Caudo-rostral brain stem reciprocal influences in the cat

Mauro Mancia, Maurizio Mariotti, Roberto Spreafico

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Intracellular recording from mesencephalic neurons during low-frequency bulbar stimulation revealed short-latency EPSPs with or without spikes, IPSPs and EPSP-IPSP sequences. At high frequency, EPSPs locked to the stimulus were seen to be superimposed on a depolarizing or a hyperpolarizing membrane potential shift. After chronic bilateral coagulation of dorsal column nuclei and hemisection of the spinal cord at C3, postsynaptic inhibition of midbrain neurons by bulbar stimulation was the exclusive effect at low-frequency and the main effect at high-frequency stimulation. In bulbar neurons, low-frequency mesencephalic stimulation mainly induced EPSPs with or without spikes at short latency, and EPSP-IPSP sequences. Post-synaptic inhibition was also observed. At high frequency, mixed excitatory and inhibitory influences were noted with prevalence of excitation in some neurons and of inhibition in others. Antidromic activation was found in the bulb during midbrain stimulation. These effects did not change significantly after chronic hemisection of the midbrain. The results show that a negative feed-back circuit (mesencephalo-bulbarmesencephalic) may be operating in the brain stem to control reticular homeostasis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-51
Number of pages11
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Nov 8 1974

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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