Functional Maturation of Muscle Spindles in the Tenuissimus Muscles of Kittens

  • Richard Butler


Almost thirty years ago, Skoglund (1960) published the results of a series of experiments in which he was able to assess the acquisition of physiological function in maturing gastrocnemius muscle spindles of kittens from birth to 45 days of age. He found that all stretch receptors responded phasically in newborn and young kittens. It was not until 6–10 days after birth that muscle spindles began to develop tonic discharges in response to a stretch and hold stimulus. At 17 days of age, the effect of gamma motoneurons on spindle discharges was demonstrable and Skoglund presented evidence for an earlier alpha innervation of the spindles.


Muscle Spindle Tonic Discharge Afferent Response Motoneuron Cell Body Gamma Motoneuron 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Bruce, I.C., and Tatton, W.G., 1980a, Sequential output-input maturation of kitten motor cortex, Exp. Brain Res., 39, 411–419.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bruce, I.C., and Tatton, W.G., 1980b, Synchronous development of motor cortical output to different muscles in the kitten. Exp. Brain Res., 40: 349–353.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Bruce, I.C., and Tatton, W.G., 1981, Descending projections to the cervical spinal cord in the developing kitten, Neuroscience Letters, 25, 227–231.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Buller, A.J., Ecoles, J.C., and Ecoles, R.M., 1960, Differentiation of fast and slow muscles in the cat hind limb, J. Physiol., 150, 399–416.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Butler, R., 1980, The organization of muscle spindles in the tenuissimus muscle of the cat during late development, Develop. Biol., 77, 191–212.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Milburn, A., 1984, Stages in the development of cat muscle spindles, J. Embryol. exp. Morph., 82, 177–216.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Nystrom, B., 1968a, Fibre diameter increase in nerves to “slow-red” and “fast white” cat muscles during postnatal development, Acta Neurol. Scandinav., 44, 265–294.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Nystrom, B., 1968b, Histochemistry of developing cat muscles, Acta Neurol. Scandinav., 44, 405–439.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Skoglund, S., 1960, The activity of muscle receptors in the kitten, Acta physiol. scand., 50, 203–221.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Tatton, W.G., Hay, M., and Bruce, I.C., 1984, Postnatal growth of medial gastrocnemius motoneurons in the cat, Neurosci. Abst., 10: 913.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Butler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnatomyMcMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada

Personalised recommendations