal geometry. The study used a data-mining approach (classification tree algorithm) to find the most significant relationships between injury outcome and the structural variables. The algorithm was applied to 120,000 real-world, head-on collisions, from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA's) State Crash data files, that were linked to structural attributes derived from frontal crash tests performed as part of the USA New Car Assessment Program. As with previous literature, the analysis found that the heavier vehicles were correlated with lower injury risk to their drivers. This analysis also found a new and significant correlation between the vehicle's stiffness and injury risk. When an airbag deployed, the vehicle's stiffness has the most statistically significant correlation with injury risk. These results suggest that in severe collisions, lower intrusion in the occupant cabin associated with higher stiffness is at least as important to occupant protection as vehicle weight for self-protection of the occupant. Consequently, the safety community might better improve self-protection by a renewed focus on increasing vehicle stiffness in order to improve crashworthiness in head-on collisions.

  13. Spinal Osteosarcoma

    PubMed Central

    Katonis, P.; Datsis, G.; Karantanas, A.; Kampouroglou, A.; Lianoudakis, S.; Licoudis, S.; Papoutsopoulou, E.; Alpantaki, K.

    2013-01-01

    Although osteosarcoma represents the second most common primary bone tumor, spinal involvement is rare, accounting for 3%–5% of all osteosarcomas. The most frequent symptom of osteosarcoma is pain, which appears in almost all patients, whereas more than 70% exhibit neurologic deficit. At a molecular level, it is a tumor of great genetic complexity and several genetic disorders have been associated with its appearance. Early diagnosis and careful surgical staging are the most important factors in accomplishing sufficient management. Even though overall prognosis remains poor, en-block tumor removal combined with adjuvant radiotherapy and chemotherapy is currently the treatment of choice. This paper outlines histopathological classification, epidemiology, diagnostic procedures, and current concepts of management of spinal osteosarcoma. PMID:24179411

  14. Spinal Bracing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    Dr. Arthur Copes of the Copes Foundation, Baton Rouge, LA, says that 35 percent of the 50 technical reports he received from the NASA/Southern University Industrial Applications Center in Baton Rouge and the Central Industrial Applications Center, Durant, OK, were vital to the development of his Copes Scoliosis Braces, which are custom designed and feature a novel pneumatic bladder that exerts constant corrective pressure to the torso to slowly reduce or eliminate the spinal curve.

  15. Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... Types of illnesses and disabilities Spinal cord injury Spinal cord injury Read advice from Dr. Jeffrey Rabin , a ... your health on a daily basis. Living with spinal cord injury — your questions answered top What are pediatric ...

  16. Tethered Spinal Cord Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... the movement of the spinal cord within the spinal column. Attachments may occur congenitally at the base of ... or may be due to narrowing of the spinal column (stenosis) with age. Tethering may also develop after ...

  17. Spinal Cord Injury Map

    MedlinePlus

    ... Counseling About Blog Facing Disability Jeff Shannon Donate Spinal Cord Injury Map Loss of function depends on what ... control. Learn more about spinal cord injuries. A spinal cord injury affects the entire family FacingDisability is designed ...

  18. Spinal injury - resources

    MedlinePlus

    Resources - spinal injury ... The following organizations are good resources for information on spinal injury : National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke -- www.ninds.nih.gov/Disorders/All-Disorders/Spinal-Cord- ...

  19. Spinal surgery -- cervical - series (image)

    MedlinePlus

    The cervical spinal column is made up of vertebral bodies which protect the spinal cord. ... spinal nerves, trauma, and narrowing (stenosis) of the spinal column around the spinal cord. Symptoms of cervical spine ...

  20. Motor neurone disease.

    PubMed

    2016-03-23

    Essential facts Motor neurone disease describes a group of related diseases, affecting the neurones in the brain and spinal cord. Progressive, incurable and life-limiting, MND is rare, with about 1,100 people developing it each year in the UK and up to 5,000 people affected at any one time. One third of people will die within a year of diagnosis and more than half within two years. About 5% to 10% are alive at ten years.

  1. Spinal cord lesions - The rehabilitation perspective.

    PubMed

    Faria, Filipa

    2006-02-01

    The present study provides an overview of the spinal cord injury focusing mainly on aspects related to rehabilitation. Spinal cord injury affects young people in an active phase of life, determining severe handicaps. Most of the lesions are traumatic, caused by car accidents. Until fifty years ago, the survival of individuals with spinal cord injury was very reduced and the leading cause of death was renal failure. Due to developments in medical knowledge and technical advances, the survival rates have significantly improved. The causes of death have also changed being respiratory complications, particularly pneumonia, the leading causes. Immediately after a spinal cord lesion there is a phase of spinal shock which is characterized by flaccid paralysis and bladder and bowel retention. Progressively there is a return of the spinal cord automatism with the beginning of some reflex activities. Based on neurological evaluation it is pos-sible to predict motor and functional recovery and establish the rehabilitation program. We can consider three phases on the rehabilitation program: the first while the patient is still in bed, directed to prevent or treat complications due to immobility and begin sphincters reeducation; the second phase is intended to achieve wheelchair autonomy; the last phase is training in ortostatism. The rehabilitation program also comprises sports and recreational activities, psychological and social support in order to achieve an integral of the individual with a spinal cord injury.

  2. Lower Motor Neuron Findings after Upper Motor Neuron Injury: Insights from Postoperative Supplementary Motor Area Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Florman, Jeffrey E.; Duffau, Hugues; Rughani, Anand I.

    2013-01-01

    Hypertonia and hyperreflexia are classically described responses to upper motor neuron injury. However, acute hypotonia and areflexia with motor deficit are hallmark findings after many central nervous system insults such as acute stroke and spinal shock. Historic theories to explain these contradictory findings have implicated a number of potential mechanisms mostly relying on the loss of descending corticospinal input as the underlying etiology. Unfortunately, these simple descriptions consistently fail to adequately explain the pathophysiology and connectivity leading to acute hyporeflexia and delayed hyperreflexia that result from such insult. This article highlights the common observation of acute hyporeflexia after central nervous system insults and explores the underlying anatomy and physiology. Further, evidence for the underlying connectivity is presented and implicates the dominant role of supraspinal inhibitory influence originating in the supplementary motor area descending through the corticospinal tracts. Unlike traditional explanations, this theory more adequately explains the findings of postoperative supplementary motor area syndrome in which hyporeflexia motor deficit is observed acutely in the face of intact primary motor cortex connections to the spinal cord. Further, the proposed connectivity can be generalized to help explain other insults including stroke, atonic seizures, and spinal shock. PMID:23508473

  3. Spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive neuromuscular disease characterized by degeneration of alpha motor neurons in the spinal cord, resulting in progressive proximal muscle weakness and paralysis. Estimated incidence is 1 in 6,000 to 1 in 10,000 live births and carrier frequency of 1/40-1/60. This disease is characterized by generalized muscle weakness and atrophy predominating in proximal limb muscles, and phenotype is classified into four grades of severity (SMA I, SMAII, SMAIII, SMA IV) based on age of onset and motor function achieved. This disease is caused by homozygous mutations of the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene, and the diagnostic test demonstrates in most patients the homozygous deletion of the SMN1 gene, generally showing the absence of SMN1 exon 7. The test achieves up to 95% sensitivity and nearly 100% specificity. Differential diagnosis should be considered with other neuromuscular disorders which are not associated with increased CK manifesting as infantile hypotonia or as limb girdle weakness starting later in life. Considering the high carrier frequency, carrier testing is requested by siblings of patients or of parents of SMA children and are aimed at gaining information that may help with reproductive planning. Individuals at risk should be tested first and, in case of testing positive, the partner should be then analyzed. It is recommended that in case of a request on carrier testing on siblings of an affected SMA infant, a detailed neurological examination should be done and consideration given doing the direct test to exclude SMA. Prenatal diagnosis should be offered to couples who have previously had a child affected with SMA (recurrence risk 25%). The role of follow-up coordination has to be managed by an expert in neuromuscular disorders and in SMA who is able to plan a multidisciplinary intervention that includes pulmonary, gastroenterology/nutrition, and orthopedic care. Prognosis depends on the phenotypic

  4. Return of function after spinal cord implantation of avulsed spinal nerve roots.

    PubMed

    Carlstedt, T; Grane, P; Hallin, R G; Norén, G

    1995-11-18

    Avulsion of nerve roots from the spinal cord is widely regarded as an untreatable injury. However, a series of experiments in animals has shown that, if continuity is restored between spinal cord and ventral roots, axons from spinal motor neurons can regrow into the peripheral nerves with recovery of motor function. These observations were applied in the treatment of a man with avulsion of the 6th cervical (C6) to 1st thoracic roots due to brachial plexus injury. Two ventral roots were implanted into the spinal cord through slits in the pia mater, C6 directly and C7 via sural nerve grafts. Voluntary activity in proximal arm muscles was detected electromyographically after nine months and clinically after one year. After three years the patient had voluntary activity (with some co-contraction) in the deltoid, biceps, and triceps muscles. To determine whether the improvement was due to spontaneous recovery from C5, the C5 root was blocked pharmacologically, and the results indicated that the repaired roots were contributing substantially to motor function. Repair of spinal nerve roots deserves further exploration in management of brachial plexus injury.

  5. Congenital segmental spinal muscular atrophy: a case report.

    PubMed

    Savaş, Tülin; Erol, Ilknur; Özkale, Yasemin; Saygi, Semra

    2015-03-01

    Spinal muscular atrophies are genetic disorders in which anterior horn cells in the spinal cord and motor nuclei of the brainstem are progressively lost. We present a patient with arthrogryposis due to congenital spinal muscular atrophy predominantly affecting the upper limbs. Spinal muscular atrophies with onset at birth may be a cause of arthrogryposis. Localized forms of neurogenic arthrogryposis have been divided into cervical and caudal forms. Our case is similar to the cases described by Hageman et al (J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 1993;56:365-368): severe symmetric lower motor neuron deficit in the upper extremities at the time of birth, no history of injury to the cervical spinal cord or the brachial plexus during delivery, and severe muscle wasting suggesting chronic denervation in utero. Because there was improvement of our patient's situation, her disease was also possibly nonprogressive and sporadic. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of a Turkish patient with congenital cervical spinal muscular atrophy. Congenital cervical spinal muscular atrophy affecting predominantly the upper limbs is a relatively rare form of motor neuron disease and should be considered in the differential diagnosis of infants with congenital contractures and severe muscle weakness by wasting mainly confined to the upper limbs.

  6. Directing Spinal Cord Plasticity: The Impact of Stretch Therapy on Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    Louisville, KY After spinal cord injury (SCI) patients commonly develop spasticity and contractures as secondary complications of “upper motor neuron...lesions. Physical therapists use stretching maneuvers to maintain extensibility of soft tissues and to manage spasticity . Previous studies in our lab

  7. Inhibition of spinal c-Jun-NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) improves locomotor activity of spinal cord injured rats.

    PubMed

    Martini, Alessandra C; Forner, Stefânia; Koepp, Janice; Rae, Giles Alexander

    2016-05-16

    Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) have been implicated in central nervous system injuries, yet the roles within neurodegeneration following spinal cord injury (SCI) still remain partially elucidated. We aimed to investigate the changes in expression of the three MAPKs following SCI and the role of spinal c-jun-NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) in motor impairment following the lesion. SCI induced at the T9 level resulted in enhanced expression of phosphorylated MAPKs shortly after trauma. SCI increased spinal cord myeloperoxidase levels, indicating a local neutrophil infiltration, and elevated the number of spinal apoptotic cells. Intrathecal administration of a specific inhibitor of JNK phosphorylation, SP600125, given at 1 and 4h after SCI, reduced the p-JNK expression, the number of spinal apoptotic cells and many of the histological signs of spinal injury. Notably, restoration of locomotor performance was clearly ameliorated by SP600125 treatment. Altogether, the results demonstrate that SCI induces activation of spinal MAPKs and that JNK plays a major role in mediating the deleterious consequences of spinal injury, not only at the spinal level, but also those regarding locomotor function. Therefore, inhibition of JNK activation in the spinal cord shortly after trauma might constitute a feasible therapeutic strategy for the functional recovery from SCI.

  8. Spinal metaplastic meningioma with osseous differentiation in the ventral thoracic spinal canal.

    PubMed

    Yamane, Kentaro; Tanaka, Masato; Sugimoto, Yoshihisa; Ichimura, Kouichi; Ozaki, Toshifumi

    2014-01-01

    Ossified meningioma is classified histologically as a phenotype of metaplastic meningioma, and it is extremely rare. There are only 12 cases involving ossified spinal meningiomas in the literature. We present the case of a 61-year-old female with a primary tumor within the ventral spinal canal at T12. Although we performed a total tumor excision using an ultrasonic bone aspirator, a temporary deterioration of motor evoked potentials (MEPs) was observed during curettage with a Kerrison rongeur. The neurologic findings worsened immediately after surgery. Histologically, the tumor was diagnosed as a metaplastic meningioma with osseous differentiation. In order to avoid spinal cord injury, great care must be taken when removing an ossified meningioma located on the ventral spinal cord.

  9. Serotonergic transmission after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Nardone, Raffaele; Höller, Yvonne; Thomschewski, Aljoscha; Höller, Peter; Lochner, Piergiorgio; Golaszewski, Stefan; Brigo, Francesco; Trinka, Eugen

    2015-02-01

    Changes in descending serotonergic innervation of spinal neural activity have been implicated in symptoms of paralysis, spasticity, sensory disturbances and pain following spinal cord injury (SCI). Serotonergic neurons possess an enhanced ability to regenerate or sprout after many types of injury, including SCI. Current research suggests that serotonine (5-HT) release within the ventral horn of the spinal cord plays a critical role in motor function, and activation of 5-HT receptors mediates locomotor control. 5-HT originating from the brain stem inhibits sensory afferent transmission and associated spinal reflexes; by abolishing 5-HT innervation SCI leads to a disinhibition of sensory transmission. 5-HT denervation supersensitivity is one of the key mechanisms underlying the increased motoneuron excitability that occurs after SCI, and this hyperexcitability has been demonstrated to underlie the pathogenesis of spasticity after SCI. Moreover, emerging evidence implicates serotonergic descending facilitatory pathways from the brainstem to the spinal cord in the maintenance of pathologic pain. There are functional relevant connections between the descending serotonergic system from the rostral ventromedial medulla in the brainstem, the 5-HT receptors in the spinal dorsal horn, and the descending pain facilitation after tissue and nerve injury. This narrative review focussed on the most important studies that have investigated the above-mentioned effects of impaired 5-HT-transmission in humans after SCI. We also briefly discussed the promising therapeutical approaches with serotonergic drugs, monoclonal antibodies and intraspinal cell transplantation.

