Priming of locomotor initiation by electrical stimulation in the hypothalamus and preoptic region in the anesthetized rat

M. C. Tresch, C. L. Miller, H. M. Sinnamon*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

electrical stimulation at a locomotor site can prime (i.e., shorten the latency to initiate) stepping elicited by subsequent stimulation of the same or a different site. We tested for the priming effect in representative sites along the medial forebrain bundle, and determined if its magnitude showed regional differences. Rats (n = 20) were anesthetized with Nembutal and held in a stereotaxic apparatus over a wheel. Stepping was detected by accelerometers attached to the hindlimbs. Priming and test trains of stimulation (0.5-ms cathodal pulses, 50 Hz, 25-75 MA, 7-9-s train duration) separated by 20 s were delivered every 90 s. When the priming and test stimulations were applied to the same site, the priming effects were similar along the entire extent of the medial forebrain bundle. When the priming and test sites were different, the priming effect depended on their relative positions. Anterior stimulation primed posterior sites at magnitudes comparable to those produced by stimulating the same posterior site. Posterior stimulation primed anterior sites at a level half of that produced by stimulation of the same anterior site. This pattern was found for priming and test sites that were ipsilateral and contralateral. Priming is a general and robust phenomenon with properties that may be useful for studying locomotor initiation pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-648
Number of pages8
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Volume57
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1995

Keywords

  • Electrical stimulation
  • Hypothalamus
  • Locomotion
  • Nembutal
  • Preoptic region
  • Priming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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