The Role of Nigrostriatal and Mesolimbic Dopaminergic Brain Systems in the Control of Voluntary Movements and Postural Adjustment in Dogs

  • K. B. Shapovalova
  • A. F. Yakimovsky


Microinjections of 3 g dopamine (DA) into the caudate nucleus head (HNC) and the nucleus accumbens (NAC) produced unidirectional effects on the motor components of avoidance instrumental reaction (IR) and posture adjustment in two groups of dogs (intact dogs and dogs with varying degrees of caudate pathology). However, each of these dopaminergic systems can mainly regulate certain components of the IR motor program, i.e. nigrostriatal system — the initiation of both the conditioned postural adjustment and the voluntary movement and mesolimbic system — the IR amplitude and stability of performance. The effects of the ipsi- and contralateral DA microinjections into HNC were, in principle, similar. The same was true of the microinjections into left and right NAC. The influence of bilateral microinjections into HNC and into NAC was stronger than that of unilateral ones. The greatest effects was obtained after combined “four-cannulae” microinjection of DA bilaterally into both structures in the dog with an akinetic form of caudate pathology. DA microinjections into the HNC of “parkinsonian” animals were followed by an improvement in all IR components and, consequently by an increase in the percentage of correct IR in the experiment. On the other hand, the normal animals with the absolutely correct IR and 100% score on the task solution apparently had a well balanced level of neostriatal mediatory system interaction. Therefore, DA microinjections into the HNC and NAC of these animals, which change this balance, disrupt the instrumental behaviour by increasing the number of interstimulus limb raising and phasic movements, overlapping the tonic instrumental reaction.


Voluntary Movement Conditioning Signal Postural Adjustment Nigrostriatal System Instrumental Behaviour 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. B. Shapovalova
    • 1
  • A. F. Yakimovsky
    • 1
  1. 1.Pavlov Institute of SciencesLeningradUSSR

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