  10. Electrophysiological Mapping of Rat Sensorimotor Lumbosacral Spinal Networks after Complete Paralysis

    PubMed Central

    Gad, Parag; Roy, Roland R.; Choe, Jaehoon; Zhong, Hui; Nandra, Mandheeraj Singh; Tai, Y.C.; Gerasimenko, Yury; Edgerton, V. Reggie

    2015-01-01

    Stimulation of the spinal cord has been shown to have great potential for improving function after motor deficits caused by injury or pathological conditions. Using a wide range of animal models, many studies have shown that stimulation applied to the neural networks intrinsic to the spinal cord can result in a dramatic improvement of motor ability, even allowing an animal to step and stand after a complete spinal cord transection. Clinical use of this technology, however, has been slow to develop due to the invasive nature of the implantation procedures and the difficulty of ascertaining specific sites of stimulation that would provide optimal amelioration of the motor deficits. Moreover, the development of tools available to control precise stimulation chronically via biocompatible electrodes has been limited. In this paper, we outline the use of a multisite electrode array in the spinal rat model to identify and stimulate specific sites of the spinal cord to produce discrete motor behaviors in spinal rats. The results demonstrate that spinal rats can stand and step when the spinal cord is stimulated tonically via electrodes located at specific sites on the spinal cord. The quality of stepping and standing was dependent on the location of the electrodes on the spinal cord, the specific stimulation parameters, and the orientation of the cathode and anode. The spinal motor evoked potentials (sMEP) in selected muscles during standing and stepping are shown to be critical tools to study selective activation of interneuronal circuits via responses of varying latencies. The present results provide further evidence that the assessment of functional networks in the background of behaviorally relevant functional states is likely to be a physiological tool of considerable importance in developing strategies to facilitate recovery of motor function after a number of neuromotor disorders. PMID:25890138

  11. Electrophysiological mapping of rat sensorimotor lumbosacral spinal networks after complete paralysis.

    PubMed

    Gad, Parag; Roy, Roland R; Choe, Jaehoon; Zhong, Hui; Nandra, Mandheeraj Singh; Tai, Yu-Chong; Gerasimenko, Yury; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2015-01-01

    Stimulation of the spinal cord has been shown to have great potential for improving function after motor deficits caused by injury or pathological conditions. Using a wide range of animal models, many studies have shown that stimulation applied to the neural networks intrinsic to the spinal cord can result in a dramatic improvement of motor ability, even allowing an animal to step and stand after a complete spinal cord transection. Clinical use of this technology, however, has been slow to develop due to the invasive nature of the implantation procedures and the difficulty of ascertaining specific sites of stimulation that would provide optimal amelioration of the motor deficits. Moreover, the development of tools available to control precise stimulation chronically via biocompatible electrodes has been limited. In this chapter, we outline the use of a multisite electrode array in the spinal rat model to identify and stimulate specific sites of the spinal cord to produce discrete motor behaviors in spinal rats. The results demonstrate that spinal rats can stand and step when the spinal cord is stimulated tonically via electrodes located at specific sites on the spinal cord. The quality of stepping and standing was dependent on the location of the electrodes on the spinal cord, the specific stimulation parameters, and the orientation of the cathode and anode. The spinal motor evoked potentials in selected muscles during standing and stepping are shown to be critical tools to study selective activation of interneuronal circuits via responses of varying latencies. The present results provide further evidence that the assessment of functional networks in the background of behaviorally relevant functional states is likely to be a physiological tool of considerable importance in developing strategies to facilitate recovery of motor function after a number of neuromotor disorders.

  12. The use of micropolarization in the treatment of spinal cord lesions.

    PubMed

    Shelyakin, A M; Preobrazhenskaya, I G; Komantsev, V N; Makarovskii, A N; Bogdanov, O V

    2000-01-01

    Transdermal micropolarization of the spinal cord was performed in patients suffering sequelae of spinal cord trauma and tuberculous spondylitis. Changes in clinical and electrophysiological status were monitored. These studies demonstrated that the use of local direct currents passed via skin electrodes promoted improvements in motor and autonomic functions in these patients, leading to positive changes in measures of the functional state of the spinal cord and heart activity. The possible mechanisms of the action of direct currents acting on the spinal cord are discussed, along with the potential for applying micropolarization in the treatment of spinal cord lesions.

  13. Common mechanisms of compensatory respiratory plasticity in spinal neurological disorders

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Rebecca A.; Mitchell, Gordon S.

    2013-01-01

    In many neurological disorders that disrupt spinal function and compromise breathing (e.g. ALS, cervical spinal injury, MS), patients often maintain ventilatory capacity well after the onset of severe CNS pathology. In progressive neurodegenerative diseases, patients ultimately reach a point where compensation is no longer possible, leading to catastrophic ventilatory failure. In this brief review, we consider evidence that common mechanisms of compensatory respiratory plasticity preserve breathing capacity in diverse clinical disorders, despite the onset of severe pathology (e.g. respiratory motor neuron denervation and/or death). We propose that a suite of mechanisms, operating at distinct sites in the respiratory control system, underlies compensatory respiratory plasticity, including: 1) increased (descending) central respiratory drive, 2) motor neuron plasticity, 3) plasticity at the neuromuscular junction or spared respiratory motor neurons, and 4) shifts in the balance from more to less severely compromised respiratory muscles. To establish this framework, we contrast three rodent models of neural dysfunction, each posing unique problems for the generation of adequate inspiratory motor output: 1) respiratory motor neuron death, 2) de- or dysmyelination of cervical spinal pathways, and 3) cervical spinal cord injury, a neuropathology with components of demyelination and motor neuron death. Through this contrast, we hope to understand the multilayered strategies used to “fight” for adequate breathing in the face of mounting pathology. PMID:23727226

  14. Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... care for people with spinal cord injuries and aggressive treatment and rehabilitation can minimize damage to the ... care for people with spinal cord injuries and aggressive treatment and rehabilitation can minimize damage to the ...

  15. Spinal Cord Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... diseases Autoimmune diseases Degenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal muscular atrophy Symptoms vary but might include pain, numbness, loss of sensation and muscle weakness. These symptoms can occur around the spinal ...

  16. [Combined epidural and spinal anesthesia for cesarean section].

    PubMed

    Hody, J L

    1994-01-01

    Combined spinal epidural block has proven its efficacy in skilled hands. This technique allies advantages of spinal anaesthesia, regarding its speed of action and intensity of motor blockade and advantages of postoperative epidural analgesia. This block must be performed with great care and method to reach a success rate of almost 100%. Local anaesthetics and additives are reviewed and commented. The two main complications, hypotension and post dural puncture headache can be contained in very low limits.

  17. Surgical Neurostimulation for Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Chari, Aswin; Hentall, Ian D.; Papadopoulos, Marios C.; Pereira, Erlick A. C.

    2017-01-01

    Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating neurological condition characterized by a constellation of symptoms including paralysis, paraesthesia, pain, cardiovascular, bladder, bowel and sexual dysfunction. Current treatment for SCI involves acute resuscitation, aggressive rehabilitation and symptomatic treatment for complications. Despite the progress in scientific understanding, regenerative therapies are lacking. In this review, we outline the current state and future potential of invasive and non-invasive neuromodulation strategies including deep brain stimulation (DBS), spinal cord stimulation (SCS), motor cortex stimulation (MCS), transcutaneous direct current stimulation (tDCS) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the context of SCI. We consider the ability of these therapies to address pain, sensorimotor symptoms and autonomic dysregulation associated with SCI. In addition to the potential to make important contributions to SCI treatment, neuromodulation has the added ability to contribute to our understanding of spinal cord neurobiology and the pathophysiology of SCI. PMID:28208601

  18. Spinal Cord Injuries

    MedlinePlus

    ... your body and your brain. A spinal cord injury disrupts the signals. Spinal cord injuries usually begin with a blow that fractures or ... bone disks that make up your spine. Most injuries don't cut through your spinal cord. Instead, ...

  19. Automobile door entrapment--a different form of vehicle-related crush asphyxia.

    PubMed

    Byard, Roger W; Woodford, Noel W F

    2008-07-01

    Crush asphyxia involving motor vehicles usually occurs when a victim is trapped beneath a vehicle that slips from a jack while being worked on, or beneath a car that has rolled over during a crash. Two cases are reported where crush asphyxia resulted from quite different circumstances. Case 1: A 58-year-old woman was found dead trapped between her car door and frame. As she was alighting from the vehicle it had rolled forward trapping her between the semi-opened door and car frame when the door had wedged against a second parked vehicle. Case 2: A second 58-year-old woman was found dead, also trapped between her car door and frame. She had been leaning out of her car trying to pick up a newspaper when the car rolled forward. The open driver's door wedged against an adjacent pillar trapping her between the door and the frame. Both victims died from crush asphyxia. This form of automobile door entrapment represents a distinct subset of automobile-related asphyxial deaths and illustrates a particular and unusual set of circumstances that may result in unexpected traumatic death. Getting, or leaning, out of a vehicle that does not have the handbrake engaged may result in wedging of the victim between the semi-opened door and car frame if the car rolls forward and the door impacts against a nearby unyielding object. Correlation of the physical dimensions of the door and frame with markings on the victim's body will assist in reconstructing the terminal events.

  20. Neurosurgical procedures, spinal nerve roots - one stage removal of thoracic dumb-bell tumor: role of spinal evoked potential.

    PubMed

    Srivastava, Dharmendra Kumar; Singh, Deepak; Tiwari, Bhuwan Chandra; Awasthi, Namarata; Hussain, Nuzhat

    2014-02-01

    We report a rare case of benign thoracic dumb-bell tumor in the upper posterior mediastinum, which was successfully removed by posterolateral thoracotomy and foraminotomy, using intraoperative monitoring of spinal motor-evoked potentials. This technique has many advantages including minimal morbidity and mortality, a single incision, one-step complete resection with adequate exposure, spinal stabilization, avoidance of laminectomy, nerve root identification, and good predicted postoperative function.

  1. Current therapeutic strategies for inflammation following traumatic spinal cord injury☆

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Priyanka L.; Agarwal, Nitin; Barrese, James C.; Heary, Robert F.

    2012-01-01

    Damage from spinal cord injury occurs in two phases – the trauma of the initial mechanical insult and a secondary injury to nervous tissue spared by the primary insult. Apart from damage sustained as a result of direct trauma to the spinal cord, the post-traumatic inflammatory response contributes significantly to functional motor deficits exacerbated by the secondary injury. Attenuating the detrimental aspects of the inflammatory response is a promising strategy to potentially ameliorate the secondary injury, and promote significant functional recovery. This review details how the inflammatory component of secondary injury to the spinal cord can be treated currently and in the foreseeable future. PMID:25624806

  2. Promazine and chlorpromazine for prolonged spinal anesthesia in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yu-Wen; Chu, Chin-Chen; Chen, Yu-Chung; Kan, Chung-Dann; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2012-07-19

    Though promazine and chlorpromazine elicited cutaneous anesthesia, no study of spinal anesthesia with chlorpromazine and promazine has been reported. This study was to examine whether chlorpromazine and promazine produce spinal anesthesia. Using a rat model via intrathecal injection, we tested spinal blockades of motor function and nociception by promazine, chlorpromazine or bupivacaine, and so were dose-response studies and durations. We demonstrated that chlorpromazine and promazine elicited dose-dependent spinal blockades in motor function and nociception. On the 50% effective dose (ED(50)) basis, the rank of potency of these drugs was bupivacaine>promazine>chlorpromazine (P<0.05 for the differences). On an equipotent basis (25% effective dose [ED(25)], ED(50), and ED(75)), the block duration caused by chlorpromazine or promazine was longer than that caused by the long-lasting local anesthetic bupivacaine (P<0.01 for the differences). Chlorpromazine and promazine, as well as bupivacaine, showed longer duration of sensory block than that of motor block. Our data reported that intrathecal promazine and chlorpromazine with a more sensory-selective action over motor blockade had less potent and longer-lasting spinal blockades when compared with bupivacaine.

  3. Intrinsically organized resting state networks in the human spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Yazhuo; Eippert, Falk; Beckmann, Christian F.; Andersson, Jesper; Finsterbusch, Jürgen; Büchel, Christian; Tracey, Irene; Brooks, Jonathan C. W.

    2014-01-01

    Spontaneous fluctuations in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signals of the brain have repeatedly been observed when no task or external stimulation is present. These fluctuations likely reflect baseline neuronal activity of the brain and correspond to functionally relevant resting-state networks (RSN). It is not known however, whether intrinsically organized and spatially circumscribed RSNs also exist in the spinal cord, the brain’s principal sensorimotor interface with the body. Here, we use recent advances in spinal fMRI methodology and independent component analysis to answer this question in healthy human volunteers. We identified spatially distinct RSNs in the human spinal cord that were clearly separated into dorsal and ventral components, mirroring the functional neuroanatomy of the spinal cord and likely reflecting sensory and motor processing. Interestingly, dorsal (sensory) RSNs were separated into right and left components, presumably related to ongoing hemibody processing of somatosensory information, whereas ventral (motor) RSNs were bilateral, possibly related to commissural interneuronal networks involved in central pattern generation. Importantly, all of these RSNs showed a restricted spatial extent along the spinal cord and likely conform to the spinal cord’s functionally relevant segmental organization. Although the spatial and temporal properties of the dorsal and ventral RSNs were found to be significantly different, these networks showed significant interactions with each other at the segmental level. Together, our data demonstrate that intrinsically highly organized resting-state fluctuations exist in the human spinal cord and are thus a hallmark of the entire central nervous system. PMID:25472845

  4. Monitoring of Motor and Somatosensory Evoked Potentials During Spine Surgery: Intraoperative Changes and Postoperative Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Objective To evaluate whether the combination of muscle motor evoked potentials (mMEPs) and somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) measured during spinal surgery can predict immediate and permanent postoperative motor deficits. Methods mMEP and SEP was monitored in patients undergoing spinal surgery between November 2012 and July 2014. mMEPs were elicited by a train of transcranial electrical stimulation over the motor cortex and recorded from the upper/lower limbs. SEPs were recorded by stimulating the tibial and median nerves. Results Combined mMEP/SEP recording was successfully achieved in 190 operations. In 117 of these, mMEPs and SEPs were stable and 73 showed significant changes. In 20 cases, motor deficits in the first 48 postoperative hours were observed and 6 patients manifested permanent neurological deficits. The two potentials were monitored in a number of spinal surgeries. For surgery on spinal deformities, the sensitivity and specificity of combined mMEP/SEP monitoring were 100% and 92.4%, respectively. In the case of spinal cord tumor surgeries, sensitivity was only 50% but SEP changes were observed preceding permanent motor deficits in some cases. Conclusion Intraoperative monitoring is a useful tool in spinal surgery. For spinal deformity surgery, combined mMEP/SEP monitoring showed high sensitivity and specificity; in spinal tumor surgery, only SEP changes predicted permanent motor deficits. Therefore, mMEP, SEP, and joint monitoring may all be appropriate and beneficial for the intraoperative monitoring of spinal surgery. PMID:27446784

  5. Very severe spinal muscular atrophy (Type 0).

    PubMed

    Al Dakhoul, Suleiman

    2017-01-01

    This case report describes a rare phenotype of very severe spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) in a newborn who presented with reduced fetal movements in utero and significant respiratory distress at birth. The patient was homozygously deleted for exon 7 and exon 8 of the survival motor neuron gene 1. Very severe SMA should be considered in the differential diagnosis of respiratory distress at birth, and more research should be dedicated to investigate the genetic determinants of its widely variable phenotypes.

