Different forms of impairment of the fore-hindlimb coordination after partial spinal lesions in cats
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Effects of large low thoracic (T10-T11) partial spinal lesions involving either the ventral quadrans of the spinal cord and, to a different extent the dorsolateral funiculi, or different extent of the lateral funiculi and/or the dorsal columns, on the fore-hindlimb coordination were examined in cats walking overground at moderate speeds. In both groups of operated cats, except those in which the lesion was essentialy confined to dorsal columns, three different forms of impairment of fore-hindlimb coordination were observed, depending on the extent of lesion: (1) a change of locomotion towards pacing with preservation of the equality of the rhythms in the fore- and the hindlimbs; (2) episodes of fore- and hindlimb rhythm dissociation and (3) a permament dissociation of the fore- and hindlimb rhythms. A comparison of the results obtained in these two groups operated cats points to the more important role played by lateral funiculi, then by other parts of the spinal white matter, in controlling the fore-hindlimb coordination in cats.
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