1 Motor Control Lab, Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet2 unknown3 Motor Control Lab, Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, Københavns Universitet
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.
Journal of Physiology, 2013, Vol 591, Issue Pt 22, p. 5433-43