  6. Very severe spinal muscular atrophy (Type 0)

    PubMed Central

    Al Dakhoul, Suleiman

    2017-01-01

    This case report describes a rare phenotype of very severe spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) in a newborn who presented with reduced fetal movements in utero and significant respiratory distress at birth. The patient was homozygously deleted for exon 7 and exon 8 of the survival motor neuron gene 1. Very severe SMA should be considered in the differential diagnosis of respiratory distress at birth, and more research should be dedicated to investigate the genetic determinants of its widely variable phenotypes. PMID:28182029

  7. Respiratory Plasticity Following Spinal Injury: Role of Chloride-Dependent Inhibitory Neurotransmission

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-10-27

    Award Number: Contract #: W81XWH-13-1-0410 TITLE: "Respiratory Plasticity Following Spinal Injury: Role of Chloride-Dependent Inhibitory...13-1-0410 "Respiratory Plasticity Following Spinal Injury: Role of Chloride-Dependent Inhibitory Neurotransmission" 5b. GRANT NUMBER SC120226...induced plasticity in chloride-dependent synaptic inhibition of phrenic motor neurons contributes to functional recovery from chronic cervical spinal

  8. Fetal grafts alter chronic behavioral outcome after contusion damage to the adult rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Stokes, B T; Reier, P J

    1992-04-01

    In the present experiments, we have examined the capacity of intraspinal transplants to effect alterations in certain locomotor behaviors after spinal contusion injuries. An electromechanical impactor that was sensitive to tissue biomechanical characteristics was used to produce rapid (20 ms) compression injuries to the thoracic spinal cord (T8). Suspensions of fetal spinal tissue (14-day) were placed at 10 days postinjury into the intraspinal cavity created by these reproducible spinal injuries. In the pre- and postinjury period, a number of general and sensitive motor behaviors were used to characterize the immediate and long-term progress of hindlimb behavioral recovery over an extended period of time (73 days). Our data reveal that a lasting alteration in some motor behaviors can be achieved by suspension grafts. While little improvement in some generalized motor tasks (inclined plane analysis, grid walking) takes place, fetal transplants precipitate a rapid and enduring change in certain motivated fine motor behaviors (gait analysis). The base of support and stride length of the hindlimbs were improved by 7 days post-transplantation and the effect was stable over time. The angle of rotation was, however, not altered. The lasting effect in two gait parameters noted was accompanied by the presence of well-developed spinal grafts that often fused with the host spinal parenchyma. These results provide the first documentation of an influence of fetal transplants on motivated locomotor capacity in a well-characterized spinal injury model that mimics lesions seen in the contused adult human spinal cord.

  9. Neuromuscular interaction is required for neurotrophins-mediated locomotor recovery following treadmill training in rat spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qinfeng; Cao, Yana; Dong, Chuanming; Wang, Hongxing; Wang, Qinghua; Tong, Weifeng; Li, Xiangzhe

    2016-01-01

    Recent results have shown that exercise training promotes the recovery of injured rat distal spinal cords, but are still unclear about the function of skeletal muscle in this process. Herein, rats with incomplete thoracic (T10) spinal cord injuries (SCI) with a dual spinal lesion model were subjected to four weeks of treadmill training and then were treated with complete spinal transection at T8. We found that treadmill training allowed the retention of hind limb motor function after incomplete SCI, even with a heavy load after complete spinal transection. Moreover, treadmill training alleviated the secondary injury in distal lumbar spinal motor neurons, and enhanced BDNF/TrkB expression in the lumbar spinal cord. To discover the influence of skeletal muscle contractile activity on motor function and gene expression, we adopted botulinum toxin A (BTX-A) to block the neuromuscular activity of the rat gastrocnemius muscle. BTX-A treatment inhibited the effects of treadmill training on motor function and BDNF/TrKB expression. These results indicated that treadmill training through the skeletal muscle-motor nerve-spinal cord retrograde pathway regulated neuralplasticity in the mammalian central nervous system, which induced the expression of related neurotrophins and promoted motor function recovery. PMID:27190721

  10. CNS-derived glia ensheath peripheral nerves and mediate motor root development.

    PubMed

    Kucenas, Sarah; Takada, Norio; Park, Hae-Chul; Woodruff, Elvin; Broadie, Kendal; Appel, Bruce

    2008-02-01

    Motor function requires that motor axons extend from the spinal cord at regular intervals and that they are myelinated by Schwann cells. Little attention has been given to another cellular structure, the perineurium, which ensheaths the motor nerve, forming a flexible, protective barrier. Consequently, the origin of perineurial cells and their roles in motor nerve formation are poorly understood. Using time-lapse imaging in zebrafish, we show that perineurial cells are born in the CNS, arising as ventral spinal-cord glia before migrating into the periphery. In embryos lacking perineurial glia, motor neurons inappropriately migrated outside of the spinal cord and had aberrant axonal projections, indicating that perineurial glia carry out barrier and guidance functions at motor axon exit points. Additionally, reciprocal signaling between perineurial glia and Schwann cells was necessary for motor nerve ensheathment by both cell types. These insights reveal a new class of CNS-born glia that critically contributes to motor nerve development.

  11. A re-assessment of a combinatorial treatment involving Schwann cell transplants and elevation of cyclic AMP on recovery of motor function following thoracic spinal cord injury in rats.

    PubMed

    Sharp, Kelli G; Flanagan, Lisa A; Yee, Kelly Matsudaira; Steward, Oswald

    2012-02-01

    This study was undertaken as part of the NIH "Facilities of Research-Spinal Cord Injury" project to support independent replication of published studies. Here, we repeated a study reporting that a combinatorial treatment with transplants of Schwann cells, systemic delivery of Rolipram to enhance cyclic AMP levels, and intra-spinal injections of dibutyryl cyclic AMP enhanced locomotor recovery in rats after contusion injuries at the thoracic level. We compared the following experimental groups: 1) rats that received Schwann cell transplants, systemic Rolipram, and injections of db-cyclic AMP (the combined treatment group that showed the greatest improvement in function); 2) rats that received Schwann cell transplants only and implantation of empty pumps as control; 3) rats that received Rolipram only and implantation of empty pumps as control, and 4) control rats that received no treatment other than the injection of DMEM into the spinal cord and implantation of empty pumps. The principal findings reported in Pearse et al. were not replicated in that the combined treatment group did not exhibit greater recovery on any of the measures, although the group that received Schwann cells only did exhibit enhanced recovery on several of the outcome measures. The failure of the combined treatment may be due in part to less successful engraftment of Schwann cells in our study vs. Pearse et al. Issues relating to failures to replicate, especially when effect size is small, are discussed.

  12. [Effects of ablation of the hindlimb on the organization of the ventral horn of the spinal cord in the lumbar region of green lizard embryos (Lacerta viridis Laur.)].

    PubMed

    Raynaud, A; Clairambault, P

    1978-01-01

    After extirpation of an hind limb in embryos of Lacerta viridis, numerous motor neuroblasts degenerate on the operated side, in the ventral horn of the lumbar spinal cord and the corresponding motor column is reduced or disappears. The lumbar spinal ganglia are affected and reduced on the operated side.

  13. Alteration of Motor Network Function Following Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-10-01

    unlikely system for spinal cord injury: namely crustacean motor networks such as the stomatogastric ganglion (STG)6. While the STG is an invertebrate...typically modify activity by regulating the properties or expression levels of subsets of ionic channels. In the stomatogastric system of crustaceans ...conductances preserves output in a computational model of a crustacean cardiac motor neuron. J Neurosci 30: 8637–8649, 2010. Baro DJ, Levini RM, Kim MT

  14. Development and characterization of pathways descending to the spinal cord in the embryonic chick.

    PubMed

    Sholomenko, G N; O'Donovan, M J

    1995-03-01

    1. We used an isolated preparation of the embryonic chick brain stem and spinal cord to examine the origin, trajectory, and effects of descending supraspinal pathways on lumbosacral motor activity. The in vitro preparation remained viable for < or 24 h and was sufficiently stable for electrophysiological, pharmacological, and neuroanatomic examination. In this preparation, as in the isolated spinal cord, spontaneous episodes of both forelimb and hindlimb motor activity occur in the absence of phasic afferent input. Motor activity can also be evoked by brain stem electrical stimulation or modulated by the introduction of neurochemicals to the independently perfused brain stem. 2. At embryonic day (E)6, lumbosacral motor activity could be evoked by brain stem electrical stimulation. At E5, neither brain stem nor spinal cord stimulation evoked activity in the lumbosacral spinal cord, although motoneurons did express spontaneous activity. 3. Lesion and electrophysiological studies indicated that axons traveling in the ventral cord mediated the activation of lumbosacral networks by brain stem stimulation. 4. Partition of the preparation into three separately perfused baths, using a zero-Ca2+ middle bath that encompassed the cervical spinal cord, demonstrated that the brain stem activation of spinal networks could be mediated by long-axoned pathways connecting the brain stem and lumbosacral spinal cord. 5. Using retrograde tracing from the spinal cord combined with brain stem stimulation, we found that the brain stem regions from which spinal activity could be evoked lie in the embryonic reticular formation close to neurons that send long descending axons to the lumbosacral spinal cord. The cells giving rise to these descending pathways are found in the ventral pontine and medullary reticular formation, a region that is the source of reticulospinal neurons important for motor activity in adult vertebrates. 6. Electrical recordings from this region revealed that the

  15. Human Neural Stem Cell Replacement Therapy for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis by Spinal Transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Hefferan, Michael P.; Galik, Jan; Kakinohana, Osamu; Sekerkova, Gabriela; Santucci, Camila; Marsala, Silvia; Navarro, Roman; Hruska-Plochan, Marian; Johe, Karl; Feldman, Eva; Cleveland, Don W.; Marsala, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Background Mutation in the ubiquitously expressed cytoplasmic superoxide dismutase (SOD1) causes an inherited form of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Mutant synthesis in motor neurons drives disease onset and early disease progression. Previous experimental studies have shown that spinal grafting of human fetal spinal neural stem cells (hNSCs) into the lumbar spinal cord of SOD1G93A rats leads to a moderate therapeutical effect as evidenced by local α-motoneuron sparing and extension of lifespan. The aim of the present study was to analyze the degree of therapeutical effect of hNSCs once grafted into the lumbar spinal ventral horn in presymptomatic immunosuppressed SOD1G93A rats and to assess the presence and functional integrity of the descending motor system in symptomatic SOD1G93A animals. Methods/Principal Findings Presymptomatic SOD1G93A rats (60–65 days old) received spinal lumbar injections of hNSCs. After cell grafting, disease onset, disease progression and lifespan were analyzed. In separate symptomatic SOD1G93A rats, the presence and functional conductivity of descending motor tracts (corticospinal and rubrospinal) was analyzed by spinal surface recording electrodes after electrical stimulation of the motor cortex. Silver impregnation of lumbar spinal cord sections and descending motor axon counting in plastic spinal cord sections were used to validate morphologically the integrity of descending motor tracts. Grafting of hNSCs into the lumbar spinal cord of SOD1G93A rats protected α-motoneurons in the vicinity of grafted cells, provided transient functional improvement, but offered no protection to α-motoneuron pools distant from grafted lumbar segments. Analysis of motor-evoked potentials recorded from the thoracic spinal cord of symptomatic SOD1G93A rats showed a near complete loss of descending motor tract conduction, corresponding to a significant (50–65%) loss of large caliber descending motor axons. Conclusions/Significance These data

  16. Vascular dysfunctions following spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Popa, F; Grigorean, VT; Onose, G; Sandu, AM; Popescu, M; Burnei, G; Strambu, V; Sinescu, C

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyze the vascular dysfunctions occurring after spinal cord injury (SCI). Vascular dysfunctions are common complications of SCI. Cardiovascular disturbances are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in both acute and chronic stages of SCI. Neuroanatomy and physiology of autonomic nervous system, sympathetic and parasympathetic, is reviewed. SCI implies disruption of descendent pathways from central centers to spinal sympathetic neurons, originating in intermediolateral nuclei of T1–L2 cord segments. Loss of supraspinal control over sympathetic nervous system results in reduced overall sympathetic activity below the level of injury and unopposed parasympathetic outflow through intact vagal nerve. SCI associates significant vascular dysfunction. Spinal shock occurs during the acute phase following SCI and it is a transitory suspension of function and reflexes below the level of the injury. Neurogenic shock, part of spinal shock, consists of severe arterial hypotension and bradycardia. Autonomic dysreflexia appears during the chronic phase, after spinal shock resolution, and it is a life–threatening syndrome of massive imbalanced reflex sympathetic discharge occurring in patients with SCI above the splanchnic sympathetic outflow (T5–T6). Arterial hypotension with orthostatic hypotension occurs in both acute and chronic phases. The etiology is multifactorial. We described a few factors influencing the orthostatic hypotension occurrence in SCI: sympathetic nervous system dysfunction, low plasma catecholamine levels, rennin–angiotensin–aldosterone activity, peripheral alpha–adrenoceptor hyperresponsiveness, impaired function of baroreceptors, hyponatremia and low plasmatic volume, cardiovascular deconditioning, morphologic changes in sympathetic neurons, plasticity within spinal circuits, and motor deficit leading to loss of skeletal muscle pumping activity. Additional associated cardiovascular concerns in SCI, such as

  17. Disability, atrophy and cortical reorganization following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Freund, Patrick; Weiskopf, Nikolaus; Ward, Nick S; Hutton, Chloe; Gall, Angela; Ciccarelli, Olga; Craggs, Michael; Friston, Karl; Thompson, Alan J

    2011-06-01

    The impact of traumatic spinal cord injury on structural integrity, cortical reorganization and ensuing disability is variable and may depend on a dynamic interaction between the severity of local damage and the capacity of the brain for plastic reorganization. We investigated trauma-induced anatomical changes in the spinal cord and brain, and explored their relationship to functional changes in sensorimotor cortex. Structural changes were assessed using cross-sectional cord area, voxel-based morphometry and voxel-based cortical thickness of T1-weighted images in 10 subjects with cervical spinal cord injury and 16 controls. Cortical activation in response to right-sided (i) handgrip; and (ii) median and tibial nerve stimulation were assessed using functional magnetic resonance imaging. Regression analyses explored associations between cord area, grey and white matter volume, cortical activations and thickness, and disability. Subjects with spinal cord injury had impaired upper and lower limb function bilaterally, a 30% reduced cord area, smaller white matter volume in the pyramids and left cerebellar peduncle, and smaller grey matter volume and cortical thinning in the leg area of the primary motor and sensory cortex compared with controls. Functional magnetic resonance imaging revealed increased activation in the left primary motor cortex leg area during handgrip and the left primary sensory cortex face area during median nerve stimulation in subjects with spinal cord injury compared with controls, but no increased activation following tibial nerve stimulation. A smaller cervical cord area was associated with impaired upper limb function and increased activations with handgrip and median nerve stimulation, but reduced activations with tibial nerve stimulation. Increased sensory deficits were associated with increased activations in the left primary sensory cortex face area due to median nerve stimulation. In conclusion, spinal cord injury leads to cord atrophy

  18. Localization of Brain Natriuretic Peptide Immunoreactivity in Rat Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Abdelalim, Essam M.; Bellier, Jean-Pierre; Tooyama, Ikuo

    2016-01-01

    Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) exerts its functions through NP receptors. Recently, BNP has been shown to be involved in a wide range of functions. Previous studies reported BNP expression in the sensory afferent fibers in the dorsal horn (DH) of the spinal cord. However, BNP expression and function in the neurons of the central nervous system are still controversial. Therefore, in this study, we investigated BNP expression in the rat spinal cord in detail using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry. RT-PCR analysis showed that BNP mRNA was present in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion (DRG). BNP immunoreactivity was observed in different structures of the spinal cord, including the neuronal cell bodies and neuronal processes. BNP immunoreactivity was observed in the DH of the spinal cord and in the neurons of the intermediate column (IC) and ventral horn (VH). Double-immunolabeling showed a high level of BNP expression in the afferent fibers (laminae I–II) labeled with calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), suggesting BNP involvement in sensory function. In addition, BNP was co-localized with CGRP and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) in the motor neurons of the VH. Together, these results indicate that BNP is expressed in sensory and motor systems of the spinal cord, suggesting its involvement in several biological actions on sensory and motor neurons via its binding to NP receptor-A (NPR-A) and/or NP receptor-B (NPR-B) at the spinal cord level. PMID:27994541

  19. Molecular and cellular development of spinal cord locomotor circuitry

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Daniel C.; Niu, Tianyi; Alaynick, William A.

