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Tonic influence of the efferent vestibular system on the spontaneous afferent activity from semicircular canals in the frog (Rana esculenta L.)


In the frog we have recorded the spontaneous activity of single afferent fibres of the ampullary nerves of the left horizontal semicircular canal (HC) and vertical anterior canal (VAC) in isolated head preparations. The recordings have been made in 4 experimental situations: intact preparations; preparations whose brain was destroyed; preparations whose contralateral vestibular nerve had been cut between Scarpa's ganglion and the brain; preparations where either an ampullary nerve (that of the HC or of the VAC) or the utricular nerve had been cut contralaterally. From our results, it appears that the efferent vestibular system has a tonic influence on the afferent activity from HC and VAC; the influence of the part of the efferent vestibular system (EVS) activity depending on contralateral vestibular inputs is inhibitory, while the influence of the part of the EVS activity depending on ipsilateral vestibular inputs might be facilitatory.

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Gribenski, A., Caston, J. Tonic influence of the efferent vestibular system on the spontaneous afferent activity from semicircular canals in the frog (Rana esculenta L.). Exp Brain Res 26, 275–283 (1976).

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Key words

  • Efferent vestibular
  • Vestibular input
  • Semicircular canals