Föreläsningar och seminarier

Reverse engineering motor output to identify the synaptic organization of motor commands

2014-05-0516:30 Hillarp, Retzius väg 8 Karolinska InstitutetCampus Solna

Welcome to the lecture: “Reverse engineering motor output to identify the synaptic organization of motor commands” by

CJ Heckman, Professor


Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Physical Therapy & Human Movement Sciences

Northwestern University


Abstract: Motoneurons are the only neurons in the CNS whose action potentials can be routinely recorded in human subjects, due to the 1 to 1 coupling between motoneuron action potentials and those of the muscle fibers that they innervate. The potential for using this unique window into CNS motor function has however been severely limited by a lack of understanding of how neuromodulatory inputs affect input-output processing in motoneurons and the restriction of recording of motor unit firing patterns to 1-2 units at a time.  To deal with these limitations, we have developed computer simulations of the motoneuron that fully capture the effects of neuromodulatory inputs.  We also have developed new electrode array techniques that allow the firing patterns of many motor units to be simultaneously recorded. Our “reverse engineering” approach uses the simulations to recreate the firing patterns of the multiple motor units recorded by our arrays.  The set of inputs that generates the most accurate recreations provides our estimate of input structure. I will present our progress thus far in using this approach to identify the 3 main components of motor commands, which we consider to be excitation, inhibition and neuromodulation.  This information on the overall synaptic organization of motor commands has the potential to transform our understanding of the neural control of movement in both normal and pathological states.  

Contact person: Ole Kiehn
Klinisk neurovetenskap