    2015-01-01

    The spinal cord of vertebrate animals is comprised of intrinsic circuits that are capable of sensing the environment and generating complex motor behaviors. There are two major perspectives for understanding the biology of this complicated structure. The first approaches the spinal cord from the point of view of function and is based on classic and ongoing research in electrophysiology, adult behavior, and spinal cord injury. The second view considers the spinal cord from a developmental perspective and is founded mostly on gene expression and gain-of-function and loss-of-function genetic experiments. Together these studies have uncovered functional classes of neurons and their lineage relationships. In this review, we summarize our knowledge of developmental classes, with an eye toward understanding the functional roles of each group. PMID:26136656

  20. Acute cervical spinal subdural hematoma not related to head injury.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hee Yul; Ju, Chang Il; Kim, Seok Won

    2010-06-01

    We report an extremely rare case of traumatic cervical spinal subdural hematoma not related to intracranial injury. There has been no report on traumatic cervical spinal subdrual hematoma not related to intracranial injury. A 27-year-old female patient was admitted to our emergency room due to severe neck pain and right arm motor weakness after car collision. On admission, she presented with complete monoplegia and hypoesthesia of right arm. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed subdural hematoma compressing spinal cord. Lumbar cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis revealed 210,000 red blood cells/mm(3). She was managed conservatively by administrations of steroid pulse therapy and CSF drainage. Her muscle power of right arm improved to a Grade III 16 days after admission. Follow-up MRI taken 16th days after admission revealed almost complete resolution of the hematoma. Here, the authors report a traumatic cervical spinal SDH not associated with intracranial injury.

  1. Spinal cord pattern generators for locomotion.

    PubMed

    Dietz, V

    2003-08-01

    It is generally accepted that locomotion in mammals, including humans, is based on the activity of neuronal circuits within the spinal cord (the central pattern generator, CPG). Afferent information from the periphery (i.e. the limbs) influences the central pattern and, conversely, the CPG selects appropriate afferent information according to the external requirement. Both the CPG and the reflexes that mediate afferent input to the spinal cord are under the control of the brainstem. There is increasing evidence that in central motor diseases, a defective utilization of afferent input, in combination with secondary compensatory processes, is involved in typical movement disorders, such as spasticity and Parkinson's disease. Recent studies indicate a plastic behavior of the spinal neuronal circuits following a central motor lesion. This has implications for any rehabilitative therapy that should be directed to take advantage of the plasticity of the central nervous system. The significance of this research is in a better understanding of the pathophysiology underlying movement disorders and the consequences for an appropriate treatment.

  2. Developmental regulation of N-methyl-D-aspartate- and kainate-type glutamate receptor expression in the rat spinal cord

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stegenga, S. L.; Kalb, R. G.

    2001-01-01

    Spinal motor neurons undergo experience-dependent development during a critical period in early postnatal life. It has been suggested that the repertoire of glutamate receptor subunits differs between young and mature motor neurons and contributes to this activity-dependent development. In the present study we examined the expression patterns of N-methyl-D-aspartate- and kainate-type glutamate receptor subunits during the postnatal maturation of the spinal cord. Young motor neurons express much higher levels of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit NR1 than do adult motor neurons. Although there are eight potential splice variants of NR1, only a subgroup is expressed by motor neurons. With respect to NR2 receptor subunits, young motor neurons express NR2A and C, while adult motor neurons express only NR2A. Young motor neurons express kainate receptor subunits GluR5, 6 and KA2 but we are unable to detect these or any other kainate receptor subunits in the adult spinal cord. Other spinal cord regions display a distinct pattern of developmental regulation of N-methyl-D-aspartate and kainate receptor subunit expression in comparison to motor neurons. Our findings indicate a precise spatio-temporal regulation of individual subunit expression in the developing spinal cord. Specific combinations of subunits in developing neurons influence their excitable properties and could participate in the emergence of adult neuronal form and function.

  3. Harnessing neural activity to promote repair of the damaged corticospinal system after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Martin, John H.

    2016-01-01

    As most spinal cord injuries (SCIs) are incomplete, an important target for promoting neural repair and recovery of lost motor function is to promote the connections of spared descending spinal pathways with spinal motor circuits. Among the pathways, the corticospinal tract (CST) is most associated with skilled voluntary functions in humans and many animals. CST loss, whether at its origin in the motor cortex or in the white matter tracts subcortically and in the spinal cord, leads to movement impairments and paralysis. To restore motor function after injury will require repair of the damaged CST. In this review, I discuss how knowledge of activity-dependent development of the CST—which establishes connectional specificity through axon pruning, axon outgrowth, and synaptic competition among CST terminals—informed a novel activity-based therapy for promoting sprouting of spared CST axons after injur in mature animals. This therapy, which comprises motor cortex electrical stimulation with and without concurrent trans-spinal direct current stimulation, leads to an increase in the gray matter axon length of spared CST axons in the rat spinal cord and, after a pyramidal tract lesion, restoration of skilled locomotor movements. I discuss how this approach is now being applied to a C4 contusion rat model. PMID:27857728

  4. Endoplasmic reticulum stress in spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy: a potential target for therapy.

    PubMed

    Montague, Karli; Malik, Bilal; Gray, Anna L; La Spada, Albert R; Hanna, Michael G; Szabadkai, Gyorgy; Greensmith, Linda

    2014-07-01

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy is an X-linked degenerative motor neuron disease caused by an abnormal expansion in the polyglutamine encoding CAG repeat of the androgen receptor gene. There is evidence implicating endoplasmic reticulum stress in the development and progression of neurodegenerative disease, including polyglutamine disorders such as Huntington's disease and in motor neuron disease, where cellular stress disrupts functioning of the endoplasmic reticulum, leading to induction of the unfolded protein response. We examined whether endoplasmic reticulum stress is also involved in the pathogenesis of spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy. Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy mice that carry 100 pathogenic polyglutamine repeats in the androgen receptor, and develop a late-onset neuromuscular phenotype with motor neuron degeneration, were studied. We observed a disturbance in endoplasmic reticulum-associated calcium homeostasis in cultured embryonic motor neurons from spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy mice, which was accompanied by increased endoplasmic reticulum stress. Furthermore, pharmacological inhibition of endoplasmic reticulum stress reduced the endoplasmic reticulum-associated cell death pathway. Examination of spinal cord motor neurons of pathogenic mice at different disease stages revealed elevated expression of markers for endoplasmic reticulum stress, confirming an increase in this stress response in vivo. Importantly, the most significant increase was detected presymptomatically, suggesting that endoplasmic reticulum stress may play an early and possibly causal role in disease pathogenesis. Our results therefore indicate that the endoplasmic reticulum stress pathway could potentially be a therapeutic target for spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy and related polyglutamine diseases.

  5. ACR Appropriateness Criteria® Metastatic Epidural Spinal Cord Compression and Recurrent Spinal Metastasis.

    PubMed

    Lo, Simon Shek-Man; Ryu, Samuel; Chang, Eric L; Galanopoulos, Nicholas; Jones, Joshua; Kim, Edward Y; Kubicky, Charlotte D; Lee, Charles P; Rose, Peter S; Sahgal, Arjun; Sloan, Andrew E; Teh, Bin S; Traughber, Bryan J; Van Poznak, Catherine; Vassil, Andrew D

    2015-07-01

    Metastatic epidural spinal cord compression (MESCC) is an oncologic emergency and if left untreated, permanent paralysis will ensue. The treatment of MESCC is governed by disease, patient, and treatment factors. Patient's preferences and goals of care are to be weighed into the treatment plan. Ideally, a patient with MESCC is evaluated by an interdisciplinary team promptly to determine the urgency of the clinical scenario. Treatment recommendations must take into consideration the risk-benefit profiles of surgical intervention and radiotherapy for the particular individual's circumstance, including neurologic status, performance status, extent of epidural disease, stability of the spine, extra-spinal disease status, and life expectancy. In patients with high spinal instability neoplastic score (SINS) or retropulsion of bone fragments in the spinal canal, surgical intervention should be strongly considered. The rate of development of motor deficits from spinal cord compression may be a prognostic factor for ultimate functional outcome, and should be taken into account when a treatment recommendation is made. The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed every three years by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and review include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer-reviewed journals and the application of a well-established consensus methodology (modified Delphi) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures by the panel. In those instances where evidence is lacking or not definitive, expert opinion may be used to recommend imaging or treatment.

  6. Magnetic-motor-root stimulation: review.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Hideyuki; Hanajima, Ritsuko; Terao, Yasuo; Ugawa, Yoshikazu

    2013-06-01

    Magnetic stimulation can activate the human central and peripheral nervous systems non-invasively and virtually painlessly. Magnetic stimulation over the spinal enlargements can activate spinal nerves at the neuroforamina (magnetic-neuroforamina stimulation). This stimulation method provides us with information related to the latency of compound-muscle action potential (CMAP), which is usually interpreted as peripheral motor-conduction time (PMCT). However, this stimulation method has faced several problems in clinical applications. One is that supramaximal CMAPs were unobtainable. Another is that magnetic stimulation did not usually activate the spinal nerves in the spinal canal, i.e., the cauda equina, which prevented an evaluation of its conduction. For these reasons, magnetic-neuroforamina stimulation was rarely used to evaluate the conduction of peripheral nerves. It was mainly used to evaluate the conduction of the corticospinal tract using the parameter of central motor-conduction time (CMCT), which was calculated by subtracting PMCT from the latency of motor-evoked potentials (MEPs) elicited by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) over the primary motor cortex. Recently, supramaximal stimulation has been achieved in magnetic-neuroforamina stimulation, and this has contributed to the measurement of both CMAP size and latency. The achievement of supramaximal stimulation is ascribed to the increase in magnetic-stimulator output and a novel coil, the magnetic augmented translumbosacral stimulation (MATS) coil. The most proximal part of the cauda equina can be reliably activated using the MATS coil (magnetic-conus stimulation), thus contributing to the measurement of cauda equina conduction time (CECT) and cortico-conus motor-conduction time (CCCT). These recent developments in magnetic-motor-root stimulation enable us to more precisely evaluate the conduction of the proximal part of peripheral nerves and that of the corticospinal tract for lower-limb muscles

  7. Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Lessons? Visit KidsHealth in the Classroom What Other Parents Are Reading Your Child's Development (Birth to 3 Years) Feeding Your 1- to 3-Month-Old Feeding Your 4- to 7-Month-Old Feeding Your 8- to 12-Month-Old Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Spinal ... > For Parents > Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) Print A A A ...

  8. What Is Spinal Stenosis?

    MedlinePlus

    ... and problems with joints. Rheumatoid arthritis:  Affects most people at a younger age than osteoarthritis.  Causes the soft tissues of the joints to swell and can affect the internal organs and systems.  Is not a common cause of spinal ... Conditions Some people are born with conditions that cause spinal stenosis. ...

  9. Paralysis following stereotactic spinal irradiation in pigs suggests a tolerance constraint for single-session irradiation of the spinal nerve

    PubMed Central

    Medin, Paul M; Foster, Ryan D; van der Kogel, Albert J; Meyer, Jeffrey; Sayre, James W; Huang, Hao; Öz, Orhan K

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose Paralysis observed during a study of vertebral bone tolerance to single-session irradiation led to further study of the dose-related incidence of motor peripheral neuropathy. Materials and Methods During a bone tolerance study, cervical spinal nerves of 15 minipigs received bilateral irradiation to levels C5–C8 distributed into three dose groups with mean maximum spinal nerve doses of 16.9±0.3Gy(n=5), 18.7±0.5Gy(n=5), and 24.3±0.8Gy(n=5). Changes developing in the gait of the group of pigs receiving a mean maximum dose of 24.3 Gy after 10 – 15 weeks led to the irradiation of two additional animals. They received mean maximum dose of 24.9±0.2 Gy(n=2), targeted to the left spinal nerves of C5 – C8. The followup period was one year. Histologic sections from spinal cords and available spinal nerves were evaluated. MR imaging was performed on pigs in the 24.9Gy group. Results No pig that received a maximum spinal nerve point dose ≤19.0Gy experienced a change in gait while all pigs that received ≥24.1Gy experienced paralysis. Extensive degeneration and fibrosis were observed in irradiated spinal nerves from the 24.9Gy animals. All spinal cord sections were normal. Irradiated spinal nerve regions showed increased thickness and hypointensity on MR imaging. Conclusion The single-session tolerance dose of the cervical spinal nerves lies between 19.0 and 24.1 Gy for this model. PMID:24060168

  10. SMN is required for sensory-motor circuit function in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Imlach, Wendy L; Beck, Erin S; Choi, Ben Jiwon; Lotti, Francesco; Pellizzoni, Livio; McCabe, Brian D

    2012-10-12

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a lethal human disease characterized by motor neuron dysfunction and muscle deterioration due to depletion of the ubiquitous survival motor neuron (SMN) protein. Drosophila SMN mutants have reduced muscle size and defective locomotion, motor rhythm, and motor neuron neurotransmission. Unexpectedly, restoration of SMN in either muscles or motor neurons did not alter these phenotypes. Instead, SMN must be expressed in proprioceptive neurons and interneurons in the motor circuit to nonautonomously correct defects in motor neurons and muscles. SMN depletion disrupts the motor system subsequent to circuit development and can be mimicked by the inhibition of motor network function. Furthermore, increasing motor circuit excitability by genetic or pharmacological inhibition of K(+) channels can correct SMN-dependent phenotypes. These results establish sensory-motor circuit dysfunction as the origin of motor system deficits in this SMA model and suggest that enhancement of motor neural network activity could ameliorate the disease.

  11. Neuromodulation of lower limb motor control in restorative neurology

    PubMed Central

    Minassian, Karen; Hofstoetter, Ursula; Tansey, Keith; Mayr, Winfried

    2012-01-01

    One consequence of central nervous system injury or disease is the impairment of neural control of movement, resulting in spasticity and paralysis. To enhance recovery, restorative neurology procedures modify altered, yet preserved nervous system function. This review focuses on functional electrical stimulation (FES) and spinal cord stimulation (SCS) that utilize remaining capabilities of the distal apparatus of spinal cord, peripheral nerves and muscles in upper motor neuron dysfunctions. FES for the immediate generation of lower limb movement along with current rehabilitative techniques is reviewed. The potential of SCS for controlling spinal spasticity and enhancing lower limb function in multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury is discussed. The necessity for precise electrode placement and appropriate stimulation parameter settings to achieve therapeutic specificity is elaborated. This will lead to our human work of epidural and transcutaneous stimulation targeting the lumbar spinal cord for enhancing motor functions in spinal cord injured people, supplemented by pertinent human research of other investigators. We conclude that the concept of restorative neurology recently received new appreciation by accumulated evidence for locomotor circuits residing in the human spinal cord. Technological and clinical advancements need to follow for a major impact on the functional recovery in individuals with severe damage to their motor system. PMID:22464657

  12. Transgenic mouse models of spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA).

    PubMed

    Katsuno, M; Adachi, H; Inukai, A; Sobue, G

    2003-01-01

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) is a late-onset motor neuron disease characterized by proximal muscle atrophy, weakness, contraction fasciculations, and bulbar involvement. Only males develop symptoms, while female carriers usually are asymptomatic. A specific treatment for SBMA has not been established. The molecular basis of SBMA is the expansion of a trinucleotide CAG repeat, which encodes the polyglutamine (polyQ) tract, in the first exon of the androgen receptor (AR) gene. The pathologic hallmark is nuclear inclusions (NIs) containing the mutant and truncated AR with expanded polyQ in the residual motor neurons in the brainstem and spinal cord as well as in some other visceral organs. Several transgenic (Tg) mouse models have been created for studying the pathogenesis of SBMA. The Tg mouse model carrying pure 239 CAGs under human AR promoter and another model carrying truncated AR with expanded CAGs show motor impairment and nuclear NIs in spinal motor neurons. Interestingly, Tg mice carrying full-length human AR with expanded polyQ demonstrate progressive motor impairment and neurogenic pathology as well as sexual difference of phenotypes. These models recapitulate the phenotypic expression observed in SBMA. The ligand-dependent nuclear localization of the mutant AR is found to be involved in the disease mechanism, and hormonal therapy is suggested to be a therapeutic approach applicable to SBMA.

