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Type: Journal article
Title: Low-frequency common modulation of soleus motor unit discharge is enhanced during postural control in humans
Author: Mochizuki, G.
Semmler, J.
Ivanova, T.
Garland, S.
Citation: Experimental Brain Research, 2006; 175(4):584-595
Publisher: Springer
Issue Date: 2006
ISSN: 0014-4819
Statement of
G. Mochizuki, J. G. Semmler, T. D. Ivanova and S. J. Garland
Abstract: The maintenance of quiet stance requires the activation of muscles bilaterally. The soleus muscles in each leg share a common function in standing; that is, each muscle acts to control antero-posterior (AP) sway on its own side. We sought to determine the extent to which oscillations in motor unit discharge were related in motor unit pairs of the soleus muscles during postural and voluntary isometric tasks, both within and between legs. Subjects stood quietly for 5 min or performed a voluntary isometric plantarflexion contraction in a seated position. During the postural tasks, the excursions of AP sway between legs were highly correlated (ρ = 0.86 ± 0.06). The strength of common modulation of motor unit discharge rates was assessed using time- and frequency-domain analyses. The time-domain common drive analysis revealed that the strongest correlation in motor unit discharge modulation occurred in the postural task with unilateral pairs (ρ = 0.71 ± 0.13) being more strongly correlated than bilateral pairs (ρ = 0.50 ± 0.16). Common modulation of motor unit discharge was lowest for the voluntary tasks, with ρ = 0.38 ± 0.11 and 0.16 ± 0.08 for unilateral and bilateral pairs, respectively. Similarly, the frequency-domain coherence analysis demonstrated an identical ordering effect, with the largest maximum pooled coherence occurring during standing posture in unilateral (0.070 at 1.6 Hz) and bilateral (0.055 at 1.6 Hz) recordings, whereas minimal coherence was observed in the voluntary task in both unilateral and bilateral recordings within the 0–5 Hz range. These results indicate that in the soleus muscle, common modulation of motor unit discharge is greater during postural tasks than during voluntary isometric tasks and can be observed in both bilateral and unilateral motor unit pairs. Differences in the extent of co-modulation of motor unit discharge between tasks may be attributed to either differences in the descending control or differences in the proprioceptive input between postural and isometric tasks.
Keywords: short-term synchronization; voluntary contractions; corticospinal projections; firing pattern; quiet stance; muscle; coherence; balance; motoneurons; stiffness; Human; Motor unit; Posture; Coherence; Common drive
Rights: © 2006 Springer-Verlag
RMID: 0020061710
DOI: 10.1007/s00221-006-0575-7
Appears in Collections:Molecular and Biomedical Science publications

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