Responses of medial reticular neurons to stimulation of the vestibular nerve

Barry W. Peterson*, Michel Filion, Leslie P. Felpel, Charles Abzug

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Responses of neurons in the medial ponto-medullary reticular formation to stimulation of vestibular nerves, bilateral pericruciate cortex and several cutaneous points were studied in cerebellectomized cats under chloralose-urethan or pentobarbital anesthesia. Reticulospinal neurons were identified by their antidromic responses to stimulation of cervical or lumbar spinal cord. Stimulation of the vestibular nerves with trains of three shocks evoked firing of approximately one third of the reticular neurons studied with extracellular recording. The same stimuli produced EPSPs or IPSPs in approximately 75% of the neurons studied with intracellular recording. Stimulus intensities required to evoke firing or PSPs ranged from 1.0 to over 10 times the threshold intensity for evoking a vestibular N1 potential. The shortest latency vestibular-evoked PSPs had properties which suggested that they were produced by a disynaptic pathway. Neurons receiving such short latency IPSPs were concentrated in the dorso-rostral part of n.r. gigantocellularis; neurons receiving short latency EPSPs were scattered throughout this nucleus, but were seldom found in the pontine reticular formation. Reticulospinal neurons were observed to receive short latency EPSPs but not short latency IPSPs. Reticular neurons often received convergent input from vestibular nerves, pericruciate cortex and several cutaneous points. No relationship was detected between such different inputs, but neurons tended to respond in a similar way to stimulation of both vestibular nerves, or of both pericruciate cortices or of different cutaneous points.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-350
Number of pages16
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 1975


  • Cutaneous afferents
  • Pericruciate cortex
  • Reticulospinal neurons
  • Vestibular nerve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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