  13. Neural plasticity after spinal cord injury☆

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jian; Yang, Xiaoyu; Jiang, Lianying; Wang, Chunxin; Yang, Maoguang

    2012-01-01

    Plasticity changes of uninjured nerves can result in a novel neural circuit after spinal cord injury, which can restore sensory and motor functions to different degrees. Although processes of neural plasticity have been studied, the mechanism and treatment to effectively improve neural plasticity changes remain controversial. The present study reviewed studies regarding plasticity of the central nervous system and methods for promoting plasticity to improve repair of injured central nerves. The results showed that synaptic reorganization, axonal sprouting, and neurogenesis are critical factors for neural circuit reconstruction. Directed functional exercise, neurotrophic factor and transplantation of nerve-derived and non-nerve-derived tissues and cells can effectively ameliorate functional disturbances caused by spinal cord injury and improve quality of life for patients. PMID:25774179

  14. Steroids, spinal cord and pain sensation.

    PubMed

    Patte-Mensah, Christine; Meyer, Laurence; Mensah-Nyagan, Ayikoe Guy

    2011-10-01

    During the whole life, the nervous system is continuously submitted to the actions of different categories of hormones, including steroids. Therefore, the interactions between hormonal compounds and neural tissues are subjected to intense investigations. While a majority of studies focus on the brain, the spinal cord (SC) has received little attention, although this structure is also an important part of the central nervous system, controlling motor and sensory functions. To point out the importance of interactions between hormones and the SC in the regulation of neurobiological activities, we recapitulated and discussed herein various key data, revealing that the pivotal role played by the SC in nociception and pain modulation, directly depends on the SC ability to metabolize and synthesize steroidal molecules. The paper suggests that future investigations aiming to develop effective strategies against chronic pain, must integrate regulatory effects exerted by hormonal steroids on the SC activity, as well as the actions of endogenous neurosteroids locally synthesized in spinal neural networks.

  15. Transformation of nonfunctional spinal circuits into functional states after the loss of brain input

    PubMed Central

    Courtine, Grégoire; Gerasimenko, Yury; van den Brand, Rubia; Yew, Aileen; Musienko, Pavel; Zhong, Hui; Song, Bingbing; Ao, Yan; Ichiyama, Ronaldo M; Lavrov, Igor; Roy, Roland R; Sofroniew, Michael V; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2010-01-01

    After complete spinal cord transections that removed all supraspinal inputs in adult rats, combinations of serotonergic agonists and epidural electrical stimulation were able to acutely transform spinal networks from nonfunctional to highly functional and adaptive states as early as 1 week after injury. Using kinematics, physiological and anatomical analyses, we found that these interventions could recruit specific populations of spinal circuits, refine their control via sensory input and functionally remodel these locomotor pathways when combined with training. The emergence of these new functional states enabled full weight-bearing treadmill locomotion in paralyzed rats that was almost indistinguishable from voluntary stepping. We propose that, in the absence of supraspinal input, spinal locomotion can emerge from a combination of central pattern-generating capability and the ability of these spinal circuits to use sensory afferent input to control stepping. These findings provide a strategy by which individuals with spinal cord injuries could regain substantial levels of motor control. PMID:19767747

  16. Transformation of nonfunctional spinal circuits into functional states after the loss of brain input.

    PubMed

    Courtine, Grégoire; Gerasimenko, Yury; van den Brand, Rubia; Yew, Aileen; Musienko, Pavel; Zhong, Hui; Song, Bingbing; Ao, Yan; Ichiyama, Ronaldo M; Lavrov, Igor; Roy, Roland R; Sofroniew, Michael V; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2009-10-01

    After complete spinal cord transections that removed all supraspinal inputs in adult rats, combinations of serotonergic agonists and epidural electrical stimulation were able to acutely transform spinal networks from nonfunctional to highly functional and adaptive states as early as 1 week after injury. Using kinematics, physiological and anatomical analyses, we found that these interventions could recruit specific populations of spinal circuits, refine their control via sensory input and functionally remodel these locomotor pathways when combined with training. The emergence of these new functional states enabled full weight-bearing treadmill locomotion in paralyzed rats that was almost indistinguishable from voluntary stepping. We propose that, in the absence of supraspinal input, spinal locomotion can emerge from a combination of central pattern-generating capability and the ability of these spinal circuits to use sensory afferent input to control stepping. These findings provide a strategy by which individuals with spinal cord injuries could regain substantial levels of motor control.

  17. Serotonin Affects Movement Gain Control in the Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Glaser, Joshua I.; Deng, Linna; Thompson, Christopher K.; Stevenson, Ian H.; Wang, Qining; Hornby, Thomas George; Heckman, Charles J.; Kording, Konrad P.

    2014-01-01

    A fundamental challenge for the nervous system is to encode signals spanning many orders of magnitude with neurons of limited bandwidth. To meet this challenge, perceptual systems use gain control. However, whether the motor system uses an analogous mechanism is essentially unknown. Neuromodulators, such as serotonin, are prime candidates for gain control signals during force production. Serotonergic neurons project diffusely to motor pools, and, therefore, force production by one muscle should change the gain of others. Here we present behavioral and pharmaceutical evidence that serotonin modulates the input–output gain of motoneurons in humans. By selectively changing the efficacy of serotonin with drugs, we systematically modulated the amplitude of spinal reflexes. More importantly, force production in different limbs interacts systematically, as predicted by a spinal gain control mechanism. Psychophysics and pharmacology suggest that the motor system adopts gain control mechanisms, and serotonin is a primary driver for their implementation in force production. PMID:25232107

  18. Motor conduction measurement in myelopathy hand

    PubMed Central

    Shibuya, Ryoichi; Wada, Eiji; Iwasaki, Motoki; Yonenobu, Kazuo; Yoshikawa, Hideki

    2014-01-01

    Summary We studied the relationship between intramedullary high signal intensity (IMHSI) on T2-weighted magnetic resonance images and motor conduction in the spinal cords of cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM) patients. There was no significant difference between the biceps or triceps central motor conduction times (CMCTs) of the patients who did and did not exhibit IMHSI, whereas the abductor pollicis brevis CMCT was significantly longer in the patients who exhibited IMHSI (p<0.05) than in those who did not. The CMCT of the abductor pollicis brevis is sensitive to the degree of damage in the cervical spinal cord. Hand dysfunction is a characteristic of CSM regardless of the cervical level affected by the condition. The motor fibers innervating the intrinsic muscles of the hand in the long tract of the cervical spinal cord are more sensitive than other motor fibers. For this reason, we consider that myelopathy hand is a characteristic impairment of CSM. Transcranial magnetic stimulation of the hand motor cortex is useful for the evaluation of cervical myelopathy. PMID:25473737

  19. Spinal Muscular Atrophy: Current Therapeutic Strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiselyov, Alex S.; Gurney, Mark E.

    Proximal spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by death of motor neurons in the spinal cord. SMA is caused by deletion and/or mutation of the survival motor neuron gene (SMN1) on chromosome 5q13. There are variable numbers of copies of a second, related gene named SMN2 located in the proximity to SMN1. Both genes encode the same protein (Smn). Loss of SMN1 and incorrect splicing of SMN2 affect cellular levels of Smn triggering death of motor neurons. The severity of SMA is directly related to the normal number of copies of SMN2 carried by the patient. A considerable effort has been dedicated to identifying modalities including both biological and small molecule agents that increase SMN2 promoter activity to upregulate gene transcription and produce increased quantities of full-length Smn protein. This review summarizes recent progress in the area and suggests potential target product profile for an SMA therapeutic.

  20. Disease mechanisms and therapeutic approaches in spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Tisdale, Sarah; Pellizzoni, Livio

    2015-06-10

    Motor neuron diseases are neurological disorders characterized primarily by the degeneration of spinal motor neurons, skeletal muscle atrophy, and debilitating and often fatal motor dysfunction. Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal-recessive motor neuron disease of high incidence and severity and the most common genetic cause of infant mortality. SMA is caused by homozygous mutations in the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene and retention of at least one copy of the hypomorphic gene paralog SMN2. Early studies established a loss-of-function disease mechanism involving ubiquitous SMN deficiency and suggested SMN upregulation as a possible therapeutic approach. In recent years, greater knowledge of the central role of SMN in RNA processing combined with deep characterization of animal models of SMA has significantly advanced our understanding of the cellular and molecular basis of the disease. SMA is emerging as an RNA disease not limited to motor neurons, but one that involves dysfunction of motor circuits that comprise multiple neuronal subpopulations and possibly other cell types. Advances in SMA research have also led to the development of several potential therapeutics shown to be effective in animal models of SMA that are now in clinical trials. These agents offer unprecedented promise for the treatment of this still incurable neurodegenerative disease.

  1. Apoptosis of limb innervating motor neurons and erosion of motor pool identity upon lineage specific dicer inactivation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jun-An; Wichterle, Hynek

    2012-01-01

    Diversification of mammalian spinal motor neurons into hundreds of subtypes is critical for the maintenance of body posture and coordination of complex movements. Motor neuron differentiation is controlled by extrinsic signals that regulate intrinsic genetic programs specifying and consolidating motor neuron subtype identity. While transcription factors have been recognized as principal regulators of the intrinsic program, the role of posttranscriptional regulations has not been systematically tested. MicroRNAs produced by Dicer mediated cleavage of RNA hairpins contribute to gene regulation by posttranscriptional silencing. Here we used Olig2-cre conditional deletion of Dicer gene in motor neuron progenitors to examine effects of miRNA biogenesis disruption on postmitotic spinal motor neurons. We report that despite the initial increase in the number of motor neuron progenitors, disruption of Dicer function results in a loss of many limb- and sympathetic ganglia-innervating spinal motor neurons. Furthermore, it leads to defects in motor pool identity specification. Thus, our results indicate that miRNAs are an integral part of the genetic program controlling motor neuron survival and acquisition of subtype specific properties.

  2. Do Not Resonate with Actions: Sentence Polarity Modulates Cortico-Spinal Excitability during Action-Related Sentence Reading

    PubMed Central

    Liuzza, Marco Tullio; Candidi, Matteo; Aglioti, Salvatore Maria

    2011-01-01

    Background Theories of embodied language suggest that the motor system is differentially called into action when processing motor-related versus abstract content words or sentences. It has been recently shown that processing negative polarity action-related sentences modulates neural activity of premotor and motor cortices. Methods and Findings We sought to determine whether reading negative polarity sentences brought about differential modulation of cortico-spinal motor excitability depending on processing hand-action related or abstract sentences. Facilitatory paired-pulses Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (pp-TMS) was applied to the primary motor representation of the right-hand and the recorded amplitude of induced motor-evoked potentials (MEP) was used to index M1 activity during passive reading of either hand-action related or abstract content sentences presented in both negative and affirmative polarity. Results showed that the cortico-spinal excitability was affected by sentence polarity only in the hand-action related condition. Indeed, in keeping with previous TMS studies, reading positive polarity, hand action-related sentences suppressed cortico-spinal reactivity. This effect was absent when reading hand action-related negative polarity sentences. Moreover, no modulation of cortico-spinal reactivity was associated with either negative or positive polarity abstract sentences. Conclusions Our results indicate that grammatical cues prompting motor negation reduce the cortico-spinal suppression associated with affirmative action sentences reading and thus suggest that motor simulative processes underlying the embodiment may involve even syntactic features of language. PMID:21347305

  3. Effect of lycopene on the blood-spinal cord barrier after spinal cord injury in mice.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qian; Wang, Jianbo; Gu, Zhengsong; Zhang, Qing; Zheng, Hong

    2016-09-05

    The current study aimed to investigate the effect of lycopene on the blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB) after spinal cord injury (SCI) in a mouse model. Lycopene inhibited lipid peroxidation and oxidative DNA damage as a highly efficient antioxidant and free radical scavenger. Lycopene (4 mg/kg/d) was administrated immediately following SCI. The permeability of the BSCB and water content in the spinal cord tissue were evaluated. Additionally, levels of expression of tight junction proteins and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) were determined with Western blotting. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analysis of spinal cord tissue homogenates was performed 48 h after SCI to evaluate the expression of inflammation-related cytokines. In addition, recovery of motor function was assessed 1 d, 2 d, 5 d, 10 d, and 15 d after SCI using the Basso Mouse Scale to score locomotion. Compared to the group with an untreated SCI, mice with an SCI treated with lycopene had significantly reduced spinal cord tissue water content and BSCB permeability. Furthermore, motor function of mice with an SCI was also greatly improved by lycopene administration. The expression of the proinflammatory factors TNF-α and NF-kB increased markedly 48 h after SCI, and their upregulation was significantly attenuated by lycopene treatment. The expression of molecules that protect tight junctions, zonula occluden-1 and claudin-5, was upregulated by lycopene treatment after SCI. Taken together, these results clearly indicate that lycopene attenuated SCI by promoting repair of the damaged BSCB, so lycopene is a novel and promising treatment for SCI in humans.

  4. Spinal epidural abscess.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Katherine G

    2013-09-01

    Spinal epidural abscess is a rare bacterial infection located within the spinal canal. Early diagnosis and rapid treatment are important because of its potential to cause rapidly progressive spinal cord compression and irreversible paralysis. A staphylococcus bacterial infection is the cause in most cases. Treatment includes antibiotics and possible surgical drainage of the abscess. A favorable neurologic outcome correlates with the severity and duration of neurologic deficits before surgery and the timeliness of the chosen intervention. It is important for the critical care nurse to monitor the patient's neurologic status and provide appropriate interventions.

  5. Motor neuron dysfunction in frontotemporal dementia.

    PubMed

    Burrell, James R; Kiernan, Matthew C; Vucic, Steve; Hodges, John R

    2011-09-01

    degeneration of lower motor neurons in the brainstem and anterior horn of the spinal cord.

  6. Distribution of Neuron Cell Bodies in the Intraspinal Portion of the Spinal Accessory Nerve in Humans.

    PubMed

    Boehm, Karl E; Kondrashov, Peter

    2016-01-01

    The spinal accessory nerve is often identified as a purely motor nerve innervating the trapezius and sternocleidomastoid muscles. Although it may contain proprioceptive neurons found in cervical spinal levels C2-C4, limited research has focused on the histology of the spinal accessory nerve. The objective of the present study was to examine the spinal accessory nerve to determine if there are neuronal cell bodies within the spinal accessory nerve in humans. Cervical spinal cords were dissected from eight cadavers that had previously been used for dissection in other body regions. The segmental rootlets were removed to quantify the neuron cell bodies present at each spinal level. Samples were embedded in paraffin; sectioned; stained with hematoxylin and eosin; and examined using a microscope at 4×, 10×, and 40× magnification. Digital photography was used to image the samples. Neuronal cell bodies were found in 100% of the specimens examined, with non-grossly visible ganglia found at spinal levels C1-C4. The C1 spinal level of the spinal accessory nerve had the highest number of neuron cell bodies.

