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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Serotonin-induced activation of the network for locomotion in adult spinal rats.

The biogenic amine serotonin has been described in the literature as a powerful modulator of the spinal central pattern generator for locomotion. In the present study, we tested whether administration of serotonin or its agonist quipazine could restore motor activity in a model of paraplegia. One to three weeks after a complete transection of the spinal cord at a low thoracic level, rats were given either intrathecal injections of serotonin (5 mM, 15 microL) or intraperitoneal injections of quipazine (400-600 microg/kg). Both treatments allowed recovery of locomotor activity on a treadmill in response to tail pinching. As compared with the activity elicited before treatment, the locomotor activity produced by spinal animals was characterised by longer locomotor sequences with a larger number of successive steps, better body support, better interlimb coordination, and a higher amplitude of electromyographic bursts. These results suggest that serotonergic drugs could be used for the recovery of motor functions after lesions of the spinal cord.[1]


  1. Serotonin-induced activation of the network for locomotion in adult spinal rats. Feraboli-Lohnherr, D., Barthe, J.Y., Orsal, D. J. Neurosci. Res. (1999) [Pubmed]
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