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Previous studies have suggested that the motor system may simplify control by combining a small number of muscle synergies represented as activation profiles across a set of muscles. The role of sensory feedback in the activation and organization of synergies has remained an open question. Here, we assess to what extent the motor system relies on centrally(More)
We used a computational analysis to identify the basic elements with which the vertebrate spinal cord constructs one complex behavior. This analysis extracted a small set of muscle synergies from the range of muscle activations generated by cutaneous stimulation of the frog hindlimb. The flexible combination of these synergies was able to account for the(More)
Several recent studies have used matrix factorization algorithms to assess the hypothesis that behaviors might be produced through the combination of a small number of muscle synergies. Although generally agreeing in their basic conclusions, these studies have used a range of different algorithms, making their interpretation and integration difficult. We(More)
We describe the responses evoked by microstimulation of interneuronal regions of the spinal cord in unanesthetized rats chronically spinalized at T10-T12. One to three weeks after spinalization, sites in the lumbar spinal cord were stimulated using trains of low current microstimulation. The isometric force produced by stimulation of a spinal site was(More)
This paper relates to the problem of the existence of muscle synergies, that is whether the CNS command to muscles is simplified by controlling their activity in subgroups or synergies, rather than individually. We approach this problem with two methods that have been recently introduced: intraspinal N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) microstimulation and a(More)
Coordination of neuronal activity to produce movement is generally thought to depend on spike activity in premotor interneuronal networks. Here we show that even without such activity, the neonatal rat spinal cord could produce a stable motor rhythm mediated by the synchronization of motor neuron oscillations across gap junctions. These rhythms, however,(More)
Motor neurons are endowed with intrinsic and conditional membrane properties that may shape the final motor output. In the first half of this paper we present data on the contribution of I(h), a hyperpolarization-activated inward cation current, to phase-transition in motor neurons during rhythmic firing. Motor neurons were recorded intracellularly during(More)
We review experiments supporting the hypothesis that the vertebrate motor system produces movements by combining a small number of units of motor output. Using a variety of approaches such as microstimulation of the spinal cord, NMDA iontophoresis, and an examination of natural behaviors in intact and deafferented animals we have provided evidence for a(More)
One theory for how humans control movement is that muscles are activated in weighted groups or synergies. Studies have shown that electromyography (EMG) from a variety of tasks can be described by a low-dimensional space thought to reflect synergies. These studies use algorithms, such as nonnegative matrix factorization, to identify synergies from EMG. Due(More)
A long standing goal in motor control is to determine the fundamental output controlled by the CNS: does the CNS control the activation of individual motor units, individual muscles, groups of muscles, kinematic or dynamic features of movement, or does it simply care about accomplishing a task? Of course, the output controlled by the CNS might not be(More)