  7. Potential associations between chronic whiplash and incomplete spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Smith, AC; Parrish, TB; Hoggarth, MA; McPherson, JG; Tysseling, VM; Wasielewski, M; Kim, HE; Hornby, TG; Elliott, JM

    2015-01-01

    Study Design: This research utilized a cross-sectional design with control group inclusion. Objectives: Preliminary evidence suggests that a portion of the patient population with chronic whiplash may have sustained spinal cord damage. Our hypothesis is that in some cases of chronic whiplash-associated disorders (WAD), observed muscle weakness in the legs will be associated with local signs of a partial spinal cord injury of the cervical spine. Setting: University based laboratory in Chicago, IL, USA. Methods: Five participants with chronic WAD were compared with five gender/age/height/weight/body mass index (BMI) control participants. For a secondary investigation, the chronic WAD group was compared with five unmatched participants with motor incomplete spinal cord injury (iSCI). Spinal cord motor tract integrity was assessed using magnetization transfer imaging. Muscle fat infiltration (MFI) was quantified using fat/water separation magnetic resonance imaging. Central volitional muscle activation of the plantarflexors was assessed using a burst superimposition technique. Results: We found reduced spinal cord motor tract integrity, increased MFI of the neck and lower extremity muscles and significantly impaired voluntary plantarflexor muscle activation in five participants with chronic WAD. The lower extremity structural changes and volitional weakness in chronic WAD were comparable to participants with iSCI. Conclusion: The results support the position that a subset of the chronic whiplash population may have sustained partial damage to the spinal cord. Sponsorship: NIH R01HD079076-01A1, NIH T32 HD057845 and the Foundation for Physical Therapy Promotion of Doctoral Studies program. PMID:27630770

  8. Motor cortex inhibition induced by acoustic stimulation.

    PubMed

    Kühn, Andrea A; Sharott, Andrew; Trottenberg, Thomas; Kupsch, Andreas; Brown, Peter

    2004-09-01

    The influence of the brainstem motor system on cerebral motor areas may play an important role in motor control in health and disease. A new approach to investigate this interaction in man is combining acoustic stimulation activating the startle system with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) over the motor cortex. However, it is unclear whether the inhibition of TMS responses following acoustic stimulation occurs at the level of the motor cortex through reticulo-cortical projections or subcortically, perhaps through reticulo-spinal projections. We compared the influence of acoustic stimulation on motor effects elicited by TMS over motor cortical areas to those evoked with subcortical electrical stimulation (SES) through depth electrodes in five patients treated with deep brain stimulation for Parkinson's disease. SES bypasses the motor cortex, demonstrating any interaction with acoustic stimuli at the subcortical level. EMG was recorded from the contralateral biceps brachii muscle. Acoustic stimulation was delivered binaurally through headphones and used as a conditioning stimulus at an interstimulus interval of 50 ms. When TMS was used as the test stimulus, the area and amplitude of the conditioned motor response was significantly inhibited (area: 57.5+/-12.9%, amplitude: 47.9+/-7.4%, as percentage of unconditioned response) whereas facilitation occurred with SES (area: 110.1+/-4.3%, amplitude: 116.9+/-6.9%). We conclude that a startle-evoked activation of reticulo-cortical projections transiently inhibits the motor cortex.

  9. GDE2 regulates subtype-specific motor neuron generation through inhibition of Notch signaling.

    PubMed

    Sabharwal, Priyanka; Lee, Changhee; Park, Sungjin; Rao, Meenakshi; Sockanathan, Shanthini

    2011-09-22

    The specification of spinal interneuron and motor neuron identities initiates within progenitor cells, while motor neuron subtype diversification is regulated by hierarchical transcriptional programs implemented postmitotically. Here we find that mice lacking GDE2, a six-transmembrane protein that triggers motor neuron generation, exhibit selective losses of distinct motor neuron subtypes, specifically in defined subsets of limb-innervating motor pools that correlate with the loss of force-generating alpha motor neurons. Mechanistically, GDE2 is expressed by postmitotic motor neurons but utilizes extracellular glycerophosphodiester phosphodiesterase activity to induce motor neuron generation by inhibiting Notch signaling in neighboring motor neuron progenitors. Thus, neuronal GDE2 controls motor neuron subtype diversity through a non-cell-autonomous feedback mechanism that directly regulates progenitor cell differentiation, implying that subtype specification initiates within motor neuron progenitor populations prior to their differentiation into postmitotic motor neurons.

  10. Spinal and Bulbar Muscular Atrophy Overview

    PubMed Central

    Fischbeck, Kenneth H.

    2016-01-01

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy is an X-linked neuromuscular disease caused by an expanded repeat in the androgen receptor gene. The mutant protein is toxic to motor neurons and muscle. The toxicity is ligand-dependent and likely involves aberrant interaction of the mutant androgen receptor with other nuclear factors leading to transcriptional dysregulation. Various therapeutic strategies have been effective in transgenic animal models, and the challenge now is to translate these strategies into safe and effective treatment in patients. PMID:26547319

  11. Forelimb EMG-based trigger to control an electronic spinal bridge to enable hindlimb stepping after a complete spinal cord lesion in rats

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background A complete spinal cord transection results in loss of all supraspinal motor control below the level of the injury. The neural circuitry in the lumbosacral spinal cord, however, can generate locomotor patterns in the hindlimbs of rats and cats with the aid of motor training, epidural stimulation and/or administration of monoaminergic agonists. We hypothesized that there are patterns of EMG signals from the forelimbs during quadrupedal locomotion that uniquely represent a signal for the “intent” to step with the hindlimbs. These observations led us to determine whether this type of “indirect” volitional control of stepping can be achieved after a complete spinal cord injury. The objective of this study was to develop an electronic bridge across the lesion of the spinal cord to facilitate hindlimb stepping after a complete mid-thoracic spinal cord injury in adult rats. Methods We developed an electronic spinal bridge that can detect specific patterns of EMG activity from the forelimb muscles to initiate electrical-enabling motor control (eEmc) of the lumbosacral spinal cord to enable quadrupedal stepping after a complete spinal cord transection in rats. A moving window detection algorithm was implemented in a small microprocessor to detect biceps brachii EMG activity bilaterally that then was used to initiate and terminate epidural stimulation in the lumbosacral spinal cord. We found dominant frequencies of 180–220 Hz in the EMG of the forelimb muscles during active periods, whereas these frequencies were between 0–10 Hz when the muscles were inactive. Results and conclusions Once the algorithm was validated to represent kinematically appropriate quadrupedal stepping, we observed that the algorithm could reliably detect, initiate, and facilitate stepping under different pharmacological conditions and at various treadmill speeds. PMID:22691460

  12. Multidisciplinary Interventions in Motor Neuron Disease

    PubMed Central

    Williams, U. E.; Philip-Ephraim, E. E.; Oparah, S. K.

    2014-01-01

    Motor neuron disease is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by loss of upper motor neuron in the motor cortex and lower motor neurons in the brain stem and spinal cord. Death occurs 2–4 years after the onset of the disease. A complex interplay of cellular processes such as mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, excitotoxicity, and impaired axonal transport are proposed pathogenetic processes underlying neuronal cell loss. Currently evidence exists for the use of riluzole as a disease modifying drug; multidisciplinary team care approach to patient management; noninvasive ventilation for respiratory management; botulinum toxin B for sialorrhoea treatment; palliative care throughout the course of the disease; and Modafinil use for fatigue treatment. Further research is needed in management of dysphagia, bronchial secretion, pseudobulbar affect, spasticity, cramps, insomnia, cognitive impairment, and communication in motor neuron disease. PMID:26317009

  13. Motor syndromes.

    PubMed

    Corea, Francesco; Micheli, Sara

    2012-01-01

    Motor disturbances alone or associated with other focal deficits are the most common symptoms suggesting a neurovascular event. An appropriate clinical assessment of these signs and symptoms may help physicians to better diagnose and to both better treat and predict outcome. In this paper the main clinical features of motor deficit are described together with other motor-related events such as ataxia and movement disturbances.

  14. What Is Spinal Stenosis?

    MedlinePlus

    ... To order the Sports Injuries Handout on Health full-text version, please contact NIAMS using the contact information ... publication. To order the Spinal Stenosis Q&A full-text version, please contact NIAMS using the contact information ...

  15. Spinal cord trauma

    MedlinePlus

    ... Oh's Intensive Care Manual . 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2014:chap 78. Bryce TN. Spinal cord injury. ... Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation . 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 49. Dalzell K, Nouri A, Fehlings ...

  16. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... is "Braingate" research? What is the status of stem-cell research? How would stem-cell therapies work in the treatment of spinal cord injuries? What does stem-cell research on animals tell us? When can we ...

  17. Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA)

    MedlinePlus

    ... children with SMA develop spinal deformities, such as scoliosis (sideways curvature of the spine) and kyphosis (front- ... Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Brain and Nervous System Scoliosis Contact Us Print Resources Send to a friend ...

  18. Spinal Muscular Atrophy

    MedlinePlus

    ... of several hereditary diseases that progressively destroy lower motor neurons—nerve cells in the brain stem and ... such as speaking, walking, breathing, and swallowing. Lower motor neurons control movement in the arms, legs, chest, ...

  19. Transcranial cerebellar direct current stimulation and transcutaneous spinal cord direct current stimulation as innovative tools for neuroscientists

    PubMed Central

    Priori, Alberto; Ciocca, Matteo; Parazzini, Marta; Vergari, Maurizio; Ferrucci, Roberta

    2014-01-01

    Two neuromodulatory techniques based on applying direct current (DC) non-invasively through the skin, transcranial cerebellar direct current stimulation (tDCS) and transcutaneous spinal DCS, can induce prolonged functional changes consistent with a direct influence on the human cerebellum and spinal cord. In this article we review the major experimental works on cerebellar tDCS and on spinal tDCS, and their preliminary clinical applications. Cerebellar tDCS modulates cerebellar motor cortical inhibition, gait adaptation, motor behaviour, and cognition (learning, language, memory, attention). Spinal tDCS influences the ascending and descending spinal pathways, and spinal reflex excitability. In the anaesthetised mouse, DC stimulation applied under the skin along the entire spinal cord may affect GABAergic and glutamatergic systems. Preliminary clinical studies in patients with cerebellar disorders, and in animals and patients with spinal cord injuries, have reported beneficial effects. Overall the available data show that cerebellar tDCS and spinal tDCS are two novel approaches for inducing prolonged functional changes and neuroplasticity in the human cerebellum and spinal cord, and both are new tools for experimental and clinical neuroscientists. PMID:24907311

  20. [Meningitis after spinal anesthesia].

    PubMed

    Mouchrif, Issam; Berdaii, Adnane; Labib, Ismail; Harrandou, Moustapha

    2016-01-01

    Meningitis is a rare but serious complication of epidural and spinal anesthesia. Bacterial meningitis is mainly caused by Gram-positive cocci, implying an exogenous contamination which suggests a lack of asepsis. The evolution is usually favorable after treatment, but at the expense of increased health care costs and, sometimes, of significant neurological sequelae. We report a case of bacterial meningitis after spinal anesthesia for caesarean section.

  1. Enhancement of motor rehabilitation through the use of information technologies.

    PubMed

    Liebermann, Dario G; Buchman, Aron S; Franks, Ian M

    2006-01-01

    The recent development of information technologies has dramatically increased the tools available for facilitating motor rehabilitation. This review focuses on technologies which can be used to augment movement-related information both to patients as well as to their therapists. A brief outline of the motor system emphasizes the role of spinal motor neurons in the control of voluntary movement and rehabilitative efforts. Technologies which induce passive motion to stimulate spinal motor output as well as technologies that stimulate active voluntary movements are discussed. Finally, we review technologies and notational methods that can be used to quantify and assess the quality of movement for evaluating the efficacy of motor rehabilitation efforts. We conclude that stronger evidence is necessary to determine the applicability of the wide range of technologies now available to clinical rehabilitation efforts.

  2. Spinal anesthesia for laparoscopic cholecystectomy: Thoracic vs. Lumbar Technique

    PubMed Central

    Imbelloni, Luiz Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    Aims: In our group, after a study showing that spinal anesthesia is safe when compared with general anesthesia, spinal anesthesia has been the technique of choice for this procedure. This is a prospective study with all patients undergoing LC under spinal anesthesia in our department since 2007. Settings and Design: Prospective observational. Materials and Methods: From 2007 to 2011, 369 patients with symptoms of colelithiasis, laparoscopic cholecystectomy were operated under spinal anesthesia with pneumoperitoneum and low pressure CO2. We compared 15 mg of hyperbaric bupivacaine and lumbar puncture with 10 or 7.5 mg of hyperbaric bupivacaine thoracic puncture, all with 25 μg fentanyl until the sensory level reached T3. Intraoperative parameters, post-operative pain, complications, recovery, patient satisfaction, and cost were compared between both groups. Statistical Analysis Used: Means were compared by ANOVA or Kruskal-Wallis test, the percentages of the Chi-square test or Fisher's exact test when appropriate. Time of motor and sensory block in spinal anesthesia group was compared by paired t test or Mann-Whitney test. Differences were considered significant when P ≤ 0.05, and for comparisons of mean pain visual scale, we employed the Bonferroni correction applied to be considered significant only with P ≤ 0.0125 Results: All procedures were completed under spinal anesthesia. The use of lidocaine 1% was successful in the prevention of shoulder pain in 329 (89%) patients. There were significant differences in time to reach T3, obtaining 15 mg > 10 mg = 7.5 mg. There is a positive correlation between the dose and the incidence of hypotension. The lowest doses gave a decrease of 52.2% in the incidence of hypotension. There was a positive correlation between the dose and duration of sensory and motor block. Sensory block was almost twice the motor block at all doses. With low doses, 60% of patients went from table to stretcher. Satisfaction occurred in 99% of

  3. Rodent spinal cord injury models for studies of axon regeneration.

    PubMed

    Steward, Oswald; Willenberg, Rafer

    2017-01-01

    For over a century, axon regeneration has been considered the Holy Grail for spinal cord injury (SCI) repair. Although there are other factors that could contribute to improving function, restoring the long motor and sensory tracts that are interrupted by SCI has the greatest potential for actually reversing paralysis, restoring the brain's control of autonomic functions mediated by sympathetic and parasympathetic circuits of the spinal cord and restoring sensation. Accordingly and in keeping with the overall theme of this special issue, this review focuses narrowly on rodent SCI models for studies of axon regeneration.

  4. Modeling spinal cord biomechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luna, Carlos; Shah, Sameer; Cohen, Avis; Aranda-Espinoza, Helim

    2012-02-01

    Regeneration after spinal cord injury is a serious health issue and there is no treatment for ailing patients. To understand regeneration of the spinal cord we used a system where regeneration occurs naturally, such as the lamprey. In this work, we analyzed the stress response of the spinal cord to tensile loading and obtained the mechanical properties of the cord both in vitro and in vivo. Physiological measurements showed that the spinal cord is pre-stressed to a strain of 10%, and during sinusoidal swimming, there is a local strain of 5% concentrated evenly at the mid-body and caudal sections. We found that the mechanical properties are homogeneous along the body and independent of the meninges. The mechanical behavior of the spinal cord can be characterized by a non-linear viscoelastic model, described by a modulus of 20 KPa for strains up to 15% and a modulus of 0.5 MPa for strains above 15%, in agreement with experimental data. However, this model does not offer a full understanding of the behavior of the spinal cord fibers. Using polymer physics we developed a model that relates the stress response as a function of the number of fibers.

  5. Canine spinal cord glioma.

    PubMed

    Rissi, Daniel R; Barber, Renee; Burnum, Annabelle; Miller, Andrew D

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord glioma is uncommonly reported in dogs. We describe the clinicopathologic and diagnostic features of 7 cases of canine spinal cord glioma and briefly review the veterinary literature on this topic. The median age at presentation was 7.2 y. Six females and 1 male were affected and 4 dogs were brachycephalic. The clinical course lasted from 3 d to 12 wk, and clinical signs were progressive and associated with multiple suspected neuroanatomic locations in the spinal cord. Magnetic resonance imaging of 6 cases revealed T2-weighted hyperintense lesions with variable contrast enhancement in the spinal cord. All dogs had a presumptive clinical diagnosis of intraparenchymal neoplasia or myelitis based on history, advanced imaging, and cerebrospinal fluid analysis. Euthanasia was elected in all cases because of poor outcome despite anti-inflammatory or immunosuppressive treatment or because of poor prognosis at the time of diagnosis. Tumor location during autopsy ranged from C1 to L6, with no clear predilection for a specific spinal cord segment. The diagnosis was based on histopathology and the immunohistochemistry expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein, oligodendrocyte lineage transcription factor 2, 2',3'-cyclic-nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase, neuron-specific enolase, synaptophysin, and Ki-67. Diagnoses consisted of 4 cases of oligodendroglioma, 2 cases of gliomatosis cerebri, and 1 astrocytoma. This case series further defines the clinicopathologic features of canine spinal glioma and highlights the need for comprehensive immunohistochemistry in addition to routine histopathology to confirm the diagnosis of these tumors.

