Medullary electrosensory processing in the little skate. II. Suppression of self-generated electrosensory interference during respiration. Academic Article uri icon


  • 1. Previous studies have demonstrated that the resting activity of electrosensory ALLN fibers is modulated by the animal's own respiratory activity and that all fibers innervating a single ampullary cluster are modulated with the same amplitude and phase relationship to ventilation. We demonstrate that ALLN fibers in the skate are modulated in this common-mode manner bilaterally, regardless of receptor group, orientation, or position of the receptor pore on the body surface (Fig. 2). 2. Ascending efferent neurons (AENs), which project to the electrosensory midbrain from the DON, are modulated through a much smaller portion of their dynamic range. AENs give larger responses to an extrinsic local electric field than to the respiratory driving, indicating that a mechanism exists for suppressing ventilatory electrosensory reafference. 3. In paralyzed animals no modulation of resting activity or of responses of extrinsic electric fields could be observed with respect to the animal's respiratory motor commands in the absence of electrosensory reafference. 4. Cells of the dorsal granular ridge (DGR) project to medullary AENs via the DON molecular layer. A majority of proprioceptive DGR neurons are modulated by ventilatory activity, however, in a given fish the modulation is not in the same phase relationship to ventilation among DGR units. 5. The modulation of AENs during respiration was increased following transection of the contralateral ALLN (Fig. 9). Resting activity and responses to excitatory stimuli were inhibited by simultaneous stimulation of the transected contralateral ALLN indicating that a common-mode rejection mechanism is mediated via the commissural interconnections of the DONs.

publication date

  • July 1990