Double stimulation modulates afterhyperpolarization phase following action potentials evoked in rat motoneurones
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The influence of a pair of stimuli running in time sequence between 5-10 ms (a doublet) on the basic parameters of antidromic action potentials was studied in rat motoneurones. Electrophysiological experiments were based on stimulation of axons in the sciatic nerve and intracellular recording of antidromic action potentials from individual motoneurones located in L4-L5 segments of the spinal cord. The following parameters were analyzed after application of a single stimulus and a doublet: amplitude and duration of the antidromic spike, amplitude, total duration, time to minimum, half-decay time of the afterhyperpolarization (AHP). It was demonstrated that application of a pair of stimuli resulted in: (1) a prolongation of action potentials, (2) a prolongation of the total duration and half-decay time of the AHP, (3) a decline of the time to minimum of the AHP, (4) an increase of the AHP amplitude of the spike evoked by the second stimulus. Significant differences in AHP parameters were found either in fast or slow motoneurones. We suppose that doublet-evoked changes in the AHP amplitude and duration are linked to intrinsic properties of individual motoneurones and may lead to the prolongation of the time interval to subsequent motoneuronal discharges during voluntary activity.
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W. Mrowczynski, Department of Neurobiology, University School of Physical Education, 55 Grunwaldzka St., 60-352 Poznan, Poland