  6. Muscular, skeletal, and neural adaptations following spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Shields, Richard K

    2002-02-01

    Spinal cord injury is associated with adaptations to the muscular, skeletal, and spinal systems. Experimental data are lacking regarding the extent to which rehabilitative methods may influence these adaptations. An understanding of the plasticity of the muscular, skeletal, and spinal systems after paralysis may be important as new rehabilitative technologies emerge in the 21st century. Moreover, individuals injured today may become poor candidates for future scientific advancements (cure) if their neuromusculoskeletal systems are irreversibly impaired. The primary purpose of this paper is to explore the physiological properties of skeletal muscle as a result of spinal cord injury; secondarily, to consider associated changes at the skeletal and spinal levels. Muscular adaptations include a transformation to faster myosin, increased contractile speeds, shift to the right on the torque-frequency curve, increased fatigue, and enhanced doublet potentiation. These muscular adaptations may be prevented in individuals with acute paralysis and partially reversed in individuals with chronic paralysis. Moreover, the muscular changes may be coordinated with motor unit and spinal circuitry adaptations. Concurrently, skeletal adaptations, as measured by bone mineral density, show extensive loss within the first six months after paralysis. The underlying science governing neuromusculoskeletal adaptations after paralysis will help guide professionals as new rehabilitation strategies evolve in the future.

  7. Motor evoked potentials in thoracoabdominal aortic surgery: CON.

    PubMed

    Coselli, Joseph S; Tsai, Peter I

    2010-05-01

    Thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms (TAAAs) have a dismal natural history that frequently necessitates surgical repair, but such repairs sometimes result in paraplegia and paraparesis. To reduce the risk of these complications, intraoperative monitoring of spinal cord motor evoked potentials (MEPs) can be used to guide TAAA repair procedures and may potentially minimize spinal cord ischemia. However, the use of MEP monitoring techniques requires important changes to anesthetic management, entails certain risks, and has important contraindications.

  8. Genetic inhibition of JNK3 ameliorates spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Genabai, Naresh K.; Ahmad, Saif; Zhang, Zhanying; Jiang, Xiaoting; Gabaldon, Cynthia A.; Gangwani, Laxman

    2015-01-01

    Mutation of the Survival Motor Neuron 1 (SMN1) gene causes spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), an autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disorder that occurs in early childhood. Degeneration of spinal motor neurons caused by SMN deficiency results in progressive muscle atrophy and death in SMA. The molecular mechanism underlying neurodegeneration in SMA is unknown. No treatment is available to prevent neurodegeneration and reduce the burden of illness in SMA. We report that the c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) signaling pathway mediates neurodegeneration in SMA. The neuron-specific isoform JNK3 is required for neuron degeneration caused by SMN deficiency. JNK3 deficiency reduces degeneration of cultured neurons caused by low levels of SMN. Genetic inhibition of JNK pathway in vivo by Jnk3 knockout results in amelioration of SMA phenotype. JNK3 deficiency prevents the loss of spinal cord motor neurons, reduces muscle degeneration, improves muscle fiber thickness and muscle growth, improves motor function and overall growth and increases lifespan of mice with SMA that shows a systemic rescue of phenotype by a SMN-independent mechanism. JNK3 represents a potential (non-SMN) therapeutic target for the treatment of SMA. PMID:26423457

  9. Spinal Plasticity and Behavior: BDNF-Induced Neuromodulation in Uninjured and Injured Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Huie, J. Russell

    2016-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a member of the neurotrophic factor family of signaling molecules. Since its discovery over three decades ago, BDNF has been identified as an important regulator of neuronal development, synaptic transmission, and cellular and synaptic plasticity and has been shown to function in the formation and maintenance of certain forms of memory. Neural plasticity that underlies learning and memory in the hippocampus shares distinct characteristics with spinal cord nociceptive plasticity. Research examining the role BDNF plays in spinal nociception and pain overwhelmingly suggests that BDNF promotes pronociceptive effects. BDNF induces synaptic facilitation and engages central sensitization-like mechanisms. Also, peripheral injury-induced neuropathic pain is often accompanied with increased spinal expression of BDNF. Research has extended to examine how spinal cord injury (SCI) influences BDNF plasticity and the effects BDNF has on sensory and motor functions after SCI. Functional recovery and adaptive plasticity after SCI are typically associated with upregulation of BDNF. Although neuropathic pain is a common consequence of SCI, the relation between BDNF and pain after SCI remains elusive. This article reviews recent literature and discusses the diverse actions of BDNF. We also highlight similarities and differences in BDNF-induced nociceptive plasticity in naïve and SCI conditions. PMID:27721996

  10. Exercise recommendations for individuals with spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Patrick L; Nash, Mark S

    2004-01-01

    Persons with spinal cord injury (SCI) exhibit deficits in volitional motor control and sensation that limit not only the performance of daily tasks but also the overall activity level of these persons. This population has been characterised as extremely sedentary with an increased incidence of secondary complications including diabetes mellitus, hypertension and atherogenic lipid profiles. As the daily lifestyle of the average person with SCI is without adequate stress for conditioning purposes, structured exercise activities must be added to the regular schedule if the individual is to reduce the likelihood of secondary complications and/or to enhance their physical capacity. The acute exercise responses and the capacity for exercise conditioning are directly related to the level and completeness of the spinal lesion. Appropriate exercise testing and training of persons with SCI should be based on the individual's exercise capacity as determined by accurate assessment of the spinal lesion. The standard means of classification of SCI is by application of the International Standards for Classification of Spinal Cord Injury, written by the Neurological Standards Committee of the American Spinal Injury Association. Individuals with complete spinal injuries at or above the fourth thoracic level generally exhibit dramatically diminished cardiac acceleration with maximal heart rates less than 130 beats/min. The work capacity of these persons will be limited by reductions in cardiac output and circulation to the exercising musculature. Persons with complete spinal lesions below the T(10) level will generally display injuries to the lower motor neurons within the lower extremities and, therefore, will not retain the capacity for neuromuscular activation by means of electrical stimulation. Persons with paraplegia also exhibit reduced exercise capacity and increased heart rate responses (compared with the non-disabled), which have been associated with circulatory limitations

  11. Molecular motors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allemand, Jean François Desbiolles, Pierre

    2015-10-01

    How do we move? More precisely, what are the molecular mechanisms that can explain that our muscles, made of very small components can move at a osopic scale? To answer these questions we must introduce molecular motors. Those motors are proteins, or small protein assemblies that, in our cells, transform chemical energy into mechanical work. Then, like we could do for a oscopic motor, used in a car or in a fan, we are going to study the basic behavior of these molecular machines, present what are their energy sources, calculate their power, their yield. If molecular motors are crucial for our oscopic movements, we are going to see that they are also essential to cellular transport and that considering the activity of some enzymes as molecular motors bring some interesting new insights on their activity.

  12. Noninvasive Reactivation of Motor Descending Control after Paralysis.

    PubMed

    Gerasimenko, Yury P; Lu, Daniel C; Modaber, Morteza; Zdunowski, Sharon; Gad, Parag; Sayenko, Dimitry G; Morikawa, Erika; Haakana, Piia; Ferguson, Adam R; Roy, Roland R; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2015-12-15

    The present prognosis for the recovery of voluntary control of movement in patients diagnosed as motor complete is generally poor. Herein we introduce a novel and noninvasive stimulation strategy of painless transcutaneous electrical enabling motor control and a pharmacological enabling motor control strategy to neuromodulate the physiological state of the spinal cord. This neuromodulation enabled the spinal locomotor networks of individuals with motor complete paralysis for 2-6 years American Spinal Cord Injury Association Impairment Scale (AIS) to be re-engaged and trained. We showed that locomotor-like stepping could be induced without voluntary effort within a single test session using electrical stimulation and training. We also observed significant facilitation of voluntary influence on the stepping movements in the presence of stimulation over a 4-week period in each subject. Using these strategies we transformed brain-spinal neuronal networks from a dormant to a functional state sufficiently to enable recovery of voluntary movement in five out of five subjects. Pharmacological intervention combined with stimulation and training resulted in further improvement in voluntary motor control of stepping-like movements in all subjects. We also observed on-command selective activation of the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles when attempting to plantarflex. At the end of 18 weeks of weekly interventions the mean changes in the amplitude of voluntarily controlled movement without stimulation was as high as occurred when combined with electrical stimulation. Additionally, spinally evoked motor potentials were readily modulated in the presence of voluntary effort, providing electrophysiological evidence of the re-establishment of functional connectivity among neural networks between the brain and the spinal cord.

  13. Orthostatic vasomotor response in spinal man.

    PubMed

    Krebs, M; Ragnarrson, K T; Tuckman, J

    1983-04-01

    The cardiovascular adaptation of tetraplegics to the upright position has been previously demonstrated to be deficient. Presumably this is due to the interruption of the spinal pathways linking supraspinal control centres with the peripheral sympathetic motor neurons. Review of previous studies of this phenomenon reveals that vasomotor responses have been determined primarily from blood flow measurements in the extremities. Contradictory conclusions have been drawn. Study of the visceral circulation, in particular renal blood flow, could shed more light on this poorly understood area. Renal clearance tests were carried out on seven healthy controls and eight chronic, clinically complete tetraplegic patients. Renal blood flow, mean arterial pressure, and total renal vascular resistance in both supine and passive head-up tilt positions were calculated from collected data. Renal blood flow and total renal vascular resistance showed significant decrease and increase respectively during tilting in controls and tetraplegic subjects. Although the renal circulation is autoregulated, postural change causes profound alteration of the renal blood flow mediated through the haemodynamic effects of the renal nerves. Sympathetic renal vasoconstriction is mediated by the carotid sinus reflex through the vasomotor centre in the brainstem. In the absence of supraspinal influence the renal vasculature is shown to respond to an orthostatic stimulus with a vigorous vasoconstriction. The adaptation of spinal man to the upright position may involve the recovery of a spinal vasomotor reflex involving the splanchnic circulation.

  14. Management of acute traumatic spinal cord injuries.

    PubMed

    Shank, C D; Walters, B C; Hadley, M N

    2017-01-01

    Acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) is a devastating disease process affecting tens of thousands of people across the USA each year. Despite the increase in primary prevention measures, such as educational programs, motor vehicle speed limits, automobile running lights, and safety technology that includes automobile passive restraint systems and airbags, SCIs continue to carry substantial permanent morbidity and mortality. Medical measures implemented following the initial injury are designed to limit secondary insult to the spinal cord and to stabilize the spinal column in an attempt to decrease devastating sequelae. This chapter is an overview of the contemporary management of an acute traumatic SCI patient from the time of injury through the stay in the intensive care unit. We discuss initial triage, immobilization, and transportation of the patient by emergency medical services personnel to a definitive treatment facility. Upon arrival at the emergency department, we review initial trauma protocols and the evidence-based recommendations for radiographic evaluation of the patient's vertebral column. Finally, we outline closed cervical spine reduction and various aggressive medical therapies aimed at improving neurologic outcome.

  15. Human-induced pluripotent stem cells pave the road for a better understanding of motor neuron disease.

    PubMed

    Winner, Beate; Marchetto, Maria C; Winkler, Jürgen; Gage, Fred H

    2014-09-15

    While motor neuron diseases are currently incurable, induced pluripotent stem cell research has uncovered some disease-relevant phenotypes. We will discuss strategies to model different aspects of motor neuron disease and the specific neurons involved in the disease. We will then describe recent progress to investigate common forms of motor neuron disease: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, hereditary spastic paraplegia and spinal muscular atrophy.

  16. Epidural Injections for Spinal Pain

    MedlinePlus

    ... back or leg pain after spinal surgery) Other injuries to spinal nerves, vertebrae and surrounding tissues Bone ... Bleeding if a blood vessel is inadvertently damaged. Injury to the nerves at the injection site. Temporary ...

  17. Living with Spinal Cord Injury

    MedlinePlus

    ... to send and receive messages to and from the brain. About 200,000 people in the United States have spinal cord injuries. Most injuries occur from a traumatic event, according to the National Spinal Cord Injury ...

  18. Respiratory Plasticity Following Spinal Injury: Role of Chloride-Dependent Inhibitory Neurotransmission

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    the respiratory pathways following spinal cord injury. J Appl Physiol. 94(2):795-810. Raineteau O and Schwab ME (2001). Plasticity of motor systems ...AD_________________ Award Number: W81XWH-13-1-0410 TITLE: " Respiratory Plasticity Following Spinal Injury: Role of Chloride-Dependent...Inhibitory Neurotransmission" PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Gordon S. Mitchell, PhD CONTRACTING ORGANIZATION: University of Wisconsin System Madison, WI 53715

  19. Neuroprotective effect of cytoflavin during compression injury of the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Bul'on, V V; Kuznetsova, N N; Selina, E N; Kovalenko, A L; Alekseeva, L E; Sapronov, N S

    2005-04-01

    Cytoflavin normalized energy metabolism, decreased the intensity of lipid peroxidation, and reactivated the antioxidant system in the spinal cord of rats with compression injury at the level of Th10-Th11. The neuroprotective effect of the test preparation manifested in normalization of hindlimb motor function and decrease in mortality rate of animals with spinal cord injury. Neuroprotective activity of cytoflavin was higher than that of Cerebrolysin.

  20. Intervertebral disc extrusion and spinal decompression in a binturong (Arctictis binturong).

    PubMed

    Spriggs, Maria; Arble, Jason; Myers, Gwen

    2007-03-01

    A 10-yr-old binturong (Arctictis binturong) developed an acute onset of hind limb paralysis. Neurological examination revealed sensorimotor paraplegia. Myelography and computed tomography demonstrated a ventrolateral extradural compression of the spinal cord centered over the L3-L4 intervertebral disc space. Spinal decompression was performed via hemilaminectomy and excision of degenerate nucleus pulposus, confirmed by histopathologic examination. The binturong regained slight motor function by day 8 postoperatively but succumbed to pancreatitis 19 days postoperatively.

  1. Thoracic rat spinal cord contusion injury induces remote spinal gliogenesis but not neurogenesis or gliogenesis in the brain.

    PubMed

    Franz, Steffen; Ciatipis, Mareva; Pfeifer, Kathrin; Kierdorf, Birthe; Sandner, Beatrice; Bogdahn, Ulrich; Blesch, Armin; Winner, Beate; Weidner, Norbert

    2014-01-01

    After spinal cord injury, transected axons fail to regenerate, yet significant, spontaneous functional improvement can be observed over time. Distinct central nervous system regions retain the capacity to generate new neurons and glia from an endogenous pool of progenitor cells and to compensate neural cell loss following certain lesions. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether endogenous cell replacement (neurogenesis or gliogenesis) in the brain (subventricular zone, SVZ; corpus callosum, CC; hippocampus, HC; and motor cortex, MC) or cervical spinal cord might represent a structural correlate for spontaneous locomotor recovery after a thoracic spinal cord injury. Adult Fischer 344 rats received severe contusion injuries (200 kDyn) of the mid-thoracic spinal cord using an Infinite Horizon Impactor. Uninjured rats served as controls. From 4 to 14 days post-injury, both groups received injections of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) to label dividing cells. Over the course of six weeks post-injury, spontaneous recovery of locomotor function occurred. Survival of newly generated cells was unaltered in the SVZ, HC, CC, and the MC. Neurogenesis, as determined by identification and quantification of doublecortin immunoreactive neuroblasts or BrdU/neuronal nuclear antigen double positive newly generated neurons, was not present in non-neurogenic regions (MC, CC, and cervical spinal cord) and unaltered in neurogenic regions (dentate gyrus and SVZ) of the brain. The lack of neuronal replacement in the brain and spinal cord after spinal cord injury precludes any relevance for spontaneous recovery of locomotor function. Gliogenesis was increased in the cervical spinal cord remote from the injury site, however, is unlikely to contribute to functional improvement.

