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Somatic receptive-field properties of single fibres in the rostral portion of the corpus callosum in awake cats

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In fifteen awake, chronic cats single-unit recordings were obtained from 316 fibres isolated in the rostral portion of the corpus callosum (CC). Altogether, 304 units were reactive to peripheral stimuli. They were fired by hair bending, light touch or light pressure (S units; 79.3%) or by gentle rotation of joints and/or by pressure on muscle bellies or tendons (D units; 20.7%). All the reactive units were endowed with small and unilateral receptive fields (RFs) located in trigeminal (49.7%) or segmentai (50.3%) regions. Trigeminal and forepaw units had the smallest RFs. All the trigeminal units were of the S type. Their RFs were located in either the ophthalmic, maxillar, and mandibular face districts or in the oral vestible. The vast majority of segmental units (146 out 153 fibres) had RFs in the forelimb. Very few units were fired by stimulation of the trunk (6 fibres), and only one had its RF in the tail. Almost half of the forelimb units (69 fibres) were fired by stimulation of the most proximal parts of the forelimb and of the shoulder; about one third (57 fibres) exhibited RFs located in the forepaw; the remaining units (20 fibres) had their RFs in the intermediate region of the forelimb. Neither the trigeminal nor segmental RFs ever extended across the midline. The distribution of the fibres within the CC conformed to a somatotopic pattern. The representations of the trigeminal and segmental regions were largely coextensive. Along the rostro-caudal axis of the CC, units with RFs in the mandibular, maxillar and ophthalmic divisions of the trigeminal region tended to lie in this order in the rostralmost 4 mm. Segmental representation extended over the rostralmost 6 mm. Shoulder fibres were mainly found in the rostral half, whereas forepaw units were segregated in the caudal half.

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Correspondence to G. Spidalieri.

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Supported by grants from the National Research Council (C.N.R.) of Italy and from Italian Ministero della Pubblica Istruzione

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Spidalieri, G., Franchi, G. & Guandalini, P. Somatic receptive-field properties of single fibres in the rostral portion of the corpus callosum in awake cats. Exp Brain Res 58, 75–81 (1985). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00238955

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Key words

  • Corpus callosum
  • Single fibres
  • Somatic receptive fields
  • Awake cats