  2. Thoracic Rat Spinal Cord Contusion Injury Induces Remote Spinal Gliogenesis but Not Neurogenesis or Gliogenesis in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Pfeifer, Kathrin; Kierdorf, Birthe; Sandner, Beatrice; Bogdahn, Ulrich; Blesch, Armin; Winner, Beate; Weidner, Norbert

    2014-01-01

    After spinal cord injury, transected axons fail to regenerate, yet significant, spontaneous functional improvement can be observed over time. Distinct central nervous system regions retain the capacity to generate new neurons and glia from an endogenous pool of progenitor cells and to compensate neural cell loss following certain lesions. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether endogenous cell replacement (neurogenesis or gliogenesis) in the brain (subventricular zone, SVZ; corpus callosum, CC; hippocampus, HC; and motor cortex, MC) or cervical spinal cord might represent a structural correlate for spontaneous locomotor recovery after a thoracic spinal cord injury. Adult Fischer 344 rats received severe contusion injuries (200 kDyn) of the mid-thoracic spinal cord using an Infinite Horizon Impactor. Uninjured rats served as controls. From 4 to 14 days post-injury, both groups received injections of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) to label dividing cells. Over the course of six weeks post-injury, spontaneous recovery of locomotor function occurred. Survival of newly generated cells was unaltered in the SVZ, HC, CC, and the MC. Neurogenesis, as determined by identification and quantification of doublecortin immunoreactive neuroblasts or BrdU/neuronal nuclear antigen double positive newly generated neurons, was not present in non-neurogenic regions (MC, CC, and cervical spinal cord) and unaltered in neurogenic regions (dentate gyrus and SVZ) of the brain. The lack of neuronal replacement in the brain and spinal cord after spinal cord injury precludes any relevance for spontaneous recovery of locomotor function. Gliogenesis was increased in the cervical spinal cord remote from the injury site, however, is unlikely to contribute to functional improvement. PMID:25050623

  3. Intraoperative and pathological findings of intramedullary amputation neuroma associated with spinal ependymoma.

    PubMed

    Arishima, Hidetaka; Takeuchi, Hiroaki; Tsunetoshi, Kenzo; Kodera, Toshiaki; Kitai, Ryuhei; Kikuta, Ken-ichiro

    2013-07-01

    Amputation neuromas typically arise in injured peripheral nerves; rarely, however, they arise in the spinal cord. We report a rare case of intramedullary amputation neuroma associated with ependymoma in the cervical spinal cord. A 73-year-old woman presented with a 5-year history of progressive gait disturbance. Neurological examination revealed complete motor deficit of her hands and legs. Magnetic resonance imaging of the cervical spine revealed an enhancing mass within the spinal cord at the C6/7 level. The patient underwent C5-C7 laminectomy surgery. During resection of the spinal tumor, we found a whitish string resembling an aberrant nerve root or schwannoma with adhesion to the tumor on the ventral side of the spinal cord. After resecting the tumor, the surgical specimen was cut and separated into a soft greyish tumor (spinal tumor) and the tough whitish string. Histopathological and immunohistochemical examination revealed the former was a spinal ependymoma and the latter was a neuroma. An intramedullary amputation neuroma associated with a spinal ependymoma is rare, and this is the first known case in which intraoprerative findings were clearly shown. Neurosurgeons should be aware that spinal ependymomas might coexist with neuromas.

  4. Role of DSCAM in the development of the spinal locomotor and sensorimotor circuits.

    PubMed

    Thiry, Louise; Lemieux, Maxime; D Laflamme, Olivier; Bretzner, Frédéric

    2016-03-01

    Locomotion is controlled by spinal circuits that generate rhythm and coordinate left-right and flexor-extensor motoneuronal activities. The outputs of motoneurons and spinal interneuronal circuits are shaped by sensory feedback, relaying peripheral signals that are critical to the locomotor and postural control. Several studies in invertebrates and vertebrates have argued that the Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule (DSCAM) would play an important role in the normal development of neural circuits through cell spacing and targeting, axonal and dendritic branching, and synapse establishment and maintenance. Although there is evidence that DSCAM is important for the normal development of neural circuits, little is known about its functional contribution to spinal motor circuits. We show here that adult DSCAM(2J) mutant mice, lacking DSCAM, exhibit a higher variability in their locomotor pattern and rhythm during treadmill locomotion. Retrograde tracing studies in neonatal isolated spinal cords show an increased number of spinal commissural interneurons, which likely contributes to reducing the left-right alternation and to increasing the flexor/swing duration during neonatal and adult locomotion. Moreover, our results argue that, by reducing the peripheral excitatory drive onto spinal motoneurons, the DSCAM mutation reduces or abolishes spinal reflexes in both neonatal isolated spinal cords and adult mice, thus likely impairing sensorimotor control. Collectively, our functional, electrophysiological, and anatomical studies suggest that the mammalian DSCAM protein is involved in the normal development of spinal locomotor and sensorimotor circuits.

  5. Deciphering the organization and modulation of spinal locomotor central pattern generators.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Ian T; Whelan, Patrick J

    2006-06-01

    Networks within our spinal cord generate the basic pattern underlying walking. Over the past decade, much progress has been made in our understanding of their function in a variety of vertebrate species. A significant hurdle has been the identification of candidate populations of neurons that are involved in pattern generation in the spinal cord. Recently, systems neuroscientists in collaboration with molecular biologists have begun to dissect the circuitry underlying spinal locomotor networks. These advances have combined genetic and electrophysiological techniques using in vitro preparations of the mouse spinal cord. This review will discuss new advances in the field of spinal locomotor networks with emphasis on the mouse. Many of the behaviors fundamental to animal life, such as breathing, chewing and locomotion, are rhythmic activities controlled by neuronal networks. Discerning which neurons are members of these networks, their synaptic connectivity and their individual electrophysiological properties is essential to our understanding of how rhythmic motor behaviors are produced. It is well known that the spinal cord contains the basic circuitry to produce locomotion. However, identifying neurons and connections within spinal networks is challenging because cells that comprise the locomotor network form part of a heterogeneous mix of interneurons within the ventral spinal cord. Recently, the merging of electrophysiological and genetic approaches has provided new tools to identify classes of interneurons within the spinal cord that contribute to network function. These new findings will be discussed in this review.

  6. Epidural Stimulation Induced Modulation of Spinal Locomotor Networks in Adult Spinal Rats

    PubMed Central

    Lavrov, Igor; Dy, Christine J.; Fong, Andy J.; Gerasimenko, Yury; Courtine, Grégoire; Zhong, Hui; Roy, Roland R.; Edgerton, V. Reggie

    2010-01-01

    The importance of the in vivo dynamic nature of the circuitries within the spinal cord that generate locomotion is becoming increasingly evident. We examined the characteristics of hindlimb EMG activity evoked in response to epidural stimulation at the S1 spinal cord segment in complete mid-thoracic spinal cord transected rats at different stages of post-lesion recovery. A progressive and phase-dependent modulation of monosynaptic (middle) and long latency (late) stimulation-evoked EMG responses was observed throughout the step cycle. During the first three weeks after injury the amplitude of the middle response was potentiated during the EMG bursts, whereas after 4 weeks both the middle and late responses were phase-dependently modulated. The middle and late response magnitudes were closely linked to the amplitude and duration of the EMG bursts during locomotion facilitated by epidural stimulation. The optimum stimulation frequency that maintained consistent activity of the long latency responses ranged from 40 to 60 Hz, whereas the short latency responses were consistent from 5 to 130 Hz. These data demonstrate that both middle and late evoked potentials within a motor pool are strictly gated during in vivo bipedal stepping as a function of the general excitability of the motor pool and, thus as a function of the phase of the step cycle. These data demonstrate that spinal cord epidural stimulation can facilitate locomotion in a time-dependent manner post-lesion. The long latency responses to epidural stimulation are correlated with the recovery of weight-bearing bipedal locomotion and may reflect activation of interneuronal central pattern-generating circuits. PMID:18524907

  7. Epidural stimulation induced modulation of spinal locomotor networks in adult spinal rats.

    PubMed

    Lavrov, Igor; Dy, Christine J; Fong, Andy J; Gerasimenko, Yury; Courtine, Grégoire; Zhong, Hui; Roy, Roland R; Edgerton, V Reggie

    2008-06-04

    The importance of the in vivo dynamic nature of the circuitries within the spinal cord that generate locomotion is becoming increasingly evident. We examined the characteristics of hindlimb EMG activity evoked in response to epidural stimulation at the S1 spinal cord segment in complete midthoracic spinal cord-transected rats at different stages of postlesion recovery. A progressive and phase-dependent modulation of monosynaptic (middle) and long-latency (late) stimulation-evoked EMG responses was observed throughout the step cycle. During the first 3 weeks after injury, the amplitude of the middle response was potentiated during the EMG bursts, whereas after 4 weeks, both the middle and late responses were phase-dependently modulated. The middle- and late-response magnitudes were closely linked to the amplitude and duration of the EMG bursts during locomotion facilitated by epidural stimulation. The optimum stimulation frequency that maintained consistent activity of the long-latency responses ranged from 40 to 60 Hz, whereas the short-latency responses were consistent from 5 to 130 Hz. These data demonstrate that both middle and late evoked potentials within a motor pool are strictly gated during in vivo bipedal stepping as a function of the general excitability of the motor pool and, thus, as a function of the phase of the step cycle. These data demonstrate that spinal cord epidural stimulation can facilitate locomotion in a time-dependent manner after lesion. The long-latency responses to epidural stimulation are correlated with the recovery of weight-bearing bipedal locomotion and may reflect activation of interneuronal central pattern-generating circuits.

  8. Stepper motor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dekramer, Cornelis

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this document is to describe the more commonly used permanent magnet stepper motors for spaceflight. It will discuss the mechanical and electrical aspects of the devices, their torque behavior, those parameters which need to be controlled and measured, and test methods to be employed. It will also discuss torque margins, compare these to the existing margin requirements, and determine the applicability of these requirements. Finally it will attempt to generate a set of requirements which will be used in any stepper motor procurement and will fully characterize the stepper motor behavior in a consistent and repeatable fashion.

  9. Exercise Training Promotes Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Juanjuan; Deng, Lingxiao; Li, Jianan

    2016-01-01

    The exercise training is an effective therapy for spinal cord injury which has been applied to clinic. Traditionally, the exercise training has been considered to improve spinal cord function only through enhancement, compensation, and replacement of the remaining function of nerve and muscle. Recently, accumulating evidences indicated that exercise training can improve the function in different levels from end-effector organ such as skeletal muscle to cerebral cortex through reshaping skeletal muscle structure and muscle fiber type, regulating physiological and metabolic function of motor neurons in the spinal cord and remodeling function of the cerebral cortex. We compiled published data collected in different animal models and clinical studies into a succinct review of the current state of knowledge. PMID:28050288

  10. Symptomatic Spinal Cord Bending After Meningioma Resection: A Technical Case Report.

    PubMed

    Paolini, Sergio; Bistazzoni, Simona; Missori, Paolo; Tola, Serena; Esposito, Vincenzo

    2016-04-01

    Resection of intradural tumors is often followed by bending of the spinal cord within the surgical cave. This event is known to be innocuous. The authors report a case where the position assumed by the spinal cord at the end of surgery was associated with significant motor evoked potential decline. The patient, a 44-year-old woman with a meningioma of the craniocervical junction, underwent tumor resection aided by intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring. At the time of dural closure, the motor evoked potentials were completely lost on the left side and reduced on the right side. Intraoperative maneuvers showed that worsening was related to the spinal cord position. Motor evoked potentials were restored by tethering the cord posteriorly, back to its original site. This report underlines the usefulness of maintaining intraoperative monitoring until the end of surgery and provides a technical nuance to manage a rare complication.

  11. Spinal Injuries in Children

    PubMed Central

    Basu, Saumyajit

    2012-01-01

    About 5% of spinal injuries occur in children – however the consequences to the society are devastating, all the more so because the cervical spine is more commonly affected. Anatomical differences with adults along with the inherent elasticity of the pediatric spine, makes these injuries a biomechanically separate entity. Hence clinical manifestations are unique, one of which is the Spinal Cord Injury Without Radiological Abnormality. With the advent of high quality MRI and CT scan along with digital X-ray, it is now possible to exactly delineate the anatomical location, geometrical configuration, and the pathological extent of the injury. This has improved the management strategies of these unfortunate children and the role of surgical stabilization in unstable injuries can be more sharply defined. However these patients should be followed up diligently because of the recognized long term complications of spinal deformity and syringomyelia. PMID:22855681

  12. Lumbar spinal stenosis.

    PubMed Central

    Ciricillo, S F; Weinstein, P R

    1993-01-01

    Lumbar spinal stenosis, the results of congenital and degenerative constriction of the neural canal and foramina leading to lumbosacral nerve root or cauda equina compression, is a common cause of disability in middle-aged and elderly patients. Advanced neuroradiologic imaging techniques have improved our ability to localize the site of nerve root entrapment in patients presenting with neurogenic claudication or painful radiculopathy. Although conservative medical management may be successful initially, surgical decompression by wide laminectomy or an intralaminar approach should be done in patients with serious or progressive pain or neurologic dysfunction. Because the early diagnosis and treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis may prevent intractable pain and the permanent neurologic sequelae of chronic nerve root entrapment, all physicians should be aware of the different neurologic presentations and the treatment options for patients with spinal stenosis. Images PMID:8434469

  13. Clinical and genetic diversity of SMN1-negative proximal spinal muscular atrophies

    PubMed Central

    Jordanova, Albena

    2014-01-01

    Hereditary spinal muscular atrophy is a motor neuron disorder characterized by muscle weakness and atrophy due to degeneration of the anterior horn cells of the spinal cord. Initially, the disease was considered purely as an autosomal recessive condition caused by loss-of-function SMN1 mutations on 5q13. Recent developments in next generation sequencing technologies, however, have unveiled a growing number of clinical conditions designated as non-5q forms of spinal muscular atrophy. At present, 16 different genes and one unresolved locus are associated with proximal non-5q forms, having high phenotypic variability and diverse inheritance patterns. This review provides an overview of the current knowledge regarding the phenotypes, causative genes, and disease mechanisms associated with proximal SMN1-negative spinal muscular atrophies. We describe the molecular and cellular functions enriched among causative genes, and discuss the challenges in the post-genomics era of spinal muscular atrophy research. PMID:24970098

  14. Chronic in vivo imaging in the mouse spinal cord using an implanted chamber

    PubMed Central

    Farrar, Matthew J.; Bernstein, Ida M.; Schlafer, Donald H.; Cleland, Thomas A.; Fetcho, Joseph R.; Schaffer, Chris B.

    2012-01-01

    Understanding and treatment of spinal cord pathology is limited in part by a lack of longitudinal in vivo imaging strategies at the cellular level. We developed a chronically implanted spinal chamber and surgical procedure suitable for time-lapse in vivo multiphoton microscopy of mouse spinal cord without the need for repeat surgical procedures. Repeated imaging was routinely achieved for more than five weeks post-operatively with up to ten separate imaging sessions. We observed neither motor function deficit nor neuropathology in the spinal cord as a result of chamber implantation. Using this chamber we quantified microglia and afferent axon dynamics following a laser-induced